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At UN, a Final Briefing on Job Loss & Foreclosure, Vos to FAO, FUNCA Bids Him Farewell

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 18 -- The UN doggedly cranks out economic advice, while its putative affiliate the International Monetary Fund imposes condition, like of increased foreclosures in Ireland as a bailout condition.

   Tuesday at the UN Inner City Press asked Robert Vos of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs about the IMF's Irish conditions, and about Bank of England governor Mervyn King's warning about competitive down-gradings.

   Vos converted the first question into one about jobs, saying that loss in income is what triggers many foreclosures. He mused about currency wars.

  During his time at UN DESA, he has been a voice for pro-poor economics, complete with PowerPoint slides and embargoed reports.The one he and Assistant Secretary-Genera Shamshad Akhtar launched Tuesday is now out of embargo, here.

   Now he heads to the Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome. Inner City Press, on behalf of the Free UN Coalition for Access, FUNCA, thanked Voss for his many briefings.

For example, in September 2009 Vos fielded questions about the UN's pitch for $500 billion for climate change; Inner City Press mused even then about how the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations was ceded, now to France four times in a row, in the form of Herve Ladsous

UN officials like Vos answer questions; last minute political patronage fill-ins like Herve Ladsous apparently feel they don't need to answer questions. That leads to profiles like this one, and more problematically to the UN covering up and stonewalling on mass rape by its partners as for example in Minova in Eastern Congo. But that's another story.

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