Wiesenthal Centre Jubilant at UNESCO Executive Board Election: South Korea 32 – Iran 25

Paris, 16 November 2017

“Iran’s campaign to control the the 58 member-state UNESCO Executive Board ended abruptly today as South Korea was elected Chair, receiving 32 votes to Iran’s 25, with one abstention. Korea had entered the race following the distribution of a Wiesenthal Centre exclusive exposure,” claimed the Centre’s Director for International Relations and Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Dr. Shimon Samuels.

The Centre had revealed the so-called “UNESCO Prison” in Dezful on the Iran-Iraq border. It also documented the attack by Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, on the UNESCO 2030 Education programme, lambasting its objectives for “gender equality” and Tehran’s deliberate arrest of journalists on “UNESCO Freedom of the Press Day,” as also the detention of Turkish speaking Iranians to snub “UNESCO’s [Minority] Mother Tongue Day.”

“Clearly the vote also mirrored the growing fear among Sunni Muslim countries at Shi’a Iran’s imperialist threats to Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and beyond. Its nuclear ambition – unfettered by the JCPOA agreement, its sponsorship of terror through its Hezbollah agency worldwide, its genocidal intent against Israel and its obscene design: ‘The Holocaust is a lie, let’s make it a reality!’ have all created a sulfuric tinder-box… hardly appropriate to Chair the very motor of the so-called intellectual arm of the United Nations,” concluded Samuels.

The Centre congratulated the Ambassador of South Korea, in the hope that today’s vote signals a politically responsible new direction for UNESCO.

For further information, contact Shimon Samuels on +33 609 770 158, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter feed.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).