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February 20, 2017


Ban Ki-moon Uses UN in Kenya, Kim Won-soo in NY, Spox Calls Press Obsessive A*hole

By Matthew Russell Lee, New Series, Video

UNITED NATIONS, February 14 – Ban Ki-moon, exposed as corrupt in three short weeks in South Korea, now wants to return to the United States after stopping in Kenya to visit the son in law he promoted to the job UN job there. When Inner City Press asked the UN about it on February, Ban's long-time deputy spokesman Farhan Haq called Inner City Press an obsessive a*hole. This is the UN Ban's made.

  On February 13, Inner City Press asked UN Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq about Ban's UN-Kenya stop, and any public costs. Haq, who dodged for years on irregularities from Ban promoting his son in law in the UN without recusal to Ban's nephew working at the UN's landlord Colliers, said "get over it." Video here.

  So after learning more - including about the role in promoting Ban of his Kim Won-soo, still paid by the UN, that is the public, Inner City Press asked Haq again, video here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: Yesterday, I asked you… and I understand that, when you hear the word "Ban Ki-moon," you're tempted to say "get over it."

Deputy Spokesman:  Indeed I am.

Inner City Press: But I wanted to ask you, the question was and remains… it remains, number one, is any UN system funds being used for his visit to headquarters?  And, number two, since yesterday your "get over it" comment, I learned that Mr. Kim Won-soo, who I understand is still a UN official, has been speaking to the media about Mr. Ban's possible job offer from a university in Massachusetts.  And so I wanted to ask you, in what capacity is Mr. Kim Won-soo speaking for Ban Ki-moon?  And how is it consistent with your position here of "get over it" while there are, in fact, cases in the Southern District and other issues that remain unresolved?

Deputy Spokesman:  Matthew, your inability to get over it speaks for itself.

Inner City Press: There are cases… I'm going to ask you…

Deputy Spokesman:  Matthew.

Inner City Press:  So the nephew case.  I'm just saying, it's un… because it's a question about UN money.

Deputy Spokesman:  I understand… I understand…

Inner City Press: You defended him for ten years to say "get over it"…

Deputy Spokesman:  Matthew, I've known you for a decade, so I know your fundamentally obsessive nature, but here's the point.  Ban Ki-moon is not the Secretary-General of the United Nations.  I do not speak for him.  I do not represent him.  When he travels, he travels as a private individual.  He has to do so on his own budget as a private individual.  He is not a UN official.

Inner City Press: That wasn't my question.  My question was, he said as he left South Korea that he was going to the UN to speak to UN staff.  That's why I think you said "get over it" a little too quickly, because my question is not who paid for his flight.  My question is, in what capacity did he enter UNON [United Nations Office in] Nairobi?  Did he speak to UN staff as he said that he would?  Does Mr. Kim Won-soo still speak for him on the UN dime?

Deputy Spokesman:  He can speak to the UN office in Nairobi as much as he wants as a former Secretary-General of the United Nations.  That is within his rights.

Inner City Press: It's not… I'm not saying it's not within his rights.  I'm saying, don't you answer for UN… the use of UN funds rather than say "get over it"?  Aren't you speaking for the UN?  So Kim Won-soo, when does his contract expire?

Deputy Spokesman:  His contract… we'll let you know once his time is done.  He is the head of the Office for Disarmament Affairs.  He is also capable of speaking about the topics that he wants to talk about.  The job that he does here is about Disarmament Affairs and is not about Ban Ki-moon.

Inner City Press: So he's off the clock when he speaks for Ban Ki-moon?  I'm asking you.

Deputy Spokesman:  Matthew. Matthew, words fail me, your inability to get around things.

Inner City Press: You know there are two corruption cases.  Right?  So it's going to be an ongoing… I just want to put you on notice; there are going to be questions that are going to arise, and saying "get over it" is not cutting it.

Deputy Spokesman:  If there are things about cases that are ongoing, that's fine.  If you want a daily update about what Ban Ki-moon is doing, ask someone else.  It's not my job.  Have a good afternoon, everyone.

