Backtracks on Sri Lanka Visit, Snow Job Even on Secretary's Trip
December 27 -- The UN's bungling of Sri Lanka continued
Monday, when a snow storm because a snow job. UN Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon on December 17 announced that his Panel ostensibly on
Accountability in Sri Lanka would travel to that country.
on December 23,
when Inner City Press asked Ban's acting Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq
about such travel, after he was quoted that it might in fact not take
place, all Haq would say is that an announcement would be made later.
announced that there would be no opportunity for in person question and
answers during the entire week beginning December 27.
City Press asked why the noon briefings were canceled, when the UN is
ostensibly open. Haq claimed that journalists had asked for less
information, so that they would not have to come in. But he said that
questions would be answered by lead spokesman Martin Nesirky, who has
said that he speaks for the Panel.
Inner City Press sent the following simple question to Haq and Nesirky,
with a deadline of 12:30 pm on December 27:
deny that the Secretariat / chief of staff of the S-G's panel on
Sri Lanka is traveling to that country, and if so, with what goals?”
11:30 am on
December 27, Haq responded with five words: "UNHQ is closed on Monday."
UN's Ban and Mahinda Rajapaksa, clarity re visit (& Panel) not shown
Rather than a
simple answer to a simple question, Haq
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.
* * *
Lanka War Crimes Panel “Broader than LLRC,” Travel Unclear,
December 23 -- Despite UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
having announced on December 17 that his “Panel of
Experts is now
able to visit Sri Lanka,” now Ban's acting Deputy Spokesman Farhan
Haq says that "We can't confirm if the panel will travel to Sri
Lanka or will meet the LLRC in some other location.”
on December 23 asked Haq to explain what changed since Ban's December
17 announcement, and whether the Panel would speak only with the
Lessons Learnt & Reconciliation Commission, and not for example
with General Sarath Fonseco, who has alleged war crimes.
is broader than dealing with the LLRC,” the UN's Haq said. Video
from Minute 6:55.
refused to say
if the Panel will, as Ban said, travel to Sri Lanka. Haq said that an
announcement will be made. But Haq also said that there will be no UN
noon briefings until January -- thus limiting the chance for
questions and answers.
UN's Ban & Mahinda Rajapaksa, visit and Q&A not shown
asked why the UN, which is open from December 27 to 30, is not
holding noon press briefings on those days. Haq blamed it on
“reporters,” claiming some had “said, do we have to come in
reporters Inner City Press asked about this disagreed, saying that
there should be live Q&A, even if some don't want to come in,
that shouldn't eliminate the chance to get answers. Watch this site.