The Trump administration is planning to withdraw from UNESCO, the United Nation’s cultural and educational agency, over its bias against Israel, Foreign Policy reported on Thursday.
According to the report, the decision is also tied to the administration’s attempts to cut its funding to the cultural agency, which it owes some $500 million, and could be announced as early as next week.
If the Trump administration indeed withdraws from UNESCO, it will be the second American administration to take such a step. The Reagan administration quit the organization in the 1980’s, and the U.S. rejoined it only two decades later, under the George W. Bush administration.
In 2011, under the Obama administration, the U.S. cut off most of its funding to UNESCO, this time over its acceptance of Palestine as a member-state.
The Trump administration reportedly wants to exit the organization entirely, citing a number of recent resolutions that have targeted Israel and the settlements, including a resolution which declared the city of Hebron, in the occupied West Bank, as a Palestinian World Heritage Site, and a resolution from October 2016 which was sharply critical of Israel’s policies in Jerusalem.