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Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


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As UN Bans Inner City Press E-Asks Spox Dujarric of Honduras SG Mali Bahamas Uganda Colombia Cameroon Fleming Bans Press 800+ UNanswered

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR Letter PFT Q&A, NY Post

UNITED NATIONS GATE, Oct 3 – Inner City Press on 5 July 2018 was banned from entering the UN, the day after it filed a criminal complaint against UN Security for physically removing it from covering the meeting about the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' $6.7 billion peacekeeping budget, as witnessed and essentially cheered on by senior UN official Christian Saunders, tearing its reporter's shirt, painfully and intentionally twisting his arm and slamming shut and damaging his laptop. On August 17, Guterres' Department of Global Communication issued a letter banning Inner City Press from the UN - for life. With no due process. Guterres has put the UN in the US Press Freedom Tracker, here. Smale said, again, that the UN would answer Press questions to the Spokesman Stephane Dujarric and his Office; Dujarric said the same on camera. On October 3 three hours before the noon briefing by Spokesman Stephane "French Whine" Dujarric where he said he and his scribes are in the same profession and answered a question about the NY Mets baseball team firing their manager after the July 26 noon briefing had no questions at all, video here, Inner City Press submitted 1254 questions, including why it continues to be lawlessly banned from entering to ask questions in person: "There are more than 800+ questions UNanswered. And Monday Sept 17, Tuesday Sept 18, Wed Sept 19 and  Thurs and Fri Sept 21, that whole week, no questions answered. Nor Sept 25, nor 28th - nor October 2 nor 3. While appreciating and using what was belatedly sent on Sept 6 (while you still withhold if-asked information about Cameroon child rape(s) in DRC),  and on March 28 in partial request to Inner City Press' questions about the UN bribery sentence of Patrick Ho of CEFC and CEFC's 2018 attempt to buy the oil company of Gulbenkian Foundation which paid the SG, no answers on Dec 17 or 18 or 19 or 20 or 21 - another FIVE days in a row, even as SG's direct conflicts of interest and failure to disclose emerge, and a newest low. No answers on January 30 nor 31 nor February 1 nor 4 nor 5 nor 6 nor 7 nor 11 nor 12 nor 13 nor 14 nor 15 nor 18 nor 19 nor 20 nor 21 nor 22 nor 25 nor 26 nor 27 nor March 1 - 27 (!) And now April 1, 3-30 (one answer in the entire month - corrupt), and now May 1-13, 15-17, 21-31, June 3-28, and July 1-2, 8-31 and August 1-5, 8-30, Sept 3-5, 9-30 and now October 1-2 many questions. No answers at all during those four days of the US v Ho trial showing corruption in the UN says it all. This ban is just censorship - and Inner City Press must be allowed back into the noon briefing to ask its questions in person and follow up on them.

October 3-1: On murderous drug conspiracy, corruption and Honduras, please immediately provide UNSG Antonio Guterres' response to and explanation of the SDNY prosecutors' asserts that El Chapo Guzman funneled $1 million to Honduras' president and Guterres' September 24, 2019 meeting with the president, Juan Orlando Hernández Alvarado, at which neither corruption nor drugs was even raised. What does Guterres have to say? 

October 3-2: On torture and Mali, particularly in light of the UN working with the army and president there, what are SG Guterres' comments and actions if any on that Malian military units are using a method to restrain detainees during counterterrorism operations that has led to amputations and other serious injuries?

October 3-3: On the Bahamas particularly in light of the SG's un-followed up on visit and speech there, what are the SG's comment and actions now on that the Hubert Minnis government to deport undocumented migrants who survived the passage of Hurricane Dorian on September 1 and are now living in shelters?

October 3-4: On Uganda, on which you have refused to respond in any way to Inner City Press' questions despite or because of the showing of CEFC China Energy bribes to the country's leadership (and Guterres' undisclosed links to CEFC), what is Guterres' comment now that Bobi Wine has tweeted a video showing him denouncing the government's ban of his trademark red beret for people who are not in the armed forces.

