In UN Impunity News Guterres Refused To Lift Immunity of ICSC Rhodes He Resigns Dec 14 After Farewell Party

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In UN Impunity News Guterres Refused To Lift Immunity of ICSC Rhodes He Resigns Dec 14 After Farewell Party

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive CJR PFTracker

UNITED NATIONS GATE, December 12 -- UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres says he has a "zero tolerance" policy for sexual harassment, and for retaliation. But after Guterres imposed on Inner City Press on ongoing now 161 day ban against entering the UN, made permanent by his Alison Smale in an August 17 unappealable letter, his two spokesman are refusing to answer written questions from Inner City Press about Guterres ignoring victims of abuse and harassment, and about the finances and possible conflicts of interest of the part time UN official Guterres has had representing or covering for him, Jane Holl Lute (see below) and now even about his own son Pedro Guimarães e Melo De Oliveira Guterres, doing business from Angola and Timor Leste as exclusively reported by Inner City Press. This has been exclusive, too: at the International Civil Service Commission, sexual harassment at which Inner City Press asked Guterres spokesmen about in person until roughed up and banned, the chairman Kingston Rhodes facing complaints is rounding up signatures of support, much like Louis Loures and now Michel Sidibe at UNAIDS. This is Guterres' UN: no standards, every man for himself and smash and ban the Press that asks. Here is a photo of the "petition" Kingston Rhoades  launched. And now on December 12 here is a photo of the internal email that Rhodes "has resigned" effective December 14 -- after, staff tell us, a farewell party for which they have been asked for money. We'll have more on this. We are also informed from UN / OIOS sources, not the filer, that a filing has been made with the Office of Internal Oversight Services, which has yet act on Inner City Press' filings on Cameroon, Guterres, Dujarric, Smale and others. This is Guterres' UN. And so, since corrupt Guterres, Smale and Dujarric continue to ban Inner City Press from their dying briefing since July 3, but we are here asking these questions: How many signatures one would need to clear a perpetrator?
How many signatures are needed to protect victims not only from sexual harassment, but from continuous retaliation and intimidation?
What are the duties of the UN staff during an investigation, are they allowed to harass further the victims and whistle blowers?
Is this how SG Guterres is protecting from victims from retaliation as he promised?
Is this what 'gender equality and empowerment of women" when women are used by those in power to attack the victims further?"
We said we'd have more on this - and now offer this update, more impunity under Guterres:

"In just the latest UN sexual harassment scandal, the Secretary-General has failed to waive the immunity
of a senior official who has been the subject of a 12 month investigation.
A UN staff member made a sexual harassment complaint against Chairman of the International Civil
Service Commission, Mr. Kingston Rhodes twelve months ago. As Chairman of the ICSC, Mr. Rhodes
is not a “UN staff member” as such, but enjoys the protection of the Convention on Privileges and
Immunities as all UN officials do.
Investigations Director, Mr. Ben Swanson of the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services (“OIOS”) - who has refused to provide Inner City Press any update on its detailed complaints against UN DSS Lieutenant Ronald E. Dobbins and five others who refused to give their names, and against others including Guterres himself --
has confirmed that while a complaint was received in November 2017; the investigation was not
actually commenced for another five months while the Organization delayed making a decision on
whether Mr. Rhodes could actually be investigated.
The OIOS investigation then took a further seven months; all of which casts serious doubt on how
seriously the Organization takes sexual harassment complaints when the subject is a senior official.
In June this year, the Secretary-General acknowledged that the evidence against Mr. Rhodes was
“credible” and “serious” - but neither he nor the UN General Assembly has the authority to discipline
the ICSC The Secretary-General does, however, have the power to waive the immunity and leave the
matter to the legal system in New York: but has been unwilling to do so.
The UN's public message is one of “zero tolerance” towards any form of sexual misconduct, but in
reality the Organization fails to act swiftly and the UN's “internal justice” system serves to protect
offenders more than it seeks to hold them accountable for their actions." Inner City Press adds, Guterres is a hypocrite. Consider
the December 5 guilty verdict in US v Ho, of bribes including of weapons offered to Chad's Idriss Deby for oil and a stake in the Chad - Cameroon pipeline. Later on December 5 Inner City Press asked UNSG Antonio Guterres for comment on this UN bribery verdict - the UN was used to make the offer, he has refused to even audit - but typically he refused to answer, video here. Then he went into a fundraiser and pontificated about freedom of the press. This is today's decayed UN.

