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Egypt: Khattab Gets 12 Votes in 2nd Round of Unesco Election

14 October 2017
Egypt: Khattab Gets 12 Votes in 2nd Round of Unesco Election

No results were achieved in third stage of voting to elect UNESCO director general, TASS reported. Then, 195 members in the General Conference will be appointed in view of recommendations from UNESCO's Executive Board.

"Now more than ever UNESCO needs a project... which restores confidence and overcomes political divisions", the foreign ministry said in a statement reacting to the United States pullout.

Egyptian candidate Moushira Khattab was among three finalists for the position, but was eliminated in a runoff with France's Audrey Azoulay on Friday.

Khattab had come joint-second place with Audrey in the fourth round of voting on Thursday, hence the run-off to decide who would compete with Al-Kawari.

The UNESCO vote comes as Egypt and three other Arab nations continue a months-long boycott of Qatar over allegations that the government funds extremists and has overly warm ties to Iran.

The rift continued to fester in recent years, with the organisation becoming the scene of repeated diplomatic flare-ups after efforts led by Arab countries to pass resolutions critical of Israel.

Under these circumstances, our candidacy for the post of Director-General of UNESCO takes on a new significance.

Egypt submitted an official note to UNESCO's outgoing chief, Irina Bokova, on Friday morning to request the verification of "violations that have been detected throughout the electoral process", foreign ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid said in a statement.

On Thursday, just before the final round of votes, the U.S. said it planned to pull out of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization citing among other things its anti-Israel bias.

Over the past few days, Egyptian media has accused energy-rich Qatar of buying votes for its contender, Al-Kawari.