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On #Kony2012, UN Now Has Statement But No Action Since November

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, March 13 -- After three times having nothing to say when Inner City Press asked about the #KONY2012 phenomenon, on March 13 when Inner City Press asked again, this time about Uganda's complaints about a lack of cooperation, the UN finally had something. From the UN's March 13 transcript:

Inner City Press: The LRA, the Lord’s Resistance Army, it looks like a lot of divisions of the Secretariat are aware of this Kony 2012 or “Stop Kony” campaign. But it has now led to the Ugandan Government saying that they don’t have access to the DRC [Democratic Republic of the Congo]. They say that one reason they are unable to pursue the Lord’s Resistance Army in the DRC is that since the election, they don’t have access, is that MONUSCO’s understanding and beyond the report that the Secretary-General filed in November, what steps is the UN system taking to assist and even if necessary, you know, assist the access of Uganda if nothing else to pursue the Lord’s Resistance Army?

Spokesperson Martin Nesirky: Well, if we have anything further, I’ll let you know. But I think that that report in November was fairly explicit about the various steps that are being taken and have been taken, and that the various linkages between the different countries and the Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). So I don’t have anything further beyond that at the moment. Obviously, as you well know, this has been quite an interesting week, given the way that the topic came to prominence through the use of social media. Obviously, it is something that many people were aware of before, but many more are now aware of it, and that’s obviously a good thing. And, particularly, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Radhika Coomaraswamy, has said she was pleased to see such a lively discussion on a topic that has actually been often rather underreported. And she also hoped that that conversation would encourage people to learn all of the facts about the Lord’s Resistance Army and Joseph Kony, as well as hundreds of thousands of children who are affected by conflict around the world, not just in that part of the world. And of course, she has also said that if people want to help, then they can support programmes for children who have escaped from the Lord’s Resistance Army, and those programmes that would rebuild their lives and communities throughout Central Africa. If I had anything further, or have anything further for you, I’ll let you know, but what was the other question?

  The real question is, how can the UN have nothing new to say about its actual action, since November 2011? This was supposed to be a UN priority, with envoy Chissano having gotten paid, and with UN peacekeeping missions in the region. The head of the UN's Department of Field Support Susana Malcorra is about to be promoted to Ban's chief of staff, but what was accomplished? Watch this site.

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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

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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