Lavinia Moore (SA) writes to the Prime Minister about decision to vote against Palestine’s membership of UNESCO 4Nov11 November 7, 2011

Dear Prime Minister,

I am deeply shocked by your decision to vote against Palestine’s membership of UNESCO.
What on earth were you thinking?
What harm would have come to Australia’s interests if you had done the honourable thing and voted for their membership of an organisation that has as its mission the protection of archaeological, historical and other culturally significant sites?

I have recently been to Morocco and noted before I left that Morocco has several World heritage Sites, some of which I was privileged to see. I know that some have been able to be restored and maintained because of grants from UNESCO, grants that would not have happened if Morocco was not a member.

I know that you are not a believer. Neither am I. But I recognise the value of respecting and caring for historical and archaeological sites. They have to do with our past. And if not directly, the past of human civilisation. They have to do with our identity. They tell us who we are and what we are.

Your refusal to vote for Palestine’s membership tells me that you have no respect for that universal heritage, one that is especially precious to Palestinians wherever they are.

I believe that they are also significant and precious to all humanity.

Sadly you put political expediency ahead of humane action. And I want you to think about that.

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