Sunday 18 December 2011

UNESCO Director General Presses Washington to Restore U.S. Funding

Director-General Irina Bokova argued for the restoration of U.S. funding to UNESCO in a series of high level meetings with Members of Congress in Washington starting on 14th December. The U.S. cut its funding to UNESCO following the General Conference vote admitting Palestine as the 195th Member to the organization on 31 October. The U.S. contribution to UNESCO represented 22% of its annual budget, and UNESCO now faces an immediate shortfall of $72 million following the suspension of U.S. contributions. Bokova had previously issued a statement pointing out that suspension of funding for the organization was potentially damaging to American interests in the international community.

Meanwhile other nations are stepping in where America has failed the international body, Her Highness Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser of Qatar has recently contributed $20 million to UNESCO, this is the first step in a longer-term engagement with the Organization.
“This is a most welcome expression of support for UNESCO,” stated the Director-General. “Her Highness is concerned that the financial difficulties faced by the Organization will have serious consequences on UNESCO’s core programs.”
Shame on you, America.

Photo: Her Highness Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser of Qatar.

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