Boulder makes Shechem a sister city

City Council in Boulder, Colorado, votes to make the city of Shechem (Nablus) its eighth international sister city.

JTA,

IDF soldiers in Shechem
IDF soldiers in Shechem
IDF Spokesperson's Unit

The City Council in Boulder, Colorado, voted to make the city of Shechem (Nablus) its eighth international sister city.

Its 7-2 vote last week came three years after a council decision against entering into a formal relationship with Shechem and years of heated debate over the issue. The council identified Shechem as being in "Palestine."

The Colorado Jewish Community Relations Council in a statement issued Tuesday said it was "deeply disappointed" with the Dec. 13 decision.

"While, on the surface, there is nothing wrong with creating a relationship with any city anywhere in the world, the fact that Nablus is inextricably linked with anti-Israel activism cannot be ignored," the JCRC said. "Appropriately, the City Council’s approval was made with an assurance that both anti-Semitism and Islamophobia would not be tolerated in Boulder."

Two-thirds of the council members were not in office the last time the issue was introduced.

The City Council has received about 1,000 emails on the adoption of Shechem as a sister city since May, when the issue was reintroduced to the council, the Boulder Daily Camera reported. Some 78 people spoke at a public hearing before the vote.

Among Boulder's seven other sister cities are Lhasa, Tibet, and Yateras, Cuba. Shechem has 11 other sister cities, including Nazareth, Israel.

Other American cities that have sister relationships with Palestinian cities include Gainesville, Florida; Mobile, Alabama; Sacramento, California; Burlington, Vermont; and Muscatine, Iowa. More than 50 American cities have sister cities in Israel.




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