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Syria's Ja'afari Says Ladsous Did Not Probe Qatar on Kidnaps, Jibes VOA

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 25 -- After Syria's Ambassador Bashar Ja'afari gave UN Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous information on involvement from Qatar in the kidnapping in Golan of Filipino peacekeepers, Inner City Press asked what happened.

The UN told Inner City Press on June 7 that “Regarding your question on Qatar earlier today, below is the response from DSS and DPKO: The United Nations has no evidence of any involvement by Member States or state actors in the abduction or detention of UN personnel in Syria. To our knowledge, the peacekeepers were detained by individual groups operating in Syria.”

  On June 25 Inner City Press asked Syria's Ja'afari about his request, and that above-quoted response. Ja'afari said he also asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, but neither Ban nor Ladsous had even given a written response. He concluded, they didn't even investigate, adding that the UN is awash in Saudi and Qatari petro-dollars.

  Later in his stakeout, Voice of America's Margaret Besheer asked Ja'afari if he viewed Hezbollah as among the foreign terrorists coming in from Lebanon.

  Are you a new journalist or an old journalist?” Ja'afari asked Besheer.

  You've seen me around, she answered.

  If you were a professional journalist, you would not ask me that,” Ja'afari said.

  There was some kerfuffle at the stakeout, perhaps merited -- but from many who said nothing when UN official Ladsous, paid with public taxpayer funds, told Inner City Press, “You know I do not respond to you" -- on questions about mass rape by the UN's partners in the Congo. And so it goes at the UN.

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