Israel to join US in quitting Unesco

BBC REPORTS:

Photo: Flickr Dan

Israel has said it will join the US in pulling out of the UN’s cultural organisation Unesco, after US officials cited “anti-Israel bias”.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the US decision as “brave and moral”, a statement said.

The agency is known for designating world heritage sites such as Syria’s Palmyra and the US Grand Canyon.

Unesco head Irina Bokova earlier called the US withdrawal a matter of “profound regret”.

She admitted however that “politicisation” had “taken its toll” on the organisation in recent years.

The withdrawal represented a loss to the “UN family” and to multilateralism, Ms Bokova added.

The US withdrawal will become effective at the end of December 2018 Рuntil then, the US will remain a full member. The US will establish an observer mission at the Paris-based organisation to replace its representation, the state department said.

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