 October 3-5: On press freedom and Cambodia, what are the SG and separately USG Melissa Fleming's comments and actions if any on that a Cambodian judge Thursday ordered a reinvestigation in the espionage case against two journalists, saying he could not rule on their guilt or innocence without enough evidence.  Phnom Penh Municipal Court Judge Im Vannak ordered the new investigation on the day he was scheduled to deliver a verdict in the case against the two reporters, Uon Chhin and Yeang Sothearin. 

October 3-6: On press freedom and Colombia, what are the SG and separately USG Melissa Fleming's comments and actions if any on that Colombia’s migration authority detained and deported a renowned Mexican journalist on Tuesday.  Photo journalist Alejandra Rajal was stopped at Bogota‘s El Dorado airport and deported around midnight... 

October 2-1: On Liberia and accountability or impunity, what are the comments and actions if any of the SG that Liberian president and former football star George Weah has expressed his reluctance to establish a war crimes court, despite widespread calls for it to be formed to try those involved in a civil war that killed up to 250,000 people.  Speaking after his arrival from the UN General Assembly on Tuesday evening, Mr Weah said: “I don’t understand what you all want. Since we came to power, I have not one day called for [a] war crimes court.”  To the wild applause of a group of supporters surrounding him, the ex-footballer asked: “Why now? When we have economic issues, we’re trying to develop our country, why focus on a war crimes court now?” 

October 2-2: On UN impunity, what is the UN's response to the cert petition filed with the US Supreme Court for the UN having brought cholera to Haiti and killed 10,000+ people but left people nearly entirely unrecompensed? 

October 1-1: On Burundi and Tanzania, what are the comments and actions if any of the SG and USG Fleming on that the Burundian government has said that it is to start repatriating refugees from neighboring Tanzania on Thursday.

October 1-2: On UN waste and spin, please immediately explain why SG Guterres has unlike Ban Ki-moon used public money for a position now given to UK Peter Reid (said to be unfilled since Ed Mortimer in 2006), and how this position, with no less than six speech writers under it - please provide their names and salaries - is different from the role of USG Melissa Fleming, who has yet to respond on the question of what the due process rights of critical journalists at the UN are, etc

September 30-1: On Cameroon what are SG Guterres' comments and actions if any on that the whereabouts of a pro-Ambazonia activists are still unknown days after he went on television to speak about the Major National Dialogue

September 30-3: On Sri Lanka, again please immediately explain why your Office refused to answer weeks of questions from Inner City Press about the impact of Shavendra Silva being made head of army (despite Dujarric on camera promise, and Smale's written promise, to answer ICP's questions) then handed the answer to FP and how that doesn't make FP the UN's teacher's pet? Is the belated decision even true? We ask again now because of Lacroix' admission is that UN's action is much more limited that Haq told his and your friends, and they reported. 

September 30-8: On UN corruption, please immediately state in light of another exclusive Inner City Press series the UN's knowledge of and action on Patrick Ho's and CEFC China Energy activities in South Sudan, and why Guterres has still not disclosed his 2016 payments from Gulbenkian which tried to sell its oil company to CEFC in his public financial disclosure covering 2016.    

September 25-5: On the UNGA luncheon and DGC, please explain how photos are by Chinese state media Xinhua / "UNCA Pool" but Xinhua is not on the list of poolers published in a Portuguese publication. Is Xinhua now "in-house" for DGC? Are there ostensibly non-UN correspondents who in fact work for and are paid by the UN? What is the ethics of that? 

September 4-8: Immediately explain the single lawless line from MALU on 30 August 2019: "Greetings Matthew Lee from Inner City Press, Your media accreditation request, with reference no: M5413398, has been declined for the following reason: Media accreditation was withdrawn on 17 August 2018." This is a formal request for the UN's explanation of grounds for this denial. And a demand for answer to these questions, which MALU has declined to answer:  Who made the decision?  Where is the list of those accredited by [MALU]?  What and to whom is the process of appeal? 

