Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the Inner City to Wall Street to the United Nations

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

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media-eg Nigeria, Zim, Georgia, Nepal, Somalia, Azerbaijan, Gambia Click here to contact us     .


Home -

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


Follow us on TWITTER

Subscribe to RSS feed

Video (new)

Reuters AlertNet 8/17/07

Reuters AlertNet 7/14/07

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

Korean Meeting at UN Stalls As Even Russia & China Disagree on Ban Statements

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 19 -- Three hours into the UN Security Council's emergency meeting about the Korean peninsula, diplomats emerged to describe the split between the positions of US, Japan, South Korea and other Western countries and that of Russia and China.

As Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin put it on December 18, when the US Mission to the UN rebuffed his request for a Saturday meeting of the Council, both sides should be told to show restraint -- implying that South Korea should not go forward with its military exercises now scheduled for Monday or Tuesday.

The US maintains that South Korea's exercises are only self defense, and that any Council statement should lay the blame on the DPRK.

Meanwhile, even Russia and China do not fully agree. Inner City Press is told that while Russia wants to refer “relevant statements” of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, China says it doesn't agree with some of these statements.

Churkin & S-G Ban (and Kim Won-soo), statements not shown

Reporters sighed that such consultations could go on well into the day. The television at the media stakeout was turned to NFL football, Giants versus Eagles. A lunch break was taken, with a US Mission staffer returning with two bags of food. Susan Rice, unlike Churkin, never emerged from the Chamber. Watch this site.

1st update: during the lunch break, several UN officials came out of the Council chamber: Lynn Pascoe, Fink Heysom and Kim Won-soo. Some wondered, where IS Ban K-moon?

Update of 2:45 pm: a Western diplomat emerges and tells the Press that now there are two texts, the Russian one (which the Westerner says "doesn't put any blame on the DPRK") and another text, which blames DPRK for "the incidents of November" shelling and even the Cheonan sinking. Big gap...

Update of 3:41 pm -- Now meeting takes 2d break, 3:40 to 4, to “get instructions,” Uganda Perm Rep says. It's hard to see this gap being bridged. Araud of France says it could be a half hour, “They are waking up Beijing.” One wags calls after him: it's a 40 year process, I'm told.

Update of 3:46 pm -- Churkin comes out and says we had a good discussion, we put forward a compromise, we'll see. A Western journalist asks why NOT assign blame? Churkin says, you don't know what the statement's going to say.

* * *

At UN on Korean Crisis, After US Rebuffs Russia, a Sunday Meeting Set

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 18 -- With tensions escalating on the Korean Peninsula, in New York on Saturday Russia's Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin asked this month's Security Council President, the United States, to call an emergency meeting. According to Churkin, the US refused to convene the meeting.

At 4:50 pm on Saturday afternoon, the Russian Mission to the UN told the Press that Churkin would be making a statement at the Mission, on 67th Street in Manhattan, in less than an hour. The statement criticized the US for failing to call the meeting, and announced one for Sunday at 11 am.

The US Mission told some reporters about the meeting. It was not clear if US Permanent Representative to the UN Susan Rice was or will be in town. On Friday afternoon, Deputy Permanent Representative Rosemary DiCarlo chaired the Council. She emerged at 6 pm and read a press statement, but walked away as Inner City Press began asking a question.

Alongside the Korean situation, in Cote d'Ivoire Laurent Gbagbo has ordered the UN peacekeeping mission in that country to leave. This too seems like an emergency, though neither the US nor Russia nor France has called for a meeting. Might it be discussed on Sunday? Watch this site.

* * *

Mogadishu in Manhattan, After Cops Called on DPR, TFG Says Controls 55%

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 17 -- Days after a fight in the Somali Mission to the UN in New York, reported exclusively by Inner City Press, the new Somali Minister of Information, Post and Telecommunications Abdulkareem Jama came to the UN to describe the new government he is a part of.

  He said that many of the 18 new ministers are from the Somali diaspora. Of former Deputy Permanent Representative Idd Beddel Mohamed, who showed up at the Somali Mission saying that the new foreign minister gave him authorization to return, only to have the police called to throw him out, Abdulkareem Jama said that wasn't yet decided.

 The chaos of Mogadishu, then, is echoed in Manhattan.

Abdulkareem Jama put a relentlessly upbeat spin on Somalia, saying that Mogadishu is 55% controlled by the Transitional Federal Government. Inner City Press asked about reports of the TFG and Puntland using private military contractors or mercenaries.

Abdulkareem Jama said that the contractor's work involves training for “VIP protection” and for a coast guard. He did not address whether the arrangement, which is shielded in secrecy, may violate the UN's Somalia sanctions regime.

  Inner City Press asked about the memorandum of understanding between the World Food Program and the Organization of the Islamic Conference to deliver food in areas controlled by Al Shabab, which has barred WFP.

   Abdulkareem Jama spoke favorably of the deal. But WFP still refuses to provide a copy of the MOU -- Inner City Press has asked -- and even the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says it has not seen the MOU.

  Following the Obama administration naming the TFG as a user of child soldiers, Inner City Press asked Abdulkareem Jama for the update. He said that child soldiers have been identified and are being kept in a camp until they reach the age they can decide what they want to do. Video here.

Abdulkareem Jama at UN, 55% control & OIC MOU not shown

  Of once and perhaps future UN official Charles Petrie, whom the UN claimed would be working for the UN in Mogadishu, Abdulkareem Jama said Petrie will be working for the EU or someone else, not the UN.

  Of the TFG's deputy minister for water barring work by UNICEF and others and then rescinding the order, Abdulkareem Jama said that the deputy minister had been frustrated but had taken the order back. Again, the chaos of Mogadishu, reflected in Manhattan. We wait to hear from Idd Beddel Mohamed. Watch this site.

Footnote: Somalia's Permanent Representative said that on December 22, the Security Council “will” pass a resolution authorizing 4000 more troops for AMISOM. While technically the resolution is not yet agreed to (or “in blue”) Council sources tell Inner City Press that is the number: 4000. We'll be here.

 Click here for an Inner City Press YouTube channel video, mostly UN Headquarters footage, about civilian deaths in Sri Lanka.

Click here for Inner City Press' March 27 UN debate

Click here for Inner City Press March 12 UN (and AIG bailout) debate

Click here for Inner City Press' Feb 26 UN debate

Click here for Feb. 12 debate on Sri Lanka

Click here for Inner City Press' Jan. 16, 2009 debate about Gaza

Click here for Inner City Press' review-of-2008 UN Top Ten debate

Click here for Inner City Press' December 24 debate on UN budget, Niger

Click here from Inner City Press' December 12 debate on UN double standards

Click here for Inner City Press' November 25 debate on Somalia, politics

and this October 17 debate, on Security Council and Obama and the UN.

* * *

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

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-453A, UN, NY 10017 USA Tel: 212-963-1439

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 2006-08 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] -