No Comment on Protests in Abyei of Haroun Flight, Partition of
March 10 -- Whether on Abyei or Darfur, despite spending
over $1 billion a year the UN has nothing to say, even as Dinka
protests confront its flights of
indicted war criminal Ahmed Haroun.
March 9, Inner
City Press asked
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin
Nesirky about criticism of the UN's lack of protection of civilians
in Abyei, then about its silence on Darfur:
Press: there is a report that the SPLM [Sudan People’s
Liberation Movement] has threatened to stop negotiations with the
National Congress Party about Abyei and outstanding issues due to the
violence. It’s in the Sudan Tribune article, which quotes an SPLM
leader for Abyei, saying why is the UN not taking a more active role?
Meanwhile, the Sudanese Government newspaper has said that the UN
has rejected calls to get involved, either physically… either in
the physical protection of civilians or in a way other than simply
monitoring. Is that… is the Sudanese Government accurate in saying
that UNMIS’s [United Nations Mission in Sudan] role in Abyei is
simply to monitor what some said is the destruction of 300 buildings
and three villages, or is there a physical protection role that is
being implemented there?
Well, two points. One is that you know quite well that the
UN Mission in Sudan was instrumental in bringing the sides together
just last week. And secondly, as you also know, we told you that an
additional company, on top of four companies already deployed in that
area, this additional company was being deployed there. So that is
extra boots on the ground.
Press: Where were they when these… not to… obviously they
didn’t burn them, but when these villages were burned down —
there are satellite photos of the before and the after — is there
any… is the attempt of this new company to actually be physically
present to stop physical destruction or…? I am just trying to
understand what the…?
The presence of peacekeeping personnel on the ground is supposed to
do a number of things. One is, yes, it is monitoring, two, it is to
investigate after the fact if they, if it happened somewhere a long
way from where they are positioned, and it is also to help people who
have been either attacked or need assistance for some other reason. And
we have seen that repeatedly. In this particular case, we are
aware of those reports that you referred to, and if I have any more
details on the location of the peacekeepers in relation to that, I’d
be happy to let you know.
hours later, there was no answer at all from the UN.
UN's Ban & spox Nesirky, cost of flying ICC indictee not shown
on March 9,
Inner City Press asked:
Press: in Darfur, there is a lot of now criticism by the rebel
groups in Darfur that the Government on Monday proposed to add two
additional administrative states to Darfur; they are calling it a
“divide and rule” regime. I just wonder, given the UN’s role
in these negotiations, one, do they think that… what do they make
of these criticisms of divide and rule, and two, do they think that
the steps that the Sudanese Government is taking to supposedly seek
consent of people in IDP [internally displaced persons] camps are
sufficient, democratic and the things that the UN would like to see
Well, as I understand it, from the mediation, this has not been
formally communicated, this notion of establishing two extra
administrative areas in Darfur. This has not been officially
communicated to the mediation, and so they are waiting to hear more
about that, because, after all, that is one aspect of the
negotiations that are going on. They haven’t heard anything
officially yet. And if they do, I’ll be happy to let you know.
30 hours later there was no answer from the UN. And so the
March 10, Inner City Press asked a follow up:
Press: about this flight of Ahmed Haroun, there has been a new
report that when he was flown into Abyei that actually 400 Dinka
youth stormed the UN’s compound, angered at his presence and that
McClatchy/Miami Herald story says that [Salah] Gosh, who is this
former intelligence chief, and Haroun were evacuated by helicopter
from their visit to Abyei. So, I wanted to know, one, can you
confirm that in fact the UN flew him in and then upon protest by
youth, Dinka youth, flew him out? Is that true?
Well, I can tell you that Governor Haroun was transported
there and back again. That is correct. I have already said that. As for
what happened at the time around the location where the
meeting was being held, there were some disturbances that ended
peacefully, and if I have more details precisely on what happened,
then I’ll let you know.
it first came up, it was presented, this is a very
positive visit, that he’d brought peace and, in fact, if 400 youth
protested him and destroyed vehicles and he left under fire, it seems
to… would the UN fly him there again?
