US pulls out of Unesco over ‘anti-israel bias’
Washington: The United States announced on Thursday that it will withdraw from Unesco, the United Nation’s cultural and educational agency, accusing the body of “anti-israel bias”. State department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Washington would establish an “observer mission” to replace its representation at the Paris-based agency. The US was angered in 2011 when Unesco members granted Palestine full membership of the body, despite opposition from its ally Israel. Washington opposes any move by UN bodies to recognize the Palestine as a state, believing that this must await a negotiated Middle East peace deal. AFP familiar with the talks. The proposal was presented to a small group of negotiators, according to the people, who asked not to be identified. The White House declined to comment on the Nafta talks, and the US Trade Representative’s press office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Canada and Mexico rejected the idea of a sunset clause after commerce secretary Wilbur Ross floated the idea last month, saying it would inject so much uncertainty for businesses that it could hurt long-term investment. The idea of a sunset clause has been among the most contentious proposals for a pact that already has a relatively straight-forward exit provision—a country can leave after giving six-months’ notice of withdrawal. BLOOMBERG want their region to remain in Spain marked the country’s national day on Thursday, marching through Barcelona waving both Spanish and Catalan flags and shouting “I am Spanish”, as the region’s threats of independence have left the country in crisis.
Meanwhile, in the national capital Madrid, troops and police paraded in front of King Felipe VI, accompanied by national and regional politicians. In Barcelona, Catalonia’s capital, a crowd of people that local police said numbered 65,000 marched to a central square, some with their faces in the red and yellow colours of both the Spanish and Catalan flags and shouting “Viva Espana” — “Long live Spain”.
Catalan regional President Carles Puigdemont announced on Tuesday that he was proceeding with a declaration of Catalan independence, but proposed freezing its implementation for a few weeks to allow for dialogue and mediation with the national government in Madrid.