Jordan's Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights speaks at ACANU at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Jamey Keaten)

UN rights chief: Vowed US cuts wouldn't be 'fatal' to office

August 29, 2018 - 7:49 am

GENEVA (AP) — The U.N. human rights chief says threatened U.S. funding cuts wouldn't be "fatal" for his office, but says he hopes other countries won't follow suit.

Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein insisted "the office will continue to survive" even if the U.S. carries out the promise made by U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton in an interview with The Associated Press last week.

Zeid told reporters Wednesday that "clearly what one doesn't want to see is a whole series of withdrawals and withdrawal of funding."

Bolton's pledge that the U.S. will cut funding to the rights office, and the U.N.'s top human rights body was the latest Trump administration salvo against U.N. institutions.

The U.S. is the U.N.'s largest single donor, providing about 22 percent of its budget.

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