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Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


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As UN Supports Sri Lanka “Protection” Body With Torturer's Involvement, UN Spox Dodges

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, February 14 – The UN, which half-admitted systemic failure under Ban Ki-moon while tens of thousands of Tamils were killed in Sri Lanka, has been supporting something called the National Authority for Protection of Victims of Crime and Witnesses.

  But now that the body has been shown to include, among others, a person accused by the UN's own Special Rapporteur of torture, what does the UN do? Nothing, it seems.

 On February 14, Inner City Press asked UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about it. He had no answer, and later in the briefing, regarding Ban Ki-moon who has had two relatives indicted for real estate fraud involving the UN, called Inner City Press "obsessive" then an a*hole.

(This same Haq in 2016 cut off Press questions about a protest in Jaffna of Ban Ki-moon's unilateral eviction from the UN of Inner City Press, where it remains restricted as  "non-resident correspondent.")

  Here's from the February 14 UN transcript, on Sri Lanka:

Inner City Press: I want to ask you about Sri Lanka, and I'll say why.  There's a report out by the International Truth and Justice Project run by Yasmin Sooka, who was one of the named panellists.  And they've basically said that there's a Sri Lankan body called the National Authority for Victim and Witness Protection, and they've named a member of the body, put on by the Government, who's named in a UN report as having been accused of torture by a Special Rapporteur on Torture.  And the reason I'm asking is the UN is apparently providing financial support to this National Authority for Victim and Witness Protection.  There's a… a… they've… they've hired a management consultant.  And I wanted to know, is the UN, given its previous role in Sri Lanka, aware that it's financially supporting a body that has, in fact, torturers on it?  And, if so, what happens to the financial support?

Deputy Spokesman:  We'd have to check and see what sort of financial support is being provided.  I'm not aware of what support is given to this group and whether that would need to be conditioned on any particular set of circumstances. 

  Haq, after calling Inner City Press an obsessive a*hole, left his office hours later having provided no answer. Here is the report, and here a sample UN system recruitment, showing support.

40,000 dead Tamils, UN failure? Get over it.


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