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U.N. states agree $7.3 billion peacekeeping budget, U.S. cuts its share

Staff Writer |
United Nations states struck a deal on a $7.3 billion annual peacekeeping budget, diplomats said, cutting $600 million from current costs and slicing 7.5 percent off the U.S. bill following calls by President Donald Trump to slash funding.

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Washington initially proposed a peacekeeping budget of $6.99 billion for the year from July 1, 2017, which would have reduced its share of the bill by more than 10 percent to $1.99 billion.

In the early hours of Wednesday, the 193-member U.N. budget committee agreed on $7.3 billion to fund 13 peacekeeping missions and a logistics support office. The budget is due to be adopted by the U.N. General Assembly on Friday, diplomats said.

The U.S. initial peacekeeping budget proposal was the lowest made of all states and regional blocs and nearly $1 billion less than U.N. chief Antonio Guterres' suggestion.

While Trump has described U.S. funding for the U.N. as "peanuts" compared to its "important work," he complains its share of the peacekeeping bill, currently 28.5 percent, is "unfair." In his 2018 budget proposal he requested Congress approve only $1.2 billion for U.N. peacekeeping.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley told U.S. lawmakers in Washington on Wednesday that Trump's proposed U.S. federal budget was "making a point that he wanted to strengthen the military and it was putting the United Nations on notice."

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