US Loses Its Vote At UNESCO For Failing To Pay Dues 08/11/2013 by Intellectual Property Watch Leave a Comment Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The United States today lost its right to vote in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) General Conference for failing to pay its dues. The US withheld its dues after UNESCO members voted to grant Palestinian membership in 2011. The US has legislation against Palestinian membership as a state in organisations. World leaders gathered this week at UNESCO headquarters in Paris for the 37th General Conference. [Update: Israel also lost its voting rights for choosing not to pay its dues, according to a news report.] The US State Department issued a statement saying the country regrets the development but it will continue to participate in UNESCO activities without a vote, and that President Obama has requested a change in the domestic legislation. Even with a vote, the US has not always reached its goals at UNESCO, such as in the case of the 2005 Cultural Diversity Treaty (IPW, United Nations, 17 October 2005; IPW, United Nations, 17 October 2005). The US State Department statement is here: “We regret that today the United States lost its vote in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) General Conference as a result of legislative restrictions that have precluded payment of U.S. dues to UNESCO. The restrictions were triggered when UNESCO member states voted to grant the Palestinians membership as a state in 2011. We note a loss of vote in the General Conference is not a loss of U.S. membership. The United States intends to continue its engagement with UNESCO in every possible way – we can attend meetings and participate in debate, and we will maintain our seat and vote as an elected member of the Executive Board until 2015. UNESCO and U.S. leadership at UNESCO matter. UNESCO directly advances U.S. interests in supporting girls’ and women’s education, facilitating important scientific research, promoting tolerance, protecting and preserving the world’s natural and cultural heritage, supporting freedom of the press, and much more. It is in that vein that President Obama has requested legislative authority to allow the United States to continue to pay its dues to UN agencies that admit the Palestinians as a member state when doing so is in the U.S. national interest. Although that proposal has not yet been enacted by Congress, the President remains committed to that goal.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related "US Loses Its Vote At UNESCO For Failing To Pay Dues" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.