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North Korea Wants UNSC Meeting, Ban & Speaker Propaganda

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 21 -- North Korea has asked for an "urgent" UN Security Council meeting again about the Ulji Freedom Guardian military exercise including the US. Fext below. This comes after South Korea resumed propaganda broadcasts from huge speakers, and North Korea fired at them.

  Back on August 10, Inner City Press asked the UN for the reaction of its Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the speakers. From the UN's August 10 transcript:

Inner City Press: in the Korean peninsula, there's been this incident where two South Korean soldiers were injured by a land mine they say was planted by the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] in the demilitarized zone, and now South Korea says they're going to resume these "propaganda broadcasts" with loudspeakers.  Some stories say that the UN has confirmed these landmark… these land mines.  So, I'd like you to… to… which is the UN Command, whether it's a UN agency or not.  What does the Secretary-General think of this development, particularly the threatens… the statements of reprisal by South Korea and what, if anything, is he doing to try to defuse this tension?

Spokesman Stephane Dujarric:  Sure.  You know what?  I have some language on that, but not with me, so I will share with you right after the briefing.  And as you know, the UN Command is… is named “UN Command” for historical reasons — is not one over which the Secretary-General has any authority.

   Dujarric said he had some "language" on it. Inner City Press went to the spokesperson's office, but there was none. It would be emailed to Inner City Press, it was assured. At  4 pm, after Ban walked by an otherwise empty stakeout of a wan Burundi meeting of the UNSC, his office put out an entirely one sided statement, with no mention or reprisal or of propaganda:

"In response to questions asked earlier about an incident on the Demilitarized Zone in the Korean peninsula, the Spokesman had the following to say:

"The Secretary-General is concerned by the reports that the Korean People’s Army has placed new land mines in the southern half of the Demilitarized Zone, which injured two soldiers from the Republic of Korea on 4 August. He urges the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to fully adhere to the obligations under the Armistice Agreement and engage in dialogue on this incident.

"The Secretary-General urges the tensions on the Korean Peninsula to be alleviated."

  Make this man president of South Korea, one wag said. And here is what DPRK said, in a letter dated August 19 sent out the next day:

“Upon instructions from my Government, I have the honour to bring to your attention the aggressive joint military exercise so-called 'Ulji Freedom Guardian (UFG)' which is now being conducted by the United States in south Korea against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea,” DPRK's Permanent Representative to the UN Ja Song Nam wrote to the Security Council's president for August.

   “The U.S.-led joint military exercises including the 'UFG,' which are staged one after another every year on the Korean peninsula and beyond, are serious provocations as well as a typical expression of the U.S. hostile policy against the DPRK. The U.S. is again attempting to cover up the aggressive and dangerous nature of such exercises by describing them as 'annul' or 'defensive' ones. However, such real war-like military maneuvers, which mobilize massive armed forces and nuclear war means with a purpose of occupying Pyongyang, capital of the DPRK, can neither be "defensive" nor justified as 'routine' under the pretext of 'annual basis.'

  “The U.S. is going to force the DPRK into an arms race through ceaseless war drills and arms build-up in a sinister bid to throw hurdles in the DPRK's efforts for the economic development and the improvement of people's living and seek an opportunity for a preemptive attack on the DPRK by making it inattentive to increased vicious cycles of tensions. The U.S. war games clearly prove that it is the U.S. which instigates the vicious cycles of escalating confrontation and tension and creating the danger of war on the Korean peninsula. The U.S.-led aggressive and provocative large scale joint military exercises are no longer issues confined to the DPRK-U.S. or the inter-Korean relations but an international issue which threatens the peace and security in Northeast Asia and beyond.

  “Therefore, I request that the issue of the U.S. joint military exercises, be placed on the Security Council agenda, and that a meeting of the Security Council be urgently held in accordance with Articles 34 and 35 of the Charter of the United Nations. I would like to remind that the Security Council has unjustifiably ignored the DPRK's several requests to place the issue of the U.S. joint military exercises on the agenda of the Security Council.

   “Should the Security Council again ignore the DPRK's just request to discuss the U.S. joint military exercises, it will expose of itself that it is giving up its primary mission of maintaining the international peace and security and becoming a political tool of an individual power. If the U.S. persistently opts for military confrontation despite the repeated warnings of the DPRK and the shared denunciation by the international community, it will be held wholly accountable for all the ensuing consequences. The DPRK will not indefinitely wait for the U.S. to change its DPRK policy by seeing its sovereignty and security being threatened, but make all necessary steps to deter the U.S. nuclear provocation."

  On August 20, Inner City Press asked the UN to confirm what is widely reported in Nigeria, that Ban will be there on Sunday August 23. The UN wouldn't confirm - nor say if Ban is headed to any other countries. Watch this site.

A year after the Free UN Coalition for Access asked the UN why its in-house EZTV had channels from the US (CNN and Fox News), UK (BBC) and France (France 24) but none from China or Russia or India or Brazil, a new channel has been added: South Korea's Arirang.

 On July 15 the channel bragged it was on "UN In-House Network," President Park appeared on it saying hello to the UN community, just before promos and news casts promoting the country's foreign policy. A panel show - about the UN - featured CHOI Jong-moo, MUN Byeong-cheol and PARK Heung-soon, who said South Korea should "use" the UN. Duly noted.

 On July 15, after reporting on the addition, Inner City Press asked UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric:

Inner City Press: I've noticed that the EZTV has this Arirang television on it, and about a year ago, I'd asked you about calling it P3 TV, that the current EZTV lineup has Fox and CNN from the United States, BBC from the U.K., France 24.  And you said that there was attempts to make it more diverse.  Has there been any attempt to get either India, Brazil, Russia, China, or is it sort of… how do these things happen?

Spokesman Dujarric:  Let me check.  Broadcasters often contact us and try to provide news feeds for us.  And as long as it has no cost to the UN…

Inner City press:  But is there a desire to have kind of a diversity?

Spokesman Dujarric:  The broader the information, the better.

  Ban Ki-moon, former foreign minister and perhaps future president of South Korea, apparently made a plug for the station. Given that current President Park appears on it, might this be a way for Ban to continue to be projected into the UN after 2016?

 Inner City Press, on behalf of the Free UN Coalition for Access, asked about UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric back on April 29, 2014:

Inner City Press: I wanted to ask on the actual UN EZTV which has channels and it’s an in-house thing, it seems like now, there’s two French channels, there’s two American news channels, there’s Al-Jazeera, there’s no Russian or Chinese channel, so…

Spokesman Dujarric: We’re trying. Part of the issue is what we can get for free, we had to cut costs in terms of subscription so it was a cost issue, but I know it’s an effort on the part of [the Department of Public Information] to add more channels in different languages, but it’s also trying to do it in a way that doesn’t cost us a dime.

Inner City Press: It’s seems like P3 TV, do you see why?

Spokesman: Okay, that’s a comment, not a question.

Two days later there was an addition on UN in-house EZTV, but it is not Chinese or Russian: it's Japan's NHK. So G4 TV?



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