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U.S. and Israel Lose Voting Rights at UNESCO

Written on:November 8, 2013
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Friday , November 8 – UNESCO has suspended the voting rights of the United States, two years after it stopped paying dues to the UN’s cultural arm in protest over its granting full membership to the Palestinians.

The move undermined America’s ability to exercise its influence in numerous countries around the globe through the United Nations agency’s educational and aid programs.

As per Unesco’s  rules, any country which fails to pay its dues for two years loses its right to vote in its general assembly. The United States ceased all support for the agency in 2011, following a vote at Unesco to give the Palestinians full membership.

Before withdrawing its financial support, the United States provided about $70 million, or 22 percent, of  UNESCO’s annual budget.

Israel suspended its dues at the same time and also lost voting rights today.

About UNESCO:

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization  (UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN).

Its purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through education, science, and culture in order to further universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights along with fundamental freedom proclaimed in the UN Charter.

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UNESCO has 195 member State and nine Associate Members. It recently added Palestine in November 2011.

UNESCO pursue its objectives through five major programs: education, natural sciences, social and human sciences, culture, and communication and information.

Projects sponsored by UNESCO include literacy, technical, and teacher-training programmes; international science programmes; the promotion of independent media and freedom of the press; regional and cultural history projects; the promotion of cultural diversity; translations of world literature; international cooperation agreements to secure the world cultural and natural heritage (World Heritage Sites) and to preserve human rights, and attempts to bridge the worldwide digital divide.

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