Council Moves to De-List Taliban for Karzai, Louis Maxwell Probe
June 28 -- When the UN Security Council was in Afghanistan
last week, Hamid Karzai announced that they had committed to remove
people from the Al Qaeda / Taliban sanctions list of the 1267
Committee. On Monday at the UN in New York, Inner City Press asked
this month's Council president, Claude Heller of Mexico:
Press: When you were in Afghanistan, did the government of Hamid
Karzai stressed particular names to the Council [inaudible] mediating
between the authorities of Afghanistan and the Taliban. Were
particular names discussed [inaudible] removed from the list?
think it’s important to say that the Sanctions committee, all of
the sanctions committees, are touching very sensitive issues, but of
course they do it on a confidential basis. The fact that the chairman
of the sanctions committee was in Afghanistan was an opportunity that
he had to be in touch with the authorities. President Karzai publicly
mentioned this issue, and the willingness of his government to
cooperate with the sanctions committee.
polite dodging of the question, the chairman of the 1267 committee
Thomas Mayr-Harting came to speak with the Press, on the record but
off camera. Inner City Press asked, if the standard to remove a
Taliban is that they are not in contact with Al Qaeda, how the Karzai
government can make this negative proof.
that his Committee in the past has applied four tests: renunciation
of violence, laying down of arms, no contact with Al Qaeda and
accepting the Afghan constitution. He said that Afghanistan's
specialized services should be able to provide information about
accepting the constitution -- some of the list are members of
parliament -- and perhaps about contacts with Al Qaeda.
UNAMA, UNSC members, action on Louis Maxwell not shown
said he is
hoping to remove dead people from the list, and that the Afghans can
help by providing proof of death. But that's not the group of people
of most concern to Karzai.
is not clear
whether during the Council's visit any member raised the killing of
member Louis Maxwell by Afghan National Forces, as described
in a UN Board of Inquiry report that calls on the Karzai government
to further investigated. It appears that no Afghan investigation
been done or even begun. Some think that should be a condition for
removing Karzai's friends from the sanctions list. We'll see.
* * *
Visits US, More Questions of Who Killed Louis Maxwell Raised by
Sister: An Inconvenient Death
May 9 -- An inconvenient death casts a shadow, at least for
some, over this week's visit to the U.S. by Afghan President Hamid
Karzai, and over the UN.
of American UN staffer Louis
Maxwell in October 2009, following an attack on a UN guesthouse of
international elections workers in Kabul, has belatedly been
described by the UN as "friendly fire."
a cell phone
video suggests, and Mr. Maxwell's sister among others believes, that
Maxwell was summarily executed by Afghan National forces after the
firefight was over. The UN never retracted its version, that Maxwell
and four other UN staff were all killed by the Taliban, until the
video became public and questions became to be asked, including by
Inner City Press.
video, here, esp. at Minute 1:01 to 1:04
the weekend wrote to Inner City Press for a third time, now
putting into words the doubt that the Taliban were (solely)
responsible for the attack on the UN guesthouse. She focuses on the
conflict of interest the UN has, in confining itself to an internal
investigation -- which it described as external and independent --
and then refusing to release a copy of its report, even to the
the U.S., too,
has a conflict, as a press conference call by Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute
on May 7 shows. Lute repeatedly described Karzai as "our
partner" and spoke about the training and evaluation of Afghan
National forces. (Lute is, as Inner City Press has reported, the
husband of former head of the UN Department of Field Support Jane
Washingotn Post op-ed says he will "convey my deepest
condolences to families of those who lost their lives in Afghanistan."
Lute and his
staffer emphasized that Karzai will spend three full hours with
Obama. In all that time, will the matter of Louis Maxwell be
raised? Inner City Press was on the press call and put itself in the
question cue as soon as it was open, but was not able to ask the
question. But the questions will continue. Below is Louis Maxwell's
third letter to Inner City Press (click here
Karzai and UN's Ban, public and credible
report on Maxwell's death not shown
Date: Sun, May 9, 2010 at 3:39
To: Matthew Lee [at] innercitypress.com
Around October 20, 2009, Kai Eide the top UN official of the mission
affirmed that the August 20 elections had been tainted. It was stated
that about one to five of the votes should be discounted and that
most of the election fraud came from Karzai supporters.
