Inner City Press

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYTAzerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

Your support means a lot. As little as $5 a month helps keep us going and grants you access to exclusive bonus material on our Patreon page. Click here to become a patron. 

MRL on Patreon

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube

More: InnerCityPro
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

On Yemen, ICP Asks UN Why Its Envoy IOCA UNheard by Hadi, UNwanted by Houthis

By Matthew Russell Lee, Photos

UNITED NATIONS, October 13 – When the UN Security Council held its Yemen meeting on October 10, Inner City Press asked UK Ambassador Matthew Rycroft if the Saudi-led Coalition now being on the UN's Children and Armed Conflict "blacklist" would change UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia. Video here. It seems not. On October 13, Inner City Press asked UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric, UN transcript here: Inner City Press: on the Yemen, there have been quotes from I guess it's called the Yemeni Government.  The Yemeni Government in exile has said that they don't have any information about the initiative that Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed said that he has.  Meanwhile, the rebels said that he's biased.  So I guess I'm just wondering, since it's a recent article, what has he done since he came? He came and said, I'm presenting to both sides, and now, both sides… one side that he's presumably in contact with says they have nothing from him, and the other side won't talk to him.  So… Spokesman:  I think… he is in touch with the parties, and I don't think it will be… those contacts will not be done through the media." Where? On October 10, when the UN's largely failing envoy on Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed came to the stakeout and claimed that he is about to meet the Houthis soon, UN Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq handpicked in advance who could ask questions. Inner City Press waited to the end, out of respect, then asked quite audibly on what basis the envoy claimed the Houthis would meet with them. He did not answer. Video here. Nor did French Ambassador Francois Delattre, president of the Security Council for October - he said he wouldn't comment on what IOCA said, even after a long closed door consultation. This is the UN. When a Yemen meeting during the UN General Assembly week was held at 8 am on September 22, new UN Relief Chief Mark Lowcock introduced as speakers the foreign ministers of Sweden and the Netherlands, representatives of Japan and the UAE, and the UN's envoy Ismael Ould Cheikh Ahmed. While billed as a humanitarian meeting, the UAE spoke without irony about outside interference. (Yemen's representative spoke in Arabic; Inner City Press streamed Periscope video). On September 28, Inner City Press asked Lowcock whether he thought the meeting had a sufficiently humanitarian character. He pointed to his concluding statements, which Inner City Press had not heard (see below), saying that the focus should be on humanitarian access, and later lamenting the continuing failure to deploy cranes. The reason Inner City Press was unable to get these views, and others, on September 22 is, in a phrase, UN censorship. To get to the meeting, held in UN Conference Room 5, Inner City Press unlike other no-show reporters like Egypt's Akhbar al Yom was required to get a UN escort or minder, who told Inner City Press it could not ask questions or speak with anyone. This despite UN OCHA staff telling Inner City Press it could wait outside and speak to people as they left. So the UN's retaliatory eviction of Inner City Press 19 months ago for covering the now conflicted UN corruption by Macau based businessman Ng Lap Seng through then PGA John Ashe now results in it, unlike the Saudi and pro-Saudi media in the meeting, being unable to speak to the participants. This has been raised, so far without any response, to Lowcock's fellow Brit, the head of DPI Alison Smale, here. This is today's UN. We hope to report more on Lowcock's views, including hoping that OCHA releases transcripts of what Lowcock says. While Canada joins The Netherlands at the UN in Geneva in calling for an investigation of possible war crimes in Yemen including the Saudi-led coalition's killing of civilians, Canada has continued a $15 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia. When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau held a press conference at the UN on September 21, Inner City Press went early, intending to ask him to explain this incongruity or seeming hypocrisy. Trudeau's spokesman announced that the questioners had been “pre-determined,” but did not explain how. So in a lull after what the spokesman called the last question - would Trudeau be a mediator on Venezuela - Inner City Press asked about Canadian arms sales to Saudi while calling for a probe. At first Trudeau said he was happy to answer the question. Then he said no, he would not reward “bad behavior,” and instead reached out for question in French about day care. (Inner City Press notes that pre-determining questioners is bad behavior. Apparently the CBC journalist who was given the first question agreed to it; the organization only the day before sent an Egyptian state media correspondent as the lone “pooler” in Secretary General Antonio Guterres' meeting with General Sisi.) Eearlier on September 21 when UK minister Alistair Burt came in front of the UN Security Council to speak about accountability for Daesh in Iraq, Inner City Press deferred to a timely question about the referendum in Kurdistan. Then during  lull - identical to that in which it put its question to Trudeau - Inner City Press asked Burt about his quote, about accountability for the bombing of civilians in Yemen by the Saudi-led Coalition with UK bombs, that "Our view is that it is for the Coalition itself, in the first instance, to conduct such investigations. They have the best insight into their own military procedures and will be able to conduct the most thorough and conclusive investigations.” Inner City Press asked how he can say this, given that the Saudis have investigated less than five percent of the killings. Video here. Burt's answer focused on the peace process - what peace process? At least Burt answered, and did not like Trudeau try to call merely asking the question in a lull "bad behavior" - we'll have more on this.


Your support means a lot. As little as $5 a month helps keep us going and grants you access to exclusive bonus material on our Patreon page. Click here to become a patron.

Feedback: Editorial [at]

Past (and future?) UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA
For now: Box 20047, Dag Hammarskjold Station NY NY 10017

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

 Copyright 2006-2017 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] for