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At UN, Only Brazil, Canada & Slovakia Raise Egypt, Bolivia on Spying, Robot Terror

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 19 -- With over 50 speakers in the UN Security Council Monday on the "Protection of Civilians," less than a week after hundreds of unarmed civilians were killed in Egypt, how many countries would raise it?

Only three, it seems. When Egypt's Permanent Representative Mootaz Ahmadein Khalil, who on August 15 told Inner City Press of the UN's Jeffrey Feltman's trip, spoke past 5 pm he criticized "three delegations" for raising Egypt in their speeches. (Inner City Press is putting his prepared speech, which did not specify the number of delegations, online here.)

  One of these, Canada, did so to focus on "unconscionable attacks on Coptic Orthodox and Anglican churches and on Baptist and Franciscan institutions," through its Permanent Representative Guillermo Rishchynski.

  Another, Slovakia, mentioned it -- but was confused with Slovenia by more than one other delegation.

  Deputy Permanent Representative Regina Dunlop of Brazil, expert in Responsibility While Protecting, said that "the escalation of-violence against civilians demonstrating in Egypt is a source of grave concern... We call for dialogue and conciliation so that the legitimate aspirations of the Egyptian people for freedom, democracy and prosperity be achieved without violence, with respect for human rights and with the full return of the democratic order."

  It was not Brazil that brought up the UK's nine-hour detention of Brazilian citizen David Miranda, partner of Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald -- it was Bolivia's Permanent Representative Sacha Llorenti who did.

   But the UK did not offer any right of reply at the end: this was left to Israel, disagreeing with Navil Pillay about Gaza, and then Syria, which cited the occupied Golan.

  Namibia expressed its opposition to the use of robots to protect civilians.

  The philosophical stand-off or loophole was captured by Turkey, which argued that counter-terrorism is not "armed conflict."

  But who gets to define it? Egypt says, emblazoned on its state TV, that it is fighting terrorism, as does Syria pointing at Al Nusra and ISIS. Sri Lanka said it did what it did in the north as counter-terrorism. The Democratic Republic of Congo called the M23 rebels terrorists. This is the UN. Watch this site.


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