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


(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

UN Praises Open Space But Proposes Taking Playground, of HABITAT, Bikes & Charlatans

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 4 -- To celebrate World Habitat Day, the director of UN Habitat Joan Clos told the press Friday about the need for playgrounds and open space, and to plan around the impacts of rising seas.

Inner City Press asked Clos about the UN's proposal to take away the Robert Moses Playground just south of 42nd Street and erect a building described as drab right next to the East River, soon after Hurricane Sandy.

Clos smiled and said, We only advise when we are asked. So apparently the UN (or the UN Development Corporation) has not asked even the UN expert agencies about its proposal. Great planning.

(Actually, UN Spokesperson Martin Nesirky told Inner City Press the building for which UNDC released architect's plans is only one proposal, even though the New York City ULURP land use review process as begun.)

Inner City Press asked asked Clos about New York City's bike-share program. Clos praised it, noting that while poor people want fewer bikes, richer people want more. He started a similar program in Barcelona when he was mayor, he said. (His views on Free Catalonia did not come up.)

  Also on the panel, Professor Thomas Elmqvist or the Stockholm Resilience Center pitched his (free) book on Urbanization and Biodiversity, available online here.

  The first question was taken by the UN Correspondents Association, whose 2013 president Pamela Falk of CBS proceeded to trash Mexico City, calling it "curious" it received any award.

  Then Falk's sidekick, who often taken the first question in her stead, referred to anyone asking questions about climate change as a "charlatan."

  As when Falk's UNCA hosted Saudi-sponsored Syria rebel boss Ahmad al Jarba for a faux UN briefing in July, it is due to UNCA's politicization (and censorship bids and even spying for the UN) that Inner City Press co-founded the Free UN Coalition for Access, @FUNCA_info.

  Whether or not the UN "advises" it -- in fact, the UN's response has been threats -- there is an absolute right to another organization; Friday was just another example of why.

Here is the UN's transcript of UN spokesperson Martin Nesirky on the proposed new building:

Inner City Press: it’s now been released, drawings for this new building on the Robert Moses Playground. And there’s the whole New York City regulatory process to follow. But, given that the plans are now released, I wanted to know if you could just describe, within the UN system, within the UN Secretariat, who’s sort of giving the directions of how it should be done? It’s alternately described as an “emergency back-up center”, as a “high-security building”, and I wanted to know, given the UN’s other duties of transparency and openness to the public, what’s that process been and are there still questions to be raised, or has it been determined how open or closed the building will be to the public?

Spokesperson Nesirky: Well, first of all Matthew, don’t believe everything you read in the media, okay? You say the plans. There has been no decision. And you asked where would the decision come from. And, quite plainly, the decision would need to be made by Member States. The Secretary-General has been asked by the General Assembly to explore different options for the long-term accommodation needs of the Organization. And a report will be submitted to the General Assembly during what’s officially known as its first resumed sixty-eighth session, and that was requested by the previous session of the General Assembly. The new report will include comprehensive information on all viable options, as requested by the General Assembly. One of the many options being studied in the proposal from the UN Development Corporation is to construct a new building, known as the UN Consolidation Building. The decision on one of the options will need to be made by the Member States.

Inner City Press: That’s helpful. Because they did a public hearing on 24 September, and [the United Nations Development Corporation] is presenting this as they have already… I guess they’re ones paying the architect. But, normally, in New York, ULURP process of city planning and City Council doesn’t start until there’s an actual decision to do the building. Are you saying that there is actually no commitment to this plan that they presented at NYU Hospital on the 24th?

Spokesperson Nesirky: That’s precisely what I’m saying, Matthew.

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]