Israel braces for results as the vote for UNESCO head continues

One strong candidate has been accused of endorsing antisemitic views, while others come from countries that are at odds with the Jewish state.

October 11, 2017 18:55
1 minute read.
Israel braces for results as the vote for UNESCO head continues

UNESCO headquarters. (photo credit: PHILIPPE WOJAZER/REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Hamad bin Abdulaziz al-Kawari of Qatar slightly strengthened his lead during the second round of secret-ballot voting in Paris on Tuesday to elect the next director-general of UNESCO.

He received 20 out of the 30 necessary votes to replaced Irina Bokova, whose tenure expires at the end of the year.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

It’s one more nod of support from the 58-member Executive Board than he received in the first round held Monday evening.

Jewish groups, including the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Anti-Defamation League have charged that Kawari is antisemitic, while Israel has remained largely silent on the matter.

The former Qatari culture minister “has overseen or endorsed projects that propagate base antisemitic conspiracy theories,” the ADL said in a statement it released on Monday after Kawari’s initial success.

French-Jewish candidate Audrey Azoulay held her own in second place with 13 votes, the exact same amount of support she received on Monday night.
UNESCO declares the Cave of the Patriarchs as Palestinian, angering Israel (Reuters)

Egyptian human rights advocate Moushira Khattab remained in third place, but received one more vote than the previous night, bringing her tally up to 12.

Vera El Khoury Lacoeuilhe of Lebanon lost a vote, lowering her tally to five; Qian Tang of China received five votes both nights; and Pham Sanh Chau of Vietnam gained one vote for a total of three.

Polad Bulbuloglu of Azerbaijan withdrew from the race, dropping the number of candidates down to six.

A misunderstanding with regard to a misquote of Israel’s public statements on Khattab led to a phone call Tuesday between Foreign Ministry director- general Yuval Rotem and Egypt’s Ambassador to Israel Hazem Khairat.

Rotem assured Khairat that Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO in Paris, Carmel Shama Hacohen, had not said anything negative about the Egyptian candidate.

The Foreign Ministry also issued a warning about the misquote.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Chelsea Football
October 19, 2018
Chelsea blows the whistle on antisemitism