Called Daewoo's Myanmar Pipeline a "Win Win," Silence
June 11 -- In the run up to Myanmar's military tilted
elections, the UN has had very little to say. Now Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon's chief of staff Vijay Nambiar is traveling to Singapore
and China, although what he is trying to accomplish is not clear.
only since taking over from Ibrahim Gambari as the UN's envoy on
Myanmar, but ever since becoming chief of staff, Mr. Nambiar has yet
to hold any on the record press conference.
so at the UN's
June 9 noon briefing, Inner City Press asked
Mr. Ban's Associate
Spokesman Farhan Haq:
Press: You mentioned Mr. Nambiar as being in Singapore, on a
good offices mandate of Myanmar. There is a project there that is of
some concern to both the opposition and human rights groups. It’s
a Daewoo pipeline, and it’s one that the Secretary-General,
was the Foreign Minister of [the Republic of] Korea, called a win-win
solution for Korea and India. Opposition figures also say that UN
officials have met with Daewoo about that project in the military-ran
country of Myanmar. I’m wondering, does the Secretary-General —
I’m now assuming you can’t say necessarily from the podium —
but can you check and see whether the Secretary-General still holds
the belief that that pipeline is a win-win solution, and whether the
various holders of the good offices mandate, [Ibrahim] Gambari and
now Mr. Nambiar, have ever met with Daewoo about the project?
Haq: I also need to check, I don’t have any
information about Daewoo.
Press: Okay, if you can check, that would be great.
I certainly will.
more than two
days later, there has been no answer.
UN's Ban and Myanmar's FM (Win) Nyan Win:
Daewoo win win not shown
In fact, Mr. Haq tried to not
take more questions on June 9. Inner City Press said that it has been
even less likely to receive answers when questions are submitted in
writing to the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary General.
Haq said that the Office provides answer when it get them. But is it
trying? Watch this site.
end of the UN's June 9 noon briefing:
Press: And you heard the head of UNAIDS saying that he’d
asked, or had hoped… well, you heard it. I won’t mischaracterize
it. Did the Secretary-General raise the issue of Maxim Popov, a UN,
essentially, funded AIDS activist who has been sentenced to 7 years
while he was in Uzbekistan, and what response did he obtain?
I’ll check with the people who are part of his
traveling delegation. I am not aware that that name came up, but
certainly we can check. And with that, I bid you a…
Press: [inaudible] go ahead.
At this stage, this more a dialogue, anyway, so, we
can sort this out than…
Press: [inaudible] where I never got a written answer. Even,
for example, on The Three Idiots. I was never sent an answer. So,
I’d rather ask the question here…
I believe you were sent an answer on this about a day
or two ago.
Press: Yeah, but I put it in 28 May. Here is my question,
about Burundi, since he was in Burundi.
Once we had an answer we gave it to you. As soon as
we had it.
Press: Since he was in Burundi, did he have anything to say
about the fact that the upcoming election will have only one
presidential candidate, since the opposition has dropped out? I’ve
read the speeches, but I haven’t seen… I’ve seen mostly praise. But
most people say that democracy has fallen apart, there is only
one candidate. Is that acceptable?
Well, first of all, he’s still in Burundi right now. He will talk to
the press whilst there. And he is talking with
President Nkurunziza, as I said at the start. So, let’s see what
he has to say at the end of the day.
on a lack of
democracy in Burundi and Myanmar,
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Invites Bashir, Indicted by ICC, It Cites Ahmadinejad, and Mugabe, Ban
June 11 -- "We have an obligation," Ugandan
Ambassador Rugunda told Inner City Press on June 8, "as African
Union members, and hosting the AU. President Bashir has been invited
what about his
indictment for war crimes by the International Criminal Court, Inner
City Press asked, of which Uganda is a member? Won't Uganda has a
duty to seek to arrest Bashir?
be like President Obama arresting Ahmadinejad when he comes to
address the General Assembly," Ambassador Rugunda said.
of his aides
added that Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe had attended a European Union -
AU summit, over the objections of "the Europeans," because
he is a member of the AU.
been indicted by the ICC, Inner City Press pointed out.
asking for a deferment," Ambassador Rugunda answered. "We
believe these interactions," he said, are useful "for
inaugurated after his election amid deaths and threats against
observers, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon set to the ceremony both
of his top advisers in Sudan, Ibrahim Gambari and Haile Menkerios.
UN's Ban arriving in Uganda, Bashir not yet show, follows
Press asked Ban's spokesman how this didn't undermine respect for the
war crimes indictments of the ICC, the response was that attending
the ceremony was somehow necessary to the UN's work, to staying in
while in Kampala for the recent ICC conference on the crime of
aggression was publicly quoted as urging African leaders to cooperate
with the ICC. While he was quoted urging them to convince Bashir to
turn himself in to the ICC in The Hague, the UN has since denied Ban
said that. Still, sending Menkerios was a signal to Uganda and others
that dealing with Bashir, indicted for war crimes, is okay.
June 11, ICC
prosecutor Ocampo should be asked for his view of Uganda's stance.
Meanwhile Sudan's Ambassador to the UN is presenting a book, that the
ICC is Guantanamo Bay for African leaders. Ocampo should be asked
about this as well. Watch this site.
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