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On Iran US Craft and Hook Brief UNSC While UN Guterres Stonewalls on UN Sexploitation

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR Letter PFT Q&A

UN GATE, Sept 15 – Back on March 11, 2019 with the new proposed U.S. budget the topic of a briefing at the State Department, Inner City Press went to ask about the provision that 15% of U.S. contributions to the UN should be cut if, as is the case, the UN is not protecting whistleblowers. See March 11 photos here, and see below for State Department answer and read-out.

 Now on June 24, 2020 - while UNSG Antonio Guterres and his spokespeople Stephane Dujarric and Melissa Fleming are refusing to answer Inner City Press, banned 722 days, about the UN sexploitation video it exclusively published - the US says this: "U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Kelly Craft, and U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Senior Advisor to the Secretary, Brian Hook, virtually briefed the UN Security Council on a proposed resolution to extend the arms embargo on Iran. Conventional arms restrictions under UN Security Council Resolution 2231 are set to expire on October 18. Special Representative Hook noted that the Security Council should be united over its concern with Iranian arms transfers, and that it has maintained arms restrictions on Iran since 2007. He updated Security Council members on the full range of Iran’s malign activity, including its September 2019 direct attack on Saudi Arabia. Given that Iran has neither abided by current restrictions nor demonstrated a change in its threatening behavior, Special Representative Hook and Ambassador Craft called on Security Council members to extend the arms embargo."

 On September 15 for the UN it was belatedly Antonio Guterres - back from a junket feigning concern for Haitian he cheats out of compensation for UN cholera - who put this clunker out: "The Secretary-General condemns Saturday’s attacks on Aramco oil facilities in the Eastern Province in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia claimed by the Houthis.   The Secretary-General calls upon all parties to exercise maximum restraint, prevent any escalation amid heightened tensions and to comply at all times with International Humanitarian Law." Because while Guterres doesn't care about international humanitarian law when it comes to refoulement and slaughter by Cameroon's Paul Biya and his Nigerian partners, nothing says "humanitarian law" more than Saudi oil facilities. This through Stephane "Crepe Lust" Dujarric, who working with Al Jazeera had Inner City Press roughed up and banned now 438 days. We'll have more on this.

  On September 12 from the UN Security Council stakeout from which Inner City Press remains banned by UNSG Antonio Guterres, this answer from French Ambassador Nicolas de Riviere: Q: "can I ask you the latest on President Macron’s Iran diplomacy, because we are days away from the UN General Assembly? Do you think there is a possibility of a meeting between President Rohani and President Trump?     DE RIVIERE: Together with the E3, France is working very hard to implement and to protect the JCPoA, number one. And number two, to try to resolve and to decrease the tensions in the Middle East. We are talking to everyone, to Iran and the US, together with our European partners, and this is what we are trying to achieve. We want to move closer to a solution."  We'll have more on this.

 Back on June 24 at the UNSC stakeout that Guterres bans Inner City Press from then for the 418th day in a row (but tweeted photo here), Iran called on Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric babbling partner in censorship, here; Iran's Ambassador was asked about a canned Guterres quote which the Ambassador said he could not agree with more.

 Now on July 18 US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said, "Today, the United States designated 12 entities and individuals based in Iran, Belgium, and China that are linked to the nuclear proliferation-sensitive activities of the Iran Centrifuge Technology Company – known by its Persian acronym, TESA.  The designations announced today under Executive Order 13382 target proliferators of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) or WMD delivery systems and their associates.  In addition to a freeze on any of their assets within the United States, the sanctioned persons and entities will be denied access to the U.S. financial system and listed online as WMD proliferators.  The United States strongly condemns Iran’s recent expansion of sensitive nuclear activities, including increasing its stockpile of low enriched uranium and enriching uranium at levels above 3.67 percent.  There is no credible reason for Iran to expand its nuclear program at this time and in this way other than as a transparent attempt to extort the international community."

 And here's a question banned Inner City Press asked corrupt Guterres, without answer: "July 16-4: On the Host Country Agreement and Iran, given the Deputy Spokesman's statements yesterday please immediately state when Guterres has allowed the 25 mile restriction to be put on UN staff who are nationals of Iran, why he has allowed it, what he has done to defend the rights of UN staff, and which other countries' nationals he allows these restrictions on. "

