Email was Drafted by DPA from its "Morning Prayers," Watered Down by
Nambiar, Blamed on Haq
August 5 -- When the UN made a statement on Kashmir, then
stepped away from it and blamed it on an Associate Spokesman, there
was more than met the eye. Inner City Press has inquired and finds
the following: the initial response on the violence in Kashmir
was produced by the UN Department of Political Affairs, in what is
called it “morning prayers” meeting, chaired by DPA chief Lynn
the statement was released, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's chief
of staff Vijay Nambiar, a former Indian diplomat and intelligence
operative, edited the statement, “watering it down” as one senior
UN official puts it.
Spokesman Farhan Haq emailed the statement to four journalists and
was published, the Indian Mission to the UN protested. They came to
meet with the UN, Mr. Nambiar, for more than two hours. Apparently,
Nambiar did not fully disclose his initial role in editing the
Martin Nesirky stepped away from the statement, emphasizing
that Ban Ki-moon never said it, and it was mere “guidance from the
Secretariat,” and claiming that it had been misinterpreted. How?
UN's Nambiar and Pascoe, Kashmir statement and morning prayers not shown
August 4, Inner
City Press asked Nesirky to think it through: if he could walk away
from this statement attributable to the Office of the Spokesman for
the Secretary General, how can any of his future statements be taken
seriously? I have said all I am going to say, Nesirky replied.
that DPA's "morning prayers" quote Pascoe, for example that "Hillary
Clinton is going to Colombia, what does she think she can
accomplish?" While some attendees conclude from this that Pascoe
is aligned with US Republicans who appointed him, others say it
establishes his "street cred" as an internaional civil servants. But is
this what HRC and Obama want? Watch this site.
3 noon briefing transcript:
Press: a controversy has arisen around a statement that Farhan
Haq had put out, talking about Indian-occupied Kashmir and calling
for restraint. And, basically, it says that the Indian Foreign
Ministry or Ministry of External Affairs has taken issues with it,
that your Office has clarified that the Secretary-General never made
those comments. Have you seen that story, and what can you do to
clarify the seeming discrepancy between the Indian Foreign Ministry
and your Office?
The Spokesperson’s Office released to the media guidance
which was prepared by the UN Secretariat, and that seems to have been
taken out of context. This was not a statement of the
What was taken out of context? This was a formal statement.
Let me repeat what I just said: the Spokesperson’s Office
released to the media guidance which was prepared by the UN
Secretariat, and it seems to have been taken out of context. This
was not a statement of the Secretary-General. That’s what I have;
I don’t have anything to add.
But the statement said the Secretary-General calls for restraint,
and is there concern about it?
As I said, I don’t have anything to add to what I’ve just said.
August 4 noon briefing transcript:
Press: Some think that the way that it was answered yesterday —
it’s hard for them to take; what weight should statements by the
Spokesperson for the Secretary-General be given if they’re later
characterized as mere guidance and the Secretary-General didn’t
mean them. For your own purposes, how do we — is this a one-off,
or does this somehow change; you get a statement today about Tanzania
— is that a statement of the Secretary-General, or is it mere
guidance, and from who — who gave the guidance on Kashmir?
You know very well what it said [on Tanzania]: it said “a
statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the
Secretary-General”, and that clearly is a statement. But I don’t
have anything beyond what I’ve already said on this topic. Okay?
No, not okay.
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Gaza Flotilla Panel, Uribe Seems Ill-Timed, Sri Lanka Delay
2 -- As Inner City Press
predicted Saturday, UN
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has announced a panel on the assault on
the Gaza flotilla, chaired by former New Zealand prime minister
Geoffrey Palmer. While Inner City Press said the announcement could
come as early as Sunday, the UN made its announcement 9:38 Monday
vice chair is
outgoing Colombian president Alvaro Uribe. While a major U.S. ally,
this selection by Ban appears ill-timed to some, given Colombia's
current stand off with Venezuela, triggered by Uribe's accusation
that Hugo Chavez is harboring FARC guerrillas.
Venezuela's Ambassador Valero met with Ban and delivered a letter
accusing Uribe of warlike acts. To now put him on the Gaza flotilla
panel seems strange.
UN's Ban and Uribe, Venezuela and Sri Lanka slowness not shown
is the speed of Ban's announcement -- the panel will
formally begin work on August 10, and make its first report in mid
compared with his delay in announcing, naming and starting his
advisory panel on Sri Lanka's “bloodbath on the beach” in May
was only in
March 2010 that Ban said he would appoint a panel, and only on June
22 did he in fact name the panel's members. They met on July 19, but
the four month clock for them to report has still not begun, as Ban
has yet to staff the panel. (His first choice as chief of staff,
Jessica Neuwirth, was withdrawn after reporting of nepotism.)
who will staff
this Gaza flotilla panel, and why can Ban move so much quicker in
this case? Watch this site.
am -- The UN is showing staged footage of Ban Ki-moon
“announcing” the panel to UN Radio microphone, following a staged
question. Why make it a pretend interview, by the UN's own in-house
* * *