In the same week that UNESCO opened its Executive Board session with five anti-Israel agenda items, the Obama Administration asked Congress to waive legislative restrictions and approve $77.7 million in funding for the Paris-based agency.
From the 2014 budget request:
The Administration seeks Congressional support for legislation that would provide authority to waive legislative restrictions that, if triggered, would prohibit paying U.S. contributions to United Nations specialized agencies that grant the Palestinians the same standing as member states or full membership as a state. Should the Congress pass this waiver legislation, the FY 2014 funding specifically requested for UNESCO would cover the FY 2014 UNESCO assessment and the FY 2013 and FY 2014 Contingent Requirements funding would cover arrears which accrued in FY 2012 and FY 2013.
(See submission by Sec. John Kerry p. 45, note 2.)
Also via UN Watch, UNESCO silent as Hamas bulldozes world heritage site for terrorist training camp,
GENEVA, April 15 – In an urgent letter sent today to UNESCO director-general Irina Bokova (see letter below), UN Watch demanded immediate action to stop the Hamas bulldozing of a 3000-year-old Gaza harbor for use as a terrorist training camp, as reported today by Al Monitor Palestine Pulse. A copy was also sent to EU foreign minister Catherine Ashton calling on the EU to take action.
The partial destruction of the ancient Anthedon Harbor—which includes the ruins of a Roman temple and archaeological remains from the Persian, Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine eras—comes exactly one year after the area was nominated by new UNESCO member state Palestine as a World Heritage site.
UN Watch, an independent Geneva-based monitoring group, called on Bokova to bring the issue before the UNESCO executive board now meeting in Paris.
UN Watch’s letter as sent today to Ms. Bokova and Lady Ashton follows here.
Read both pieces at the links.