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Jill Biden heads to France to mark US rejoining UNESCO, honor WWII troops

First lady Jill Biden will be in France this week to mark the U.S. rejoining the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and to honor troops who served in World War II.

Biden’s trip, which will be her first in France as first lady, will begin Monday in Paris where she will greet families at the U.S. Embassy there, according to the White House. On Tuesday, she will meet with France’s first lady, Brigitte Macron, at the Élysée Palace. Biden will then deliver remarks at the UNESCO flag-raising ceremony and greet UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay.

Biden will then travel Wednesday from Paris to Brittany and Normandy where she will visit the Brittany American Cemetery to pay respect to American service members who lost their lives in northern France in World War II.

She will then visit Mont Saint-Michel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to highlight the importance of preserving cultural heritage sites around the world.

The White House Saturday marked the U.S. rejoining UNESCO after former President Trump withdrew the U.S. from the agreement. 

The U.S. withdrew from the organization in 2019. The international organization was co-founded by the U.S. after WWII. 

Senior administration officials said that the U.S. not being in the organization was harmful to its interests, noting that its competitors were “working hard in the U.N. to shape the global agenda on issues ranging from emerging technology to sustainable development.”

“If we aren’t in the room, we can’t push back and if we don’t show up, we can’t fight for the American people and defend our allies abroad from unfair attacks,” officials said.

Source: The Hill

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