Obama Administration Makes Case for US Contributions to UN

The Obama administration has reinforced its support for the United Nations, emphasizing that robust financial assistance to the global body helps promote U.S. interests.

Esther Brimmer, U.S. assistant secretary of state for international organizations, said that the U.S. has better leverage by engaging with the U.N.

“The United States must be a responsible global leader, and that means paying our bills and working for real renewal at the U.N.,” Brimmer said in remarks delivered at The Brookings Institution Feb. 1.

“How can we work with other leading contributors to maintain U.N. budget discipline and hold down costs if we do not meet our own obligations?” she asked.

Brimmer said the U.N. has established new oversight bodies at several agencies, including the U.N. Development Program, that could help ensure U.S. funding are spent wisely. 

Some Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives criticized the U.N. as ineffective. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), chairwoman of the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, hosted Jan. 25 a panel of U.N. advocates and critics as part of House Republicans’ moves to reduce U.S. funding for the U.N.

>> US House Panel Hears From UN Advocates, Critics

About the author

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    Ma. Rizza Leonzon

    As a former staff writer, Rizza focused mainly on business coverage, including key donors such as the Asian Development Bank and AusAID.