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Targeting Press, UNCA Stokes Sri Lanka Extremists as in 2012, Turtle Exposed

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, March 30 -- In 2012 Inner City Press received death threats from extremist supporters of Sri Lanka's Rajapaksa government, triggered by a United Nations Correspondents Association proceeding against it that was likened to a kangaroo court.

The UNCA president at the time threatened to sue Inner City Press for reporting on it, so see this summary from the UK based Sri Lanka Campaign.

  As detailed below, still now in 2013, UNCA is playing to the same audience. After UNCA's “new” president Pamela Falk of CBS took photographs while Inner City Press' office was raided by the UN on March 18, trolls not only from UNCA but from Sri Lanka have re-emerged: anonymous as always.

  After the UN raid, which not only Falk but apparently other UNCA “leaders” photographed, a BuzzFeed article of March 22 contained photos that the UN will not explain. The UN's Stephane Dujarric has said the photos are not “ours,” leaving it unclear if this means only the UN Department of Public Information or other DPI allowed in on March 18.

  Among the anonymous commenters on the BuzzFeed article, beyond some obviously with UNCA, there are at least two with a Sri Lanka focus.

  There is a “David Knutsen,” which makes allegations echoing those of Margaret Besheer of Voice of America about long ago college attendance. But this David Knutsen has commented elsewhere twice trying to link Inner City Press to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, merely because it reported on war crimes in Sri Lanka.

Where did Knutsen make these comments? On the “Turtle Bay” blog, which tellingly never reported on the March 18 raid on a journalist's office in the UN, nor for example on UN Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous openly refusing questions from Inner City Press in May and October 2012 press conferences, stakeouts on November 27, December 7 and December 18, and now on March 24.

   Turtles are slow, apparently.

There, Knutsen linked to a blog about the International Monetary Fund reporting of Inner City Press, with a comment from one “Arash,” that “Matthew Russell Lee is [a MF] who deserves to be tried for being a sponsor of terror.”

  On the same blog, an “Al Paul” opines the Inner City Press “deserves to be invesitgated [sic] and brought to justice in Sri Lankan courts for supporting terrorists.”

And now, on BuzzFeed, an “ArashPaul” rants that “I just checked out some of his blogs and his incessant attack on the UN spreading cholera in Haiti... We hear of some illegal outfits funding his one man crusade to damage people's reputation.”

Apparently those source are dead people in Haiti. But this is who UNCA was playing to in 2012, and is playing to now.

  In 2012, when Inner City Press got death threats, UNCA vice president Sylviane Zehil said, "I have nothing to do with this." Denis Fitzgerald of Saudi Press Agency demanded, who funds you? Louis Charbonneau of Reuters smirked and said, "Tell NYPD." This is UNCA. Watch this site.

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