Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the United Nations to Wall Street to the Inner City

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYT Azerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .


Follow us on TWITTER

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

After Sudan Ordered UN's Helle & Za'tari Out, UN Files Protest, What of Darfur?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow up on Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, December 25, more here -- Amid charges that the UN in Sudan, including Herve Ladsous' UN Peacekeeping in Darfur, has colluded with the authorities in Khartoum to cover up rapes and killing, now the UN's Resident Coordinator Ali Al Za'tari has been ordered to leave Sudan by January 2, Inner City Press first reported earlier today. Inner City Press similarly exclusively reported, and asked the UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric about, Sudan's ouster of UNDP Country Director Yvonne Heller on December 24. After another inquiry by Inner City Press to Dujarric and UNDP on December 25, Dujarric has sent this:

From: Stephane Dujarric [at]
Date: Thu, Dec 25, 2014 at 1:31 PM
Subject: Re: Press request on Sudan PNG-ing Yvonne Helle (asked Dec 24) & now Dec 25 Ali Al-Za'tari
To: Matthew Lee [at]
Cc: UNDP, funca [at]

Matthew, The UN has filed a protest with the government of Sudan following their decision to request the departure of two senior UN officials from the country.

  So the UN has now filed a protest. But what about the UNFPA case in April, and this one, in Darfur, which Inner City Press exclusively reported on earlier today?

  Earlier this Fall, Sudan's security agency NISS ordered a UN humanitarian staffer to leave El Fasher in North Darfur, Inner City Press is exclusively informed. 

  She left, to Khartoum -- where NISS "harassed" her, ordering her to return to El Fasher and "apologize" to a NISS official there.

   Ultimately she left Sudan. Nothing was said, as with an earlier case in April (on which we'll have more; questions are pending to spokespeople who cite the holiday). This is today's UN, under Ban Ki-moon and Herve Ladsous, Helen Clark and, until now, Ali Al-Za'tari.

  On December 24, Inner City Press similarly exclusively reported and then asked the UN Spokesman about UNDP Country Director Yvonne Helle being ordered out of Sudan, citing her and Al-Za'tari's e-mails. Video here.

  A full day after that, Reuters reported on Helle's ouster -- typically, for Reuters, with no credit to the Press' prior exclusive story. (Reuters' UN bureau chief has said he has a policy of not crediting Inner City Press' exclusive, and has gone to far as to censor, Sudan-style, his "for the record" anti-Press complains to the UN, click here for that, via EFF's

   On December 24, Inner City Press asked UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric about Sudan having just similarly "PNG-ed" or declared persona non-grata the Sudan Country Director of the UN Development Program Yvonne Helle, with Za'tari barely pushing back against the government.

  Dujarric said that host countries' ordered to PNG a UN staff member are treated seriously and should be sent to, and considered and acted on by, Ban's Secretariat in New York. But Dujarric in the 18 hours after Inner City Press asked about Helle has not returned with any information or answer. Then Reuters published its story, with no credit.

  On the Christmas holiday in New York and with UN Headquarters and the UN Security Council closed, Za'tari has sent out this e-mail, which Inner City Press obtained and published here:

From: Ali Al-Za'tari [at]
Date: December 25, 2014 at 12:55:04 PM GMT+3
To: UNCT1 Sudan, UNCT2 Sudan, UNCT3 Sudan, UNDP Sudan
Subject: I am Leaving

Dear all,
I regret to inform you that the government had requested me today to leave Sudan. I will do so on 2 January. Best. ali

ali al-za'tari
Khartoum - SUDAN

   UNCT is the UN Country Team, which as RC (Resident Coordinatory) Za'tari is or has been in charge of.

  Sudan PNG-ing even Za'tari, who has been so accommodating, leads Inner City Press' sources in Sudan to surmise that the government of International Criminal Court indictee Omar al Bashir is "just going for it," after having told UN Peacekeeping to start preparing to leave.

 UN Peacekeeping under Herve Ladsous has helped cover up rapes in Darfur; Ladsous met with Bashir without ever explaining or answering Press questions why.

  Now what will Ban and Ladsous, who 123 non-government organizations and Sudan experts have asked Ban to fire, do? What will the UN Security Council, of which a Permanent Member has confirmed to Inner City Press having received the "fire Ladsous" letter from the NGOs, do? Watch this site.

