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As Ban Slams DPRK, Is It In “National Capacity” As Asked by UNCA Prez?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 2 -- As the situation between the Koreas heats up, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is in Andorra. But he made a point of speaking on the issue at a press conference opening, then in response to a question on it.

  He said, “rising rhetoric and threats by the DPRK authorities has gone too far, and it has heightened the level of tensions on the Korean Peninsula. That is why I am taking this opportunity visiting Andorra to make a special mention.”

  But in what capacity was Ban Ki-moon speaking?

  Earlier on April 1, Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Eduardo Del Buey was asked for Ban's comments “in his national capacity.”

  To some it seemed a strange request. The phrase is used when a monthly president of the Security Council is speaking, to get him or her to step out of that role and state a national position.

But a UN Secretary General is not supposed to have, or at least say or act on, a “national capacity.” This is for example what some say the French chief of UN Peacekeeping Herve Ladsous does: use the UN to advance his country's position.

  But the Secretary General? And the president of the UN Correspondents' Association, sometimes know as Ban's UN Censorship Alliance, being the one to ask for Ban's position in his “national capacity”?

  Perhaps this is what was discussed in the luncheon between Ban and UNCA's 13 opaque apostles, a meeting after which some of the 13 wrote stories quoting Ban but refused to release a transcript or recording of the session, even to their own UNCA members.

  The UN also refused to release a transcript or recording, beyond a set of canned “highlights.” No highlight concerned Sudan or Haiti, but there was discussion. Why only for 13? And was it there at that luncheon, on the Peninsula, that some wink and nod about Ban's position in his “national capacity” was given? Watch this site.

Footnote: Falk was not present at Tuesday's beginning of UNSC Presidency press conference by Rwanda; she sent a person who ran and lost to be one of the apostles of opacity, who yelled out demanding the first  question, then didn't give the microphone to any questioners. To this has UNCA sunk.

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