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On Kosovo, Russia Warns Danger's Ahead, While UN's Pristina Airport-Runner Is Indicted

Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN

UNITED NATIONS, January 3 --  "It would be extremely dangerous to go into imposition mode," Russia's Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, said Wednesday, referring to UN envoy's Martti Ahtisaari's impending proposal to resolve the legal status of Kosovo. Responding to a question from Inner City Press, Amb. Churkin said he doubted that Kosovo will make it onto the program of work of the UN Security Council, which he chairs this month, since "We Russians believe that an opportunity must be given to the sides to continue the dialogue." Video here, from Minute 16:55.

            The side most recently on-record at the UN was the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Agim Ceku, who on December 13 predicted that the Security Council would address Kosovo's status "early next year." Video here, from Minute 3:05. Inner City Press asked Mr. Ceku, and Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Kosovo Joachim Rucker, to comment on Russia's threats to veto any resolution proposing independence for Kosovo. Mr. Rucker spoke of a process involving the European Union and the United States, and said he trusts the Contact Group of countries to "guide the process, including Russia."

   A new self-styled guide appeared in the pages of Wednesday's Financial Times: U.S. Senator Joe Biden. He decries "the Kremlin's quiet efforts to exacerbate territorial conflicts in Georgia, Moldova and Azerbaijan," warning that "Serbia could become the latest victim of this strategy." The first reference is to Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Transdniestia and Nagorno-Karabakh. The warning is that continued uncertainty about Kosovo holds even Serbia back.


            On Wednesday Russian Ambassador Churkin referred to the danger of trying "to impose a solution on parties in which at least one of the parties does not agree."

   On the same day, prosecutors in Kosovo indicted UK citizen Ioan Woolett, employed by the UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) to run Pristina airport. Mr. Woolett is charged with "accepting bribes, through a local businessman acting as the intermediary, from Kosovar residents in exchange for employment." Fraud in the hiring and other practices of the UN-run Pristina airport was the subject of a UN Office of Internal Oversight Services audit completed in April 2006, which criticized then- Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Kosovo Soren Jessen-Petersen for ignoring complaints of corruption. Asked about the  OIOS report during his final UN press conference on June 20, 2006, Mr. Jessen-Petersen scoffed that OIOS was living in the past, and that the Pristina Airport was a model of transparency. Video here, from Minute 31:35.

  [In terms of transparency, Amb. Churkin was asked again about the last-minute deletion of the (Iranian government-owned) Aerospace Industries Organization from the Iran sanctions list at the Council's Dec. 23 vote. Amb. Churkin said that "after discussions" the drafters of the resolution dropped it. But again, why? Click here for more.]

            From Amb. Churkin's statements on Wednesday, one wonders if it is Russia's status as president of the Security Council in January which has kept Kosovo off of the Council's agenda, at least off of this beginning-of-the-month agenda. One also wonders, when the matter finally comes onto the agenda, in February for example, if Russia will in fact veto a proposal for independence, or use it as leverage for ever-increased autonomy for Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Transdniestia. We'll see.

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At the UN, Death Penalty Lurchings, Ban Ki-moon Lunching, Somalia Left for Another Day

Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN

UNITED NATIONS, January 2 -- Cameramen and reporters, spokespeople, staffers and sycophants, the UN's lobby was crowded Tuesday morning. The new Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (pronounced Bahn Gee-moon, his spokeswoman Michele Montas told the press) walked to work with his new chief of staff, Vijay Nambiar. Contrary to announced plan, he did not speak in the lobby, but rather upstairs at the Security Council stakeout. The first question of the first work day of the first year was for comment on the execution of Saddam Hussein. As even Ashraf Qazi, the envoy to Iraq of Kofi Annan, put it on December 30, "the UN remains opposed to capital punishment." But Tuesday, man bit dog, or at least a little nibble. "The issue of capital punishment is for each and every Member State to decide," came the answer. Clarification was sought, there at the stakeout and then at Ms. Montas' noon briefing. Is this a new UN policy? No. But why didn't he state the UN's previous position, of opposition to the death penalty?

