Sudan, Hilde Johnson Tapped as Ban's Envoy, UN Confirms to Press, “Like
June 22 -- Hilde Johnson of Norway has been tapped to head
the UN Mission in South Sudan, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's
spokesman Martin Nesirky confirmed
to Inner City Press on Wednesday.
Inner City Press asked about Sudanese president Omar al Bashir's
threat to cut off the oil pipeline from South Sudan, set for
independence on July 9, and whether the UN would sent Ms. Johnson
threat is just one example of the foreseeable tensions between South
Sudan and Khartoum
that a UN envoy in Juba should work on.
placed UN sources have told Inner City Press, which first reported
Ms. Johnson's candidacy and confirmed it with her, that “heart-felt
activist” Hilde Johnson may find it hard to be heard in and by
Ms. Johnson's candidacy for the post as far back at May 16, along
with UN officials Ian
Martin of the UK and “Fink” Haysom of South Africa, Inner City
Press asked the US Mission to the UN to confirm that Ambassador Susan
Rice was lobbying Ban Ki-moon to give the post to Johnson.
spokesman Mark Kornblau replied to Inner City Press on June 14 that
“we generally don’t comment on nominees until they are officially
put forward by the Secretary General.”
June 21, having
confirmed from other diplomatic sources that Ban Ki-moon had acceded
and tapped Johnson for the post, Inner City Press asked Kornblau, now
that “she has the UNMIS job -- did the US / Ambassador Rice support
her?” Twenty three hours later there has been no response. Now that the
UN itself has confirmed, will Rice or her Mission now speak out?
Johnson, with Ms. Coomaraswamy & Rama Yade,
mediation not shown
chaired a UN session on how to help South Sudan. She is hardworking,
having reportedly clashed while at UNICEF with other UN officials about
the use of
heightened security threat ratings by the UN during the Arab Spring.
as one well
placed source put it, “Why not name, like, Susan Rice at the UN's
envoy to South Sudan? Isn't the point of the UN to be able to talk to
both sides of a conflict?”
Some see this
move by Ban as symbolic
of the over-domination by the United States which even wire services
have reported, much to the displeasure of Ban's communications team.
The proof is and will be in the pudding. Watch this site.
* * *
Takes Darfur Deal from Bassole, IDPs & Rebels
June 20 -- Ignoring complaints from Darfur itself, UN
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Monday accepted a yellow bound peace
agreement from Burkina
Faso foreign minister Djibril Bassole and his
told Ban, even during the photo op, “congratulations on what will
happen tomorrow” -- referring to the expected General Assembly
approval of the Security Council's June 17 recommendation of Ban for
a second five year term.
his June 6
press conference announcing he wants a second term, Ban was asked
about his “failure” on Darfur in his first five years. As it
happens, there is escalating fighting, reports of Zaghawas killed,
and rejection of this so-called peace agreement by the Justice &
Equality Movement (JEM) and others.
Ibrahim has been trapped in Libya for weeks. Inner City Press asked
the UN about requests to it by JEM to help remove Ibrahim from
Tripoli, as the UN did with its international staff. Apparently it
was never done; Khalil Ibrahime was abandoned.
Bassole, Ban and Qatar minister on June 20, 2011, (c) MRLee
(June 8) reported
the Sudanese government of planning an attempt to assassinate its
leader, Dr. Khalil Ibrahim, in Libya. Jibril Adam Bilal, the
spokesperson of the movement, said in a press release that the
movement managed to foil the plot to kill the chairman of the
movement. The Darfuri rebels claimed that they were able to determine
the source of the attempt and stop it by foreknowledge of the means
of the attempt. Jibril Bilal affirmed that the movement knew which
governmental entitities had paid 25 billion Sudanese pounds to an
organization called Bijer B to carry out the operation and there is
an investigation going on to know more facts. Jibril warned the
National Congress Party that it is stupid to try these attempts which
have unknown consequences and would lead the country to a path the
country has never taken before.”
