Second round of UNESCO Director-General vote starts Tuesday



Tue, 10 Oct 2017 - 10:09 GMT


Tue, 10 Oct 2017 - 10:09 GMT

 Khattab said that she expected to be among the top three candidates for the post – File Photo

Khattab said that she expected to be among the top three candidates for the post – File Photo

CAIRO – 10 October 2017: The second round of elections for the new Director-General of UNESCO will be held on Tuesday.

The first round took place on Monday in Paris without bringing results as none of the candidates got an absolute majority.

Seven candidates are running for office, including Ambassador Moushira Khattab, the candidate from Egypt and Africa.

Khattab expressed gratitude and thankfulness for her support through her official page on Facebook.

The others are Audrey Azoulay (France), Polad Bülbüloglu (Azerbaijan), Juan Alfonso Fuentes Soria (Guatemala), Pham Sanh Chau (Vietnam), Qian Tang (China), and former Qatari Minister of Culture Hamad Abdul Aziz al-Kawari, who is currently the cultural affairs adviser to the Emir of Qatar.

In the first round, the Qatari, French, and Egyptian candidates got respectively 19, 13, and 11 votes. Commenting on the result, she said in a statement to CBC channel on Monday that she expected to be among the top three candidates for the post, pointing out that this result prompts Egypt to think about the required political moves in the run-off stage.

Egypt's candidate noted that some African countries did not vote in favor of Egypt, stressing that the election depends on the efficiency of candidates and political lobbying.
There is a conviction among experts that the votes obtained by the Qatari candidate in the first round represent the final ceiling of the votes that can be obtained by money during the voting process.

All reactions in UNESCO indicate that a number of permanent delegates in the organization changed switched their votes to the Qatari candidate in the last minute. Qatar’s use of bribes is what all candidates warned of before the election, but it seems that the money enticed a number of countries to change their previous commitment to specific candidates.

The members of UNESCO criticized the emergence of the force of money in the UNESCO elections, which causes delegates to choose the candidate based on financial benefits, not on the efficiency and ability of each candidate.

The UNESCO executive board will vote over a maximum of five rounds, in a process expected to last about a week. The winning nominee will then be presented to the agency’s general assembly for final approval.



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