As I say, I would need to check on the precise details. There were
protests; that is the case. But also there was a result, in the form
of the agreement that I have mentioned before. But if I have more
detail, I’ll be happy to give it to you.
later, nothing. Nothing at all. And so it goes at the UN.
* * *
in Abyei, UN Flew in Torcher Haroun,
7 -- Amid the torching of villages in Abyei by
Sudanese nomads, the UN flew into
Abyei Ahmen Haroun, indicted by the
International Criminal Court for organizing nomads to commit war
crimes in Darfur, it confirmed to Inner City Press on March 4.
Inner City Press over the weekend asked Secretary General Ban
Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky to
all previously requested specifics of ICC indictee Ahmed Haroun's now
second flight with the UN, and did DPKO tell the Security Council?
Was it a special or scheduled flight? How much did it cost? Did the
UN ask why Sudan's air force couldn't make the flight? Did OLA
consider and approve this? When will Patricia O'Brien hold a press
conference and take questions?”
March 7, with
Nesirky not having answered any of the questions, he used his noon
briefing opening to deliver praise to the government of Omar al
Bashir, also indicted by the ICC for genocide, for now agreeing to
try to avoid violence. Inner City Press asked:
on Sudan, I mean, I heard your message lauding this
agreement between the SPLM and the NPC. Has the UN seen, and can it…
seen this report, and can it confirm that three villages were burned
down in Abyei, 300 buildings destroyed, and what’s the relation
between that… is this the violence that the agreement that you are
applauding will be stopping or… and what was, did Ahmed Haroun,
this indicted ICC [International Criminal Court] individual, what was
his role? Did he sign this for the NPC, and do you think that
villages will no longer be burned down in this way?
of all, it is precisely that kind of violence and
damage with human, as well as material, cost that this agreement
would be designed to stop, and to try to stop. Governor [Ahmed]
Haroun of South Kordofan, as you know, is responsible for the
Misseriya’s respect for the rule of law and finding a solution to
their migration, and so that is why his role was crucial in that
What do you say to those who say that, since he is
actively charged by the ICC with organizing nomadic tribes to burn
down villages that may be relying on him, transporting him may be not
a good idea?
Menkerios (r) with Mbeki & Hillary Clinton,
Haroun not shown
think the point here is that, as I just said, his role in
ensuring that Misseriya respect the rule of law and also in helping
to find a solution to their migration is really crucial. And,
indeed, the talks between the Ngok Dinka/SPLM and the Misseriya/NCP
really can’t take place without his participation.
impossible to deal with murderous nomads without the UN flying in a
Sudanese government official indicted by the ICC for organizing
nomads to murder in Darfur. Is the resulting and continuing murder
March 7 Inner City Press on deadline asked the three
spokespeople of the US Mission to the UN the following question, so
far without response:
the US State Department / Administration find the new Satellite
Sentinel Project imagery, confirming the deliberate burning of three
villages in Sudan's contested Abyei region, useful? How is the Obama
administration focusing on Abyei? Do you agree with the conclusions
of the Satellite Sentinel Project that it's systematic targeting of
civilian infrastructure, and as such, evidence of a possible war
questions to the US Mission to the UN that have gone unanswered.
Watch this site.
* * *
of ICC Darfur Indictee Haroun to Abyei in Sudan, Impunity
updated -- The UN
has for a second time offered a free UN
flight in Sudan to Ahmed Haroun, under indictment by the
International Criminal Court for war crimes in Darfur, the UN
admitted Friday in response to questions from Inner City Press.
March 3 the UN
Security Council met about renewed fighting in the disputed Abyei
region. Back in January, Inner City Press got the UN to acknowledge
they had flown ICC indictee Haroun from South Kordofan, where he
serves fellow ICC indictee Omar al Bashir as governor, to Abyei.
UN has defended
this controversial flight by saying that Haroun and Haroun alone
could stop violence in Abyei. The UN never explained why the
government of Sudan, which has an air force currently bombing civilians
in Jebel Marra in Darfur, couldn't itself fly Haroun.
