Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate (Jerusalem) – Follow-up to decisions previously adopted – 192nd UNESCO Executive Board session



Item 5 of the provisional agenda












D. Implementation of 36 C/Resolution 43 and 191 EX/Decision 5 (I) relating to the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem

(Follow-up to 191 EX/Decision 5 (1))


1. Pursuant to 176 EX/Special Plenary Meeting/Decision and to the decisions of the World Heritage Committee since its 31st session in 2007 (Christchurch, New Zealand), the World Heritage Centre has spared no efforts to facilitate exchanges between Israeli, Palestinian, Jordanian and Waqf experts regarding the design of the Mughrabi Ascent in the Old City of Jerusalem.  Despite these efforts, to date no follow-up to the technical meetings held in January and February 2008 has taken place.


2. This item was inscribed on the agenda of the Executive Board at all subsequent sessions.  It is also presented annually to the World Heritage Committee within the framework of the item related to the state of conservation of World Heritage properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger as regards the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls.


3. During the discussions at the 190th session of the Executive Board, Member States expressed their concern as regards the lack of progress in implementing the decisions of the Board and of the World Heritage committee.  At the 191st session, a consensus was reached among the concerned parties, which led to the adoption of 191 EX/Decision 5 calling for a joint technical reactive monitoring mission to Jerusalem by the World Heritage Centre, ICCROM and ICOMOS to be sent to the Old city of Jerusalem.  As a result of this decision, the parties also agreed to hold a meeting of experts on the Mughrabi Ascent in May 2013.


4. The meeting, for which the Jordanian and Palestinian authorities had designated their experts, was due to take place at the World Heritage Centre on 27 May 2013.  However, failing to agree on the terms of reference of the above-mentioned mission, the Israeli authorities considered the meeting to be premature and it therefore has not taken place at the time of drafting of the present document.


5. At the 37th session of the World Heritage Committee (Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 17-27 June 2013), during the assessment of the state of conservation of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls, inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger, the Committee adopted decision 37 COM 7A.26 following a roll-call vote1 deploring  the fact that the mission had not taken place.  Part II of the decision concerning the Mughrabi Ascent “reaffirms … that no measures, unilateral or otherwise, shall be taken which will affect the authenticity, integrity and the distinctive character of the site”.



1Ten votes in favour, three votes against, and eight abstentions.




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