Tests Terror with
Microsoft and Kennedy, UN FOIA Called For But Denied
Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of
Inner City Press at the UN: News Analysis
NATIONS, January 22 -- A
little known UN agency, the Turin-based Interregional
Crime and Justice
Research Institute, held a conference on "security governance" at
UN on Thursday. Microsoft, despite the well known security flaws in its
software, was invited to present, along with Kerry Kennedy of the RFK
Foundation. Ms. Kennedy, it emerges, will be "partnering" with UNICRI
to develop and disseminate a human rights curriculum for kids.
press conference, Inner City Press asked Ms. Kennedy if she or the RFK
Foundation had played any role in the UN's September 2007 conference on
victims of terrorism, and whether she believes the UN should have a
Information Act and better whistleblower
protection -- the lack of which in the
US's Abu Ghraib prison scandal in Iraq she has commented on.
Ms. Kennedy said she was not been a part of the
September victims' event,
but that she believes that more openness and information is important
anything associated with government, like the UN. She said of the UN,
would be in favor of making those as rigorous and open as possible."
from Minute 11:44.
UN - responding to corruption? FOIA not shown
Later, Inner City Press asked UN Assistant Secretary
General Robert Orr,
who had introduced both Ms. Kennedy and the Microsoft representative,
justify the UN's lack of a FOIA. He said that member states had
paying "the costs associated with FOIA." Video here,
35:14. But if those costs are mostly
related to redacting and concealing information, and nearly all records
electronic, this should not be a bar.
Orr encouraged questions to the director of UNICRI,
Inner City Press asked Mr. Calvani how UNICRI is funded. He said it is
"extra-budgetary," that one third of the funds from from the Italian
and other funds from "corporations" including "US
corporations." Like Microsoft? He said that UNICRI unlike the UN
Secretariat "can take risks," and doesn't need concensus for what it
does How nice, to have all of the powers of the UN with none of the
accountability. There are other farflung UN centers like this, on some
we will be reporting shortly.
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
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City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics
Click here for Inner City
Press Nov. 7 debate on the war in Congo
Watch this site, and this Oct. 2 debate, on
UN, bailout, MDGs
and this October 17 debate, on
Security Council and Obama and the UN.
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