US urges no vote on Palestine UNESCO membership

Republican Representative Kay Granger
© AFP/Getty Images/File Amy Sussman


PARIS (AFP) –  The United States on Wednesday called on UNESCO members to vote against the cultural body accepting Palestine as a member with the rights of a state.

“The United States urges all delegations to join the United States in voting ‘no’ on this resolution,” David Killion, US ambassador to Paris-based UNESCO, said in a statement.

Earlier Wednesday UNESCO’s executive committee backed the Palestinian bid to become a member of the body, and the UNESCO general assembly is due to vote on the measure at the end of the month.

“We take the floor to express our strong opposition to this resolution,” Killion said. “Granting the Palestinians full membership now in a specialised agency such as UNESCO is premature.

“Given that the UN Security Council is reviewing the Palestinian application, we believe it is inappropriate for a UN specialised agency to also take up the same matter,” he said.

In Washington a top US lawmaker warned on Wednesday that UNESCO risked losing all of its US funding if it accepted the Palestinians in as a state.

“I will advocate for all funding to be cut off,” Republican Representative Kay Granger, who chairs the key subcommittee that disburses US monies for diplomatic purposes, said in a statement before UNESCO’s executive committee approved the move.

And “making a move in another UN agency will not only jeopardise our relationship with the Palestinians, it will jeopardise our contributions to the United Nations,” she cautioned.

© AFP — Published at Activist Post with license

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