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-eg Nigeria, Zim, Georgia, Nepal, Somalia, Azerbaijan, Gambia 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, Turkish Cypriot Leader Denounces EU, Calls Downer and His Team Fatigued, Looks to January

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 19 - video here -- Two months after denying that UN mediator Alexander Downer was “exhausted” by the negotiations between the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, TRNC President Dervis Eroglu told Inner City Press on November 19 that “not only Downer but everyone involved are showing signs of fatigue, they are tired of continuing negotiating so long.”

  Eroglu was in New York for meetings with Cypriot President Dimitris Christofias, Downer and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. He told the Press he wouldn't go into details of what had been said, but he denounced the European Union which, he said, had taken all pressure off the Greek Cypriots by according EU membership.

  The EU “cannot be an honest broker,” he said, adding that the EU has “not keep its promise of 2004 of lifting the isolation of the Turkish Cypriots,” who now have little confidence in the EU.

  Inner City Press asked if the TRNC, if there's no progress by the next meeting with Ban in January 2011, might declare independence as Kosovo did. Eroglu said this would be considered in January, not before while there are talks. Things should be decided one way or the other, both he and his spokesman Osman Ertug said.

TRNC's Eroglu & Ertug on Nov. 18, UDI not shown

The November 19 interview took place in the Office of the TRNC on the 9th floor of the Turkish Mission to the UN's building. A florescent light bulb flickered; there were maps of Northern Cyprus and New York City's five boroughs on the walls.

  Other questions came to mind, everything between bank regulation in the TRNC and what passports Eroglu and Ertug were traveling on. (Turkish, appears to be the answer, despite the response in the interview that “the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is an independent country.”)

As previously reported by Inner City Press, the TRNC is given its own entry passes to the UN, under the name “Turkish Cypriot Community.” This is based on being part of a UN mediated negotiation process. But how much longer will that last? Watch this site.

* * *

On Cyprus, Two Views of Downer, “No Right to Be Exhausted,” Disclosure Still Lacking, Lobbying Not Precluded

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, September 25 -- The President of Cyprus Dimitris Christofias, and leader of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Dervis Eroglu, talked at cross purposes to the Press at the UN on September 24 and 25.

  Inner City Press asked each about the performance of UN Special Adviser Alexander Downer, a former Australian diplomat who now moonlights with the business consultancy Bespoke Approach.

   Eroglu had been quoted that the Greek Cypriots are “exhausting Downer's patience.” When Inner City Press asked Christofias about the quote, he replied that “Alexander Downer has no right to be exhausted. He's a Special Adviser of the UN Secretary General for two years, maybe less than two years... We have to be patient.” Video here, from Minute 18:15.

  Inner City Press waited until the next morning to ask Eroglu the same question. Eroglu denied his quote in the Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris, by way of Famagusta Gazette, adopted the more diplomatic position that Downer must be and is neutral. This was said in Turkish, through an interpreter. Eroglu added in English, to Inner City Press, that Downer is “young.. enough.”

In fact, Downer was walking jauntily about the UN this week. Some wondered whether his ubiquity was entirely related to his Cyprus portfolio for the UN, or might be related to or assist in his private for profit work for the clients of Bespoke Approach.

Inner City Press has several times asked Downer to disclose his outside business interests and clients, so that possible conflicts of interest could be assessed. Downer has refused, insisting that his work for example for Chinese firms wanting to do business in Australia has nothing to do with Cyprus.

UN's Ban and the parties (former TRNC) &
Downer, dislosure not shown

But consider this: a part time Special Adviser or Special Representative like Alexander Downer, or Tony Blair, or Matthew Nimitz, is given full access to the UN. People including world leaders will take these people's call, sometimes in part due to the UN connection. Can this be abused? Should there be disclosure and then reform? Watch this site.

Footnote: Eroglu's stakeout took place before 10 a.m. on Saturday in the UN's Temporary North Lawn Building. While security outside on First Avenue and 42nd Street was post-Obama being dismantled, inside the UN buzzed with bilateral meetings.

 Inner City Press spoke, for forthcoming stories, with for example the Permanent Representatives of Uganda and South Africa, in the midst of bilateral meetings, and the Foreign Minister of Indonesia. The mood was collegial, with an air of relief that the most tense part of the General Debate is over. The Permanent Representative of Malaysia asked Inner City Press, “Working on Saturday?” Yes. Watch this site.

 Click here for an Inner City Press YouTube channel video, mostly UN Headquarters footage, about civilian deaths in Sri Lanka.

Click here for Inner City Press' March 27 UN debate

Click here for Inner City Press March 12 UN (and AIG bailout) debate

Click here for Inner City Press' Feb 26 UN debate

Click here for Feb. 12 debate on Sri Lanka

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.

* * *

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] -