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On Syria, Non-Payers Sponsored, List of Paying No-Shows, Kyrgyzstan Locked

By Matthew Russell Lee, Analysis

UNITED NATIONS, February 17 -- "We tried to vote but it doesn't work," the Kyrgyz representative complained after Thursday vote on Syria in the General Assembly. Video here, from Minute 53:48.

  Inner City Press has since learned that Kyrgyzstan is in arrears on its dues to the UN and therefore cannot vote; in fact, the UN disables such countries' voting buttons in the General Assembly.

  Comoros, on the other hand, while behind on dues had an exemption to vote. Still it complained after the vote, "nous avons les memes problemes techniques" - we have the same technical problems.

  Inner City Press has analyzed the list of those who didn't vote Thursday on the Syria resolution. While others may not know, Yemen is behind on dues and precluded from voting, along for example with Tonga, Swaziland, Gambia, Gabon, the Dominican Republic and Dominica.

  But some who were listed as sponsors of the Syria resolution were also precluded from voting due to failure to pay, including Cape Verde, Palau and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

  There were countries which were all paid up but nevertheless failed to show up or vote, including Cambodia, oil-rich Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea and Ethiopia, Kiribati, Laos, Madagascar, Mali, Philippines, Sierra Leone with its UN Mission, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan with its UN Office and Uzbekistan, whose Permanent Representative joked with Inner City Press earlier in the week about when the voting might be.

Three states paid up just before the vote in order to participate: Marshall Islands, Micronesia and Sudan, which told Inner City Press that its arrears were due to some slip up with Chase Manhattan Bank. Hello, JP Morgan.

After the vote, two states favoring the resolution separately spun Inner City Press that those precluded from voting by arrears would have voted for the resolution and raised the tally higher.

  Beyond Kyrgyzstan's complaint, which several UN insiders told Inner City Press was "embarrassing," complaints about not being able to vote were made by Burundi and Comoros, which it is true has an exemption to vote for the rest of this 66th General Assembly session. Was Comoros' voting machine still locked, like Kyrgyzstan's? Watch this site.

Footnote: This supersedes a typically wan write-up by a venue which has just this month mis-labeled "exclusives" on Syria, and tried to steal a Sri Lanka story. The former was raised on February 2 without correction or response; the latter has yet to be addressed. Watch this site.

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

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

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

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