The separate body of the UN has run afoul of US Congressional Law from the 90’s that forbids funding for ‘any U.N. body that grants state status to the Palestinian territories.’
The Law which is a decade old has strong backing in Congress and had No chance of being waived….
The problem is …..
Taking the defunding route only makes the United States more isolated in the eyes of the UNESCO members who voted 107 to 14 for the move….
The United States has had a rocky relationship with UNESCO in the 1980’s that led to similar funding cuts….
The amount being cut next month will be $60 Million, 22% of that agencies budget…..
The White House has warned that other UN agencies maybe be cut off from funds if the move for a Palestinian State continues…A decision by the United Nations‘ cultural organization to admit Palestine as a member state set off a confrontation between the U.S. and the U.N., threatening to strip Washington of influence in several key international agencies while cutting off a major source of contributions to the world body.
The Obama administration said it would end funding for theUnited Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization hours after the group Monday voted 107 to 14 to accept the Palestinian Authority as a full member. The UNESCO action triggered U.S. laws from the early 1990s that bar Washington from giving money to any U.N. body that grants state status to the Palestinian territories.
U.S. officials said they would block a planned payment of $60 million to the group next month, and warned that they could be forced to halt payments for other U.N. groups as well if they accede to Palestinian requests for full membership.
The cutoff deprives UNESCO of 22% of its funding, and could force the agency, which focuses on literacy, human rights and the preservation of historic sites worldwide, to soon begin laying off employees, diplomats said.
At the same time, U.S. officials warned that American interests could be damaged if Washington is forced by similar future votes to cut off funding for other international agencies essential to U.S. business and security interests.
One such body, the U.N. World Intellectual Property Organization, helps U.S. high-tech, entertainment and other industries protect their property rights, including patents, around the world. The group’s bylaws require that members who fail to pay their dues eventually lose their voting rights….