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ICP Asks Next SG Gherman of Moldova Cujba Role in South South Scandal

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 13 -- How should the next UN Secretary General be selected, to improve the Organization?

First, how low has the UN fallen, in terms of corruption, not stopping rapes, and retaliating against the Press that asks the questions? On April 12, Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq about an April 13 hearing in the US House of Representatives about impunity for UN rapes. Just as the UN skipped court hearings on bringing cholera to Haiti, Haq's answer did not say that the UN would attend the hearing.

  But it gets worse, or closer to home. When Moldova's candidate Natalia Gherman came to the stakeout at 5 pm on April 13, Inner City Press has already gotten in questions to Danilo Turk and Vesna Pusic.

  But for Moldova's Gherman, first Inner City Press could not access the stakeout due to a cut in accreditation by UN official Cristina Gallach. Then, unlike the earlier stakeout, for this one Inner City Press was not "permitted" a question (two of three were mere requests to restate what Gherman has said in the past two hours.)

  But there was a question and had to be asked, and must be pursued. Standing to the side of the stakeout was Moldova's former, until recently, "Permanent Representative" to the UN Alexandru Cujba. He is deeply involved in the South South scandal. He promoted the 2015 South South Awards, which Cristina Gallach attended with Frank Lorenzo.

 Inner City Press asked Gallach about it - and then was thrown out by Gallach.  We'll have more on this.

  A few hours later on April 12, after Inner City Press asked Next SG candidates Antonio Guterres and Irina Bokova about UN rapes and corruption, the UN's Department of Public Information emailed to Inner City Press a final eviction notice.

  All of Inner City Press' files, from covering and investigating the UN for ten years, will be thrown and moved out on Saturday, April 16 - when no one else is in the building. Email below.

  This came after the head of DPI, Cristina Gallach, was shown in the Office of Internal Oversight Services audit, full text exclusivley put online by Inner City Press, to have allowed corrupt events in the UN Visitors Lobby and even to commemorate slavery. This is retaliation.

  And what about the current, outgoing Secretary General? We'll have more on his response in the coming days. Here's what the UN sent:

Subject: Office
To:matthew.lee [at]
From: Tal Mekel [at]
Date: Tue, Apr 12, 2016 at 6:47 PM

Dear Mr. Lee,

Further to the letter to you from Cristina Gallach, Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information, on 30 March 2016, we note that you did not remove your belongings from the office by the 6 April deadline as required.

As you have still not removed your belongings, we wish to inform you that your belongings will be packaged on Saturday 16 April 2016 at 10:00 a.m.

After carefully packaging them up, your belongings will be forwarded to Bronx NY headquarters address for Inner City Press that you had listed in your media accreditation application. If you wish us to forward your packaged belongings to another address instead, please let us know as soon as possible.

We request your presence during the packing. Please contact the Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit (MALU) to make the necessary arrangements. If you are not present, the packing and forwarding will still take place at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday 16 April 2016.

Best, Tal

Tal Mekel
Acting Chief
Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit
United Nations - S-250
New York, NY 10017


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