  And as Haq walked about, he said "A*hole." This is the UN Ban's made. It must be cleaned up.
February 13, 2017

After PA's Fayyad Blocked, UN Selectively Spins US Green Light, UK Not Mentioned

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, February 11 – The US blocked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' nomination of the Palestinian Authority's Salam Fayyad to be UN envoy to Libya.

  Now Guterres' holdover UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric selectively spins that Guterres had somehow received a "green light" from the US - like when Ban Ki-moon invited Iran to the Syria talks in Montreux, then disinvited them on Monday.

  This time, Dujarric "told" at least three favored media the exact same thing: "Based on the information available to him at the time, the secretary-general had the perception, now proven wrong, that the proposal would be acceptable to Security Council members." Why not send this out more widely? To Inner City Press, Dujarric answered a mere two and a half of twenty-two questions. These holdovers have no credibility.

  One of the two to which Dujarric dole out his quote went on to quote French Ambassador Francois Delattre as having "full confidence" in the UN chief's personnel appointments. But of course: France stands poised to get the top UN Peacekeeping job for the fifth time in a row.

  The stories did not mention that the UK had - and now maybe still has - its own candidate for the UN Libya envoy post, Nicholas Kay. Clearly the UK didn't think Fayyad was best for the post. We'll have more on this.

  Inner City Press on-camera asked the UN about the nomination earlier on February 10, noting that its sources told it the nomination was really by Jeffrey Feltman, the Obama administration's appointee to head the UN Department of Political Affairs. Can Feltman stay on, given the new Administration in Washington?

  While Antonio Guterres' deputy spokesman dodged Inner City Press' question at noon on February 10, and his lead holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric waited more than 10 hours to respond to Inner City Press' question tweeted at him that evening, an arch and in context laughable response was mass-emailed 11 hours later. Dujarric wrote, in pertinent part:

"The proposal for Salam Fayyad to serve as the Secretary-General’s Special Representative in Libya was solely based on Mr. Fayyad’s recognized personal qualities and his competence for that position.

The Secretary-General... notes that, among others no Israeli and no Palestinian have served in a post of high responsibility at the United Nations. This is a situation that the Secretary-General feels should be corrected, always based on personal merit and competencies of potential candidates for specific posts."

  It sounds reasonable - but why then for example is Guterres restricting his "search" for a head of UN Peacekeeping to a single country, France? As Inner City Press has exclusively reported, the three candidates are all French: Jean Maurice Ripert (who previously stood up the UN in Pakistan), Jean Pierre Lacroix and probably winner Sylvie Bermann. There are other examples - watch this site.

  Some cynics wonder if this wasn't done as theater, just before Guterres' 12-day trip to Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE, where the UN's previous Libya sell-out Bernardino Leon is getting paid. Meritocracy, indeed.February 6, 2017

UN Waste In Dump Caused Malaria in Central African Republic Under Ladsous, Bermann Next?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, February 3 – Despite having killed more than 10,000 people in Haiti with lax sanitation practices, the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations in Central African Republic, under its fourth consecutive French director in a row Herve Ladsous, is dumping waste negligently, a UN memo leaked to Inner City Press shows.

  The memo states that "following complaints by the local population living in the vicinity of the dumpsite" a UN investigation found that the dumpsite sludge dams breed insects which result in sickness. Eighty-one percent of the UN's victims are children, the memo says.

  The report, under "Community Discontent," cites malaria. It notes that when concerns were raised, "police force was used to quell the dissent."

  Inner City Press has long questioned Ladsous, for example about his linking of sexual exploitation and abuse by peacekeepers to "R&R" or rest and recreation, here. Ladsous replies, "I don't answer your questions, Mister."

  Now under new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, many are interested who will replace Ladsous. While other Under Secretary General posts like Cristina Gallach's atop the Department of Public Information are now subject to public vacancy notices, DPKO has not. Why not? Inner City Press asked, but UN holdeover spokesman Stephane Dujarric didn't answer.

