Lebanon Gunfire Echoes Through Council Meeting on August's Work: Piracy
and Chad But No Myanmar
August 3, updated -- News of a shootout between Lebanese and Israeli
forces echoed through Tuesday morning's Security Council breakfast
and August program of work meeting.
Lebanon's Deputy Permanent
Representative Caroline Ziada, rushing into the Council at 10 am, said
be consultations on the shootout at 11:30.
Council sources told Inner City Press the time and format were not
yet set, but that “something will happen this morning.”
when French peacekeepers were pelted with eggs, an emergency Council
session was held. Now with at least three dead Lebanese soldiers and
one dead journalist - and reports of a senior Israeli military
casualty - an emergency meeting and statement are to be expected.
said “this always happened in August,” harkening back to the
Russia - Georgia war in South Ossetia. Russia's Vitaly Churkin, the
Council's president for August, has been project a slow, vacation
like month. Russia decided it would not have the standard “thematic
debate” -- sources say theirs would have been on Resolution 1540 --
and to keep meetings to a minimum.
member told Inner City Press its priorities for August included
keeping any re-opening of discussion on Kosovo's status at the August
3 debate to a minimum, hearing the Secretariat's plan to protect
civilians in Chad, and the rule of law component in combating piracy
off the coast of Somalia.
Lebanon's DPR Ziada, under Israeli eyes, consultations not shown
member told Inner City Press that the Children and Armed Conflict
report on Colombia has been completed, and so needs to be presented.
concerned about Myanmar or as they call it Burma, did not ask to have
it even in the footnotes. We aim to have more about the UN and
Myanmar, soon. And on Lebanon. Watch this site.
Update of 10:43 am
-- sources tell Inner City Press that Lebanon is "any other business"
item after program of work. Presidency says Churkin will go forward
with 11 am press conference about the month's agenda. "They are through
with Lebanon," an attendee says at 10:44. Through? Surreal.
Update of 10:48 am
-- Attendee returns and apologizes. The consultations on Lebanon will
be at 11:30.
11:32 am -- for the 11:30 briefing on Lebanon, head peacekeeper
Alain Le Roy rushes in, and Secretariat's Nicholas Haysum. Churkin's
program of work presser pushed back to after the noon briefing.
12:32 pm -- A Permanent Representative exiting the Council tells
Inner City Press that “elements to the press” on Lebanon have
been agreed (litany of buzzwords, restraint, investigation, 1701) and
that a more formal press statement on Ban's flotilla panel is being
of 1:25 pm -- Churkin read out the elements to the press and then
declined to take questions on them, saying it is still being
investigated by UNIFIL. Alain Le Roy confirmed to the Press that Israel
gave a few hours notice of the work that it would be doing. At
Churkin's presser, Inner City Press asked about Kyrgyzstan, Sudan and
Kosovo - watch this site this afternoon.
* * *
Says Travel Restrictions Break Agreement, But No Attribution of
Pilot Hostake Taking or Kalma Camp Violence
2 -- In Darfur, the embattled UN - African Union
mission UNAMID has been instructed to only travel, including on the
roads of Nyala, after giving prior notice to the government, which
has also said it will search UNAMID personnel's bags in airports.
asked UN spokesman Martin Nesirky about these new Sudanese government
rules. “If implemented, then these restrictions on movement would
not be consistent with the Status of Forces Agreement,” Nesirky
replied in what seemed a prepared statement. Video here,
that UNAMID is resisting the restrictions, in a way it did not resist
the orders to only use its helicopters on 48 hours notice, even to
defend its peacekeepers? “We're working with the local authorities
in South Sudan,” Nesirky said.
last week repeatedly asked if and when the UN would disclose what it
knows about who took hostage the Russian pilot, and beat his
passengers. On July 30, Inner City Press was told that the pilot,
already then released, would rest before being interviewed as to who
had taken him.
when on August
2 Inner City Press asked the UN, which has presumably now interviewed
the pilot, to say whether as reported it was pro-government militia,
Janjaweed, who were responsible for the incident, Nesirky said the UN
still does not know.
and its Department of Peacekeeping Operations has begun work toward
required (and compromised) “full understanding of the facts”
behind the deaths and
violence in the Kalma camp last week, Nesirky said that DPKO chief
Alain Le Roy will conduct a previously scheduled briefing for the
Press on August 4.