            Some point to South Korea having the death penalty on the books, if not in effect. Others point, as explanations, to the death penalty in use in Permanent Five nations, from the United States to China to, of course, Russia. Since these nations held veto power over the election of the Secretary-General, why is the position surprising?  Meanwhile some right-leaning press will support Mr. Ban's Tuesday position. How well it was considered remains to be seen. We have been told to await clarification. [On January 3, Mr. Ban said through his spokeswoman that he "strongly believes in the wisdom of Article 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states, 'Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.' In that context, he fully endorses the call made today by Louise Arbour for restraint by the Government of Iraq in the execution of the death sentences imposed by the Iraqi High Tribunal." Clear? No so much.]

            So too on the hot war of the day, Somalia. At the noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Ms. Montas if, since Ethiopian troops are now present in Mogadishu and even Kismayu, Mr. Lonseny Fall or the Secretariat have anything to say.

            "We expect to have a statement on Somalia, probably tomorrow, or the next day," Ms. Montas politely replied. "For the time being, the situation is the way it was stated before you left for the Christmas holiday." Except that control over most of Somalia has been wrestled from Islamic Courts to TFG / warlords, by the force of Ethiopia's army and air force.

            A visit to the UN Political Office on Somalia's website finds that the most recent update, as of January 2, is from December 13. At that time, Mr. Fall was calling for restraint, ceasefires, talks between TFG and Islamic Courts. What's his and the UN's position now? Impossible to know.

       Ms. Montas was asked Tuesday, "Is Alice Barcena one of the prime candidates for the [department of] management position?" She answered, "I cannot say." Reuters says yes. And word in the hall has it that OCHA will go to John Holmes of the UK.

           In the UN basement (see below or click here for today's story about the Vienna Cafe), the plasma screens outside each conference room showed photos of Ban Ki-moon's day, the Kofi Annan and other non-Ban shots being taken out of the rotation. Workers in the UN cafeteria were enthused by Ban Ki-moon's visit, that he stood in line and paid a cashier and stayed for more than half an hour.

Leather hot seats

 More formally, in his meeting with the Staff Union, the new Secretary-General was told that "the current internal system of justice of the organization 'fails to meet may basic standards of due process established in international human rights instruments'" and that "a fundamental change in the mindset of senior management is required, from a relationship based on dominance, disregard and fear." This last characterization is the status quo Ban Ki-moon at the UN Development Program, as we have reported in detail. Where else these dynamics exist is where we are next headed.

To Accommodate Smoking, UN Spends $130,000 on Ducts Faced with Demolition Within Two Years

Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN

UNITED NATIONS, January 2 -- Practicality, it seems clear, is the better part of diplomacy. How else to explain the UN spending $130,000 to install for two years a ventilation duct system for an indoor cafe in which no one is supposed to be smoking?

            On the Saturday before Christmas, while covering a rare weekend Security Council meeting at which sanctions on Iran were adopted, Inner City Press noticed in the UN basement that the Austria / Vienna Cafe had been walled off.  Informal inquiries found that the plan was to ventilate the space to remove cigarette smoke. This cafe is often smoke-filled, despite a 2003 Secretary-General's Bulletin purporting to ban smoking in the UN, as it is banned in all public indoor areas in New York City.

            Inner City Press sent written questions about the work to UN officials and spokespeople, before and after New Years. On Tuesday in two separate written response, Inner City Press was told that the contract was subject to competitive bidding and that cost of the work was $130,000. To Inner City Press' follow-up question of whether the work would be destroyed when the now-adopted $1.88 billion Capital Master Plan (CMP) results in the gut rehabilitation of the UN, the official in charge, Ms. Joan McDonald, replied that "this work will not be destroyed by the CMP... CMP have confirmed."

            But when Inner City Press subsequently telephoned the CMP's Administration and Communication Chief Ms. Vivian Van de Perre, she stated that all of the work being done in the Vienna Cafe will be ripped out. Then why are they paying $130,000 for the work? "That's a good question," she said, adding that she'd had the same doubt and then asking, "Have you spoken with Joan McDonald?" Well, yes, this very afternoon:

Subject: Re: Follow-up questions on Vienna Cafe work

From: mcdonald [at]

To: Inner City Press

Sent: Tue, 2 Jan 2007 3:56 PM


Apologies for the delay in response as you are aware I was out last week...