  Sources will Inner City Press France is trying to hold onto DPKO for the fifth time in a row, albeit with a women, on information and belief Sylvie Bermann, since 2014 France's ambassador in London. Five times in a row? Given this kind of mismanagement, in a former French colony?

Exclusive: UN Waste In Dump Caused Malaria in Central African Republic, Report Leaked to Inner City Press S... by Matthew Russell Lee on Scribd

January 30, 2017

UN Wastes Funds Keeping Clinton-Aligned Feltman So His Pension Vests, Draft EO Here

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, January 27 – The United States has controlled the UN Department of Political Affairs under former Clinton State Department official Jeffrey Feltman, and Inner City Press is informed by whistleblowers that Feltman is trying to stay on at the UN until July 4, 2017.

  The reasons, the whistleblowers tell Inner City Press, is so that Feltman's UN pension can "vest."

 But is it wise for the UN to spend taxpayer money in this way, keeping on an official so closely aligned with Hilary Clinton?

  This takes place after reporting on, but not publication of, a draft Executive Order to cut UN funding. Now Inner City Press publishes the draft, here.

Here's UN Budget Cut Draft Executive Order, On Hold Jan 27 as Inner City Press Exposes Clinton-Aligned Felt... by Matthew Russell Lee on Scribd


Even as it's said it won't be signed imminently, there are scams at the UN, including Feltman, Cristina Gallach and Herve Ladsous, which can and should be stopped immediately.

 Inner City Press put the questions directly to Feltman:

"Dear Mr. Feltman - These are Press questions very much on deadline, very straight forward:

1) When does your contract with the UN end?

2) Separately, please confirm or deny that your contract got extended.

3) Separately, that your contract was extended through June.

4) Separately, that this was related to your UN pension vesting.

5) Entirely separately, whether Katrin Hett is taking up a position in the Secretary General's office.

6) Separately, does this involves a jump from P4 to P5?

As noted, very much on deadline. Thanks in advance for your answers, asap."

  Current UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric, also a holdover, does not answer Inner City Press' management and reform questions, most recently about a UN "Hospitality Log" of wining and dining, click here for that. In fact, Dujarric and the UN threw Inner City Press out of the UN without a hearing, and restrict it still.

  After publication of the above, and this, Inner City Press at the January 27 noon briefing asked spokesman Dujarric, who called the questioning "despicable." Video here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: I’ve asked Mr. [Jeffrey] Feltman and now I’m asking you, that his contract was extended from March through June so that his UN pension can vest.  And I wanted to know, just… you said something like it’s early days, but just, did that occur?  And was Katrin Hett from his office, placed in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General, moved from P4 to P5?  I’m told by people in DPA (Department of Political Affairs), essentially, to kind of keep an eye on things.  But the most important thing I want to know is… and I’m asking not to be personal, but because it is public money.  That’s why I expected a yes-or-no answer… a yes-or-no answer.

Spokesman:  I think two things.  As I said, we’re in a period of transition.  The Secretary-General is looking at his senior leadership.  He’s taking decisions that will need… that will ensure the continuing smooth transition that is already ongoing.  That’s for Mr. Feltman.  I have… I don’t have the exact dates of his contract.  We’re in a period of transition.  As for… as for the other person you mentioned, you know, I… you’re free to ask.  I find it somewhat despicable that people use you or others to drag people’s names through the mud and insinuate things.  The… we’re in a transition period.  The Secretary-General’s Office is in the midst of changes.  New staff’s coming in.  All rules are being observed and… all rules and regulations are being observed.  And I’ll leave it at that.

Inner City Press:  I guess my… my… you can use the word “despicable” if you want.  What I wanted to know about the Mr. Feltman thing is, if… and you can easily ask… I guess he contacted you when I e-mailed him, but if, in fact, his contract was extended and if you know that he was appointed by the previous administration and you know that the new administration came in and said… I guess they believe they deserve a USG (Under-Secretary-General) post, what was the thinking behind extending and is it related… [inaudible]

Spokesman:  The only thing that matters is to have as smooth of a transition continue, as we’ve had.  Yeah, go ahead.

