Tale of Two Dengs at Southern Sudan “Feel Good” Meeting with
Ban, No Answers on Darfur
February 10 -- With the results of the Southern Sudan
referendum now released, Salva Kiir has invited Secretary General Ban
Ki-moon and many others to the formal declaration of independence
On Thursday afternoon in his third floor office over the
UN's North Lawn, Ban met with Deng Alor Kuol, Minister of Regional
Cooperation of the Government of Southern Sudan. Ban was not alone:
Francis Deng, his Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide among
others was there.
way in, Inner City Press asked him without answer if he is related to
Deng Alor. Deng is a common name. Francis Deng previously told Inner
City Press, in response to a question if he owns property in Sudan
and Abyei, said that there are “many huts in Abyei” which could
be said to be owned by his family.
however, is reflected in Francis Deng's purported Public Financial
Disclosure. Ban on January 14 told the Press that 99% of his senior
officials have made public financial disclosure. When Inner City
Press showed this is not the case, Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky
insisted that Ban had merely been using a metaphor.
in the UN, monitoring Mubarak's speech from Egypt and a
live stakeout by Ehud Barak, who met with Ban before Deng, wanted to
know what new name Southern Sudan will take on, and what its capital
meeting, one imagines that the future of the UN's billion dollar
UNMIS peacekeeping mission should have been discussed. Afterward, one
of the participants told Inner City Press it was a mere “feel good”
UN's Ban, one Deng at left hand, another across the table
down for the meeting were Department of Peacekeeping Operations
deputy Atul Khare of India. The minister of external affairs of
India, S.M. Krishna, has arrived in New York; his Permanent
Representative Hardeep Singh Puri will be holding another press
conference about his program later on Thursday at the New York Palace
photo op began, Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky admonished Inner City
Press that “this is just a photo op, I'm watching you.” The reverse
is also true: it's metaphorical. Watch this site.
Thursday's noon briefing dodged questions from Inner City Press
about the UN in Darfur:
Press: I wanted to ask about Sudan. There were reports that in
the IDP [internally displaced persons] camps, including Hamadiya and
Zalengei, that there is no, that food is no longer being distributed
by WFP [World Food Programme] and the people inside the camp say that
this was an attempt by the Government to disassemble the camps in
this visit of this guy, Ghazi Salaheddine, who is in charge of the
Darfur file for the Khartoum Government. First off, was the UN, is
it a fact that food services in this IDP camp have stopped, and what
is the UN going to do about it?
Well, let’s ask our colleagues from the World Food Programme to
let us know what the picture is there. And obviously, it is a clear
priority for the United Nations to ensure that aid can be delivered
to those people who need it.
Press: I actually had a follow-up. This guy, Ghazi Salaheddine,
the Government Minister for Darfur, held a joint press conference
with Ibrahim Gambari in which they announced a partnership, and Mr.
Gambari said he was very positive. So what I was, I guess, trying to
say is that people in Darfur say it was the visit of this minister
that led to this suspension of services to IDPs. I wanted, I guess,
some explanation of what it is that Mr. Gambari is finding so
positive in the visit of this minister, the announced intention to
“Darfurize” the peace process, which most people in the IDP camps
are protesting. What… how do you explain Mr. Gambari’s positive
statements in light of the reports of continued fighting, bombing and
I’d like to take a closer look at precisely what Mr. Gambari said,
firstly, and secondly, as I already mentioned to you, I am sure our
colleagues from the World Food Program can give us some details on
precisely what is happening on the ground.
* * *
Indictee Harun to Abyei, NGOs & US Have Yet
The UN Mission in Sudan transported and
assisted International Criminal Court indictee Ahmed Harun, UN
spokesman Martin Nesirky confirmed to Inner City Press on Tuesday,
because the UN finds Harun helpful in dealing with violence in Abyei.
Nesirky implied that the UN will continue to transport
Harun, saying that the UN "will continue to provide necessary support
to key players." Video
the UN transported Harun, not only in light of his ICC
indictment for war crimes in Darfur, but also of the capacities
the Sudanese Air Force, which has recently conducted bombing raids
and near Southern Sudan.
Air Force can bomb, Inner City Press asked, why can't it fly Harun to
Abyei? Nesirky did not answer this question. Nor would he tell Inner
City Press if UNMIS, led by Haile Menkerios, had checked with UN
Headquarters' Office of Legal Affairs or Ban Ki-moon before
transporting an indicted war criminal.
seems to some
that the Sudanese government of Omar al Bashir, who has also been
indicted by the ICC for genocide as well as war crimes, has no lack
of capacity to transport its official Harun, but instead wanted to
get the UN further involved in undercutting the war crimes
counterpart at the Mission in Darfur UNAMID Ibrahim
Gambari attended the inauguration of Omar al Bashir. Inner City Press
asked Nesirky, without answer, if the UN would provide transport and
assistance to other ICC indictees, including Joseph Kony of the the
Lord's Resistance Army, widely thought to be in South Darfur.
UN Security Council in Sudan w/ Gambari, 10/10 (c)MRLee
City Press asked representatives of
non-governmental organizations active on Sudan about the UN's
transport of ICC indictee Harun. David Abramowitz, the Director of
Policy and Government Relations of the group Humanity United, said
that he wasn't aware of the reports of Harun being transported, "I have
not seen that report."
has the US
administration, including its Mission at the UN, yet spoken on the
matter. Some wonder whether they were consulted, even whether, in
light of the offer to delink Darfur from the offer to remove some
sanctions on Sudan in exchange for the South Sudan referendum, if the
Executive Director of the Genocide Intervention Network / Save Darfur
Coalition, said he hadn't
seen the report confirmed, but either way
it did not send a good message to the people of Darfur, where Harun
was indicted for war crimes: "already Darfuri are suspicious of UNAMID
and UN personnel."
fact, Harun was
indicted for working with and organizing the type of nomadic tribes
which are accused of the killings in Abyei, and now in South Kordofan
state as well.
told Inner City Press that "Governor Harun was critical" to bringing
the Miseriya tribes together. Video
in this view,
it is not only a matter of the fox guarding the hen house: the UN has
taken to transporting the fox to the hen house. Where will there be
accountability? Watch this site.
Click here for Inner City
Press' March 27 UN debate
Click here for Inner City
Press March 12 UN (and AIG
Click here for Inner City
Press' Feb 26 UN debate
Click here for Inner City Press' Jan.
16, 2009 debate about Gaza
Click here for Inner City Press'
review-of-2008 UN Top Ten debate
Click here for Inner
City Press' December 24 debate on UN budget, Niger
Click here from Inner City Press'
December 12 debate on UN double standards
Click here for Inner
City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics
and this October 17 debate, on
Security Council and Obama and the UN.
* * *
usually also available through Google
News and on Lexis-Nexis.
for a Reuters
AlertNet piece by this correspondent
about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click
for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali
Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an
undefined trust fund. Video
some are available
in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.