MOSCOW, October 23. /TASS/. The United States’ withdrawal from UNESCO is an irresponsible decision of President Donald Trump’s administration, a Russian expert said on Monday.
"The presidential administration’s and State Department’s decision is irresponsible because they too need UNESCO membership," said Alexei Borisov, a deputy head of the United Nations Association of Russia. "Investments from and participation of major players is needed amidst growing terrorism and extremism, when inter-cultural and interethnic dialogue and preservation of cultural values are very important."
According to Borisov, it is not ruled out that the United States will try to disavow UNESCO’s work. "They are already discussing possible establishment of a commission of US observers at UNESCO. So, the new director general of the organization should be on the lookout to provide the right reaction to the Americans’ behavior," he said.
Earlier in October, the United States notified UNESCO that it had decided "to withdraw from the organization and to seek to establish a permanent observer mission to UNESCO," State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a statement. The decision will take effect on December 31, 2018, and the United States will remain a full member of the UN cultural organization until that time.
The US stopped its membership contributions to UNESCO after Palestine was granted full-fledged membership in the organization. Israel followed suit shortly after. As a result, the international organization has lost nearly a quarter of its income.
Later on, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also ordered to prepare his country’s withdrawal from UNESCO.