Inner City Press:  But you understand, other organizations actually transition. [end]

 As the UN remains unreformed after Ban Ki-moon's ten years ended with corruption, long asked about by the Press, exposed, budget cuts are coming.

 In Washington executive orders are being prepared to cut up to 40% of the US' contributions to the UN, and to fully cut funding to entities blamed for violation of human rights.

  One obvious question is whether the total denial of due process for whistleblowers - already part of US law - and investigative press which covers UN corruption constitutes such a violation.

  For example, the UN Department of Public Information under Cristina Gallach in early 2016 threw Inner City Press out of the UN, dumping its investigative files onto First Avenue, without a single hearing or opportunity to be heard, and no appeal since.

All this for seeking to cover an event in the UN Press Briefing Room which was nowhere listed as closed, and leaving as soon as a single UN Security officer said the Spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, wanted Inner City Press out.

Gallach had a conflict of interest, having been asked by Inner City Press about her own links with Macau-based businessman Ng Lap Seng, facing trial (like Ban Ki-moon's nephew and brother) on bribery charges.

There are no rules, only the one-person fiat rule of an official dumped on Ban's UN by Spain, where she had previously managed, at most, seven people as spokesperson to Javier Solana. Nothing has been done; eleven months later Gallach still requires Inner City Press to have "minders" to cover the UN Security Council.

January 23, 2017

US Has Asked For Ban Ki-moon Brother To Be Extradited, Hearing Reveals As Obama, Power Leave

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 20 – Ban Ki-moon left the UN on January 1 and tellingly his first move was to take legal action against the press. Before he left, he named his own son in law Siddharth Chatterjee to the top UN top in Kenya.

  Now the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York has asked South Korea to arrest and extradite Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki Sang.

  The statement came from prosecutor Daniel Noble in the previously scheduled hearing on the afternoon January 20, inauguration day.

 The indictment makes clear the scheme used the "family" -- Ban Ki-moon -- connections to the Qatar royal family to try to sell Landmark 72 in Vietnam. Now-gone US Ambassador Power's claim to Inner City Press that the indictments have nothing to do with the UN was false.

The cover up by censorship is crumbling.

   Just as Ban left his brother Ban Ki Sang and his nephew Dennis Bahn, of whom Inner City Press has asked Ban's UN spokespeople since at latest May 2015, were indicted for bribery. Bahn was described using his family connections - Ban Ki-moon - to try to sell real estate in Vietnam.

  Inner City Press' questions to Ban's longtime spokesman Stephane Dujarric were referred to a Ban supporter in Seoul, Lee Do-woon, at a number which was never answered. On January 17, after Inner City Press appeared on TBS radio in South Korea about Ban's corruption and censorship, Dujarric provided a number for a second spokesman: Yoon Won-joong.

  After speaking with him, Inner City Press on January 18 asked UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, video here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: I guess it was Stéphane Dujarric that sent the phone number of a second Ban Ki-moon Spokesman.  I did speak to him, but in fact, the coverage there is giving rise to a question I have to ask you as the UN.  There’s a story in today’s Korea Times, the title of which is “Prosecutors say Ban Ki-moon was ‘indeed on bribery list.’”  And it describes a list that was provided by Mr Park of Taekwang Industry, saying he had given money to Ban Ki-moon during the time frame that he was Secretary-General.  So the question becomes… there are… obviously, there are questions to Ban Ki-moon there.  The question becomes, when did South Korean prosecutors -- because this article says that what would have held them up was… was immunity, that, as Secretary-General, they would be unclear whether they could even question him or go… or look into this matter.  Was the UN contacted by the prosecutors about this Park list?  And, if so, what did they do?

Deputy Spokesman:  No, I don’t have any comment on that.

Inner City Press:  It’s a UN question.  I mean, do you acknowledge… because I talked to the guy for about five minutes yesterday, but he said those are UN questions.

Deputy Spokesman:  I don’t actually have any comment on this.

