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UNESCO’s General Conference today voted to admit Palestine as a Member State of the Organization.
For its membership to take effect*, Palestine must sign and ratify UNESCO’s Constitution which is open for signature in the archives of the Government of the United Kingdom in London.
Palestine’s entry will bring the number of UNESCO’s Member States to 195.
The vote was carried by 107 votes in favour of admission and 14 votes against, with 52 abstentions.
Admission to UNESCO for states that are not members of the United Nations requires a recommendation by the Organization’s Executive Board and a two thirds majority vote in favour by the General Conference of Member States present and voting (abstentions are not considered as votes).
The General Conference consists of the representatives of the States Members of the Organization. It meets every two years, and is attended by Member States and Associate Members, together with observers for non-Member States, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Each Member State has one vote, irrespective of its size or the extent of its contribution to the budget.
The General Conference determines the policies and the main lines of work of the Organization. Its duty is to set the programmes and the budget of UNESCO. It also elects the Members of the Executive Board and appoints, every four years, the Director-General.
* c.f UNESCO Constitution, Article XV, on "Entry into force"