Q: what consideration was given, and by whom, to the relation between the cost and the amount of time the ventilation would be in use, before being destroyed in the upcoming gut-rehab of the space under the Capital Master Plan?

[A:] This work will not be destroyed by the CMP.  This CMP have confirmed. During the life of the CMP there will be projects carried out by FMS which are not covered by CMP... We coordinate all FMS projects with CMP. FYI the review process of this project was like all other projects through the Chief of FMS and in this particular case I was consulted and I agreed that the project should go ahead. The work is completed.   The clean up of the area, including furniture and shampooing the carpet will happen today and tomorrow and the cafe will be back first thing Thursday morning.

            A visit to the area on Tuesday morning by Inner City Press found holes in the ceiling now covered with sheet plastic. A workman on the scene with a tape measure, when asked about the work, said that only the asbestos abatement had been completed, and that the duct work, by Alex Wolf & Son, has yet to be done and can only be performed from six p.m. to six a.m., since the cafe will re-open later this week.

             In Ms. McDonald's above-quoted message, FMS stands for "Facilities Management Services." In the most recent UN phone book, the director of FMS is Martin Bender. But Mr. Bender has not been coming in to work, due to an investigation into his alleged collusion with a UN contractor. (Mr. Bender's replacement, Andrew Nye, did not respond to telephone and email requests for comment on this story.) The Procurement Fraud Task Force is interviewing others in Facilities Management Services. Whether related or not, FMS clearly does *not* coordinate with the Capital Master Plan, whose spokesperson told Inner City Press on Tuesday that all of this work will be ripped out.  

Smoking: outdoors in Cambodia, free. Indoors at the UN? $130,000 for two years

            In 2003 Mayor Bloomberg prohibited smoking in public indoor areas in New York City. (More recently, the UN's WHO is a beneficiary of Bloomberg's $125 anti-smoking grant.) Kofi Annan followed suit with a Bulletin, 2003/9, stating that "No smoking shall be permitted in any of the UN premises at Headquarters." Nevertheless smoking continued, defended in a pinch by Ambassadors citing diplomatic immunity. Russia's then-Ambassador Sergey Lavrov was quoted that Annan "doesn't own this building," while heading off to smoke in the Delegate's Lounge.

            More recently, the front line of the smoking battle has been in the area outside the Security Council chamber. Diplomats and staffers often smoke there. Petitions have gone up on the wall, with dozens of signatures, alongside lists of the impacts of smoking. A copy of Kofi Annan's Bulletin that "No smoking shall be permitted in any of the UN premises at Headquarters" was even posted.

            In the basement, someone gave up the fight. The extent of smoking at what's also call the Viennese Cafe has been noted online by NGOs and bloggers of the right and left, and even from the youth. It has been pointed out that many more staffers than diplomats frequent the Vienna Cafe, presumably making the three-year old no smoking policy easier to enforce. But enforcement, one wag noted, has never been the UN's strength. And so the contact for the ducts, to suck smoke from the cafe. But when the whole area is going to be gut-rehabilitated in two years or less, why pay $130,000 to accommodate smoking, which is already prohibited?

          A half-dozen workmen were onsite at 7 p.m. Tuesday night. Several acknowledged the absurdity of the work. A man in with an "FMS" badge sewn on his shirt, unnamed to avoid retaliation, pointed at the holes in the ceiling and said, "For this, they should have taken the whole ceiling down. Because when they fix this area, all of the ceiling that's been left will have to do -- it's asbestos. And they aren't even ventilating the seating area by the back conference rooms, where people smoke all the time. Why not send them all up to the Ex-Press Bar and open a window? Or just tell them they can't smoke, like the rest of us?"

            To recap, a UN official who signed off on this work has told us that the work will not be ripped up by the Capital Master Plan  gut-rehabilitation, while a spokeswoman for the Capital Master Plan has told us unequivocally that the work *will* be ripped out, "all of it." Even putting aside the issues raised by accommodating an already prohibited activity, and beyond the she said - she said, one wonders how a $1.88 billion rehabilitation would not involve the full rebuilding of this space.

            New Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday told reporters that the UN is "sometimes unfairly criticized" so he is encouraging staff "to have continuous dialogue with the press." So maybe these questions will be answered. Watch this site.

