30 April 2018

Africa: U.S. to Punish Those Who Vote Against It?

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Africa v Trump
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Burundi, South Africa and Zimbabwe look set to be punished - or at least sent to the naughty corner - by the United States if the Trump administration acts on threats to penalise countries which don't agree with Washington at the United Nations.

A statement issued in the name of Nikki Haley, the U.S. Ambassador to the UN, on April 26 says the three African countries were among the 10 which least often voted with the U.S. on General Assembly resolutions during 2017. The other countries were Iran, Syria, Venezuela, North Korea, Turkmenistan, Cuba and Bolivia.

Haley said Americans paid 22 percent of the UN budget but on average the rest of its member nations voted with the U.S. government only 31 percent of the time - a rate lower than that in 2016.

"That's because we care more about being right than popular and are once again standing up for our interests and values," she said.

"Either way, this is not an acceptable return on our investment. When we arrived at the UN last year, we said we would be taking names, and this list of voting records speaks for itself. President Trump wants to ensure that our foreign assistance dollars - the most generous in the world - always serve American interests, and we look forward to helping him see that the American people are no longer taken for granted."

The 10 countries which agreed with Washington most often last year were Israel, Micronesia, Canada, Marshall Islands, Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Palau, Ukraine, and the Czech Republic.

This report has been amended since first publication to state correctly how frequently UN members voted with the U.S. government. The error is regretted.

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