For the PBS Frontline "UN Sex Abuse Scandal" documentary, Guterres arrogantly refused to be interviewed - by contrast he did 30 minutes with RT recently - and went on vacation on the broadcast date, after ousting and banning Inner City Press which has asking him about UN sex abuse. Guterres foisted off Jane Holl Lute, who has been saying the same thing on the issue for a decade. On August 27, Inner City Press asked Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric and Farhan Haq, as well as Smale and Guterres' Deputy SG Amina J. Mohammed, "August 27-2: As asked Friday, please confirm that the SG's envoy Jane Holl Lute is still on the Board of Directors of Union Pacific railroad AND the President and CEO SICPA, North America. Given that she now has two UN jobs and these other two jobs, at least, please explain how there are no conflicts of interest and why she had not made public financial disclosure -and, as Inner City Press has repeatedly asked, why USG Smale has not." On August 28 at 11 am Dujarric replied on this (nothing on Cameroon) that "MS. HOLL LUTE SERVES “UNDER WHEN ACTUALLY EMPLOYED CONTRACT.” SHE’S FULFILLED HER OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE RELEVENT ETHICS RULES OUTLINED HERE: . HER OUTSIDE ACTIVITIES ARE CLEARED BY THE ETHICS OFFICE." We'll have more about this - but what about Smale, who without due process and without recusal banned Inner City Press for life? 

 On July 25, banned from entering the UN by Guterres for the 22nd day Inner City Press put written questions to several missions and has received this, to his credit, from Swiss Mission spokesman Johann Aeschlimann: "I do not have any comment on Cameroon, but regarding your question on sexual abuse, I would like to assure you that for Switzerland these matters are of high importance. Consistent with our national approach, we consider all instances of sexual misconduct by UN peacekeepers as unacceptable. Switzerland is working closely with the offices of the Special Coordinator on improving the United Nations response to sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA), Ms. Jane Holl Lute, and of the Victim’ Rights Advocate (VRA), Ms. Jane Connors. Moreover, the President of the Swiss Confederation is a member of the Secretary-General’s Circle of Leadership on the prevention of and response to SEA in United Nations operations. Switzerland holds that an adequate response to SEA should be victims-centered. In the upcoming negotiations in the Fifth Committee this fall, Switzerland will engage for a strengthening of the office of the VRA... On the matter of your access problems to the UN premises, I appreciate your information." We'll have more on this - including on the EU response. It was covering the July 3 meeting of the referenced Fifth (Budget) Committee that Inner City Press was roughed up by Guterres' Security and has been banned by him since, 24 days and counting. Back on July 25, banned from entering the UN by Guterres for the 22nd day Inner City Press put questions on First Avenue to the French Mission's political coordinator (who refused to answer, video here) and French UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric who said without explaining that Guterres chosen to to speak and sent Lute. Inner City Press in the morning wrote again to the French Mission: "Dear Ambassador Gueguen,, Ms Bree, Ms Negga, others: This is a reiterated request for your, your Mission's and Ambassador Delattre's comment on three issues: first, the troubling issue of UN sexual abuses, detailed in a one hour Frontline documentary broadcast an hour ago, for which UN Secretary General explicitly refused to be interviewed while now going on vacation. What is your mission and country's comment on  this? Here at the Delegates Entrance, banned from the UN for 22 days with no end in sight, I asked your Mission's political coordinator this morning. Nothing. Second, again, the human rights abuses by the Cameroon army and security forces, not only in the Anglophone areas (which I have been asking about in the UN since early 2017) but now also in the north, video linked to in Inner City Press, here, as verified by Amnesty International. (Now HCHR has commented, today - why is there no meeting of the UNSC, at least under Any Other Business?) Given that the Security Council has supported these Cameroonian forces, and given France's role in Cameroon and the region, this is a request for comment on deadline including on whether your Mission will now seek and/or support a Security Council meeting on these abuses, and if not, why not. I am asking these questions in writing now because I was banned all week from entering the UN and could not ask them at the Security Council stakeout.This notifies your Mission that I have been banned from the UN since at latest July 5, with no due process. See, The Independent (UK), July 12, 2018, “UN 'roughs up and bans' investigative reporter long considered thorn in side of world body officials, Mr Lee has written about UN in connection to Haiti, Burundi, Sri Lanka and other nations." Frontline did well by interviewing victims, but entirely misrepresented several interviewees' roles, most notably Isobel Coleman, who did not criticize the UN when she worked for Samantha Power, and stood by as the UN evicted Inner City Press from its work space and made it a "non resident corresponent." (Guterres has gone much further, trying to strip even that, deploying violence and banning the Press.) There was no mention of "R&R" Ladsous' role, nor of Lacroix. It was filmed some time ago, with David Gressley. But a key point is the 32 new allegations this year, each of which Inner City Press has asked the UN about before being targeted with violence and Guterres ban. That, and his arrogant refusal to answer, and going on vacation, should have consequences. Watch this site.