Other Inner City Press reports are available in the ProQuest service and some are archived on --

UNDP's Ad Melkert Says He Will Finally Increase Transparency, Describes Fraud in Russia, Dodges Uganda

In Eastern Congo, Kidnapper of UN Peacekeepers Is Made a Colonel, Clooney And Now Guehenno Might Stay

At the UN, Ocampo 1 Says Kony To Jail and Ocampo 2 Sees No Serious Bertucci Charges, Dueling Parties

In UNDP's Book, Strong's Scandals Are Missing, While Workers Complain, MMB Schmoozes the Korean Mission

At UNDP, Flighty Rhetoric Founders in Mismanagement, MMB's Net, a Genocidaire and Whither ECOSOC

At the UN, Disabled Are Freed from a Footnote, Murky Answers from Gbagbo to Kosovo to a Genocidaire

Countering UN's Vanity Press, UNDP Histories from Below, Brussels and Two Views of Omar Bakhet

At the UN, Indigenous Indignation, Revolving Door Mysteries and Peace Pipe Belatedly Smoked

At the UN, Questions of Congo Mass Graves and Kazana, Mugabe and Forests and Rich German Ships

UNDP Is Important For The Poor, and Therefore Must Be Made Transparent

As UN Speechifies, UNDP Audits Are Still Being Withheld, While War in Somalia and Sudan, Pronk Blogs On

Waste, Fraud and Abuse at UNDP in Vietnam, While UN Secretariat Urges Censorship

At the UN, Questions of Humanitarian Aid and Congo Body Count, Despots' Crackdown on Dissent

In UNDP, Questions of Money Wasted, Neutrality Trampled, Russian Office Audits Withheld and Sachs Expenses

From Baidoa to the UN, Denials on Ethiopian Troops Being in Somalia, Resolution Is Passed

Retaliation Found at UNDP, While Dervis Is Focused on Turkey, In Two Weeks Will Take Questions

Annan's Spokesman Silent on 150 Dead in Congo, War in Somalia - But in Loud Defense of UNDP's $567,000 Book

At the UN, Interlopers into Somalia Are Discussed, With Chadian Pull-Back, Peacekeepers and Uganda's Karamoja

UNDP Spent $567,000 on Book to Praise Itself, While the Well-Placed Feed Off UNDP's Core Budget and Prime Postings

As UNDP Questions Mount, Mark Malloch Brown Calls Them Irresponsible, Answers Only in Vanity Press

In UNDP Series, Questions of Jeffrey Sachs and Associates Payments, From $1 to $75,000

From Sleaze in Vietnam to Fights in DC-1, UNDP Appears Out of Control at the Top

On Somalia, Past Arms Embargo Violations Forgiven in Zeal to Contain Islamic Courts

In UNDP, Drunken Mis-Managers on the Make Praised and Protected, Meet UNDP's Kalman Mizsei

From Violent Disarmament in Uganda to the National Bank of Serbia, UNDP Leaves Others to Answer for It

UNDP Sources Say Dervis Fires Malloch Brown-linked Officials, Then Offers Hush-Up Jobs

On Somalia, Fiji and Oil-for-Food, UN Ambiguity Leads to Hypocrisy and Corruption

At the UN, Indigenous Rights Get Deferred, As U.S. Abstains, Deftly or Deceptively

At the UN, Threat and Possible Statement on Fiji Spotlights Selection and Payment of UN Peacekeepers

At the UN, China and Islamic Dev't Bank Oppose Soros and World Bank On How to Fight Poverty

At the UN, Misdirection on Somalia and Myanmar, No Answers from UNDP's Kemal Dervis

UNDP Dodges Questions of Disarmament Abuse in Uganda and of Loss of Togo AIDS Grant, Dhaka Snafu

At the UN, The Swan Song of Jan Egeland and the Third Committee Loop, Somalia Echoes Congo

UN Silent As Protesters Tear Gassed in Ivory Coast, As UNMOVIC Plods On and War Spreads in Somalia

In the UN, Uzbekistan Gets a Pass on Human Rights As Opposition to U.S. Grows and War's On in Somalia

At the UN, Cluster Bombs Unremembered, Uighurs Disappeared and Jay-Z Returns with Water -- for Life

From the UN, Silence on War Crimes Enforcement and Conflicts of Interest on Complaint from Bahrain

En Route to Deutsche Bank, the UN's Door Revolves, While Ban Ki-moon Arrives and Moldova Spins

As Two UN Peacekeepers Are Killed, UN Says Haiti's Improving, Ban Ki-moon on Zimbabwe?

