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For UK at UN, Lyall Grant's Successor Is Rycroft, In 5 Months, Of Mansour & Delattre

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 29 -- As the East Jerusalem meeting of the UN Security Council started up on Thursday afternoon, a noteworthy small moment occurred at the Council's press stakeout. Palestine's Riyad Mansour was telling a half-dozen reporters that Security Council members should shoulder their responsibility -- and just then, UK Permanent Representative Mark Lyall Grant walked by.

  "Hello, Mark,” Mansour said, and Lyall Grant, a flower on his label, laughed and continued on. Recently the House of Commons voted, with many abstentions, to recognize the state of Palestine. Other Council sources told Inner City Press it may have “softened” the UK's or Lyall Grant's approach to the issue. Perhaps these questions are answered elsewhere.

  Others have asked, what about Lyall Grant moving on from the Council? The answer is yes, but not until April 15, 2015. His replacement is Matthew Rycroft, most recently the “chief operating officer” of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. (Rycroft's replacement Deborah Bronnert, already interviewed as such, has said all British diplomats should be on Twitter, with Lyall Grant had no problem with.)

  And so to Lyall Grant, even with five and a half months to go, this insider-football joke: what team is made up of two things ISIS or Da'esh hates? West Ham.

  Meanwhile, while France's Gerard Araud was replaced by Francois Delattre and Inner City Press and the Free UN Coalition for Access taken a break from writing about press freedom issues that arose with the French mission, from French-only sessions in the UN Press Briefing Room to Araud calling a Lebanese correspondent not a journalist but “an agent,” still little has been heard from Delattre (for now we keep an open mind).

  Some say it's because he came to the UN not during the summer but right in September. Will Rycroft start shadowing Lyall Grant and Peter Wilson between now and April 15?

  Rycroft it is clear has recently toured the DR Congo. What are his views on the UN not suspending any support to the Congolese Army after their 130 rapes in Minova for which only two soldiers were convicted? By April 2015, will the FDLR militia have actually been neutralized, as the M23 was by the UN and its Force Intervention Brigade?

 What about the UN Secretariat, on Darfur, only giving Security Council members the executive summary of its (whitewash) report into covering-up attacks on civilians, and not the whole report? That'll be for Lyall Grant to address -- and some others on the Council. Watch this site.


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