As UN Cries Poor Guterres Hires Zoe Paxton Who Spun For UK DfID No Answers On Costs of Peter Reid

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As UN Cries Poor Guterres Hires Zoe Paxton Who Spun For UK DfID No Answers On Costs of Peter Reid

By Matthew Russell Lee, Letter, CJR PFT

UN GATE, Oct 9 -- While UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres cries poor and scales back "official travel," he has just made another high cost hire for his propaganda / vanity shop: "Zoe Paxton, head of media at the Department for International Development (DfID) and a rising star in the Government Communication Service, is leaving for a top comms job at the United Nations."

This follows his hiring of a man from McKinsey, Peter Reid, to join fully six other speechwriters, and refusing to answer banned Inner City Press' written questions on the cost. Is this an organization that should get more money? Guterres is a corrupt censor and is destroying the UN.

He has for months taken secret trips to his real home in Lisbon without disclosing the cost to the UN. Inner City Press which asked about the cost was roughed up and has been banned from the UN for 462 days by Guterres and his spokespeople Melissa Fleming and Stephane Dujarric.

 On October 8 while refusing to answer a single one of Inner City Press' six written questions despite being paid all day by the public, Dujarric solicited questions about the letter that banned Inner City Press now publishes and puts online on Scribd here: "The United Nations is confronting the worst regular budget liquidity crisis in recent years.  The ongoing financial uncertainty is threatening our ability to fully implement the mandates placed upon us by Member States.  On 2 August 2019, I wrote to express my profound concerns about the situation and appealed for concerted action to resolve it. I conveyed my gratitude for action on some of my proposals to improve the timeliness of our reimbursement to troop and police-contributing countries, but I also underscored my deep worry that the underlying regular budget crisis had not been addressed.  In January, we assessed Member States for an amount of $2.849 billion, of which we have received $1.990 billion. However, our real liquidity needs for 2019 are higher, owing to additional mandates approved and being implemented in 2019 but not yet assessed, as well as delayed expenditures from 2018.  As a result, we now face a liquidity crisis that is worse than any the Organization has confronted in at least a decade. Contributions by Member States by the end of the third quarter have fallen to a mere 70 per cent (of the current year’s assessment) compared to 78 per cent last year. For 2019, this translates to an additional shortage of over $230 million.  The Secretariat has taken a number of significant measures to align expenditures with projected cash inflows. Without these steps, our cash shortfall may have been as high as $600 million in October.  Despite these meaningful efforts, the crisis is perpetuated as inflows trickle in slower than in the past. This is exacerbating an already difficult situation. Liquidity mechanisms are failing us.  Had we not contained expenditures globally from the beginning of this year – by adjusting hiring and postponing non-post expenditures to adapt to the liquidity flow – we would not have had the liquidity to support the opening of the General Assembly debate and the mandated high-level meetings last month.  All Permanent Representatives of  Member States of the United Nations New York  By July, we had started borrowing from the Working Capital Fund, and by August we had to borrow from the Special Account as well.  By late September, we had to borrow from the closed peacekeeping missions, as regular budget cash reserves were so severely depleted that we risked problems with payroll payments or defaults in vendor payments.  By the end of this month, we risk exhausting the closed peacekeeping cash reserves, and surpassing the record cash deficit of last October. We therefore risk starting November with not enough cash to cover payrolls.  I am reaching out to Member States with an urgent plea to pay outstanding assessments. In order to minimize disruptions to our operations, and to ensure that we can meet our contractual obligations to staff and vendors, I have been forced to take additional stop gap measures to manage the situation until the liquidity improves. Further measures may be introduced if the situation does not improve drastically.  I have limited all official travel to the most essential activities, and I am further reducing all other non-post expenses with immediate effect. This includes postponing purchases of goods and services, implementing energy-saving and other measures to reduce utility bills and temporarily curtailing expenses on managing facilities. Starting 14 October 2019, we will discontinue events before or after official meeting hours at all headquarters duty stations and during weekends. Events that have already been booked for after that period will be reviewed as we cannot guarantee their continuance. I urge you to consider postponing or finding alternative venues for non-mandated events.  I have directed managers to explore avenues to further limit expenses during the last quarter, including postponing conferences and meetings, or seeking ways to reduce related expenses by adjusting services. We will continue to review our activities to seek better options to manage the liquidity crisis and will keep all such measures under periodic review.  I once again appeal for you to mobilize the will and wherewithal to solve this problem that is undermining our ability to serve the people who look to us to support them.  I am grateful to the 127 Member States that responded to my calls and have paid their contributions to the regular budget in full. I trust that all others will do so urgently.  But, as I have repeatedly stated, even if all Member States pay in full and on time, we will still face significant shortfalls owing to restrictions imposed on the management of our budgets that defy common sense. We therefore must increase our liquidity reserves and address the structural problems that undermine our management of the budget.  It pains me to convey this message to you yet again, but I trust that you will appreciate the gravity of the challenges and commit to resolve them without any further delay.  Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.  António Guterres "