Nagorno-Karabakh President Disputes Fires and Numbers, Oil and UN, in Exclusive Interview with Inner City Press

Inside the UN, Blaming Uganda's Victims, Excusing Annan on Mugabe, and U.S. Blocked Darfur Trip

U.S. Blocked Council's Trip to Darfur Meeting, Brazzaville Envoy Explains After U.S. Casts a Veto

At the UN, Council Works Overtime To Cancel Its Trip About Darfur, While DC Muses on John Bolton

UN Panel's "Coherence" Plan Urges More Power to UNDP, Despite Its Silence on Human Rights

On Water, UNDP Talks Human Rights, While Enabling Violations in Africa and Asia, With Shell and Coca-Cola

Will UN's Revolving Door Keep Human Rights Lost, Like Bush's Call and WFP Confirmation Questions?

On Somalia, We Are All Ill-Informed, Says the UN, Same on Uganda, Lurching Toward UNDP Power Grab

On WFP, Annan and Ban Ki-Moon Hear and See No Evil, While Resume of Josette Sheeran Shiner Is Edited

Would Moon Followers Trail Josette Sheeran Shiner into WFP, As to U.S. State Dep't?

At the UN, Positions Are Up For the Grabbing, Sun's Silence on Censorship, Advisor Grabs for Gun

In WFP Race, Josette Sheeran Shiner Praises Mega Corporations from Cornfield While State Spins

At the UN, Housing Subsidy Spin, Puntland Mysteries of UNDP and the Panama Solution

In Campaign to Head UN WFP, A Race to Precedents' Depths, A Murky Lame Duck Appointment

At the UN, Gbagbo and his Gbaggage, Toxic Waste and Congolese Sanctions

WFP Brochure-Gate? John Bolton Has Not Seen Brochure of "Official" U.S. Candidate to Head World Food Program

Ivory Coast Stand-Off Shows Security Council Fault Lines: News Analysis

At the UN, It's Groundhog's Day on Western Sahara, Despite Fishing Deals and Flaunting of the Law

"Official" U.S. Candidate to Head WFP Circulates Brochure With Pulitzer Claim, UN Staff Rules Ignored

Senegal's President Claims Peace in Casamance and Habre Trial to Come, A Tale of Two Lamines

A Tale of Two Americans Vying to Head the World Food Program, Banbury and Sheeran Shiner

At the UN, the Unrepentant Blogger Pronk, a Wink on 14 North Korean Days and Silence on Somalia

At the UN, Literacy Losses in Chad, Blogless Pronk and Toothless Iran Resolution, How Our World Turns

Sudan Pans Pronk While Praising Natsios, UN Silent on Haiti and WFP, Ivorian Fingers Crossed

UN Shy on North Korea, Effusive on Bird Flu and Torture, UNDP Cyprus Runaround, Pronk is Summoned Home

At the UN, Silence from UNDP on Cyprus, from France on the Chad-Bomb, Jan Pronk's Sudan Blog

Russia's Vostok Battalion in Lebanon Despite Resolution 1701, Assembly Stays Deadlocked and UNDP Stays Missing

As Turkmenistan Cracks Down on Journalists, Hospitals and Romance, UNDP Works With the Niyazov Regime

At the UN, Darfur Discussed, Annan Eulogized and Oil For Food Confined to a Documentary Footnote

With All Eyes on Council Seat, UN is Distracted from Myanmar Absolution and Congo Conflagration

As Venezuela and Guatemala Square Off, Dominicans In Default and F.C. Barcelona De-Listed

At the UN, North Korea Sanctions Agreed On, Naval Searches and Murky Weapons Sales

At the UN, Georgia Speaks of Ethnic Cleansing While Russia Complains of Visas Denied by the U.S.