again, the UN
might just deny the Radio Dabanga report, as it did on June
asked about reported
failure to deliver food to IDP camps in El
Press: I wanted to ask about in Darfur, there is a report again
by Radio Dabanga that food has stopped being delivered to the IDP
camps in El Geneina. I tried over the weekend to write to both WFP
[World Food Programme] and UNMIS - I mean UNAMID [African
Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur] — to ask whether
it is true and why this would happen. Is that something you can
Nesirky: I’ll see what the World Food Programme or our
colleagues at the UN Mission have on that.
later, Nesirky's office sent this:
question on Darfur and Sudan
From: UN Spokesperson - Do Not
Reply [at] un.org
Date: Mon, Jun 20, 2011 at 3:45 PM
Matthew.Lee [at] innercitypress.com
Food Programme has confirmed that the food distributions to El
Geneina are on track, and any reports suggesting that such
distributions have stopped are inaccurate.
what WFP then
sent Inner City Press:
are not stopping food distribution in any of the nine camps that we
serve in El Geneina in West Darfur. Distribution plan is on
schedule, very much within the 30-day cycle. We completed
distribution in two camps (El Hujaj and Jaama) and today distribution
will start in El Riyadh. In other camps (Abu Zar, Ardamata,
Kirinding 1 and 2, and Dorti) distribution will start from the 22nd
onwards. In Sultan camp, food voucher distribution started yesterday
and so far we have not seen any trouble.”
there's the key
word: “voucher” distribution. Because the camp residents are
opposing the use of vouchers and “traders” --
sheikh from one of the camps said that the Program used to distribute
the food rations every month but did not do so this month after they
were informed by the displaced people that they, the displaced
people, would not receive their food rations from traders. The sheikh
said that they demand an explanation from WFP regarding the delay,
stating that the representatives of the WFP who used to meet with the
sheikhs after intervals have stopped doing so. The sheikh stated that
diseases such as malnutrition and diarrhea have spread in camps
because of the lack of relief materials.”
UN as reported
above refused to speak to the actual people in the camps, just as it
ignores the actual rebels in Darfur. The plan to declare peace in
Darfur appears to be to ignored and isolate the rebel movements, and
hold photo ops in New York. Watch this site.
* * *
Ban Credits Bassole for Darfur “Progress,” He Left Post on June 8
9 -- When UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announced on
June 6 for a second term, he was asked about failing on Darfur,
his top two stated priorities in his first term. Ban replied that
process is accelerating, and credited Joint Chief Mediator Djibril
June 9, Inner
City Press asked Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky:
if I understood it correctly Mr. Djibril Bassolé was
described as stepping down as the joint AU/UN mediator. But he has
since been quoted as saying he remains a mediator. And he did go to
these Doha talks. So, is he the UN’s mediator or not? It’s
unclear. He says that he is, but it was said here that he is not. Which
think it was also said here that he has a split role at the moment
and will continue to — was continuing, I should say — was
continuing to serve as one of the mediators in the run-up to the
meeting that you spoke about. But there will be a change in that
status, and I think I’ll be able to give you precisely what that
change is after this.
briefing ended, Nesirky said he would look into it. Later this was
added to the UN's transcript:
later said that Djibril Bassole’s contract
as a United Nations-African Union envoy ended Wednesday, 8 June.]
Ban's man on
Darfur is no longer in the post.
Ban and Bassole, left Darfur post June 8 with a whimper
And where do
we stand? Rebels
supporting Minni Minawai and Abdel Wahid al Nur did not sign onto the
recent Doha process. The head of the joint UN - AU peacekeeping
mission UNAMID, Ibrahim
Gambari, is often in New York, most recently listed as giving
speech in Connecticut on June 4. What is the UN doing in Darfur? It
is not clear. Watch this site.
* * *
updated -- The UN
has for a second time offered a free UN
flight in Sudan to Ahmed Haroun, under indictment by the
International Criminal Court for war crimes in Darfur, the UN
admitted Friday in response to questions from Inner City Press.
March 3 the UN
Security Council met about renewed fighting in the disputed Abyei
region. Back in January, Inner City Press got the UN to acknowledge
they had flown ICC indictee Haroun from South Kordofan, where he
serves fellow ICC indictee Omar al Bashir as governor, to Abyei.