UN said it was
a scheduled flight, then UN Mission in Sudan chief Haile Menkerios
Inner City Press that it was a special flight. Inner City Press is
told such flights cost $40,000, and the UN has confirm no
reimbursement has been sought from the Bashir government.
violence has continued, making the UN flight of ICC indictee Haroun
harder to justify even by the UN's own argument.
of the Security Council, Inner City Press asked Council president for
March Li Baodong of China if the UN Peacekeeping official who briefed
the Council, Atul Khare, had mentioned if Haroun would again be flown
in a UN helicopter. Li Baodong did not directly answer.
the March 4 UN
noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's
spokesman Martin Nesirky to confirm or deny that that the UN would
once again fly ICC indictee Haroun to Abyei, even now that his work in
connection with the first flight has proved ineffective.
check. Ten minutes later, Nesirky's deputy Farhan Haq announced
by speaker to all UN correspondents that yes, Haroun attended today's
meeting in Abyei, and yes, “he was transported” by the UN.
even for one of the few people indicted for war crimes by
the ICC. Meanwhile Ban Ki-moon brags about the Security Council's partial
referral of the situation in Libya to the ICC -- a referral that Ban
Ki-moon did not even call for until after the Council voted to make
and enshrining lawlessness, with no transparency or
accountability. Watch this site.
of 3:48 pm -- Human Rights Watch, via Richard Dicker, submitted
is the second time in recent weeks the UN has transported Ahmed
Haroun who is charged by the ICC with war crimes in Darfur. We have
real concerns because the U.N. should not be in the business of
transporting Haroun. There needs to be an extremely high threshold of
urgency for such action by UNMIS.”
from the Missions to the UN of France, the UK and the US,
with the latter two asked if they knew in advance of the UN's new
flight of ICC indictee Haroun. Given her
social media, & after hours of non-response by the US Mission
to the UN,@AmbassadorRice
has been asked directly as well. Watch
-- Then this, from UK Mission to the UN spokesman Daniel
spokesperson, I would only reiterate the message that my two
Ambassadors have both said on the record (and published by Inner City
Press) first time around: that we aren’t going to second guess how
UNMIS fulfills its mandate to provide good offices to the
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) parties in efforts to resolve
differences through dialogue and negotiations. I’d only add that
this work is particularly important at this sensitive time, to
contain any potential escalation after the recent Abyei violence.”
again that violence has persisted despite the UN flying ICC indictee
Ahmed Haroun in the first time, and that it is the role of UN member
states to oversee the UN Secretariat, not to defer in this case to
what some see as its promotion of impunity - but at least the UK
would put its position on the record.
-- this too has come in, perhaps in response:
Subject: Haroun and Abyei
To: Matthew.Lee [at]
questions! Have you noticed perhaps that the United
Nations seems to be unaware of who is causing the violence in Abyei.
And yet "diplomatic sources" report seeing the burial of 33
bodies - all southerners.
the violence started when SPLM police shot at them
(Hitler used a similar ploy to invade Poland) - and today thousands
of civilians fled Abyei fearing another crisis like in June 2008. The
Dinka Ngok villages north of Abyei, such as Maker, have been
burnt to the ground. The end explains the means. There is a
creeping ethnic cleansing going on in the Abyei region despite the
agreements of 2005 and the Court of Arbitration ruling in 2010.
Abyei - what is his cv? It is, as you correctly point
out, that of arming arab militias to burn villages. I hope to see
more of your questions pinning the UN to the responsibility to
for Mar 1, '11
BloggingHeads.tv re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption
Click here for Inner City
Press' March 27 UN debate
Click here for Inner City
Press March 12 UN (and AIG
Click here for Inner City
Press' Feb 26 UN debate
Click here for Inner City Press' Jan.
16, 2009 debate about Gaza
Click here for Inner City Press'
review-of-2008 UN Top Ten debate
Click here for Inner
City Press' December 24 debate on UN budget, Niger
Click here from Inner City Press'
December 12 debate on UN double standards
Click here for Inner
City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics
and this October 17 debate, on
Security Council and Obama and the UN.
* * *
usually also available through Google
News and on Lexis-Nexis.
for a Reuters
AlertNet piece by this correspondent
about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click
for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali
Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an
undefined trust fund. Video
some are available
in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.