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UN Has No Comment on UK Detaining Miranda & Laptops, Journalism Banned?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 20 -- After the UK detained David Miranda, the partner of journalist Glenn Greenwald, for nine hours and seized his computer and files there has been criticism worldwide.

Inner City Press on Tuesday asked UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesperson Martin Nesirky if Ban or the UN have any comment on the detention, on the use of supposedly anti-terrorism legislation to hinder journalistic reporting on government surveillance.

"No," Nesirky said. Video here and embedded below.

Previously Ban Ki-moon was quoted by Icelandic parliamentarians who met with him as saying that whistleblower Edward Snowden "misused" his position and information. (Ban has said it was a private meeting.)

Still, the terse "no" was at odds even with another answer Nesirky gave Inner City Press in the same noon briefing. When Inner City Press asked about recent treatment in Egypt of journalists, Nesirky said they should be allowed to work without harassment. The nine hour detention and seizing of laptops is not harassment?

  But as Inner City Press covered yesterday, old-style groups like the Committee to Protect Journalists urge more coverage of Egypt than of the Miranda case. Click here for that.

  CPJ has its own blindspots, including at the UN support of a UK-linked wire service shown to be engage in spying FOR the UN. That's how the UN likes to work, spying where it can, spoon-feeding information to favored scribes when it can.

On that, Inner City Press also asked Nesirky on Tuesday about a story it was first to report, a whistleblower's complaint from Mogadishu to the head of UN Peacekeeping Herve Ladsous. Inner City Press wrote and published it on June 22, and asked the UN at the June 24 noon briefing. After providing no answer, Ladsous' spokesperson Kieran Dwyer gave it to another media.

Now the whistleblower has complained that media held back under pressure from the UN, and that the intervening UN probe was a scam. Inner City Press on Tuesday asked Nesirky if the probe is finished, and if the subject David Bax has been removed from Mogadishu or not. Nesirky said he would check. Watch this site.


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