Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

The UN Debt - Still There

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

The UN Debt - Still There

Article excerpt

Some members of Congress don't really believe the United States owes the United Nations a lot of money - $1.5 billion by the UN's tally. So a few concerned lawmakers asked the federal General Accounting Office to prepare a study of the world body's financial needs and the US debt.

Sure enough, the GAO found a widening gap between UN expenses, particularly for peacekeeping, and resources. And nonpayment of dues - not just by the US, but most prominently by it - is a big factor.

The GAO also found that even if the US paid the full amount under consideration by Congress this year, it would still come up well over $200 million short of settling accounts.

But the prospects of Congress meeting even a part of the US obligation is cloudy as ever. In the latest stalling tactic, anti-UN forces in Congress have made a $475 million payment, included in a large appropriations bill, contingent on a reduction in the US share of UN expenses - to 22 percent from the current 25 percent. …

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