Earlier Inner City Press story here; exclusive publication of whistleblowers' international condemnation of retaliation and favoritism in Sidibe's UNAIDS, below. On July 18, even as Guterres read a speech about sustainable development in ECOSOC, his UN disclosed yet another case of sexual exploitation, by a Morocco "peacekeeper" in the Central African Republic. Inner City Press published a report on that one, and later noticed yet another case, against a Malawian peacekeeper in the DRC. On July 19 before a UN noon briefing from which Inner City Press was banned - and the UN Webcast of which had no audio, nearing the very definition of censorship - Inner City Press asked Haq, "Please provide all information on the new sexual exploitation and abuse cases put on UN website yesterday while SG spoke to HLPF. What is the stage of investigation(s)?" The question was plural - but Haq only replied about the second of the two cases, the Malawi one. Inner City Press has also asked, among other things, "1) why is this UN investigation of the ouster of a journalist taking so long, and being limited to only the latter of two “incidents” and not taking into account Lt Dobbins' motive and my June 25 notification to Guterres and Smale? Didn't the Deputy Spokesman call me a “repeat offender” and cite June 22? Why have I still not been given a copy of “my statement, much less those of Lt Dobbins, ASG Saunders and the UNnamed July 3 officer who tore my shirt and twisted my arm? Is this a cover up of retaliation, and of the SG and his team's knowledge?

2) why am I banned during this investigation so that I cannot enter and ask any questions? Who made that decision and why has it not been reversed given the video of the incident, questions raised by the Government Accountability Project, etc?" We'll have more on this.
On June 18, the UN disclosed yet another case of child rape - alleged child rape - by a UN Peacekeeper from Tanzania, in the DR Congo. Photo here. On June 19 - the same day Dujarric spoon-fed Al Jazeera then arranged to have Inner City Press roughed up on June 22 after its critique, Inner City Press asked UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric about the case and only then was it revealed that this UN child rape resulted in the birth of a child. From the UN transcript: Inner City Press: there's a new case of… in this case, it's listed as child rape, was disclosed by the UN yesterday, a Tanzanian peacekeeper in MONUSCO [United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo], DRC.  And all it said is everything is pending.  It seems like… this seems like a pretty serious charge.  And so I'm wondering, what can… what more can you say about this?  When… when did the UN learn of it?  Where is the person?

  Back on March 15 when Inner City Press asked about the UN Secretariat's own investigation of whistleblowers, for the second day in a row, Haq again defended it, as somehow benefiting member states. From the UN transcript: Inner City Press: I'm sure you've seen the article in The Guardian quoting Michel Sibidé [sic] of UNAIDS [Joint United Nations Programme against HIV/AIDS].  What I wanted to ask you is, he seems to be attacking those who came forward in the sexual harassment case against Luiz Loures.  He's attacked them.  He's said that Loures is a… is… made a courageous decision.  And, of his detractors, he says, we know these people are taking their golden shan… handshakes from us here and knowing they have a job and then attacking us.  We know all about that.  We know every single thing.  Time will come for everything.  When I hear anything about abuse of our assets, I ask for an investigation.  Maybe these investigations are going on.  And so, many staff and many people in the… in the “#MeToo” movement see this as a direct threat against those who came forward.  And I wonder, what does António Guterres… who I'm… I… I would assume is a reader of The Guardian, what does he think of these comments?

Deputy Spokesman:  We're aware of this article.  Obviously, it's for UNAIDS and Mr.  Sidibé to explain what the comments attributed to him are. 

At UNESCO in Paris there are cover-ups and retaliation in the wake of the two-step firing of Assistant Director General Frank La Rue for sexual harassment.

But when Inner City Press on March 20 asked Guy Berger, the grandly titled Director of Freedom of Expression and Media Development at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, if he thought reporting on l'affaire La Rue, which has included Inner City Press' exclusive report that after his suspension he was still getting paid and now questions about UNESCO Ethics Adviser Rebecca Trott, Berger said he was unaware of the specifics of the case and to ask UNESCO's press officer.

  Since Inner City Press published the video of the Q&A, it has heard from UNESCO staff in New York that Berger "lied - he was among the best friends of La Rue, defended him at every turn, while also trying to take his job." This is how the UN works - work with collaborators like Berger's former student, to cover up abuse, while seeking mutual advancement. It is disgusting. So too on Rebecca Trott, UNESCO's "Ethics" adviser. As question mount about cover up, it will be interesting to know who is still protecting her within the organization. We'll have more on this.

Likewise, after Berger has spoken and joked with a former student (given the first question) about the importance of independent media and even holding power in check, when Inner City Press asked about the UN's FAO and WIPO going after the press, he said he was unaware but implied it might be justified.

When Inner City Press asked about the UN Department of Public Information's continuing lack of content neutral media access rules, despite Inner City Press' repeated requests to DPI boss Alison Smale, both his student and the UN moderate looked surprised, as if they didn't understand.

OK: Inner City Press was evicted from its UN work space for pursuing the Ng Lap Seng UN bribery case in the UN Press Briefing Room - an event of the group headed by Berger's student - and has been a non-resident correspondent requiring DPI “minders” to cover the UN General Assembly and its President. Meanwhile its office was given to a no-show Egyptian state media, Akhbar al Yom's Sanaa Youssef, who has not ask the UN a question in ten years.

Media that rarely come in and ask anything have arrived since Inner City Press' eviction and have been given UN office space. Inner City Press has been told it is not even on the list, and Smale has not answer a single email. No rules. We'll have more on this (charade) - and on UNESCO. Watch this site.


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