At the UN, Deference to the Congo's Kabila and Tank-Sales to North Korea, of Slippery Eels and Sun Microsystems

At the UN, Annan's Africa Advisor Welcome Chinese Investment, Dodges Zimbabwe, Nods to Darfur

At the UN, Richard Goldstone Presses Enforcement on Joseph Kony, Reflecting Back on Karadzic

UN Defers on Anti-Terror Safeguards to Member States, Even in Pakistan and Somalia

Afghanistan as Black Hole for Info and Torture Tales, Photos and Talk Mogadishu, the UN Afterhours

Amid UN's Korean Uproar, Russia Silent on Murder of Anna Politkovskaya, Chechnya Exposer

UN Envoy Makes Excuses for Gambian Strongman, Whitewashing Fraud- and Threat-Filled Election

Sudan's UN Envoy Admits Right to Intervene in Rwanda, UNICEF Response on Terrorist Groups in Pakistan

At the UN, As Next S-G is Chosen, Annan Claims Power to Make 5-Year Appointments, Quiet Filing and Ivory Coast Concessions

Chaos in UN's Somalia Policy, Working With Islamists Under Sanctions While Meeting with Private Military Contractors

U.S. Candidate for UN's World Food Program May Get Lame Duck Appointment, Despite Korean Issues

At the UN, U.S. Versus Axis of Airport, While Serge Brammertz Measures Non-Lebanese Teeth

Exclusion from Water Is Called Progress, of Straw Polls and WFP Succession

William Swing Sings Songs of Congo's Crisis, No Safeguards on Coltan Says Chairman of Intel

Warlord in the Waldorf and Other Congo Questions Dodged by the UN in the Time Between Elections

In Some New Orleans, Questions Echo from the South Bronx and South Lebanon

In New Orleans, While Bone Is Thrown in Superdome, Parishes Still In Distress

At the UN, Tales of Media Muzzled in Yemen, Penned in at the Waldorf on Darfur, While Copters Grounded

US's Frazer Accuses Al-Bashir of Sabotage, Arab League of Stinginess, Chavez of Buying Leaders - Click here for video file by Inner City Press.

Third Day of UN General Debate Gets Surreal, Canapes and Killings, Questions on Iran and Montenegro and Still Somalia

On Darfur, Hugo Chavez Asks for More Time to Study, While Planning West Africa Oil Refinery

At the UN, Ivory Coast Discussed Without Decision on Toxic Politics, the Silence of Somalia

Evo Morales Blames Strike on Mobbed-Up Parasites, Sings Praise of Coca Leaf and Jabs at Coca-Cola

Musharraf Says Unrest in Baluchistan Is Waning, While Dodging Question on Restoring Civilian Rule

At the UN, Cyprus Confirms 'Paramilitary' Investigation, Denies Connection to Def Min Resignation, CBTB Update

A Tale of Three Leaders, Liberia Comes to Praise and Iran and Sudan to Bury the UN

UN Round-up: Poland's President Says Iraq Is Ever-More Tense While Amb. Bolton Talks Burmese Drugs, Spin on Ivory Coast

As UN's Annan Now Says He Will Disclose, When and Whether It Will Be to the Public and Why It Took So Long Go Unasked

At the UN, Stonewalling Continues on Financial Disclosure and Letter(s) U.S. Mission Has, While Zimbabwe Goes Ignored

At the UN, Financial Disclosure Are Withheld While Freedom of Information Is Promised, Of Hollywood and Dictators' Gift Shops

UN's Annan Says Dig Into Toxic Dumping, While Declining to Discuss Financial Disclosure

A Still-Unnamed Senior UN Official in NY Takes Free Housing from His Government, Contrary to UN Staff Regulations

UN Admits To Errors in its Report on Destruction of Congolese Village of Kazana, Safeguards Not In Place

As UN Checks Toxins in Abidjan, the Dumper Trafigura Figured in Oil for Food Scandal, Funded by RBS and BNP Paribas

Targeting of African Americans For High Cost Mortgages Grew Worse in 2005, While Fed Downplays Its Own Findings

The UN and Nagorno-Karabakh: Flurries of Activity Leave Frozen Conflicts Unchanged; Updates on Gaza, Gavels and Gbagbo

