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On W. Sahara, Ban's Dujarric Misstated 25 Staff Back, ICP Exposed & Asks Why

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow Up On Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, July 15 --   The spokesman for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Stephane Dujarric, on July 14 told the press that the “first group of 25 MINURSO personnel, first batch, of the returning landed in Layun yesterday.”

  But, Inner City Press is exclusively informed by sources, that was false. They tell Inner City Press, after seeing Dujaric's claim, that:

“Returns to Laayoune: 4 staff returned on wednesday 13 july 2016; 3 staff returned on thursday 14 july 2016; 5 staff shall return on friday 15 july 2016. The balance of 13 staff are awaiting their travel confirmations.”

  So why did Dujarric misspeak or mislead? We wrote that we'd be asking - and hoped Dujarric wouldn't run from the podium amid Press questions as he did on July 14, video here.

After Dujarric said 25 staff were back at the July 14 noon briefing - false - he did not appear for or at the July 15 briefing. Inner City Press asked his deputy Farhan Haq about the misstatement and Haq said it was “garbled.”

  So Inner City Press asked why Dujarric or his office hadn't at least sent out an email to say the number given on camera was false. Haq said, We said so to those who approached us - ironic given that Dujarric walked away from Inner City Press' questions and the podium.

On another question Haq wouldn't even commit to answering by email, saying he might not have time for an email and might leave it until the next briefing. But even by that retaliatory logic, note that Haq did NOT in his opening to the July 15 briefing correct Dujarric's July 14 misstatement on Western Sahara. This is Ban's UN.

Then at the UN Security Council stakeout it emerged, again, that only 12 are back. Inner City Press asked UN official Herve Ladsous, who typically refused to answer. Inner City Press asked the Council president Koro Bessho, who diplomatically declined to give a number, saying its about full functionality. But the number was SEVEN when Dujarric said 25, and is only 12 now. We'll have more on this.


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