Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi Reuters

Italy's Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, on Friday described the UNESCO resolution ignoring the Jewish connection to Jerusalem as "incomprehensible and unacceptable".

Renzo said his officials should have voted against it, reported the AFP news agency.

Italy joined most of its European partners in abstaining on a vote on the resolution.

"It is incomprehensible and unacceptable, it was a mistake," Renzi was quoted as having told Italian radio.

The premier said he had issued instructions to Italian diplomats to take a different stance if the same issue arises again in international bodies.

"Suggesting that Jerusalem and Judaism have no connection is like suggesting the sun causes darkness," he said. "If we have to break with European unity on the subject, so be it."

The UNESCO resolution ignoring the Jewish connection to Jerusalem was originally approved last week. The agency on Tuesday held a revote on the resolution and passed it again.

The second vote occurred after Mexico changed its mind on the issue and called to change its vote and also to hold a revote on the question altogether.

Renzi’s condemnation of the resolution follows a protest outside UNESCO's offices in Rome organized by the pro-Israel popular Italian newspaper Il Foglio.

The protest was attended by over 300 people, including the paper's staff, MP's from both right and left ends of the political spectrum, the head of Rome's Jewish community Ruth Dureghello, as well as Jewish and older non-Jewish Italians who said they were fed up with the wheeling and dealing of politicians that sacrifice truth and principles for power and money.

Palestinian Authority officials have welcomed the passing of the resolution, claiming that the vote was "about occupation."

Israeli officials blasted the resolution, as did a group of Jewish American lawmakers who on Wednesday issued a statement denouncing the move.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)