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UN Says Truck in Anti-Kagame Convoy "Taken Over" - But Jeep in Video?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 10 -- After rumors of the death of Rwanda's Paul Kagame were shot down, across the border in the Eastern Congo, a time-stamped photograph was tweeted of a UN truck full of people on the back, captioned "MONUSCO in Goma celebrating the death of Pres Paul Kagame."

  It seemed worth asking the UN mission chief Martin Kobler to comment on or explain the photograph, and Inner City Press sent this, to Kobler and three MONUSCO spokespeople:

"Please comment on / explain this time-stamped photo, which is being described as a UN truck participating in "celebrations" of the rumor of the Rwandan president's death. Do you dispute that the photo was taken on January 10? To whom is the UN giving a ride in this truck / photo? In what context?"

   After a time, UN envoy Kobler replied:

"@innercitypress Ceci apparait de toute évidence comme une utilisation frauduleuse d'un véhicule de la #Monusco. C'est inacceptable"

  Translated: "This appears clearly as a fraudulent use of a vehicle of the #Monusco. This is unacceptable."

(Translation not by Google, not only because of NSA spying issues but also acquiescence in Digital Millennium Copyright Act abuse by Reuters UN bureau, click here for that.)

  The question became, now what does Kobler, or those above him in New York, do? 

  Inner City Press went to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's press conference, 11 am in New York, to ask this question: "in the DRC this morning, after false rumors of Paul Kagame being dead, a MONUSCO truck was photographed in what some call celebrations and Martin Kobler told me is "unacceptable." What do you think your UN should do about this, in terms of the perception of impartiality or bias by the UN?"

  But Ban's acting deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq did not call on Inner City Press, instead automatically giving the first question to the United Nations Correspondents Association (a/k/a UN's Censorship Alliance), then mostly questions soft on the UN about Syria.

  Next came spin from MONUSCO, e-mailed to the Press:

Fraudulent use of MONUSCO truck in Goma

Kinshasa, 10 January 2014 - MONUSCO is aware of a photo being circulated on the internet showing a MONUSCO truck in Goma during a demonstration.

In reality, the truck was taken over by demonstrators while on a regular mission. The driver was alone and unarmed when the incident happened. MONUSCO condemns this agressivity against its assets.

MONUSCO has launched a full investigation to ascertain the circumstances and the context surrounding the incident.

  But how does the UN explain, then, this UN jeep or Four by Four in this longer video of the anti-Kagame protests, from Minute 1:04 to 1:54?

   Watch this site.

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