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On Syria, Ban Ki-moon's Chemical Weapons Mystery Tour in Madrid, Murky

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 30 -- From whom on Syria did UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon hear, between April 4, when Syrian Ambassador Bashar Ja'afari said he had a deal with the UN's Angela Kane for access for a chemical weapons investigation in Khan al Assad near Aleppo, and April 5 when Ja'afari said Ban "went back on the deal"?

  While Ban Ki-moon did not take questions during his "press encounter" on April 29, on April 30 Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky just this. Did Ban receive new information during that time frame, when he was in Madrid for the UN Chief Executives Board meeting?

  With whom did Ban Ki-moon speak in that time - for the P3 (France, UK and United States)?

  Nesirky refused to answer this question. Video here from Minute 10:42 and 23:20. He said, twice, that the UN consistently conveyed to Syria that there were additional allegations, in letters dated March 21 and 28, and April 3 and April 5.

  But as Inner City Press asked, the April 3 letter from Angela Kane stated that "I wish to confirm that the investigation mission will look at the specific incident brought to his attention by your Government and investigate the facts related to the reported incident on 19 March 2013 at Khan al Asal."

  Kane on April 3 also wrote that "the Secretary-General continues to assess the reports submitted by the Governments of France and the United Kingdom."

  But by April 5, that "continuing to assess" appears to have reached the conclusion, canceling according to Ja'afari a final technical meeting to begin the probe at Khan al Asal.

  So to whom DID Ban Ki-moon speak between April 3 and the April 5 letter? He was in Madrid. We aim to have more on this.

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