d'Ivoire, UN Has Nothing on Mercenaries on Blocked
December 27 -- Five days after UN Secretary
Ki-moon called for member states to help break the blockade and
deliver supplies to peacekeepers in Abidjan, Ban's Office of the
Spokesperson has stopped answering any questions about the UN in Cote
Inner City Press asked Ban's acting Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq why
at this time the UN was planning to suspend all of its noon press
briefings for the week starting December 27. After claiming that it
was journalists who asked to receive less information, Haq said not
to worry, while he was going on vacation until January 4, main
spokesman Martin Nesirky would be in charge and answering questions.
Inner City Press sent three Cote d'Ivoire questions to Nesirky and
Haq, asking for responses for a 12:30 pm December 27 deadline. These
were and are the questions:
the UN done about mercenaries in Cote d'Ivoire since Alain Le Roy
confirmed the UN's sighting of mercenaries in that country?
or deny the UN's knowledge of Angolan
fighters in Cote
had asked Le Roy, when he came out from briefing the Security Council
last week, if he could confirm Liberian and Angolan mercenaries in
Cote d'Ivoire. Yes, Le Roy said, speaking of Liberian mercenaries who
spoke English and not French.
Roy's statement, Ban's deputy spokesman Haq denied that the UN had
knowledge of mercenaries. The next day, Ban himself referred to them.
Then the UN stopped answering questions, including about what if
anything they had done. Inner City Press also asked on December 26:
Cote d'Ivoire, confirm or deny any UN involvement in or knowledge
of the blocking of broadcast stations beyind Abidjan. Separately,
plea se provide Ban Ki-moon's and Choi Young-jin's comment on this
and Le Roy had
called state broadcasting in Cote d'Ivoire hate radio for what it
said of the UN. Then when it went off the air, what did they say?
UN's Ban and Y.J. Choi, spokespeople's answers not seen
and when we
get answers from Ban's office, we will publish another article. Watch
11:30 am Monday, Ban acting Deputy Spokesman sent the following,
in response to the three Cote d'Ivoire and other questions
outstanding since the previous week and before:
Haq [at] un.org
To: Inner City Press, Martin Nesirky [at]
Date: Mon, Dec 27, 2010 at 11:32 AM
Re: Press Qs on Cote
d'Ivoire, Darfur, Sri Lanka and Kosovo (and old questions...
reiterated re  days ago
closed on Monday. Thanks.
* * *
Decertify Gbagbo Diplomat, Le Roy Reconfirms Mercenaries
-- After Cote d'Ivoire's UN Ambassador was
targeted in a General Assembly speech by Secretary General Ban
Alain Le Roy again told Inner City Press that
Laurent Gbagbo is using mercenaries, and the ports of Abidjan have
Le Roy if the UN is asking other member states, like Nigeria or
others in ECOWAS, to help break the blockade, as Ban implied. Le Roy
said there is a Friday meeting of ECOWAS at which response will be
spoke about state media preaching hate and attacking on UN
peacekeepers. Inner City Press asked if the UN would move to shut
down the radio, as some in the UN say should have been done in Rwanda
in 1994. Le Roy answered by contrasting a speech by Gbagbo
ostensibly calling for peace with what the media is doing.
Le Roy to confirm that UN Peacekeepers have shot and killed at
least one Ivorian. He said only that they had responded
appropriately, but that there are more threats.
was Le Roy's second
confirmation to Inner City Press of Gbagbo's use of
mercenaries. After the first one, still Ban's acting Deputy
Spokesperson Farhan Haq said on Tuesday at noon that it had NOT been
confirmed. Video here.
But Le Roy
confirmed it again four hours later. Why did
Haq deny it?
UN's Ban & Gbagbo, mercenaries and blockade not shown
the hall of the
UN's North Lawn building, Sudan's Permanent Representative greeted
Ban and his chief of staff Vijay Nambiar, and then the Ambassador of
Nigeria and ECOWAS, and Le Roy. At the stakeout, Inner City Press
asked Le Roy about Sudan's destruction of IDP camps in Darfur. We are
aware of that, Le Roy said. UNAMID is on the scene. We'll see.
interviewed Cote d'Ivoire's Deputy Permanent
Representative both before and after Ban's speech. Before, when Inner
City Press asked if he would speak, he said “nous ne sommes pas
mandate.” Afterward he said Ban's speech was only about the
Permanent Reprentative Djedje, and that the new Ouattara Perm Rep Mr.
Joseph previously represented Gbagbo: “He's a career civil
servant.” Oh, diplomacy.
* * *
Ban Ki-moon's UN, Defense of Gambari, Withholding
of Massacre Reports
“Mister Gambari has been working very hard
with the Sudanese government,” UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
told the Press on Friday of his envoy in Darfur.
why the UN peacekeepers under Ibrahim Gambari's UNAMID
command did not leave their base when dozens of civilians were
murdered in Tabarat in September, and whether Ban would at least make
UNAMID's report on the killings public.
“We will have
see,” Ban answered. But UNAMID has answered requests for copies of
the report by saying it is up to the Secretary General.
Ban's end of year press conference, run by acting Deputy Spokesman
Farhan Haq, there had been no questions or answers about Sudan, where
the UN has two $1 billion peacekeeping operations. After a protest,
Haq allowed the Sudan question from Inner City Press:
was one of your priorities. As the year ends, the
government of Omar al Bashir is attacking the one rebel group it
supposed made peace with, the Minni Minawi group, UNAMID has no
access to Jebel Marra and ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo says that
UNAMID doesn't report attacks on civilians because it is threatened
by the government. You summoned Ibrahim Gambari to meet you... about
the massacres in Tabarat, after the UN peackeeepers didn't even leave
their base in Tawila to do to the site. Even the report on these
Tabarat killings is being withheld. What will you do differently in
question, Ban responded largely about the Southern Sudan referendum.
He said, “The situation in Sudan will be one of the top concerns of
international community starting January 9... There are sticking
issues, to establish a commission in Abyei.” Video here,
to Darfur, saying that “the security situation in
Darfur a serious concern. The recent bombing by the Sudanese
government of the north and south boundary of southern sudan... [We
are] making demarches that
the Sudanese government should be
cooperative. This afternooon I meet the Minister for Peace and the
CPA for Southern Sudan to discuss this matter.”
Doha process, Ban answered that the “peace negotiation has not been
progressing well. Except that government of Sudan and the Liberation
and Justice Movement LJM have agreed to a negotiation text. That can
be done, but without participation of all other rebel movements --
JEM, SLA and Abdel Wahid -- without their participation this
negotiation will not be sustainable. Joint mediator Bassole is
asserting his best efforts.”
saying that “Mister Gambari has been working very
hard with the Sudanese government... to have freedom of movement of
in Tawila for example tried to go to the Tabarat or
Tabra site but were stopped by the government. But internal UN
communications obtained by Inner City Press show that the UN
Peacekeepers told relatives of those being killed and injured that
they had come to late, to come back in the morning.
UN's Ban & Gambari, report on Tabarat massacre not shown
the report on
the incident is being withheld, with UNAMID saying it is up to the
Secretary General, who when asked would not released, instead
speaking of “consultations.”
if the report on Sri Lanka war crimes inquiries by Ban's
three person Panel of Experts will be made public. Ban did not answer
this either. Watch this site.
in the UN press corp about how
acting Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq ran the press conference, and
about lack of question and answer opportunities with Ban Ki-moon
throughout 2010. Ban said he will make an announcement in early 2011
about seeking a second term as S-G. We'll see.
for an Inner City Press YouTube channel video, mostly UN Headquarters
footage, about civilian
in Sri Lanka.
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.