Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the Inner City to Wall Street to the United Nations

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media-eg AJE, FP, Georgia, NYT Azerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us   .


Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


Follow us on TWITTER

March 1, 2011: Libya

Video (new)

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

As UN Watches Death & Flies Haroun in Sudan, Calling Darfur Safe, Who's to Blame?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 17, updated Oct 18 -- Who is to blame for the UN's under-performance in Sudan? Civilians and even a UN contractor were killed in front of UN peacekeepers in South Kordofan in June, but nothing has been done.

  Now the UN is accused by the SPLM-North of flying Ahmed Haroun, indicted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes, to the disputed town of Talodi, as the UN admits it flew Haroun to Abyei.

  Inner City Press asked noted American activist John Prendergast about these on Monday, in advance of a book launch at the UN. After referring to a "confused response," Prendergast urged not to "blame the UN" for these things, but rather then member states.

  Obviously it's not either-or. But in the case of flying Haroun, the UN was specifically "demarched" or criticized by member states for its previous flight of Haroun.

  The UN nevertheless flew Haroun again. Now in the face of SPLM-N allegation to the UN that it has again flown Haroun, the UN has not responded to Press requests for comment in over 67 hours.

  Inner City Press sent the questions in writing to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations on October 14 and, having no substantive response, asked about the SPLM-North letter at the October 17 UN noon briefing, Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky said, you have asked DPKO. Yes, but they have not answered.

  Should member states be blamed for that? In that case, perhaps France is to blame since it has controlled DPKO's top post with four Frenchmen in a row, including current occupant Herve Ladsous.

  Inner City Press asked asked Prendergast about the claims of UN (and African Union) official Ibrahim Gambari about refugee and IDP returns in West Darfur. Prendergast called the urging of people to return "unrealistic and dangerous," but still said don't blame the UN. So who is Gambari speaking for? Watch this site.

Prendergast previously at UN, Mia Farrow shown, critique of UN performance in Sudan and Haiti not shown

Footnote: the book project will be launched later on Monday and will benefit education in the camps. The press conference was hosted by UNCHR, whose Udo Janz introduced Prendergast as, among other things, the "strategic advisor to Not On Our Watch, the organization founded by George Clooney, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, and Brad Pitt." Prendergast described a trip to Sudan with Tracy McGrady, leading to the Darfur Dream Team Sister Schools Program.

  With all this, Prendergast is in a position to call-out the UN when it under-performs. The fault of states which host Sudanese president and ICC-indictee Omar al Bashir, for example, can be separately addressed. But the lack of accountability within the UN continues when those positioned to at least critique it do not. We will continue on this.

Update of Oct 18, 12:50 pm -- four days after the questions were asked, the UN proffered responses to some but not all of them:

"I have received further information from our liquidation team on the ground in Sudan on this matter. The UNMIS liquidation team has not flown Governor Haroun on its helicopters. The liquidation process continues, in accordance with the timeline agreed with the Government of the Republic of Sudan."

  And what about, regarding the murders in Kadugli in June in front of UN peacekeepers -- "Who were the commanders of the Egyptian peacekeepers there that day, and are or will they work again in UN peacekeeping missions?"

  Watch this site.

Share |

Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

Click for Mar 1, '11 re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-253, UN, NY 10017 USA Tel: 212-963-1439

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-2001 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]