Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the Inner City to Wall Street to the United Nations

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media -e.g. Somalia, Nepal, Ghana, Azerbaijan, The Gambia  For further info, click here to contact us         .

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


Subscribe to RSS feed

Video (new)

Reuters AlertNet 8/17/07

Reuters AlertNet 7/14/07

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

At UN, W. Sahara Resolution Approved, Exploitative Fishing Continues, Pascoe's Murky Trip

Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN: News Analysis

UNITED NATIONS, October 21 -- The lingering question of Western Sahara came up for a vote on Tuesday in the UN's Fourth Committee. Inner City Press interviewed two representatives of the Polisario Front. Both expressed moderated satisfaction with the resolution about to be voted on. The key is Operative Paragraph Two, said the first, pointing to a section saying that the General Assembly "strongly supports Security Council Resolution 1754 (2007), by which the Council called upon the parties to enter into negotiations without preconditions... which will provide for the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara." He went to say that "the rest is bull [excrememt]."

  Morocco, on the other hand, likes the subsequent paragraphs, and pushed for inclusion of such concepts as political realism, which some equate not only with Elliot Abrams but further back with Henry Kissinger -- who incidentally is slated to appear at the UN on October 24, with Hans Blix and others. 

  The second Polisario representative present at Tuesday's vote, referring to Monday's voting-down of Argentina's language that self-determination must be qualified by any question of sovereignty that may exist, blamed Argentina for not simply making a resolution about the Falklands Island, instead of putting other situations like Western Sahara into jeopardy.

   Last week, Inner City Press asked the UN's former envoy to Western Sahara Francesco Batagli about the European Union's agreement with Morocco which the EU claims gives its members permission to fish off the coast of Western Sahara.  Batagli said Spain is using the agreement to exploit Western Saharan waters, while Sweden disagreed on these grounds with the EU's agreement with Morocco. 

  Unloading in Western Sahara, Batagli and flag not shown

Batagli, who also served in Kosovo, said he left the UN because he was embarrassed. In Western Sahara, he said, the Moroccan flag was allowed to fly over that of the UN. They sent me there without no tools, he said, echoing another UN envoy, to Myanmar

  The non-governmental diplomatic service that brought Batagli to the UN told Inner City Press that the UN's Lynn Pascoe was then going to Rabat to try to convince the Moroccan government to accept as Ban's envoy to Western Sahara the American Christopher Ross.  Pascoe was seen in the UN on Monday, eating Chinese food. Was his trip to Rabat successful? "Morocco is trying to humiliate Ross," one of the Polisario representatives told Inner City Press.

  "Not a good start," Inner City Press commented.

  "For whom?" came the response. "For Ross? Or for Morocco?"

  While the meeting was to start at 3, at 3:18 the crowd was still milling around. The chairman, Argentine himself, gaveled open the meeting. By 3:24, the resolation had been rubber stamped, and the first speaker began: Jean-Maurice Ripert of France, which actively keep human rights out of the Western Sahara process. Droits de l'homme, mon oeil. The meeting was over by 3:33.

Watch this site, and this Oct. 2 debate, on UN, bailout, MDGs

and this October 17 debate, on Security Council and Obama and the UN.

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-453A, UN, NY 10017 USA Tel: 212-963-1439

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-08 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] -