From June 24, here is the Iranian Mission's transcription of what he said: "Ambassador Ravanchi’s introductory remarks  In the UN Security Council Media Stakeout - 24 June 2019 As a country whose airspace has been violated by two U.S. spy drones, Iran was entitled to participate in the Council’s Meeting. This is our right under the UN Charter. We expressed our readiness and requested to participate in that meeting. However, unfortunately, we were denied of exercising this right. Today, the Council was briefed unilaterally by one party, the U.S. who is abusing its position as the Council’s permanent member to misguide this body in order to advance its anti-Iranian policy. We have irrefutable information on the incident to provide to the Council. According to our credible detailed and precise technical information on the path, location, and points of intrusion and impact of the U.S. spy drone, there is no doubt that when targeted, it was flying over the Iranian territorial sea. This was done after several radio warnings, all of which were disregarded.  Iran’s action was in full conformity with international law. Iran acted in self-defense in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter. Additionally, on the same day, another U.S. spy aircraft with 35 people on board violated Iran’s airspace. However, Iranian armed forces exercised maximum restraint and no action was taken against the invading aircraft. In another instance in less than one month, another U.S. spy drone entered into our airspace on 26 May 2019. Iran has consistently recorded its protest against all such violations and provocative actions through the U.S. interests section in the Embassy of Switzerland in Tehran.  These are only a few examples of provocative actions and adventurism by the U.S. in violating Iran’s borders and airspace.  Conversely, Iran’s practices indicate that while having an inherent right to defend our territorial integrity and enjoying all required capabilities as well as resolute determination to exercise this right, we want neither war nor an escalation of tension in the Persian Gulf region. But, certain circles from inside and outside of the region, through dangerous acts, are attempting to escalate the tensions. This helps them to justify further foreign military buildup in the region and sell more American and western arms to certain countries, including to continue committing the gravest crimes in Yemen. To pursue this policy, they resort to deception, fabrications and disinformation. One clear example is the unfounded claim of the U.S. against Iran regarding the recent oil tankers incident, which were not even supported by some of the closest allies of the U.S.. We categorically rejected the claim. How could Iran be benefited from attacking tankers destined to Japan, while simultaneously its Prime Minister, in his historic visit to Iran, was meeting with the highest Iranian officials? The claim could not be more absurd! The U.S. decision today to impose more sanctions against Iran is yet another indication that the U.S. has no respect for international law and order as well as the views of overwhelming majority of the international community.  To ease tensions in the broader Persian Gulf region, the U.S. must stop its military adventurism as well as its economic war and terrorism against the Iranian people.  There is also a need for a genuine regional dialogue on regional security. We have already expressed our readiness for such a dialogue and have asked the Secretary-General to play a role in this regard."

 Guterres does nothing but flim-flam the Permanent Five members, trying to ensure a second term as UNSG to live high off the hog.

 Back in March 2019 before UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres came to Washington on March 13 reportedly hat in hand, his spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Guterres would speak at his photo spray with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Inner City Press went - but Guterres, as is his way, said nothing. Photo here. Then this read out -- from US State Department deputy spokesperson Robert Palladino: "The below is attributable to Deputy Spokesperson Robert Palladino:‎     "Secretary Michael R. Pompeo met today in Washington with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.  The Secretary extended his condolences on the tragic loss of life of United Nations affiliated personnel on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.  The Secretary and UN Secretary-General discussed the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, ongoing events in Venezuela, and the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, among other matters.  The Secretary expressed concern that Iran’s destructive and disruptive activities across the Middle East undermine the UN’s efforts to resolve conflicts." Hours later UN Spokesperson tweeted a read out that was, it seems, not emailed out, and that does not mention Iran: "The Secretary-General met with H.E. Mr. Michael Pompeo, United States Secretary of State, today in Washington. They discussed the need for strong cooperation between the United States and the United Nations and addressed several issues of concern, such as Yemen and Venezuela. Additionally, they raised efforts under way, both for prevention and conflict resolution in several African and Middle East situations.   The Secretary-General also provided a status update on the on-going UN reform effort and encouraged continuing US engagement and support." Guterres' spokesman Dujarric did not answer, despite his promise, banned Inner City Press' questions including "March 13-3: On today's and tomorrow's SG team trip to Washington, (1) state how many and which UN staff are on the trip, (2) how much it costs, (3) which members of Congress the SG is meeting with, (4) whether this includes Sen Marco Rubio and if not, why not- did the SG request a meeting? (5) provide read-outs of all meetings or state why not." We'll have more on this. On March 11, too few questions were taken but afterward it was suggested to Inner City Press ask the question in writing. So it did: "Hi - earlier this afternoon after the (short) briefing about the budget, I asked about the provision that 15% of US contributions to the UN would be cut if the UN is not protecting whistleblowers.   It was suggested to me that I email you to ask: does the State Department currently believe that the UN is or is not sufficiently protecting whistleblowers, in light of such case as Anders Kompass and others who blew the whistle on UN and French peacekeepers' sexual abuse in CAR, recent cases at WIPO, etc." On March 12, this was the response to Inner City Press from a State Department spokesperson on background: "The United States believes that all international organizations should operate under modern, accountable management practices, including robust protections for whistleblowers.  The Department of States assesses these protections in the context of preparing the report to Congress required by section 7048(a) of the appropriations act, and raises shortcomings with senior leadership and other UN member states to spur corrective action.  The Department has been monitoring the UN’s protection of whistleblower protections, including recent improvements to the organization’s whistleblower protection policy, which has been a priority for Secretary-General Guterres." We'll have more on this - given Kompass, WIPO, etc. "Policy" and practice are two very different things. Watch this site. When Helen Clark who ran an open campaign for Secretary General won by the significantly less open Antonio Guterres spoke about drugs near the UN on November 19, Inner City Press went to ask and cover it. On the panel also were two UN officials, Craig Mokhiber of the office of Michelle Bachelet and Simone Monasebian, the New York Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. Ms Monasebian recounted how some member states were prepared to break consensus on a paragraph on harm reduction in the annual resolution in the UN's Third Committee so that paragraph was removed. Inner City Press when called on asked the panel about the Security Council's heavy handed and military approach to drugs, for example in Afghanistan, and asked for more detail on the Third Committee which it for 138 days has been banned from accessing by UNSG Guterres. Ms. Monasebian noted that beyond Afghanistan the Security Council addressed drugs from 2009 under the Presidency of then Council member Burkina Faso through 2014. Mr. Mokhiber said that military approaches are counter productive. And Helen Clark when she spoke chided the shrinking of civil society space and attacks on journlists including exclusion from the UN across the road. Video here.

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