The UN Cries Poor on Lawless Somalia, While Its Ex-Security Chief Does Business Through Ruleless Revolving Door

At the UN, Micro-States Simmer Under the Assembly's Surface, While Incoming Council President Dodges Most Questions

"Horror Struck" is How UN Officials Getting Free Housing from Governments Would Leave U.S., Referral on Burma But Not Uzbekistan

Security Council President Condemns UN Officials Getting Free Housing from Governments, While UK "Doesn't Do It Any More"

At the UN, Incomplete Reforms Allow for Gifts of Free Housing to UN Officials by Member States

Rare UN Sunshine From If Not In Chad While Blind on Somalia and Zimbabwe, UNDP With Shell in its Ear on Nigeria

Annan Family Ties With Purchaser from Compass, Embroiled in UN Scandal, Raise Unanswered Ethical Questions

At the UN, from Casamance to Transdniestria, Kosovars to Lezgines, Micro-States as Powerful's Playthings

Inquiry Into Housing Subsidies Contrary to UN Charter Goes Ignored for 8 Weeks, As Head UN Peacekeeper Does Not Respond

On the UN - Corporate Beat, Dow Chemical Luncheon Chickens Come Home to Roost

Stop Bank Branch Closings and Monopolies in the Katrina Zone, Group Says, Challenging Regions- AmSouth Merger

Ship-Breakers Missed by UN's Budget for Travel and Consultants in Bangladesh, Largest UNIFIL Troop Donor

With Somalia on the Brink of Horn-Wide War, UN Avoids Question of Ethiopian Invasion

In UN's Lebanon Frenzy, Darfur Is Ignored As Are the Disabled, "If You Crave UNIFIL, Can't You Make Do With MONUC?"

UN Decries Uzbekistan's Use of Torture, While Helping It To Tax and Rule; Updates on UNIFIL and UNMIS Off-Message

On Lebanon, Russian Gambit Focuses Franco-American Minds, Short Term Resolution Goes Blue Amid Flashes of Lightening

Africa Can Solve Its Own Problems, Ghanaian Minister Tells Inner City Press, On LRA Peace Talks and Kofi Annan's Views

At the UN, Jay-Z Floats Past Questions on Water Privatization and Sweatshops, Q'Orianka Kilcher in the Basement

In the UN Security Council, Speeches and Stasis as Haiti is Forgotten, for a Shebaa Farms Solution?

UN Knew of Child Soldier Use by Two Warlords Whose Entry into Congo Army the UN Facilitated

Impunity's in the Air, at the UN in Kinshasa and NY, for Kony and Karim and MONUC for Kazana

UN Still Silent on Somalia, Despite Reported Invasion, In Lead-Up to More Congo Spin

UN's Guehenno Says Congo Warlord Just Needs Training, and Kazana Probe Continues

With Congo Elections Approaching, UN Issues Hasty Self-Exoneration as Annan Is Distracted

In DR Congo, UN Applauds Entry into Army of Child-Soldier Commander Along with Kidnapper

Spinning the Congo, UN Admits Hostage Deal with Warlord That Put Him in Congolese Army

At the UN, Dow Chemical's Invited In, While Teaming Up With Microsoft is Defended

Kofi Annan Questioned about Congolese Colonel Who Kidnapped Seven UN Soldiers

UN Silent As Congolese Kidnapper of UN Peacekeepers Is Made An Army Colonel: News Analysis

UN's Guehenno Speaks of "Political Overstretch" Undermining Peacekeeping in Lower Profile Zones

In Gaza Power Station, the Role of Enron and the U.S. Government's OPIC Revealed by UN Sources

UN's Corporate Partnerships Will Be Reviewed, While New Teaming Up with Microsoft, and UNDP Continues

BTC Briefing, Like Pipeline, Skirts Troublespots, Azeri Revelations

Conflicts of Interest in UNHCR Program with SocGen and Pictet Reveal Reform Rifts

UN Grapples with Somalia, While UNDP Funds Mugabe's Human Rights Unit, Without Explanation

UN Gives Mugabe Time with His Friendly Mediator, Refugees Abandoned

At the UN, Friday Night's Alright for Fighting; Annan Meets Mugabe

UN Acknowledges Abuse in Uganda, But What Did Donors Know and When? Kazakh Questions

In Uganda, UNDP to Make Belated Announcement of Program Halt, But Questions Remain (and see The New Vision, offsite).

