Government brands Unesco 'wasteful'

David Rogers

International heritage agency under fire for failing to show results

A government review has decided that Unesco does not do enough to justify the £12 million it receives each year from UK taxpayers.

The United Nations agency looks after World Heritage sites across the globe including this country’s 28 sites which include Stonehenge, Durham Castle and Cathedral and Ironbridge Gorge in Shropshire.

Unesco was established at the end of the Second World War to promote peace and cultural and academic co-operation.

But in an interview with The Sunday Times, international development secretary Andrew Mitchell said a review had found Unesco was wasting money and failing to show concrete outcomes.

As a result, it has been given a ’yellow card’ by government - meaning it should pull its socks up.

Mitchell said: Most international organisations are doing a decent job but some need to be shown the yellow card. Others will frankly get the bullet.”

The news comes as the government will announce tomorrow changes to how it distributes its £7.8 billion overseas aid budget.

Direct aid to 16 countries including Russia, India and China will be stopped while money will be instead be spent on a core of 27 countries includign Afghanistan and Ghana.

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