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Israeli nature reserve designated as UNESCO site

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TEL AVIV (JTA) — UNESCO voted to designate a nature reserve in northern Israel as a World Heritage Site.

The culture and science arm of the United Nations gave the Nahal Me’arot and Carmel Caves Nature Reserve the distinction last Friday, according to an Israeli government news release.

Located near the northern port city of Haifa, the nature reserve is the site of a group of prehistoric caves where early humans lived for millennia, according to the release. Israel has seven other World Heritage Sites, including Jerusalem’s Old City and Masada.

Also last week, UNESCO named the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem a World Heritage Site and listed it in Palestine, a decision that drew criticism from the United States.

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