  Here is what Inner City Press asked Ban's spokessman Dujarric on December 24, as transcribed by the UN:

Inner City Press: I wanted to ask you to confirm and comment on the Government of Sudan ordering the UNDP country representative Yvonne Helle to leave the country by Monday.  There is already an e-mail by Ali Al-Za’tari, the Resident Coordinator, saying essentially she is gone, she will be missed.  So I wanted to know... what is the UN's policy when the Government orders somebody out?  Is it common to immediately accept it or is it sent to Headquarters to decide whether to combat it and fight it or oppose it?

Spokesman Dujarric:  As you profiled, I'm not aware of this particular case.  Obviously, declaring a person PNG, to be asked to leave is a serious issue, which is discussed at Headquarters — but I will find out.

Inner City Press: I've seen the e-mails and there is basically a one-hour gap between her e-mail to staff saying “I have to leave by Monday”, and Mr. Ali Al-Za’tari saying “not nice to see you go” but essentially, “sorry”.  I'm wondering, can you confirm that there is a protocol?

Spokesman Dujarric:  As I said, these things are taken very seriously.


   On December 24 Yvonne Helle said, in an e-mail obtained by Inner City Press, "The Government of Sudan has informed Ali [Al-Za'tari] that I am no longer welcome in Sudan and have been asked to leave by Monday. You can imagine the state of shock I am in... As you all know, I loved working and living in Sudan. Given the timing it will be impossible to say goodbye to alll of you in person, so herewith my heartfelt goodbye to you in writing."

  Ali Al-Za'tari is the UN's "Resident Coordinator" in Sudan; whistleblowers tell Inner City Press he has "simply accepted this as usual... It will become a regular thing as long as he is so concerned to please internal security instead of standing up for the Sudanese people."

  An hour after Yvonne Helle's message, Al-Za'tari wrote, "As you have read in Yvonne's message, a government decision was made and formally delivered regarding Yvonne's stay in Sudan... I will miss Yvonne as a leader of thought and creativity."

  It is not only UNDP that gives in so easily to the authorities in Khartoum.

     Amid the cover up of rapes in Darfur by UN Peacekeeping, whose chief Herve Ladsous met with Sudan's International Criminal Court - indicted president Omar al Bashir without ever explaining why, 123 non-governmental organizations and human rights experts and activists have called for Ladsous to be fired. Ladsous video here, Vine here.

   Inner City Press has obtained the letter and published it.

  The above-referenced Reuters UN bureau chief, it must be noted, under his own byline sought to exonerate Ladsous, reporting without context complaints made to Ladsous about another UN staff member, without mentioning Ladsous' own role in covering up rapes in the DR Congo and now Darfur. Reuters has not reported the complaints against Ladsous, even as a Permanent Three mission on the Security Council has confirmed to Inner City Press its receipt of the letter.

  At the UN's December 22 noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric to confirm receiving and then provide responsive comment on the letter. Video here, including sample Ladsous "walk away" on April 23, 2014 about his cover up in South Sudan.

   This follows UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon taking no questions about Darfur or Sudan during his December 17 press conference (at which, as noted by the Free UN Coalition for Access, Ban seemed to have the content of questions in advance.) Nor did Ban answer Inner City Press' request for an update at the Darfur rapes at the end of his December 22 media stake-out.

  The letter is copied to the presidents / prime minister, foreign ministers and UN ambassadors of the US, UK and France. How will they respond, particularly France which installed Ladsous atop UN Peacekeeping after their first selection, Jerome Bonnafont, was rejected at the last minute by the UN? And how might this new outspokenness of NGOs impact attempts to install Andrew Lansley atop the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs?

  The letter says, "The result has been a vastly expensive and discredited UN mission, led by Herve Ladsous, who consistently and deliberately diminishes the scale of the conflict in Darfur, thereby enabling Khartoum’s crimes to flourish, whilst the international community congratulates itself on improved circumstances in Darfur."

  The letter's final paragraph begins, "At the very least Herve Ladsous should not continue his role at the UN DPKO."

  Watch this site.


Share |

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Click for re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-2014 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]