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March 1, 2011: Libya

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On Libya, UN's Pascoe Dodges NATO Continuing Role in Martin Plan, Claims Big UN Involvement in Elections

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, September 12 -- Two weeks after the UN's grandiose plan to send 200 military observers to Libya, alongside what the UN plan called a continuing role for NATO, was exposed and largely rejected by the National Transitional Council there, on Monday UN Political chief Lynn Pascoe held a briefing to brag about the UN's success in mediation.

  Inner City Press asked Pascoe, now that UN mediator Al Khatib is being removed from the scene, what his involvement is with Ian Martin, the author of the plan, and how the UN justifies the position in the Martin Plan that "[t]he Security Council's 'protection of civilians' mandate implemented by NATO does not end with the fall of the Qadhafi government and, therefore, NATO would continue to have some responsibilities." Click here for the Martin Report, exclusively obtained and published by Inner City Press.

  Pascoe launched into a length response that veered into Sudan and envoy Haile Menkerios' work there, then returned to say that the Libyans "want us to be very involved in elections," a position disputed by sources in Benghazi and now Tripoli.

  In terms of the requested UN defense of it having posited a continuing role for NATO, which Martin when he took the question insisted was a "factual statement," Pascoe offered no defense.

  When Inner City Press tried at the end of the disjointed answer to ask, "What about the NATO statement," Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky cut in, saying "we have to move on to others."

"Mediator" Khatib, Ban & Martin on Aug 26, Pascoe not shown, Martin has 2 rivals?

  Perhaps Pascoe's reference to Sudan, from which the UN Mission has been expelled on July 9, was that even now Ban's New York based adviser on the country Haile Menkerios reports to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and not Pascoe's Department of Political Affairs.

  Inner City Press has also asked Pascoe to respond to the criticism that this UN is often far from impartial. This, he did not answer, but it has in the view of many become the UN's Achilles heal. Watch this site.

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At UN on Libya, Proposed Arms Embargo Exceptions for TNC & UN

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, September 12 -- With the UK drafted resolution on Libya expected to be circulated to Security Council members today, German Permanent Representative Peter Wittig told the Press that he doesn't "expect any acrimonious philosophical debate," and predicts adoption this week.

  But when Inner City Press asked two other well placed Council sources, the answer was "not so fast." One source, from among the IBSA (India, Brazil and South Africa) grouping, told Inner City Press that the proposed modification of asset freeze and particularly the arms embargo could give rise to some debate.

  A European diplomat who is a proponent of the draft countered to Inner City Press that it would not life the arms embargo but open "exceptions" to it.

  Another Council diplomat, from a country which has recognized the Transitional National Council, told Inner City Press that the proposed exceptions to the arms embargo are for the TNC, and separately to take in weapons to protect the UN.

Guns in Libya: is there a lack? Arms embargo exception not shown

  Some wonder: is it that the TNC does not have enough weapons? But the diplomat from the country recognizing the TNC predicted that any questions or opposition will disappear, indicating that they have to see which way the wind is blowing. Watch this site.

Footnote: a well placed Permanent Representative told Inner City Press the Credentials Committee is supposed to formally switch to the TNC this week.

Click for Mar 1, '11 re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

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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

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