Rice, Cote d'Ivoire Plots, Sudan Greets and Meats, UN
December 9, updated -- The Ambassadors of Sudan and Cote d'Ivoire
were among the guests at US Ambassador Susan Rice's diplomatic
holiday party Thursday night in the Waldorff Towers. The former,
Dafallah Osman, had two hours earlier delivered
a speech saying that
humanitarian groups in Darfur were engaged in “espionage.”
d'affaires asked Inner City Press what now should happen to
Gbagbo, who had appointed him. His interlocutor, another African
Permanent Representative, predicted that Gbagbo will try to stay in
power a la Robert Mugabe.
invitation, it was argued, was sent before Gbagbo ignored the
election results, and the remnant Deputy Ambassador wasn't part of
the “dark side.” But he was plotting how Gbagbo could stay in
power, in Susan Rice's living room. This is diplomacy at the UN.
laudably eclectic, including the Special Adviser for the
Responsibility to Protect rushing to catch a train for Westchester,
the Special Representative on Sexual Violence and Armed Conflict and
a slew of Ambassadors, many of whom had stopped first at a Kazakhstan
event. There was some talk of upcoming UN budget fights, and more of
Serbia, a long time UN employee from Georgia and India, bragged about
his country's Davis Cup tennis win over France. The Ambassador of
Palau, from the Upper West Side, talked up his wife's country's move
to create a sanctuary for sharks.
taking the chair, at least in New York, of the Organization of the
Islamic Conference, which sides with Sudan's Omar al Bashir over the
International Criminal Court. “I am only the chair,” the Tajik
Ambassador told Inner City Press. Israel's Ambassador also spoke at
length, which may be a separate story.
Susan Rice entering US with Ban, eclectic party not yet shown
the US Mission
residence's dining room there was turkey, ham and cheese and slew of
ASGs, from Human Resources to ACABQ. Interesting art on the walls was
said to be on loan for a program for US Embassies. The full USUN team
was in the house, from the spokespeople to Rosemary DiCarlo
through Brooke Anderson to
Rick Barton and Ambassador Melrose, who covers the Budget Committee.
US' big event
this month will be Youth in the Security Council. Austria will have
three youths there, but only if they can pay their own airfare. While
they will fetchingly stay overnight with the Austrian Perm Rep, could
this be just an event for rich kids? [see update below]
in the US,
schools are on hiatus when the event is being held. We'll see who
shows up, and what scholarships are provided. It was a friendly event
full of holiday spirit. And in Sudan, the UN Mission in Darfur covers
up killings. UN Peacekeeping chief Alain Le Roy told Inner City Press
he will look into it. What will the US do? Watch this site.
Update of December 13: Inner City
Press is informed that as regards Austria, the foreign ministry is
"providing some financial support for the airfares for the three kids."
Duly noted. So rather than ask about the danger of it being an event
for rich kids, might it not, without the UN or US taking precautions,
be an event disproportionately for kids from richer COUNTRIES? Watch
* * *
As UNAMID Covers Up Killings by Sudan, ICC Reports Them
December 9 -- After the UN refused
to release what it knows
about the killing of civilians at Tabarat and the destruction of
and other villages in Darfur in September, the International Criminal
Court's report unveiled in the Security Council on December 9 names
13 other destroyed villages (with Soro transliterated as “Souroo”),
and has witness quotes what it calls the government sponsored killing
in Tabarat (which it calls Tabra).
prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo's presentation to the Security Council
on Thursday, Inner City Press on camera asked both him and Sudan's
Permanent Representative to the UN Dafallah Osman about the Tabra
killings and the destruction of villages.
said that the killings were “tribal,” involving
kidnapping and promises to pay blood money. He praised UNAMID and its
leader Ibrahim Gambari (calling him a “seasoned diplomat”).
asked if he thought UNAMID should release what it knows about the
Tabra killings. This, he did not answer, instead ranging from saying
that Ocampo's report shows NGOs were engaged in “espionage” to
claiming that Radio Dabanga was disseminating destabilizing and even
several yards away, unlike with the previous Sudanese Ambassador
Abdalmahmood Abdalhaleem Mohamed, whom Ocampo stood right next to
during their final stare down. When Ocampo came to the microphone,
Inner City Press asked him if he thought UNAMID was in essence
covering up Sudan's and Bashir's acts by not reporting on them.
UNAMID is under threat, that's why it doesn't report. This means
that UNAMID is not reporting, which is its job. What will Ban
Ki-moon, the Security Council and Obama administration do?
ICC's LMO close to Sudan's last Ambassador,
new backing away mirrored by UN- & US?
Thursday, Mark Hanis of the Genocide Intervention Network / Save
Darfur Coalition on a press conference call said Obama, Hillary
Clinton and Joe Biden campaigned on (among other things) protecting
civilians in Darfur, and named Samantha Power and Susan Rice as
officials. Hanis called them “disappointing” so far. Inner City
Press asked what UNAMID should do. Report, Hanis said. But UNAMID
and 9, Inner City Press asked UN spokesman Martin
fighting and death in Darfur, including in Tabarat / Tabra:
Press: a request made to UNAMID [African Union-United Nations
Hybrid Operation in Darfur] for the report that they were supposed to
do on the Tabarat killings of 2 September, near Tawilla, the one that
the Secretary-General summoned Mr. [Ibrahim] Gambari to speak about.
Anyway, somebody that asked him was told that there is no report for
external dissemination available on it, and I just wonder, what is
the UN’s final finding? Did it do the right thing, in apparently
not getting out to the site despite the warning by relatives of those
killed? Are all such reports confidential, and in which case, how is
the Security Council or the international community to assess the
level of violence and killing in Darfur if these new reports never
Well, that’s a very long question.
This is the only time I’ll ask it, but if there is anything the UN
can say about those killings, I’d like to know.
Well, I hear your question, I think, and let’s look into what the
Mission tells us.
than a full
day later, UNAMID has said nothing. When Inner City Press asked
again about UNAMID on December 9, Nesirky claimed he had already
answered questions, including about attacks the Sudanese government
had just bragged about.
Presidency of the Security Council for December, Susan Rice told
Inner City Press that UNAMID (and UNMIS) are required to investigate
and report on attacks on civilians. Does that mean report to the
public, as the ICC does? What will Susan Rice and the US Mission do?
press had been
told that Susan Rice would speak at the stakeout, where Ocampo and
Sudan's Ambassador did. But she did not. A reporter given advance
notice that she would not come was told that “one country” had
blocked the elements to the press that she would have read. But she
could have spoken, especially after what Sudan's Ambassador said,
including denying things that the US Mission has previously said,
about the Council's interlocutors being harassed and Radio Dabanga's
Khartoum office being shut down.
City Press also asked Ocampo about Guinea -- he said he is
watching “national proceedings” -- and Kenya, where witnesses are
under threat. Ocampo answered by bragging that none of his witnesses
have been injured. But how about retaliated against, given what
Sudan's Ambassador said about the NGOs. Watch this site.