Inner City Press

In Other Media-eg CJR, Independent, Fox, New Statesman, AJE, FP, NYT CSM Click here to contact us     .

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

More: InnerCityPro

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

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

In UN Guterres Faux Stakeout With VOA Qatar South Africa State Media Corruption UNanswered

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR PFT CEFC Video

UNITED NATIONS GATE, March 26 – How lawless and staged is the United Nations of Secretary General Antonio Guterres? On March 26, while refusing Press questions about the UN bribery three year jail sentence of the previous day, and even on WFP's introduction of poisonous food into Uganda, Guterres blathered at the UN Security Council stakeout about the cyclone in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe. Then his spokesman Stephane Dujarric, hiding his recent podcast in which he cited "mutually assured destruction" with journalists, pre-picked questions from state media from South Africa, USA / VOA and Qatar, his favorite. The questions were propaganda: the first asked Guterres to "frame" his answer, the last asked Will the UN stay the course with the people of Southern Africa? NO. In the midst of Inner City Press' questioning in 2018 about Guterres' links to now convicted UN bribery Patrick Ho's China Energy Fund Committee and Guterres' failures on Cameroon and elsewhere, his UN Security twice roughed up Inner City Press on June 22 and July 3, 2018.

Then after Inner City Press filed a New York Police Department complaint against the UN and its Lieutenant Ronald E. Dobbins, none of its written questions to UN Security chief Peter Drennen and Guterres were answered. There are no due process rights for journalists in the UN of Guterres - and yet some correspondents smile with him and praise him, colluding in essence with censorship.

  Take for example the 18 March 2019 UN Photo with this caption: "Secretary-General António Guterres (centre right) poses for a group photo with the Executive Committee of the UN Correspondents Association (UNCA).  First row from left to right: Betul Yuruk (Anadolu Agency); Giampaolo Pioli (Quotidiano Nazionale); Edith Lederer (Associated Press); Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, Chef de Cabinet; Valeria Robecco (ANSA News Agency), UNCA President; Mr. Guterres; Alison Smale, Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications; Maria Khrenova (TASS News Agency); Seana Magee (Kyodo News); and Oscar Bolanos (OMB News).   Second row from left to right: Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General; Sherwin Bryce-Pease (SABC South Africa); Farnaz Fassihi (Wall Street Journal); Widad Franco (NHK Japan Broadcasting); Melissa Kent (CBC/Radio-Canada); Nabil Abi Saab (Al Hurra TV); Luke Vargas (Talk Media News); Carole Landry (Agence France Presse); and Erol Avdovic (Webpublicapress)." We'll have more on this.

   Compare: on March 14, Inner City Press UN bureau chief, this reporter, was invited to press freedom event in the UN sponsored by the UN Missions of France, Lithuania and Greece. I RSVP-ed and was told to come up up my ticket at the Visitors Entrance. I did; I was given a ticket with my name on it. Tweeted photo here.

After waiting in line, I showed my drivers license and the ticket and was waved into a second line for the metal detectors, where a sign said no video allowed. Periscope video here, until voluntarily turned off. Halfway through the line, four UN Security officers and a supervisor came over and ordered me to leave, saying I am on their barred list. I asked to see the list. I was pushed from behind and told I would be shown the list outside. They took the paper ticket, saying it is property of the UN. (There's still this photo.) But once they pushed me out onto the stairs, no one came out with the list. First of a series of Periscope videos here.

UNCA promoted the event: "Dear colleagues,   UNCA is extending an invitation from the Permanent Mission of Greece to the UN to a CSW63 side event with the members states of the Group of Friends for the Protection of Journalists, Reporters Without Borders, the Committee to Protect Journalists and the International Women’s Media Foundation on Journalism and the Empowerment of Women: New Challenges in the Digital World, taking place on Thursday, March 14th at 1:15 pm in ECOSOC.  Please see the invitation and concept note below for more details.  The event is open to all UN correspondents.  Valeria Robecco President, United Nations Correspondents Association."

After a UN media accreditation "review" that did not include any opportunity to be heard for Inner City Press, Guterres' Under Secretary General Alison Smale on 17 August 2018 issued a letter "withdrawing" Inner City Press' UN media accreditation. Smale was asked how Inner City Press could appeal, including by UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression David Kaye, but did not answer that.

On 3 September 2018, facing the prospect of being unable to enter the UN to cover the General Assembly "high level" week for the first time in a decade, Inner City Press submitted an application for accreditation. But there was no action on it - in fact, during high level week, it emerged that Inner City Press had been put on a non-public "barred" list such that even if invited by a member state or UN agency, it could not enter the building.

Patrick Ho of CEFC was convicted on 5 December 2018. asked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres what he will do to clean up the UN, where he has left CEFC without any audit, still in consultative status with the UN. On his way from his Mercedes to a glitzy UNCA fundraiser including George and Amal Clooney, Guterres refused to answer. This footage in now in a 22 minute Hong Kong TV documentary about the case, at Minute 22, here. Inner City Press again exclusively reported that Guterres had failed to include his paid position on the board of the Gulbenkian Foundation in his Public Financial Disclosure covering 2016 - and that Gulbenkian in 2018 was trying to sell its Partex Oil and Gas affiliate to CEFC as Guterres refused to audit CEFC and had Inner City Press which asked roughed up and banned.

