Dodges Protest of Ban's TRNC Trick in Cyprus, Questions Refused
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, February 4 -- Following UN Secretary General's largely
failed and protested visit to Cyprus, back in New York the UN spin
machine doggedly presented things as rosy, alongside an upbeat view
of Alexander Downer.
asked Ban's Associate Spokesman Farhan Haq to comment on February 2 on
Cypriot parties' boycott of the reception for Ban, due to his meeting
at the "presidential" compound in the Turkish Republic of
Northern Cyprus. From the UN's
City Press: About his trip, I wanted to ask about the reports that,
while he was in Cyprus, four of the Greek Cypriot parties, European
parties, the Greens and two acronyms, DEKO and EDEK, boycotted his
reception. They say because he met with Ali Talat at the
presidential office in the break-away region. Where did he meet with
Mr. Talat and what’s his response to the boycott by these important
parties in Cyprus?
Spokesperson Haq: As for Cyprus, I would leave it, as you know, the
Secretary-General is on his way back from Cyprus. He will brief the
Security Council about this and his other travels tomorrow at 3 p.m.,
and he will meet with you after that at approximately 4:30 p.m. at
the Security Council stakeout. So, I’ll leave it for him to
media stakeout on Wednesday, February 3, Inner City Press was not
allowed to ask him a question. In fact, no Greek or Greek Cypriot
reporter was allowed. The only question allowed by Ban's spokesman
Martin Nesirky was from a Turkish journalist. And Ban's answer was,
as always, rosy. But is this just propaganda?
stakeout, a Greek Cypriot told Inner City Press there was no reason
to even wait to here Ban Ki-moon speak. Ban has allowed Alexander
Downer to destroy the process, he said, opining that beyond himself,
what Downer cares about in this post is retaining the British bases.
there's Downer's claim that his work for business
consultancy Bespoke Approach could never conflict with the Cyprus
role that Ban has given him. Only at the UN.
UN's Ban, Downer and leaders at reception, 4
boycotting parties not shown
to the single
Cyprus question allowed by Nesirky was Ban's non-downer answer:
was very much encouraged by such a strong commitment by both leaders
to continue their negotiations. And I was again, very much encouraged
and touched by the strong support of the people from both sides who
were chanting, in unison, shouting 'resolution now.' These were all
the loud and clear voices from the general population, regardless of
where they were from, both Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot. That
was quite moving for me. I felt a strong sense of responsibility
[about] what the United Nations can do more to facilitate this
Cypriot-led and Cypriot-owned negotiation. My observation was that a
solution was possible and a solution was within reach, and, in fact,
they made significant progress in power-sharing and governance. I was
quite encouraged by this. Of course, there are many more important
issues: property; border and security issues. I hope they will
continue. President Dimitris Christofias told me that he will issue
some sort of plan for further negotiations, despite this planned
[Turkish Cypriot] election, and that is quite encouraging. And I am
going to have my special adviser, Alexander Downer, continuously
engaged, so that this negotiation will be facilitated."
is not "continuusly" engaged -- rather, he is drumming up
business for Bespoke Approach. Alternate Foreign Minister of Greece
Dimitris Droutsas, whom Inner City Press asked Thursday morning about
the IMF, will meet with Ban Ki-moon and then the Press on Thursday
afternoon. Watch this site.
* * *
UN's Ban Rolls Dice on N. Korea Trip, Kim Won-soo Is
Asked to Brief Press
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, February 3 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, returning
from a brief trip during which protesters in South Sudan told him to
"repent before judgment" while he was snubbed in Cyprus by
four political parties, is said by close observers to be "rolling
the dice" on a trip to
be remembered as the S-G when the Koreas reunited," the close
insider said. "If it happens, all the other failures will be
the upcoming trip to Ban's closest inner circle is reflected by on
the record quotes that his main advisor Kim Won soo -- Ban's Karl
Rove, as some put it -- gave
to the JoongAng Daily. Inner City Press
asked Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky, with his own Korean
connections, about the quote at Wednesday noon briefing, UN
City Press... You said the other three members; who are the other
three members of Mr. Pascoe’s team?
Nesirky: Kim Won-soo, the Deputy Chef de Cabinet is one of them, and
two other members of staff.
City Press: Of DPA or of the Executive Office of the Secretary
One of each.
City Press: Okay. I had asked earlier about when it was first
announced that Kim Won-soo was quoted in Joong Ang Daily, describing
the trip, saying it may have a nuclear component, as well as
humanitarian. So, I was wondering, I mean, those are his quotes,
right? That he spoke on the record Joong Ang?
Well, you have to ask Kim Won-soo.
City Press: That’s why I asked. When it first came up, I actually
asked whether he could be a part of the briefing with Lynn Pascoe,
since I don’t think he’s ever briefed the media on the record,
but he seems to have a pretty important role within the Executive
Office of the Secretariat, and obviously he is willing to speak on
the record to at least some media. Is that possible to convey that
UN's Kim, at left, with UN's Ban and Munoz, on glaciers
I will certainly convey it.
Ban and his entourage, including Vijay Nambiar and Lynn Pascoe,
passed the Press at the Security Council stakeout, Kim Won-soo waved
over. Correspondents recounted anecdotes from Ban's trip last month
to Haiti. There was general agreement: Mister Kim must brief the
press, and on the record. We'll see. Watch this site.