  Meanwhile this from the correspondents Dujarric and Guterres allow in "their briefing room, for example:

"Question:  But the one country… but one country continues to never pay what it’s supposed to pay, the United States.  What is the Secretary‑General’s message to the White House and Capitol Hill on this?  Spokesman:  Listen, the Secretary‑General’s message to all countries is that they have an obligation under the Charter to pay their dues to the United Nations, and all should do it.  Evelyn?  Question:  Yes.  Just a follow‑up again…  Spokesman:  I’m sorry, Iftikhar.  I will come… I will not leave without taking your question.  Question:  Do you have the number of what the United States owes to the regular and to the peacekeeping?  Spokesman:  The regular… both those numbers are publicly available."

  But not available is how much Guterres has spent in secret trips to Lisbon, and covering up his links to UN briber CEFC China Energy. We'll have more on this.

  With the UN complaining about a lack of funding, today in Geneva the UN "Human Rights" Office encouraged its staff to leave early, see below. And why not, since under Antonio Guterres and Michelle Bachelet the Office does nothing on China, or Cameroon, or any number of other abusers like the Honduran president Guterres met with last week without mentioning corruption or drugs or El Chapo?

From multiple sources in Geneva, leaked to Inner City Press: "Sent: 03 October 2019 12:20:48 Subject: Early release into the sunshine today - if you are able :)   Dear Colleagues,     As you may recall from other years, when sunny days here in Geneva seem to be on the decline and the grey, damp and cold of winter is just around the corner, we have adopted a method for spontaneously making the best use of what perhaps is one of the last beautiful sunny days for a while.     We have been watching Geneva’s weather and, from what we can tell, today may turn out to be just that – one of our few remaining days that are truly sunny with still a little warmth in the air!     So, please do just pack up, leave the Office and get out into the beauty of this afternoon!     Of course, check in with your manager/supervisor first!  If it is impossible for you to be this spontaneous – given the work demands of today (e.g. committee meetings, conferences, tough timelines, etc.), then perhaps agree with your manager to hold the afternoon in credit for taking at a better time.     But if at all possible – let’s do get spontaneous -- Pack up your bag, shut down your computer, take a deep breath and get out of the office and into the sunshine!     And please do accept this as a small but heartfelt thank you for your contribution to the Office and for your commitment to human rights.     Warmest wishes  Kate                   Kate Gilmore UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights E-mail: kgilmore [at] Tel: +41 22 917 92 96."

Yes, the UN complains of lack of funds despite the many personal flights on the public dime of UNSG Antonio Guterres to his real home in Lisbon is so corrupt and wasteful as UN Secretary General that bringing in his long time spokesperson from UNHCR Melissa Fleming, to continue his ban on the Press while tweeting out personal information about refugees, was not enough. Turns out he needs or wants another spin-meister, this one British and also ostensibly focused on social media (whose personal information will *he* tweet out?), Peter Reid.

From the (self) promotion: "Peter Reid has joined the United Nations as director of strategic communications for the secretary-general.  Based in New York, Reid started in the role at the beginning of this month. He is reporting to U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres  With a team of six speechwriters, Reid said ... he wants to increase the secretary-general’s use of social media and digital communications.  Reid’s position had been vacant for some time. The last person to serve in the role was Edward Mortimer, who stepped down in 2006.  Reid most recently served as director of external communications for management consultancy McKinsey & Company. Before that, he was head of communications at Deloitte. For most of his career, he worked for the British government, including stints in the Foreign Office and its embassy in Washington, DC." We'll have more on this - and on Guterres' and Fleming's ongoing ban on Inner City Press which covers the UN in more detail that the sleepy and worse state media Guterres prefers, from Xinhua on down.

   The personal identifying details of a refugee child and family were tweeted out - some say, pimped out - by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' head of the Department of Global Communications Melissa Fleming. Her response has been a condescending, "Just so you know, the photo is six years old." Fleming has not been disciplined, even as she uses Inner City Press' questioning of Cameroon's Ambassador 445 days ago as a basis to deny it access to the UN.

   And now in classic North Korean fashion, Fleming has published on the state media she now controls, UN "News," an "interview" with Guterres about the UNGA week she is banned Inner City Press from. Among her softball questions, the very last one mentioned, " finally, peace and security will come up."

