US Withdrawal from UNESCO (1984)

  • Date / 1984
  • Location / United States
  • Ratifying Body / Board of Directors
  • Status / Archived

Whereas the International Humanist and Ethical Union continues its historic support of the United Nations and its member agencies, and

Whereas the IHEU is proud to be an accredited NGO to the Economic and Social Council of the UN and to Unesco, and

Whereas we endorse the principles and purposes for which Unesco was originally created, having particular concern and long-standing interest because the first Director-General of Unesco, Julian Huxley, was the Honorary Chairman of the founding Congress of the IHEU in Amsterdam in 1952, and

Whereas we believe that membership and support by the United States is indispensable to the survival of Unesco, and

Whereas the United States Secretary of State, George P Shultz, has informed the Director-General of Unesco, Amadou-Mahtar M’Bow, of the US intention of withdrawing its delegation and its support as of 31 December 1984, and

Whereas we understand that the proposed United States action is not without some justification, and in particular that Unesco has been seriously mismanaged during the past eight years, and in further particular, that a number of actions of Unesco have seriously compromised its scholarly, educational, and philosophic integrity by politicising its activities, and in further particular, proposals on the part of Third World countries to impose restrictions on journalistic freedom were, although defeated, a dangerous threat to freedom of information which is a basic principle of world humanism,

We, the Board of Directors of the IHEU, meeting in New York on July 8, 1984, urge the Director-General of Unesco to continue efforts to reorganise and improve the administration of the agency, and

We further urge the United States to re-consider its intention to leave Unesco and instead continue its active membership and support of Unesco.


Board of Directors 1984

Suggested academic reference

'US Withdrawal from UNESCO (1984)', Humanists International, Board of Directors, 1984

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