UN has defended
this controversial flight by saying that Haroun and Haroun alone
could stop violence in Abyei. The UN never explained why the
government of Sudan, which has an air force currently bombing civilians
in Jebel Marra in Darfur, couldn't itself fly Haroun.
UN said it was
a scheduled flight, then UN Mission in Sudan chief Haile Menkerios
Inner City Press that it was a special flight. Inner City Press is
told such flights cost $40,000, and the UN has confirm no
reimbursement has been sought from the Bashir government.
violence has continued, making the UN flight of ICC indictee Haroun
harder to justify even by the UN's own argument.
Council president for
March Li Baodong of China if the UN Peacekeeping official who briefed
the Council, Atul Khare, had mentioned if Haroun would again be flown
in a UN helicopter. Li Baodong did not directly answer.
the March 4 UN
noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's
spokesman Martin Nesirky to confirm or deny that that the UN would
once again fly ICC indictee Haroun to Abyei, even now that his work in
connection with the first flight has proved ineffective.
by speaker to all UN correspondents that yes, Haroun attended today's
meeting in Abyei, and yes, “he was transported” by the UN.
for war crimes by
the ICC. Meanwhile Ban Ki-moon brags about the Security Council's partial
referral of the situation in Libya to the ICC -- a referral that Ban
Ki-moon did not even call for until after the Council voted to make
of 3:48 pm -- Human Rights Watch, via Richard Dicker, submitted
is the second time in recent weeks the UN has transported Ahmed
Haroun who is charged by the ICC with war crimes in Darfur. We have
real concerns because the U.N. should not be in the business of
transporting Haroun. There needs to be an extremely high threshold of
urgency for such action by UNMIS.”
the UK and the US,
with the latter two asked if they knew in advance of the UN's new
flight of ICC indictee Haroun. Given her
media, & after hours of non-response by the US Mission
to the UN,@AmbassadorRice
has been asked directly as well. Watch
UN spokesman Daniel
spokesperson, I would only reiterate the message that my two
Ambassadors have both said on the record (and published by Inner City
Press) first time around: that we aren’t going to second guess how
UNMIS fulfills its mandate to provide good offices to the
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) parties in efforts to resolve
differences through dialogue and negotiations. I’d only add that
this work is particularly important at this sensitive time, to
contain any potential escalation after the recent Abyei violence.”
again that violence has persisted despite the UN flying ICC indictee
Ahmed Haroun in the first time, and that it is the role of UN member
states to oversee the UN Secretariat, not to defer in this case to
what some see as its promotion of impunity - but at least the UK
would put its position on the record.
Subject: Haroun and Abyei
To: Matthew.Lee [at]
seems to be unaware of who is causing the violence in Abyei.
And yet "diplomatic sources" report seeing the burial of 33
bodies - all southerners.
(Hitler used a similar ploy to invade Poland) - and today thousands
of civilians fled Abyei fearing another crisis like in June 2008. The
Dinka Ngok villages north of Abyei, such as Maker, have been
burnt to the ground. The end explains the means. There is a
creeping ethnic cleansing going on in the Abyei region despite the
agreements of 2005 and the Court of Arbitration ruling in 2010.
as you correctly point
out, that of arming arab militias to burn villages. I hope to see
more of your questions pinning the UN to the responsibility to
for Mar 1, '11
BloggingHeads.tv re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption
Click here for Inner City
Press' March 27 UN debate
Click here for Inner City
Press March 12 UN (and AIG
Click here for Inner City
Press' Feb 26 UN debate
Click here for Inner City Press' Jan.
16, 2009 debate about Gaza
Click here for Inner City Press'
review-of-2008 UN Top Ten debate
Click here for Inner
City Press' December 24 debate on UN budget, Niger
Click here from Inner City Press'
December 12 debate on UN double standards
Click here for Inner
City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics
and this October 17 debate, on
Security Council and Obama and the UN.
* * *
usually also available through Google
News and on Lexis-Nexis.
for a Reuters
AlertNet piece by this correspondent
about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click
for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali
Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an
undefined trust fund. Video
some are available
in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.