In Nyala, UN copters still unused, now roads off
limits, no pilot report
prepared that the situation in Kalma has “improved but remains
tense,” and that deputy joint Special Representative Mohamed Younis
Nyala and spoke with the Wali of South Darfur sheiks and UNAMID
staff. Nesirky did not fully confirm until after the briefing that
three UNAMID peacekeepers, from Sierra Leone, while accompanying
Younis died in a car crash. RIP.
will have more
about the roads of Nyala. Watch this site.
* * *
Violence, Nur's Role as Unclear as US Stance on Doha, Sudan Says
Camp Is Under UN Control, Lobbies
30, updated -- Darfur camp violence was
taken up by the UN
Security Council on Friday afternoon. According to UN sources,
the Liberation and Justice Movement group which is negotiating with
Khartoum were targeted by members of the Abdel Wahid Nur faction,
which is not.
States called for the consultations, it is not clear if the US stands
with the UN and its Darfur envoy Ibrahim Gambari in saying that the
solution to Darfur is to be found in Doha across the table from Omar
al Bashir's negotiators.
Bernard Kouchner loudly announced that Paris based Abdel
Wahid Nur would be joining the Doha process. Nearly immediately,
Abdel Wahid Nur qualified this with the conditions previously listed,
including safety in Darfur.
asked Ibrahim Gambari on July 27 about Abdel Wahid Nur's
participation. Gambari said no, and characterized the conditions,
including safety, as something you get at the END of negotiations,
not as a precondition. One can see this as either realism or a too
cavalier attitude to the protection of civilians, especially for one
in charge of a peacekeeping mission with such a mandate.
More Kalma from the past, Gambari not shown
on his way at 4 pm into the Council's suite where he
would not be allowed into consultations, said that Gambari had told
him at 2:30 that he would be placing some calls to get information,
and would himself be giving the briefing at 4. But at that time, he
was spotted by an Inner City Press source strolling the streets
outside the UN, dress in white national dress.
on June 27 that he has gone to Paris twice to meet Abdel Wahid Nur.
Three days later, he is still in New York, but not in the
consultations room. Briefing was Alain Le Roy of Peacekeeping, joined
at 4:40 by Lynn Pascoe of Political Affairs.
referendum Eminent persons monitoring group the UN is moving to set
up, which Inner City Press exclusively reported earlier today, would
be staffed by Pascoe's Department of Political Affairs and not the UN
peacekeeping mission run by Haile Menkerios. Whether Pascoe's arrival
at the Council was about this, or the Doha process implications of
the attacks in the Darfur IDP camps is not yet known. Watch this
-- Sudan's charge d'affaires was lobbying in the hall outside
the Council. “We cannot live with a paragraph about inspecting the
Kalma camp... the camp is under the control of UNAMID...” Then,
after fumbling with their passes, they went into the Council's suite.
Coming out were the outgoing Nigerian presidency's plants and bean
bag chairs with Islamic script. Coming in -- Russia's set up, for
p.m. -- there will be a press statement. Unclear if it will
include the paragraph about inspecting or investigating in Kalma
camp, which Sudan is opposing.
p.m. -- while UN TV had been told the press statement would
be ready and read by now, the Council has gone into recess. Inner
City Press is told by Council source that France has proposed the UN
send an investigation team to Kalma camp. China and Russia have
opposed it, as does Sudan. Developing.
p.m. -- Here's what happened: France “aggressively” asked
for an investigation, setting of “red lights” among some other
delegations. But wait - the US asked the meeting, but France made the
proposal. Why? Le Roy pointed the finger at the Abdel Wahid Nur
group, but France says they've spoken to him and he denies it. THAT's
why France wants the investigation. You heard it here first....