Debate Ends with Kashmir and Karabakh, Vietnam Hits at Swedish
September 29, 2010 -- The UN General Assembly debate ended
Wednesday with a whimper not a bang, with bickering about regional
disputes and a self-important speech by self styled visionary GA
President Joseph Deiss, before a nearly empty GA hall.
Armenia mixed it out about Nagorno Karabakh. India and Pakistan
traded charges of interference around Jammu and Kashmir. Eritrea and
Ethiopia fought another round, while the Democratic People's Republic
of Korea -- North Korea to you -- lashes out at South Korea and the
United States, declaring itself innocent of sinking the Cheonan ship.
UN can be
blamed for its role in not solving several of these conflicts. The UN
has a force in Kashmir, and like in Western Sahara there was talk of
a plebecite / referendum. But none was ever held. Pakistan quoted
from what it said was a 1952 offer by Nehru to leave J&K if so
claim is that the UN and international community never enforced a
border dispute ruling. On the Cheonan ship sinking, the UN Security
Council issued a Presidential Statement that was so vague it allows
each side to keep claiming victory ad infinitum. And so on.
has refused to disclose the outside business interests he says are
paying him this year, declared that the G-20 must make itself
relevant, there was a final requester for the floor: Vietnam.
PGA Deiss & bell, financial disclosure and peace not shown
a speech on
Tuesday, Sweden had criticized the treatment of press and bloggers in
eight countries. Three of them, led by Cuba, hit back on Tuesday
night, raising questions about Sweden's own record. Inner City Press
Wednesday morning about the showdown, including Cuba's
statement that Sweden was asked to but refused to stay to hear the
called Wednesday to explain that generally it does not talk back to
criticisms of its human rights record, because it believes in the
freedom of speech. Inner City Press asked Deiss' spokesman if Sweden
would be able to speak on Wednesday afternoon at the Debate's final
session if they wanted, and the answer seemed to be yes.
reply to Sweden, there was no call to surreply. Inner City Press
understands that the Swedish reason for its Permanent Representative
not being present Tuesday night was the way in which the Cuban
Permanent Representative made the request to stay: as a barked order
by the glass wall to the side of the GA rostrum.
Debate ended inconclusive, in a fit of pique. And so it goes at the
UN. Watch this site.
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Hit & Run Human Rights Attack Lambasted by Cuba in GA
29, 2010 -- As this UN General Debate reaches what
some call its garbage time stage, when all the heads of state and
attendant security are gone and the General Assembly Hall is largely
empty, the deep fissures in the international community become
a near empty
GA on September 28, Sweden delivered a high minded speech, barely
mentioning its own country but rather critiquing the human rights
records of at least ten countries.
followed the more
modest plea of Tuvalu, largely devoted to the right of Taiwan to
participate in the UN's specialized agencies. A cynical called this
Tuvalu “singing for its supper” -- saying what was necessary to
keep Taiwanese aid flowing in, as Burkina Faso also did on Tuesday
the end of the
proceedings, new GA President and international man of mystery Joseph
Deiss -- what are the outside business interests he mentioned
but did not disclose? -- opened the floor for the right to reply.
Most interventions were predictable.
claims about three islands by the United Arab Emirates, a dispute
between oil rich and well armed states which never seems to end.
litany of complaint, including on behalf of Djibouti, against
Eritrea, which in turn responded that the so called international
community never enforced the boundary judgment it won.
beyond the parochial, lambasted Sweden's “arrogant” attack on
eight states in the Global South (somehow Cuba missed two). Most
compellingly, at least to Inner City Press, Cuba said that the Sweden
speaker had been asked to stay and hear Cuba's response, but chose
not to. Even at the UN this passes for bad form.
Cuba's foreign minister, bringing the noise in this GA, Sweden not shown
panned over to the Swedish set of seats, in which two young staffers
sat, looking outgunned. Neither of them chose to surreply. One
imagined the Swedish speaker out to dinner, having gravlax and
thinking big thoughts. But at the UN you have to engage. Score one
for Cuba, on these grounds alone. Watch this site.
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To Hand Over Bashir's Enemies for “Blood
Exclusive Must Credit
2010 -- In Darfur, the Joint African Union -
UN peacekeeping mission UNAMID is preparing to turn over to the
government of Omar al Bashir five supporters of rebel leader Abdel
Wahid Nur who have been “accused by Sudanese authorities of having
committed crimes,” as shown by UNAMID documents obtained by Inner
two months the
government of Bashir, who has been indicted by the International
Criminal Court for war crimes and genocide, has demanded that UNAMID
and the UN turn over the five, who “sought refuge in the Community
Policing Center of the Kalma Camp for Internally Displaced Persons”
after an outburst of violence in the camp.
imposed a blockade on the camp, not allowing in food or fuel or
medicine, and now seeks to close down the camp.
from UNAMID chief Ibrahim Gambari to Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali
Karti recites that Bashir's government “explained its position of
principle that Sudan has the right to apply the death penalty as such
a penalty is not illegal under international law and is part of
Sudan's criminal code.”
prejudice to its position of principle,
the Government has undertaken to work in a co-operative manner with
UNAMID... with a view to bringing the issue to a mutually acceptable
Click here to see
Gambari's letter, as obtained exclusively by Inner City Press.
paragraph of his letter, Gambari “propose[s] that the issue of the
five individuals be brought to a conclusion... on the basis of the additional
terms set forth in the attachment hereto... to ensure that
the five individuals concerned are transferred to the relevant
authorities of the Government.”
what are the
terms under which the UN, Gambari and UNAMID would turn over the five
to Bashir's government?
Click here to see
Gambari's and the UN's Additional Terms, as obtained exclusively by
Inner City Press.
Amazingly to some, under Gambari's
Additional Terms, “blood relatives of the victims of the alleged
crimes will be called upon to exercise their power to waive the death
penalty and seek payment of compensation in the form of 'blood money'
UN's Ban shakes with Bashir, Kalma Five and blood
money not shown
an incident in Geneina, multiply described to Inner
City Press, in which UNAMID became involved in and even proposed the
payment of “blood money” by IDPs to janjaweed who came into the
camp beating up IDPs and demanding money for a person they said had
Terms of the Government's assurances for the transfer of the five
individuals from the Kalma CPC to the host country authorities”
ends with assurances that “UNAMID's Human Rights Division” could
visit the prisoners, and that Bashir's government will not “undermine
UNAMID's ability to conduct its activities.”
government has restricted the movement of UNAMID peacekeepers and
helicopters, as peacekeepers and civilians as in the Tarabat Market
early this money lay dying. The UN's human rights divisions in Sudan
have been accused by opposition leaders of failing even to come on a
timely basis to examine the body of a slain Darfuri student.
says it tried, but the Government stopped it -- even if true, hardly
a basis for replying on the assurances in the Additional Terms. On
September 27, Inner City Press asked a series of questions to Gambari,
UN Humanitarian Coordinator Georg Charpentier and Under Secretary
General for Field Support Susana Malcorra, click here for
this case of
the five, UNAMID would rely on “the Ajaweed traditional justice”
and, again amazingly, that “the President” -- indicted war
criminal Omar al Bashir -- “has the prerogative of mercy which he
has confirmed he will exercise in the event that the death penalty is
imposed on the accused.”
many, this is a
new low for the UN: accepting the promise of an indicted war criminal
not to kill again as a basis to turn over more of his enemies to him.
Watch this site.
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