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On Syria, P5 Convene to Meet Ban, UK Silent on Draft, US Power Just Silent

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 30 -- On Syria, last night Inner City Press reported that the Permanent Five members of the UN Security Council would meet today at noon with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. After that was confirmed by the UN, this morning, the UN also said that its "Spokesperson's Daily Briefing" would move back to 12:30 pm.

  Simultaneously in Washington at 12:30, or after that as usual, John Kerry spoke, calling France "our oldest ally." Will he and Ban Ki-moon have the same message? One wag asked, do they ever really not?

  Diplomats from non P-5 countries told Inner City Press of anger of the freeze-out of the 10 elected members of the Council, and others spoke of rumblings for a General Assembly resolution, one adding "that would be too slow for the Americans."

  In the UN's lobby the media assembled to catch the P5 entrances. Russian Deputy Pankin was asked about the upcoming meeting with Ban. Ask him, he replied.

  UK Permanent Representative Mark Lyall Grant stopped and said that he expected an update on the chemical weapons investigation and on Syria. He did not answer a question about the UK draft resolution, which after Cameron's loss in parliament seems doomed, at least in its current form.

  Most interest was reserved for US Ambassador Samantha Power. Her arrival was filmed, but she did not answer any of the questions asked or make any statement, as she did on her first day as UN ambassador. Nor, colleagues told Inner City Press, did Power speak on the way out, saying that John Kerry was speaking. Inner City Press was up in the UN briefing - which will be our next story. Watch this site.


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