MOSCOW, October 25 (RIA Novosti) – The US will face serious difficulties during the re-election process to the UNESCO Executive Board, which will take place at the General Conference of the Organization in November 2015, a UNESCO official told RIA Novosti.
"Re-election of the US is questionable, because they do not pay contributions," the source said, recalling the fact that the US cut off financial support for UNESCO on October 31, 2011, after Palestine received full membership to the Organization.
The US already lost its vote at the Organization in November 2013. Under UNESCO’s provisions, any state that doesn’t pay contributions for two years loses its vote in the UNESCO General Assembly, the New York Times reported. Financial support withdrawal can have further negative consequences for the United States as a member of UNESCO, which plays a tremendous role in promoting world peace and security, the source said.
“The US decision was unprecedented, the organization has lost 22% of its funding. This led to the reduction of much of international staff and the termination of many programs. Over the past few years, [UNESCO Director-General] Irina Bokova had to constantly address issues of balancing the organization’s budget," UNESCO official stressed.
Withdrawal of US contributions arose from US legislation, namely, from a law passed by the US Congress in the 1990s. The legal act stated that the United States would terminate all UNESCO donations in case of Palestine’s membership to the UN agency.
According to the New York Times, Ms. Bokova tried to convince US congressmen of changing the legislation, but her efforts have not been successful.