September 3-17: In light of the death of Jeffrey Epstein, now on August 27 multiply accused of sex trafficking along with Ghislaine Maxwell who was allowed to promote her now closed charity in the UN Press Briefing Room, as Inner City Press asked without any UN response on July 22, please immediately disclose all UN interactions with his Ghislaine Maxwell's TerraMar Project and relatedly, with Paolo Zampolli. 

September 3-19: On press freedom and Cameroon, on which you refused to answer on August 13 despite saying the office was staffed and answering, now more specific: what is the SG's comment and action if any, post golden statue, to that Paul Atanga Nji, territorial administration minister, says Cameroon's journalists are becoming highly unpatriotic.  "They have one main objective, just to sabotage government action, to promote secessionist tendencies," said Nji. "I urge them to be responsible. Those who do not want to respect the laws will be booked as being recalcitrant and will be treated as such"... Now that the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has ruled against public officials blocking critics on Twitter even if the official claims their account is private, what is the justification for UNSG Spokesperson Stephane Dujarric, with the UN flag in his profile photo and Guterres promoting content, blocking Inner City Press? What is SG Guterres' response / reaction to UN DSS and Guterres' actions on Inner City Press being listed in the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, here.  In the UN, what has the accountability been for Lt Ronald E. Dobbins and those those refused on camera to give their names? What is each of yours - particularly the SG's - response to the letter written and sent by Burundi activist Manisha Lievin? Immediately explain the single lawless line from MALU on 30 August 2019: "Greetings Matthew Lee from Inner City Press, Your media accreditation request, with reference no: M5413398, has been declined for the following reason: Media accreditation was withdrawn on 17 August 2018." This is a formal request for the UN's explanation of grounds for this denied, and since SGcentral, the SG's chief of staff and Deputy SG and USG Fleming have not even responded... AGAIN, immediately explain how it is legitimate to ban from enter into the UN the media that has been asking about these and other questions, with no hearing or appeal - and respond that Inner City Press on August 24 applied like 100s or 1000s of others to cover the upcoming UNGA high level week, including now formally offering to answer any quesions the UN / DSS might have, having been vetted and accredited elsewhere since, as both USG DSS Michaud and MALU have formally been timely informed -- and how it is possible that a media that closely covers and uncovers the UN could be denied entry, other than (SG) censorship.

May 15-3: On the Public Financial Disclosures for 2017 belatedly published over the weekend of April 27-28, please state why Mohammed Ibn Chambas, like the Executive Secretary of the UN Biodiversity Convention, Cristiana Paşca-Palmer, UNICEF's Henriette Fore, with documented links to ExxonMobil and others, USG Mark Lowcock (undisclosed while the Secretariat's speaker at the UNSC Arria on Cameroon), UNCTAD's Mukhisa Kituyi, UN Women's Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UNOG chief Michael Moller, UNDP chief Achim Steiner,  Heidi Mendoza, Adama Dieng, UN Security chief Peter Drennan, Rosemary DiCarlo and Nicholas Haysum, is not even on the list. OIOS chief Inga-Britt Ahlenius reported - why not Mendoza? Where IS Mendoza? Isn't it a bad practice for the UN's head (anti) genocide definition official to conceal from the public even cursory financial disclosure? Did DiCarlo decline to make any public disclosure despite being the UN's top political officer? What is the even plausible applicability of this line from SG Guterres' web page: "Please note that given the multi-cultural environment of the UN and the often security sensitive locations where UN staff are either working or come from, full public disclosure may not always be a viable or sensible option for certain staff members"? Why has Guterres changed the previous system in a which a "choosing not to disclose" statement was upload and listed, to one which helps conceal who reports and who does not?  Again, state why considering the UN bribery conviction of Patrick Ho of CEFC, and CEFC's attempt to purchase the oil company of Gulbenkian Foundation which paid Mr. Guterres in 2016 was omitted from his online public financial disclosure covering 2016, and why Guterres has not even started an audit of CEFC in the UN. 

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