Iraq withdraws candidate running for UNESCO chief post in favor of Egypt

Cairo ( The Iraqi embassy in Cairo has announced withdrawing the candidate running for the post of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) chief in favor of the Egyptian candidate.

“The Iraqi Foreign Ministry has informed its Egyptian counterpart on Thursday with obtaining the approval on withdrawal of its candidate Saleh al-Hasnawi, in support of the Egyptian candidate Mushira Khattab,” the embassy said in a statement.

“This came within bilateral cooperation in all international and Arab events, which have been significant over the past period of time,” it added.

The statement also indicated “the highly-competitive qualifications of the Iraqi candidate, which shows the progress within the Egyptian-Iraqi ties.”

The competition has now been among eight candidates from each of China, France, Azerbaijan, Vietnam, Guatemala, Lebanon, Qatar and Egypt.

The winner will succeed the current Bulgarian chief Irina Bokova, which has been in office since 2009.

The Arab candidates are hoping that one of them would win the post that has never been occupied by an Arab since UNESCO was founded in 1945.

UNESCO’s executive board convened on Wednesday in the 202nd session in Paris to secretly vote on one of the candidates to be submitted to the General Conference to be ratified in November.

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