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

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media-eg 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



ICP on YouTube

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

On Budget, US Puts a Ham-Hand on Scale, Oman Rejects, Jane Holl Lute in Hall

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, December 21 -- With US President Obama flying to Hawaii as the fiscal cliff approaches, at the UN in New York US representative Joe Torsella is described by multiple sources as playing ham-handed fiscal hardball with Oman on the UN's scales of assessment.

  Much earlier today Inner City Press reported on "some attempts by the United States to split the Group of 77 irritated the Group of 77 and made progress stop."

  Now we can report more. A finely tuned proposal was on the table, balancing a 7.5% discount in the peacekeeping scales of assessment and the change of category of Oman (like the change of Bahrain two years ago)/ Oman agreed to forgo a one-time windfall, and the deal seemed ready to seal.

  But then US ambassador for management Torsella, the sources say, gave a so called "non paper" to Oman's representative. This document argued clumsily that the coordinator of the proposal Singapore would be making Oman pay more. This was shown to countries including Singapore, not a source for this, and was rejected by Oman.

  Then Torsella compounded matters by demanding to know why Oman had shared his "non-paper." It's called transparency, Joe, said one close observer.

  Another well placed Fifth Committee source told Inner City Press that Torsella's "attempt with Oman threw things off and [angered] both EU and Oman. Oman got so angry it almost made G77 take its proposal off the table, and EU then made effort to finalize quick before things spiralled out of control." The genial chairman had no comment. Ah, diplomacy.

  As noted, Torsella was at Morocco's End of Security Council Presidency reception in the UN Tent Thursday night, just behind the North Lawn building where the talks are talking place. Man's got to eat. But how will re-costing play out?

  The General Assembly hall was been booked for 10 am on Monday, Christmas Eve. Still time for seven fishes? (Click here for that story from last year). We jibe because he can more than take it.

   Thinner skinned, on Lockheed Martin, spotted at the UN on Friday by Inner City Press sources was Jane Holl Lute, previously an Assistant Secretary General for Peacekeeping and now a top official in the US Department of Homeland Security.

  Why was she at the UN?

   Sources exclusively tell Inner City Press it is in connection with the Under Secretary General for Safety and Security position being vacated by fellow American Gregg Starr. Click here for Inner City Press' exit Q&A with Starr.

 On the upside, if she looked beyond DSS, Holl Lute could do more to make the UN Human Rights Due Diligence Policy credible after the 126 FARDC raped in Minova than has USG Ladsous, click here for that.

Footnote: Inner City Press also report that on a $8.7 million budget proposal to "implement Rio+20," on Thursday the European Union and Japan proposed to cut that budget to zero. This gave rise to howls among the Group of 77 and China, and accusations that the EU and Japan are hypocrites on sustainable development and the environment.

Inner City Press went to Friday's noon briefing and asked, "given how important sustainable development is to the Secretary-General and his statements, it’s been proposed by Japan and the European Union to cut funding for the implementation of Rio+20 to zero. This was a proposal made by the two, by Japan and the EU, yesterday and it seems to me… what is… does the Secretariat think about no implementation of Rio+20?"

Deputy Spokesperson Eduardo Del Buey: Well, Matthew, I am not going to get into a budget discussion until we find out what the General Assembly decides.

Inner City Press: But can you say that there will be a Secretariat statement on the budget when it comes up?

Deputy Spokesperson: If the Secretariat believes that the… that a statement is warranted, one may be issued, but I can’t promise you anything on that.

  Now we can report that they also proposed that, not to be "absorbed" like Rio+20, the budget should including $40,000 for a consultant on the arms trade treaty. More screams of hypocrisy. And so it goes at the UN.

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-253, UN, NY 10017 USA Tel: 212-963-1439

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 2006-2012 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]