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March 1, 2011: Libya

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At IMF on Egypt, No Change But a Visit, No Comment on Occupy Wall St

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 6 -- As Egypt says it is "changing its attitude" toward a previously offered $3.2 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund, the IMF on Thursday told the press that there has been no new request from Egypt and that only policy and technical assistance is being provided.

  IMF spokesman David Hawley did tell the press, under embargo as a big revelation, that IMF staff will be going to Egypt in the "next few weeks." Hawley did not provide any update on Director Christine Lagarde's claim that the IMF would be helping out the drought and famine in the Horn of Africa, despite not recognizing the government in Somalia.

  Inner City Press submitted an Egypt question and two others, including "what is the IMF's comment on the Occupy Wall Street developments in the US, including 700 arrests in lower Manhattan?" The IMF did not acknowledge or answer the question.

IMF's Lagarde and Ban Ki-moon: no comments on #OccupyWallStreet

On September 28, the IMF acknowledged but said it would have no answer to this question:

Former IMF managing director Strauss-Kahn has just argued in Bronx court that he is immune under the 1947 Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the Specialized Agencies.

But this Convention provides that "[e]ach specialized agency shall have the right and duty to waive the immunity of any official in any case where, in its opinion, the immunity would impede the course of justice and can be waived without prejudice to the interests of the specialized agency."

That is to say, the IMF can waive any immunity that is being argued for. The question: will the IMF waive the IMF-based immunity for which Mr. Strauss-Kahn is arguing, or will the IMF shield him from the charges?

  Saying the IMF "has nothing" on this question, an IMF spokesperson did answer Inner City Press' question about South Sudan -- with a press release from July, to which it said there is no update. And so it goes at the IMF.

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Click for Mar 1, '11 re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

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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

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