Disarmament Abuse in Uganda Leads UN Agency to Suspend Its Work and Spending

Disarmament Abuse in Uganda Blamed on UNDP, Still Silent on Finance

Alleged Abuse in Disarmament in Uganda Known by UNDP, But Dollar Figures Still Not Given: What Did UN Know and When?

Strong Arm on Small Arms: Rift Within UN About Uganda's Involuntary Disarmament of Karamojong Villages

UN's Selective Vision on Somalia and Wishful Thinking on Uighurs

UN Habitat Predicts The World Is a Ghetto, But Will Finance Be Addressed at Vancouver World Urban Forum?

UN's Annan Concerned About Use of Terror's T-Word to Repress, Wants Freedom of Information

UN  Waffles on Human Rights in Central Asia and China; ICC on Kony and a Hero from Algiers

UN & US, Transparency for Finance But Not Foreign Affairs: Somalia, Sovereignty and Senator Tom Coburn

Human Rights Forgotten in UN's War of Words, Bolton versus Mark Malloch Brown: News Analysis

In Praise of Migration, UN Misses the Net and Bangalore While Going Soft on Financial Exclusion

UN Sees Somalia Through a Glass, Darkly, While Chomsky Speaks on Corporations and Everything But Congo

Corporate Spin on AIDS, Holbrooke's Kudos to Montenegro and its Independence

The Silence of the Congo and Naomi Watts; Between Bolivia and the World Bank

Human Rights Council Has Its Own Hanging Chads; Cocky U.S. State Department Spins from SUVs

Child Labor and Cargill and Nestle; Iran, Darfur and WHO's on First with Bird Flu

Press Freedom? Editor Arrested by Congo-Brazzaville, As It Presides Over Security Council

The Place of the Cost-Cut UN in Europe's Torn-Up Heart;
Deafness to Consumers, Even by the Greens

Background Checks at the UN, But Not the Global Compact; Teaching Statistics from Turkmenbashi's Single Book

Ripped Off Worse in the Big Apple, by Citigroup and Chase: High Cost Mortgages Spread in Outer Boroughs in 2005, Study Finds

Burundi: Chaos at Camp for Congolese Refugees, Silence from UNHCR, While Reform's Debated by Forty Until 4 AM

The Chadian Mirage: Beyond French Bombs, Is Exxon In the Cast? Asylum and the Uzbeks, Shadows of Stories to Come

Through the UN's One-Way Mirror, Sustainable Development To Be Discussed by Corporations, Even Nuclear Areva

Racial Disparities Grew Worse in 2005 at Citigroup, HSBC and Other Large Banks

Mine Your Own Business: Explosive Remnants of War and the Great Powers, Amid the Paparazzi

Human Rights Are Lost in the Mail: DR Congo Got the Letter, But the Process is Still Murky

Iraq's Oil to be Metered by Shell, While Basrah Project Remains Less than Clear

Kofi, Kony, Kagame and Coltan: This Moment in the Congo and Kampala

As Operation Swarmer Begins, UN's Qazi Denies It's Civil War and Has No Answers if Iraq's Oil is Being Metered

Cash Crop: In Nepal, Bhutanese Refugees Prohibited from Income Generation Even in their Camps

The Shorted and Shorting in Humanitarian Aid: From Davos to Darfur, the Numbers Don't Add Up

UN Reform: Transparency Later, Not Now -- At Least Not for AXA - WFP Insurance Contract

In the Sudanese Crisis, Oil Revenue Goes Missing, UN Says

Empty Words on Money Laundering and Narcotics, from the UN and Georgia

What is the Sound of Eleven Uzbeks Disappearing? A Lack of Seats in Tashkent, a Turf War at UN

Kosovo: Of Collective Punishment and Electricity; Lights Out on Privatization of Ferronikeli Mines

Abkhazia: Cleansing and (Money) Laundering, Says Georgia

Post-Tsunami Human Rights Abuses, including by UNDP in the Maldives

Citigroup Dissembles at United Nations Environmental Conference

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