  But that was the reason the UN has founded. That Guterres has failed so badly on the issue, from Cameroon to Yemen to Libya shows why he should be impeached, and in the interim not allowed, by himself and through his "interviewer" Fleming, to ban the independent Press from entering the UN and UNGA. We'll have more on this.

   Fleming tweeted, above a photograph of a girl holding her refugee card with all identifying information of herself and her family plainly visible, "Thinking of this refugee girl I once met. One of our biggest challenges is to ensure girls like her can enroll in school so they can recover from trauma and learn again. The children of war can hold the keys to lasting peace, if we invest in them."

  In many countries, and in the federal courthouse from which Inner City Press reports while it is banned by Flaming from even entering the UN, it is illegal to publish the personal identifying information of a minor. But would the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services, which Guterres who is using Fleming as his Global Censor has turned into his own secret police, raiding the UN offices of whistleblowers, do anything? Watch this site.

Bigger picture, who gets to decide which media can enter the United Nations to cover this month's United Nations General Assembly high level week?   

  The answer in today's UN, not unlike in any dictatorship whether China or Cameroon, is one man and his small circle of yes-men and a yes-women, with no due process, no right to appeal, no judicial oversight.   

  In this case the man is Antonio Guterres, and the new yes-woman is Melissa Fleming. She previously served as his spokesperson during his tenure at the UN refugee agency UNHCR. Guterres parlayed that into the top UN job by showing great deference to China on its refoulement to North Korea for torture.   

  Guterres took money from Lisbon-based Gulbenkian Foundation during the year after he left UNHCR. Then once despite his feminist rhetoric Guterres shouldered out women candidates to take over the UN with China's support, Guterres omitted these Gulbenkian payments from the UN public financial disclosure he filed covering 2016.  

  When Inner City Press which while reporting daily from inside the UN also covered the UN bribery trial of CEFC China Energy's Patrick Ho in the federal courthouse in lower Manhattan asked Guterres about that case, Guterres refused to answer.    

   Worse, Guterres pretended through his spokesman Stephane Dujarric to not have even heard Inner City Press' question when called on at the UN Security Council stakeout about Cameroon and his closeness with 37 year president Paul Biya.   

   On 3 July 2018 Inner City Press was interviewing Biya's long time Ambassador Tommo Monthe outside a meeting of the UN Budget Committee that Monthe chaired.     Suddenly Guterres' security detail, led by UN DSS Lieutenant Ronald E. Dobbins, grabbed Inner City Press' computer and twisted its arm, video here, right in front of Guterres' official Christian Saunders, now conducting cover up for him at UNRWA.  

  After Inner City Press went to file an assault complaint with the NY Police Department on 4 July 2018 but was told the UN is entirely immune, the next day Inner City Press was barred from even entering the UN to continue to cover the UN Security Council, that day a meeting about Yemen as Guterres took money from Saudi Crown Prince MBS.   

  After a review that did not afford Inner City Press a single hearing or opportunity to be heard or to see evidence, the UN on 17 August 2018 formally revoked Inner City Press' 10-year UN media accreditation.    

  Guterres' motive became clear as Inner City Press, awaiting reinstatement, more closely covered the SDNY federal court where it is now fully accredited.   

  Convicted Patrick Ho's CEFC China Energy had been seeking to buy the Partex Oil Company from Gulbenkian Foundation which paid Guterres undisclosed moneys. It was and is, in short, outright personal corruption by Guterres, on which he refuses to answer questions.  

  On 24 August 2019, alongside continuing the cover the SDNY court, Inner City Press submitted a simple application to the UN like hundreds of other media to enter and cover the UNGA High Level week beginning September 23.   

  In response, Inner City Press received a Kafka-esque response by Guterres' UN Security Gilles Michaud that the assault on it was for being in a "locked area" - that is, the wide open lounge outside the UN Budget Committee meeting - and that all UN Security is doing is enforcing a decision by the UN Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit, now under Melissa Fleming.   

  Fleming refused to answer any of four letters sent to her. At 4:30 pm on Friday, August 30 her MALU issued a one-line denial of access: "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."   

  So Guterres' lawless UN can withdraw a critical media's accreditation for daring to ask why he omitted from his financial disclosure payments from a company selling its oil company to a Chinese government bribery vehicle - then use the withdrawal to automatically deny access to the UN General Assembly, the so-called global parliament of "We the Peoples."   

  If press freedom means anything, and if the UN is anything more than a dictatorship of a single corrupt censor, this cannot stand.

 Inner City Press will be reporting on the UN and its UNGA either way - but demands to be allowed to enter and cover the often shameful deals of undemocratic nations, like the hundreds of their state media that Guterres lets in to praise him.

The peoples demand the fall of this Guterres regime.


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