On 2 January 2019 Smale's Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit has issued a denial of Inner City Press' September application for accreditation, stating only that

"Greetings Matthew LEE from ICP     INNER CITY PRESS, 

Your media accreditation request, with reference no: M72295425, has been declined for the following reason: Accreditation was withdrawn on 17 August 2018."

  This is Kafka-esque. Accreditation was withdrawn without any hearing or chance to appeal, but that decision is used to deny future accreditation. While preaching about due process and freedom of the press, Guterres' UN has a "one strike and your out" policy - even if there is no strike. The alleged violations were filming in place Smale's own MALU staff told Inner City Press it could film with out an escort, and recording her deputy in a known media stakeout position.

While Guterres was refusing throughout 2018 to begin any UN audit into China Energy Fund Committee, implicated in the UN bribery prosecution US v Patrick Ho, Guterres had a secret: his role on the board of Gulbenkian Foundation which was trying to sell its Partex Oil affiliate to CEFC. See Inner City Press' first exclusive report here.

   A now-removed Gulbenkian Foundation web page says Guterres continued as a board member into 2018. Archived here. In fact it was on 9 February 2018 that Gulbenian tweeted that Guterres was no longer on the board - AFTER it was reported that Gulbenian was trying to sell, or even had already sold, Partex to CEFC. This is called guilty knowledge.

   For years Guterres received money as a board member of the Calouste Galbenkian Foundation, which despite its name is the 100% owner of Partex Oil and Gas. Partex has operations in Angola, Abu Dhabi, Brazil, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Oman and Portugal. It was to a Portuguese court that Guterres, while justifying no listing some of his income, disclosed in 2016 that he was paid at least € 2735 per month for his position with the Gulbenkian Foundation.

   But while a now deleted Foundation web page (archived here) stated that Guterres continued with Gulbenkian into 2018, Guterres did not list it on his most recent, and so far lone, UN Public Financial Disclosure, which covered 2016 ("Disclosing financial and other interests for the 2016 reporting year").

  So why did Guterres disclose his position with the Club of Madrid, but not with the Gulbenkian Foundation / Partex Oil and Gas?

   Following the roughing up and banning from the UN of Inner City Press which has covered the CEFC scandal throughout, Guterres' head of Global Communications Alison Smale promised UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression David Kaye, who asked, that the UN would still answer Inner City Press' written questions.

   But even as 2018 came to a close Guterres' spokesmen Stephane Dujarric and Farhan Haq left unanswered 36 questions in a row from Inner City Press, including this: “Beyond the 35 questions from Inner City Press you refused to answer this week, this is a request on deadline that you (1) state when SG Guterres left his position on the Gulbenkian Foundation,

(2) state why Gulbenkian was not listed on SG Guterres' public financial disclosure which covered 2016;

(3) explain how it is not a conflict of interest for SG Guterres to have refused to start an audit of CEFC in the UN, as requested by Inner City Press in January 2018, given CEFC's bid for the oil business of Gulbenkian.

Also, again, state why under SG Guterres there have been no updates to the UN public financial disclosures since those filed for 2016. Also, again, explain your refusal to answer any of Inner City Press' questions this week despite USG Smale's statements to GAP, me and UNSR David Kaye. On deadline.” In March 2019, Dujarric and Haq have not answered a single Inner City Press question, on a range of topics.

   The questions have also been sent to the e-mail addresses of Guterres, his chief of staff Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, his Deputy Amina J. Mohammed, and Smale, who told Inner City Press she would take “under advisement” her 17 August 2018 pretextual withdrawal of Inner City Press decade long UN media accreditation.
  It seems clear that Guterres and his team have engaged in censorship for corruption, to conceal a blatant conflict of interest by Guterres.

Back on 5 December 2018 Patrick Ho was found guilty of seven of eight counts of violating the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and month laundering.

The night of the verdict I asked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres what he will do to clean up the UN, where he has left CEFC without any audit, still in consultative status with the UN. On his way from his Mercedes to a glitzy UNCA fundraiser including George and Amal Clooney, Guterres refused to answer. This footage in now in a 22 minute Hong Kong TV documentary about the case, at Minute 22, here. The next day when asked by another journalist why Guterres had refused to answer banned Inner City Press' question, his spokesman Stephane Dujarric claimed that the UN has “cooperated” with the prosecution. 

   CEFC remains an accredited non governmental organization with the UN's Economic and Social Council, while investigative Inner City Press for which I have been covering the case has been dis-accredited by and ousted from the UN, put on a list of those permanently banned without notice, due process or appeal. 


Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office, past & future?: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA
For now UNder Guterres: UN Delegates Entrance Gate
and mail: Dag H. Center Box 20047, NY NY 10017 USA

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 2006-2019 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] for