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 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

In UN Budget 3 AM Dec 24, Of 2.9% Cuts, Orr, Re-Costing &  Mobility, No Answers

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 24, updated -- With the UN budget fight going surreal at 3 am on December 24, Inner City Press was told by a Permanent Representative that "they... the West" proposed to cut the Department of General Assembly and Conference Services and the Department of Public Information by 2.9%. 

  He counter-proposed, "why don't they cut Ban Ki-moon's travel, and consultants?" Why, indeed. 

  Another budget insider told Inner City Press, as of 2 am, that the UN Pension Fund items were agreed, but "re-costing is still in play." 

  On the second floor of the UN's North Lawn building, from which Inner City Press reported on the proceedings, diplomats sat in the half-light. Aluminum trays of Latin food got told -- blood sausage, rice and beans -- while on the first floor some got sleep on couches.

  A UN staffer emerged from hours of waiting in a Conference Room where, he was told, the President of the General Assembly would reconvene a meeting to "hash things out." As of 3 am, it hadn't happened.

  There again was Peter Wilson of the UK and Alexis Lamek of France, and their counterparts from Russia and from the EU, Ionnis Vrailas. There was US Joe Torsella, on his last night of UN budget duty one assumes.

  And amid calls for cuts, including layoffs for some UN Security officers on January 2, why is the UN moving to send 500 blue helmeted guards to Central African Republic with mandates limited to offering protection to a smaller number of UN staff? Click here for that Inner City Press story.

In the UN budget process, disputes include the referenced $160 million of "re-costing" -- adding back to the budget after Secretary General Ban Ki-moon claimed cuts -- and the mobility plan of Mister Ban.

  Ban's Controller was present along with other staffers. Apparently there were no UN Spokespeople working -- Inner City Press' questions from Saturday morning about the crisis in South Sudan went entirely unanswered for SIXTY hours and counting.

 And Ban's Spokesperson's office won't even hold a noon briefing on December 24, after diplomats worked all night on Ban's budget and supposed reform proposals, and amid the South Sudan crisis. The Free UN Coalition for Access @FUNCA_info has protested.

  When Inner City Press spoke with diplomats working on the budget, there were many critical comments about Ban's "corporate partnerships" proposal, some calling it an attempt to get a promotion for longtime UN official Robert Orr, said to be very close with Ban. 

 At 1 am a source told Inner City Press "they might get some posts, but not the structure."

Notably absent from budget negotiations on December 23-24, even on the sidelines, were the Staff Union, whose incumbent is battling to stay in control or block the recognition of Ticket 1, and those ostensibly covering the UN. Updated here.

  Finland's Deputy Permanent Representative Janne Taalas, the chair of the Budget Committee, joked to about the sunrise; on December 21 he'd joked to Inner City Press that it should get done then since "this is the longest night of the year." Once again, down to the wire. 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 2006-2013 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]