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IMF Demands Foreclosures Then Won't Answer, Nor on Sudan,  Rwanda, Pakistan

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 13 -- The IMF under Christine Lagarde is at once demanding the imposition of home foreclosure regimes and refusing to answer questions about it.

At Thursday's biweekly IMF press briefing, the last of the year, Inner City Press submitted five questions including

In Ireland, many say the IMF demanded the provision allowing banks to seize the homes of defaulting borrowers, in the Personal Insolvency Bill, as a condition for IMF lending. What is the relation between the IMF's lending to Ireland and this home foreclosure provision?

  Since the IMF claims to have left behind structural adjustment and even conditionality, one would think they'd want to answer this question.

 But spokesman Gerry Rice did not take it, and nothing was provided afterward to Inner City Press before the embargo deadline.

  Instead, Rice fielded question after question about Greece. He was asked if an Argentine official is at the IMF in the run-up to Monday's deadline; Rice said he would respond after the briefing. So, not to those not in DC?

   Rice was asked about departing Bank of England governor Mervyn King's prediction of "competitive devaluations;" he responded about the IMF being a venue for all 188 member countries. On the US fiscal cliff, he referred back to comments made earlier by Christine Lagarde.

Inner City Press also asked:

"Pakistan's Finance Minister says the ruling alliance has spoken with the opposition about its plans with the IMF. But the PML-N, PTI and ANP say they have not been spoken with. What is the IMF's understanding of such consultations in Pakistan?"

This was not answered by deadline; nor were three of the five questions Inner City Press posed two weeks ago, including questions on Sudan, Rwanda and Hungary.

On Rwanda, Mr. Shinohara's statement did not directly mention aid cuts offs amid the M23 controversy. What *is* the IMF's position on that?

On Sudan and South Sudan, how does Khartoum's announcement that no South Sudan oil can flow through for now impact the IMF's views and programs?

On Hungary, what does the IMF think of the country's new foreign currency bond plan? Does it mean no IMF program any time soon?

  While the IMF for two weeks has not answered this question, it's reported that the IMF will visit Hungary in January. Watch this site.

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