Supporting sustainable tourism through the safeguarding, rehabilitation and promotion of the Agro-Cultural Landscape in Battir, Palestine

East Jerusalem, 21 June 2023

Today, Consul General of Italy in Jerusalem, H.E. Mr. Giuseppe Fedele, Head of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), Mr. Guglielmo Giordano, and Head of Office at UNESCO Ramallah, Mrs. Noha Bawazir, signed an agreement to promote agro-cultural tourism and sustainable agriculture in Battir, which has been inscribed as a site on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2014.

With a total budget of 2,850,000 EUR provided by the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, the project aims to harness the unique cultural and agricultural values of the site through safeguarding natural resources, promoting sustainable farming practices and attracting agro-cultural tourism. UNESCO will lead on project implementation, in partnership with the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), and in close collaboration with Battiri communities.

Over the next three years, the project intends to enhance the livelihoods of locals in Battir, enhance the tourism experience and ultimately drive economic and social development which can be sustained into the future. This will accelerate progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Palestine, especially Sustainable Development Goals around protecting the World’s Cultural and Natural heritage, promoting economic growth, achieving food security, and making communities sustainable and safe.

The Italian Government has a longstanding record in supporting Palestine and this time we firmly believe that culture and the protection of heritage are more necessary than ever. This project represents a key demonstration of our commitment to protect the UNESCO World Heritage site of Battir,” said Consul General of Italy in Jerusalem Giuseppe Fedele.

Guglielmo Giordano, Head of AICS Jerusalem highlighted: “As tourism continues to grow in Palestine, it’s important to invest in green tourism. AICS will do its best to make this sustainable and increase job opportunities in Battir village.”

Thanking Italy for funding this project, Mrs. Noha Bawazir, Head of Office and UNESCO Representative to Palestine, said: “Core to UNESCO’s mandate is to safeguard and promote cultural heritage, and enhance livelihoods, in Palestine. We look forward to working alongside our strategic partners and local communities in pursuit of these shared objectives in Battir.” 

Ciro Fiorillo, Head of Office of FAO in Palestine, stressed that: “FAO is proud of this partnership with Italy and UNESCO as it provides a special opportunity to leverage the unique cultural heritage of Battir to enhance farming households’ access to land and water and to valorize these resources for sustainable agro-ecological production and income generation.


For more information:

Albert Saleh
+970 597 804 676

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