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UN Feltman Speaks on Syria in McClatchy Reports, Called Only Former US Official

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 14 -- With a Syria draft UN Security Council Presidential Statement stalled in the Council, meant to support the work of the UN's third envoy to the country Staffan de Mistura, quotes in yesterday's McClatchy report(s) about Syria by current UN Political Affairs chief Jeffrey Feltman are more than a little strange.

   As published on, the story in focusing on 2011 quotes and identifies Feltman:

“'You were constantly pivoting from portfolio to portfolio, knowing there were linkages between them all,' recalled Jeffrey Feltman, who then oversaw the State Department’s Middle East policy as assistant secretary of Near Eastern Affairs. 'It was really hectic a lot of the time.'”

   Feltman is not identified there as a current UN official. Nor in a longer McClatchy version:

“'It’s probably accurate to say we underestimated how bad it would be,' Jeffrey Feltman, who was the assistant secretary of state for Near East Affairs until July 2012, said of the administration’s response to the jihadist threat in Syria. 'The concern was there all along.'”

  When Inner City Press first reported in March 2012 that Feltman was being placed by the US atop the UN Department of Political Affairs, to replace fellow American B. Lynn Pascoe, Inner City Press noted that putting “UN” policy in the hands of the person who covered the Middle East for the State Department might be a problem. (There were other problems, like here and then censorship here.)

   But are these problems being covered up by simply not identifying Feltman as UN official? Or was the lack of identification a condition of Feltman giving quotes to McClatchy? Watch this site.


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