Monday, October 23, 2017
   
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Following the U.S., Israel pulls out of UNESCO

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UNESCO-xUS. officials have told the Associated Press that the United States is pulling out of UNESCO, after repeated criticism of resolutions by the U.N. cultural agency that the Trump administration sees as anti-Israel.

The U.S. stopped funding UNESCO after the agency voted to include the Palestinian Authority as a member in 2011, but the State Department has maintained a UNESCO office at the agency’s Paris headquarters and sought to weigh in on policy behind the scenes.

The withdrawal was confirmed Thursday by U.S. officials speaking on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to be publicly named discussing the decision. It comes as UNESCO is voting to choose a new director.

Senior American officials, including U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, have issued repeated denunciations of UNESCO.

Following the move by the U.S., Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel also planned to pull out of the agency.

Netanyahu said Thursday that UNESCO has become a "theater of the absurd because instead of preserving history, it distorts it."

He says he has ordered Israeli diplomats to prepare Israel's withdrawal from the organization in concert with the Americans’.


 


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