Details emerge of vote in UNESCO's Executive Board

27 countries have voted in favor of the Albanian initiative to recommend Pristina to be allowed to join UNESCO, among them Montenegro and Macedonia.

Source: B92
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14 voted against, and 14 more abstained during the UNESCO Executive Board vote that took place behind closed doors in Paris on Wednesday, and recommended to the UNESCO General Conference, that will meet next month, to allow Kosovo to join.

Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic held a news conference last evening and revealed that the countries that voted in favor of the initiative included Afghanistan, Albania, Austria, Belize, Britain, Gabon, Gambia, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, Italy, Kuwait, Macedonia, Germany, Pakistan, St. Kitts and Nevis, the United States, Thailand, Togo, the United Arab Emirates, France, Holland, Montenegro, the Czech Republic, Chad, and Sweden.

Against were Argentina, Angola, Brazil, Ecuador, Ethiopia, India, Cuba, China, Morocco, Mexico, Namibia, Nigeria, Russia, and Spain. Dacic expressed his great gratitude to these countries.

Those who abstained included Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Mauritius, Malawi, Mozambique, Mali, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Trinidad and Tobago, and Uganda.

Representatives of Tunis, Turkmenistan, and Ukraine were not in the room during the voting.

Dacic added that "it was known from the start the ratio of the number of the countries was not in our favor," but stressed that five countries that recognized Kosovo abstained from voting yesterday (Japan, South Korea, Malawi, Egypt, and Papua New Guinea).

The minister said that the result of the vote in Paris was better than anyone expected, and that "a great battle against Kosovo's membership is yet ahead."

Asked to comment on the decision of Podgorica and Skopje to vote in favor of the initiative, Dacic said, "Of course we're disappointed by their position, but we're not surprised."

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