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As UN Raids Inner City Press Office, Roles of AFP, Reuters, BBC, Al Jazeera

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, March 18 -- The build up to the UN's pre-textual search of Inner City Press' office on Monday (photo here), allegedly on safety grounds, were a series of complaints, all about articles published and verbal statements such as Agence France Presse being a “lapdog” for Herve Ladsous, the fourth Frenchman in a row to head UN Peacekeeping.

AFP's Tim Witcher urged a UN Correspondents Association proceeding against Inner City Press. And UNCA's “new” president Pamela Falk was there snapping photos of the search on Monday, then fleeing. Some CBS.

But also passing the search and subsequent destruction of files was Michele Nichols of Reuters, whose bureau chief Louis Charbonneau tried directly and indirectly to get Inner City Press thrown out after stating he has a policy of not giving Inner City Press credit for its exclusives.

There was Marcelle Hopkins of Al Jazeera, who voted against Inner City Press time after time in 2012, to get thrown out, despite Al Jazeera's reputation as somehow free press.

Barbara Plett of BBC, too, voted to expel the press, asking Inner City Press why it had published a photograph of the French Ambassador, and why it reported that UNCA's president had rented one of his apartment to Sri Lanka's ambassador, when he was a UN official, before UNCA without asking the opinion of the whole board screened Sri Lanka's war crimes denial film in the UN.

Assisting or serving the request to expel Inner City Press, formally made June 20, 2012 by Voice of America, was UN Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit chief Stephane Dujarric, who on March 15 before the raid again refused to disclose any UN due process rules, after filing his own false complaint.

Still, it is the people at the top who are responsible. More on that to come. Watch this site.

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