Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the United Nations to Wall Street to the Inner City

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media-eg AJE, FP, Georgia, NYT Azerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .


Follow us on TWITTER

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis



ICP on YouTube

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

UN Stonewalls 40 Hours Before DRC Deadline, UK Cheers, US & France Silent

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 30 -- Forty hours before the deadline the UN has set to begin offensive military action in Eastern Congo, the UN has still not answered basic questions such as whether the Geneva Conventions apply to it, or which units of the Congolese Army it will be supporting.

  The UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations has had months to answer these questions. Twenty four days ago, DPKO told Inner City Press it would provide an answer about whether it was supporting Army units depicted engaged in abuses in the UN Group of Experts report the full text of which Inner City Press exclusively put online in June.

   But no answer. This is what DPKO has become under Herve Ladsous, compilation video here.

  Where is the oversight? At the US State Department's briefing on Tuesday, no question was asked about the Congo, or about the United Nations at all -- despite US Acting Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Dean Pittman traveling to Kunming, China, to discuss Security Council issues and UN Peacekeeping with other P5 members.

  The UK had an Africa expert tweeting in support of MONUSCO's threats, with no reference to its failure to answer basic questions. French Ambassador Gerard Araud, when Inner City Press asked what law applies to MONUSCO, said he would check with his legal experts and get back.

  Now he is apparently out of town himself, having missed Monday's Syria session in the General Assembly.

  The French mission has not responded to whether it believes the Geneva Conventions apply to MONUSCO and its Intervention Brigade. Herve Ladsous is the fourth Frenchman in a row to head DPKO, and represented France in the Security Council during the 1994 Rwanda genocide, arguing for the esacpe of genocidaires into Eastern Congo. This will be on them.

Jump-cut to Tuesday's UN noon briefing, video here, after the MONUSCO mission had announced its ultimatum. Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesperson Eduardo Del Buey:

Inner City Press: I wanted to ask you about what you’d announced of MONUSCO, this announcement they’ve made. Essentially, it seems to say that if groups don’t disarm in 48 hours, they’re fair game to be attacked, so I wanted to ask you some questions that have kind of built up, that haven’t been answered. One is: which of the units of the Congolese army MONUSCO will be supporting, since they have this human rights due diligence policy and a number of units are named in the Group of Experts report? 24 days ago, I asked DPKO [Department of Peacekeeping Operations] which units, now I want to ask before in this 48-hour period, which are the units they’d support, whether it includes the 391st battalion, which did the Minova rapes and desecration, and also whether MONUSCO itself is covered by the Geneva Convention, as it now, basically, declares war... says in advance that they will undertake offensive actions.

Deputy Spokesperson: I’ll have to check on those two questions for you, Matthew.

Inner City Press: Given that it was 24 days ago that it was asked, is it possible to get an answer in the next 48 hours?

Deputy Spokesperson: Well, all we can do is try. We’ll try.

Inner City Press: Right. Do you think… does the Secretary-General think, given this unprecedented change in approach by UN peacekeeping, that to have the policy of due diligence mean anything, they have to say which units they support? That’s the question.

Deputy Spokesperson: Well, we have, I believe, not said anything about that yet and when we have something, we will.

Inner City Press: Right, but I mean, not said which units you support. That’s what I’m asking. It’s like you’re just saying…

Deputy Spokesperson: When we have something, we’ll let you know, Matthew.

Inner City Press: Do you think it will be before they start shooting guns?

Deputy Spokesperson: I can’t predict what’s going to happen. My crystal ball is covered in smoke. [Video here]

Seven hours after that briefing, the UN and its Department of Peacekeeping Operations had not answered any of the questions. Watch this site.


Share |

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Click for re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-2013 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]