On October 28 the UN guesthouse was attacked. The same guesthouse
where UN monitors for this same election was staying.
After the attack it is stated by top UN officials that senior afghan
officials were uncooperative in providing information and that
they(UN) were completely stonewalled.
On November 1 the runoff candidate to Karzai drops out of the
On November 7 Karzai is declared president.
And this is the same government that Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon
wants to investigate their deliberate killing(murder) of my brother
be the judge....
* * *
Execution Video Report from Louis Maxwell's Family, Sister
May 7 -- As questions mount about the UN's investigation of
the murder of its staff member Louis Maxwell in Afghanistan last
October, and even about how the UN has engaged with Maxwell's family,
his sister has written Inner City Press a second letter. [Click here
for the first.]
it, she states
that it was only in March when the UN told Maxwell's mother that his
murder was caught on video tape. Of the tape, she notes as Inner City
Press did that as Maxwell is shot and killed, the Afghan National
forces next to him do not flinch or look up.
video, here, esp. at Minute 1:01 to 1:04
but as a cover up the UN is declaring that he was shot at
long range, and that it was the long range shot that killed him.
Despite Maxwell's own sister's request, the UN has not released any
part of its Board of Inquiry report. His sister writes, if a "US
soldier had done what they did to by brother that US soldier would
have been court martialed."
May 5, Inner
City Press asked the UN spokesman:
on Afghanistan, Louis Maxwell’s sister has contacted
some concerns about the investigation and the report, among others,
saying and I just would like, I understand, I guess you’re not
going to release the report, but maybe you can find out if this is
the case of not. She contends that, in the fire-fight and
afterwards, among other things, he was wearing shorts, which she
thinks is inconsistent with him being mistaken as one of these
attackers. She also says… It was unclear to me given the
statements made from her of how much the UN is briefing Mr. Maxwell’s
family. Does that include this sister, Ms. Muhammad? Because she is
somehow not convinced by the reports.
don’t have here and now a list of the family members who have
been briefed. I do know, and you also heard Ms. [Susana] Malcorra
say that the family members have been briefed regularly throughout. Not
just briefed, but supported, and spoken to, visited regularly,
throughout this. As I say, precisely who, I do not know. So, we’d
need to find out. I don’t know the answer to that right now.
later said that, among others, the United Nations has
been in touch with Latanya Ginn, the mother of Louis Maxwell’s
Maxwell's sister's second letter
Date: Thu, May 6, 2010
Matthew Lee [at] innercitypress.com
for writing back to me and posing the question(s) to the UN... My
brother has on either dark blue or black shorts. As a matter of
fact he was wounded by the humvee and on all four when he is trying
to stand back up his when he is shot. He was not in high ready mode
but in low ready mode. His gun was not even drawn. I can even accept
the fact of friendly fire for wounding him but his death I saw is
murder. If a US soldier had done what they did to by brother that US
soldier would have been court martialed.
Murphy who just retired from the UN, I must say has been the
one who really stays in contact with my mother. They have only made
one additional visit besides the funeral to see my parents and that
was back in March when we were told about the fact there was a video
showing my brother's death. Ms. Susana Malcorra just made contact
with my mother in April.
UN's Ban in Kabul 2009, video not shown
e-mailed my concerns regarding my brother's death. At how the
afghan guard who is standing in front of my brother when he is shot
does not even flinch or even goes to high ready mode. So if they are
saying or trying to say that an insurgent or threat is who shot my
brother then why when the shots were fired the afghan police did not
even draw his gun to his shoulder. I have even said that we the
family deserve the right to know what is written in the board of
inquiry report and honestly I would like to see the actually report
but I have not been given a response to my request. I am very angry
and hurt with how all of this going and know that it cannot bring
back my brother but I want justice. Someone has to be the voice for
the UN's May 7 noon briefing, Inner City Press asked UN spokesman
Martin Nesirky to confirm or deny that the UN had delayed from at
latest January until March in informing Mr. Maxwell's family about the
video of his murder, and to explain it. Watch