of Beheaded Opponent & Kagame Whitewash, No UN Follow Up
August 10 -- With Rwanda's Paul Kagame declaring victory in
an election with 30 media shut down and few opponents who have not
been beheaded or chased into exile, Inner City Press has three times
asked for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's views and comment.
Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky said Ban was calling for credible
investigation of the death of opponents, like the beheaded Green
Party leader. But after Ban's call, Kagame's government issued what
many call of a whitewash of the murder.
just before the August 9 election, Nesirky said he didn't have any
statement , but would have one soon.
August 10, Inner
City Press asked again, including for Ban's response to the whitewash
investigation after his last call. “I just said” he asked for an
investigation, Nesirky answered. “Next question.” Video here,
UN's Ban and Kagame, beheaded opponent and
follow-through not shown
for an investigation -- mostly because he was embarrassed by Spain's
Zapatero's refusal to meet with Kagame, his co-chair of the MDGs
Advocacy Group -- but the Kagame government ignored him. This seems
to require some action on Ban Ki-moon's part, no? “Next question.”
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Choice of Kagame Triggers Spanish Boycott, Role of UNDP's Clark;
Rwandan to Get UN
16 -- Naming Rwanda's Paul Kagame to co-chair a UN
group of “super heros” for the Millennium Development Goals
seemed like a good idea to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
co-chair, Spanish Prime Minister Zapatero, has boycotted
the meeting with Kagame on human rights grounds. Meanwhile, Ban is
considering a Rwandan government minister to head the new UN Women
in the UN's North Lawn building say Ban got some advice that
Kagame, given recent developments in Rwanda, might not be the right
choice; the sources infer UNDP and Helen Clark weighing in for Kagame,
which has now "blown up in Ban's face," they say.
July 15, Inner
City Press asked
Associate Spokesman Farhan Haq:
about this MDG Advocacy Group. There is a story in El
Mundo today in Madrid saying that Ban Ki-moon initially asked Prime
Minister [José Luis] Zapatero of Spain to be a co-chair and then
later decided that Paul Kagame of Rwanda would be. And it says that
Spain was uncomfortable with that on human rights grounds and urged
Ban Ki-moon not to appoint Mr. Kagame. I wonder if, one, if you can
comment on that and, two, whether, with the recent beheading of the
vice-president of an opposition party in Rwanda, what the UN’s
thoughts are of the developments in Rwanda and if a Rwandan Minister
is being considered to head UN Women?
First of all, the nominations for UN Women are
continuing to come in, so I wouldn’t have any comment on any
particular names on that.
Mundo article, yes, we are aware of that information. We did
keep the various parties, including the Government of Spain, informed
of the Secretary-General’s choice of President Kagame.
of President Kagame of Rwanda, one of the points on
this is that we believe that committed political leadership from both
the North and the South is essential to build support for the global
partnership embodied in the Millennium Development Goals. Rwanda has
displayed extraordinary commitment to the MDGs and is among the few
countries in Africa that have made the most progress towards the
Goals. There have been commendable declines in both child and
maternal mortality there. The country has also made remarkable
progress in reducing the number of reported malaria cases and deaths
and has the highest proportion of women parliamentarians in the
world. So Rwanda’s commitment to the Millennium Development Goals
has been outstanding.
against President Kagame, it’s clear that the
Secretary-General is against all violations of human rights and he
strongly condemns any such violations of human rights.
UN's Ban and Kagame, Zapatero and Erlinger not shown
point, however, President Kagame is the Head of State of Rwanda, and
it is not for the Secretary-General to prejudge the outcome of any
proceedings or accusations that have been initiated against him. So
we would need to see what the results of those are.
Does the UN believe, for example, this most recent
killing of an opposition leader should be investigated, and by whom?
At this stage, I believe the matter is with the
local law enforcement. We’ll see where it goes from there and
whether anything else needs to be done.
Zapatero boycotted the UN meeting with Kagame. After that, on
July 16, Inner City Press and EFE asked Haq why Ban had paired Kagame
and Zapatero of Spain, where Kagame is defending human rights charges.
answers not given by Haq: Helen Clark of UNDP. Watch this site.
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