President of Better World Campaign Peter Yeo Commends House State, Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee on FY 2020 Funding Bill

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Yeo says legislation embraces the principle that the United States cannot go it alone in stamping out extremism or eradicating disease, underscores value of the UN.

Better World Campaign President Peter Yeo praised passage of the fiscal year 2020 House State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs funding bill and the work of Chairwoman Nita Lowey and Ranking Member Hal Rogers.

“This legislation embraces the principle that the United States cannot go it alone in stamping out extremism or eradicating disease – we need the UN as our partner,” said Peter Yeo, President of the Better World Campaign.

“Just a few months ago, terrorists attacked a UN camp in Mali, killing 10 peacekeepers and injuring 25 more. These brave men and women are fighting extremists and trying to allow democracy to take root. In calling for payback of $479 million in FY’17 and FY’18 arrears, this Subcommittee made clear it recognizes the noble purpose of peacekeeping and that the U.S. should begin to fully reimburse troop contributing countries for the sacrifices their soldiers are making in Mali and around the globe.”

“Likewise, by calling for full funding of organizations like the World Health Organization, the Subcommittee showed it’s taking a stand for those health and humanitarian professionals delivering vaccines to counter another deadly Ebola outbreak in DR Congo. Despite daily attacks on these workers, they have still vaccinated more than 100,000 people and saved the lives of hundreds who have contracted the disease. The funding called for in this bill will be vital to ensure this work continues.”

“In addition, these contributions not only serve as vital force multiplier to the United States’ own efforts, but also ensure that the UN Secretary General’s ambitious reform plans proceed. It’s much easier to institute system-wide reforms when you have the necessary resources to implement them.”

“Going forward, we hope the Senate Appropriations Committee will follow the wise path laid out by the House.”

In total, the FY’20 House State, Foreign Operations bill provides $56.4 billion for the International Affairs Budget — $13.7 billion above the President’s budget request. The legislation robustly funds U.S. dues to UN peacekeeping and life-saving global health programs — such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and bilateral family planning — which enable the UN and its partners to empower women, halt preventable deaths, and help build more prosperous and sustainable partners.

Specifically, the bill would provide for the following:

  • UN Peacekeeping: $2.128 billion for Contributions for International Peacekeeping Activities (CIPA) – $577 million above the fiscal year 2019 enacted level and $992 million above the President’s budget request. The House mark also pays CIPA arrears from FY’17 and FY’18.
  • UN Regular Budget: $1.52 billion to fully fund our assessed Contributions to International Organizations (CIO) and the UN regular budget – $160 million above the fiscal year 2019 enacted level.
  • International Organizations & Programs (IO&P): The bill doubles the IO&P account to $646 million – ending the misguided prohibition of all funding within this account put forward in prior House and Administration bills. This funding will be channeled to a range of UN agencies engaged in critical security, humanitarian, and development assistance abroad including UNICEF, UNDP, UN Women, and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA).
  • Environment: The House mark wisely removes the prohibition on the Green Climate Fund. It also prohibits the use of funds to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.
  • Health: The bill includes $1.56 billion for the Global Fund – $210 million above the fiscal year 2019 enacted level and $1.6 billion above the President’s budget request – restoring the U.S. Global Fund contribution to 33%.
  • Family Planning & UNFPA: The bill includes $750 million for family planning – $175 million above the fiscal year 2019 enacted level and $513 million above the President’s budget request and $55.5 million for UNFPA – ending a prohibition carried in prior House and Administration bills on assistance to UNFPA. The House mark also includes the Global HER Act, which would permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule, reinstated by President Trump in January 2017.

About the Better World Campaign

The Better World Campaign works to foster a strong relationship between the U.S. and the UN to promote core American interests and build a more secure, prosperous, and healthy world. The Better World Campaign engages policymakers, the media, and the American public alike to increase awareness of the critical role played by the UN in world affairs and the importance of constructive U.S.-UN relations.

Media Contact: Kathryn Kross | kkross(at)unfoundation(dot)org

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