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UN Budget Session Has Haiti, Kosovo & S. Sudan Open, Punts on Silva SAG

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 9 -- As the UN Budget Committee closes weeks of work on Peacekeeping, spending for at least three Missions, in South Sudan, Kosovo and Haiti, still has to be decided on Monday, sources tell Inner City Press.

   The sources list among major issues this session the transfer of functions from New York to Brindisi, Italy, which was approved, while transfers to Valencia, Spain were rejected, and a new director level (D2) position in the Department of Field Support.

   The top issue, they say, was Troop Costs, for which the supplemental payment of seven percent begrudgingly agreed last year was extended until March 2013, "when the Special Advisory Group on Peacekeeping Operations" results will be discussed.

As Inner City Press on May 23 quoted a South Asian representative in attendance at this SAG, "France is the worst, in trying to cut the pay. We told them, fine, then don't keep creating new missions. Two of my country's peacekeepers died in Ivory Coast, carrying out French foreign policy."

  It subsequently emerged and the Press reported that France's representative on the SAG switched from Jean-Marie Guehenno, now one of Kofi Annan's two deputies on Syria, to Nicolas de la Riviere, who like current Ban DPKO Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous was a former Deputy Permanent Representative of France to the UN, serving under Permanent Representative Gerard Araud (who, incidentally, has not been seen in UN Headquarters for some time, replaced by Deputy now charge d'affaires Martin Briens.)

  Inner City Press began closely covering the SAG after alleged war criminal Sri Lankan general Shavendra Silva was made one of the Senior Advisers to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and his Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous. Attacks on Inner City Press now cite not only UNCA but also Shavendra Silva, here.

  Ban Ki-moon told Inner City Press that this is entirely up to member states; meanwhile his advisers whisper that Inner City Press must be funded by remnants of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, giving rise to threatening anonymous telephone calls.

  Ladsous, when Inner City Press asked him about accepting Silva on the SAG, as well as about the Mission in Haiti introducing cholera to that country, refused to answer, saying "Well, Mister, I will start answering your questions when you stop insulting me and making malicious and insulting insinuations." The video, at Minute 28:10, is online here.

  As Ladsous said this, he was flanked by Ban's spokesman and former Reuters reporter Martin Nesirky and by the acting head of the Department of Field Support Anthony Banbury, who did not answer the question Inner City Press put to him. Will he, on the DFS budget? Watch this site.

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Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

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

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

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