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UN: Sri Lanka


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After UN Link to Sri Lanka Report Goes Dead, Back Online Here

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 14 -- Two and a half hours after the report on the UN's action and inaction in Sri Lanka was handed to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon by Charles Petrie, Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky began Wednesday's noon briefing saying it was now online.

  Inner City Press accessed it and asked why it had sections blacked out, and no mention of Ban's envoy Vijay Nambiar and his role in the so-called White Flag Killings of surrenders Tamil Tiger leaders.

  Nesirky didn't answer on the redactions, nor on Nambiar, saying there would be another briefing tomorrow. Inner City Press wrote a story, linking to the Petrie report.

  But shortly after that, numerous readers contacted Inner City Press saying that the UN link had "gone dead." Inner City Press checked and it was true: the link no longer worked.

So here now is the report as the UN put it online Wednesday at noon, with redactions for example in Paragraphs 83 and 84 of the Narrative in Annex III. Click here to view. We will have more on this, but for now re-post the report as a public service. Watch this site.


UN Report on Sri Lanka Has Portions Blacked Out, No Nambiar, More Spin?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 14 -- The UN said it would make the Petrie report into its actions and inactions in Sri Lanka public.

  But when it put the report online at noon on Wednesday, portions had been blacked-out or redacted. Click here to view, for example Paragraphs 83 and 84 in the Narrative in Annex III.

 Inner City Press did a fast word search and found that while "John Holmes" -- who defends his and the UN's actions on Tuesday -- appeared in the report, UN envoy Vijay Nambiar did not.

  Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky who made the decision to black out portions of the report and whether Nambiar, who played a role in the White Flag Killings of surrendering Tamil Tiger leaders, would be part of Ban's new senior advisory team.

Nesirky did not explain the redactions, repeating twice that some yet-unnamed senior UN officials will brief the press tomorrow. He did not answer on Mr. Nambiar.

Inner City Press reported and exclusively pursued that Ban accepted as a Senior Adviser on Peacekeeping Operations one of the Generals most associated with the killings in Sri Lanka in 2009, Shavendra Silva. If he accepted Silva, how not Nambiar?

Silva appeared with Kohona at a film screening in the UN's Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium, fallout written up by the SLC, here.

After being excluded from a UN memorial service Wednesday morning after the Petrie photo op, Inner City Press spotted Nambiar leaving that closed session. So he was at the UN.

In what remained of Wednesday's noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Nesirky if Ban has any comment on the impeachment of Sri Lanka's chief justice by the Rajapaksa government. He does not, apparently.

Analysis: it is not at all clear that this long delayed Petrie report represents any more serious approach by Ban's UN on the ongoing issues in Sri Lanka. Some call it a belated attempt at cover up, or covering something. But we will see, continuing to cover it. Watch this site.

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