The U.N. agency focusing on education and science voted Monday to accept a Palestinian bid for full membership, in the first vote on the matter by a part of the world body.
The vote, which required two-thirds approval by UNESCO members, passed with 107 votes in favor, 14 against, and 52 abstentions.
The vote is separate from the Palestinian bid for full membership in the United Nations. Representatives of several countries pointed out that currently that bid is being discussed by members of the U.N. Security Council.
Huge applause broke out at the meeting in Paris when the results of the vote were announced.
The vote risks the agency - the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization - losing its U.S. funding, which accounts for more than a fifth of its budget.
Some U.S. lawmakers have threatened to cut off the funding, which a spokeswoman for the U.S. Mission to UNESCO said totals $80 million a year.FULL STORY