  Well, the UN will have to. We'll have more on this.January 16, 2017

UN Referred ICP's Corruption Qs to Ban Ki-moon Seoul Spox, Whom They Have Never Called

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 13 – January 10 saw the belated bribery indictment in New York of Ban Ki-moon's nephew Dennis Bahn, about whom Inner City Press has been asking the UN since at least May 2015, video here.

  Inner City Press obtained the 39-page indictment from multiple sources and is putting it online here in Scribd, now also here in pdf.

   It shows Ban's nephew using the influence and access of his family - that is, Ban Ki-moon -- to Qatar as part of his Vietnam building selling fraud. But on January 11, Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric, still at the UN for at least six months, referred all of Inner City Press' questions to Ban's Seoul spokesman Lee Do-woon.

   After Dujarric's office gave Inner City Press not an email address but what they said was Lee Do-woon's cell phone number, Inner City Press waited and called it. But during working hours in Seoul, it had only a telephone menu tree, only in Korea. Vine here. This is a run-around.

 On January 13, Inner City Press asked UN Associate Spokesperson Eri Kaneko, as politely as possible, how to get answers. From the UN transcript:

Inner City Press:  Yesterday, I was told to call Mr. Lee Do-woon in Seoul, and I was told it was a mobile number.  I've called it five times.  It's nothing but a telephone tree that's entirely in Korean.  I sent it a text message, which wasn't received.  So, I'm going to ask you again, if the idea is all of the questions raised by the indictment should be given to the new Associate Spokesperson, can I have an e-mail address or some way that actually I can reach somebody?

Associate Spokesperson:  We'll check.  I mean, that's the only number we have, as well, so, you know, you know as much as we do.

Inner City Press:  Did you get a telephone tree?

Associate Spokesperson:  We haven't tried calling it.

   They just gave this number to Inner City Press saying to ask it all UN corruption questions.

On January 12, Inner City Press asked Ban's holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric, Video here, UN Transcript hereJanuary 9, 2017

As Budget Scrutiny Looms, UN Must Do Better on Press Freedom, Due Process & FOIA

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 7 – The United Nations at the beginning of 2017 still has no Freedom of Information Act, no content neutral standards for media accreditation and no right to due process or appeal for journalists. This is UNacceptable.

New UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres should be expected to address these issues, and to hold at least monthly sit-down press conferences. On January 6 holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric indicated he would wait for something to announce. But Q&A should not be tied to a particular UN announcement.

   Downgrading to non-resident correspondent status, and eviction from UN work-space, is not a legitimate way to respond to coverage of UN irregularities and corruption such as that alleged in the ongoing Ng Lap Seng / John Ashe UN bribery case. It must be reversed, but also non-resident correspondents should not be restricted to minders or escorts to cover events on the Conference Building's second floor.

On January 6, Dujarric and DPI's Cristina Gallach led Guterres on a tour that implied that only those who pay money to a group which last month gave an award to anti-press Ban Ki-moon, and who are granted (and not evicted in retaliation from) UN office space are part of the UN press corps. Click here for Inner City Press' story, and YouTube video. This will ill-serve Guterres, and the UN.


New SG Guterres is toured around by Gallach & Dujarric, Jan 6, 2017, photo by M.R. Lee

  Beyond headquarters, the UN in the field must become more responsive to local journalists. A Free UN Coalition for Access member in Hargeisa, Somaliland complains that the UN in Mogadishu refuses to answer simple journalistic questions. The same has occurred in Colombia, while the UN's leadership in Kenya has informed staff not to speak to particular media. This is UNacceptable.

  That former Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, among his very first acts upon leaving the UN, took legal action against reports of possible corruption during his tenure reflects badly on the UN.

FUNCA hopes for a better 2017, but hope is not enough. The UN needs a FOIA, a reversal of recent anti-press decisions and due process and content neutral standards, and at least monthly Secretary General press conferences, going forward. We will have more on this; watch this site.

January 2, 2017

New UNSG Guterres Calls for Peace, Yemen, Myanmar & Burundi Early Tests

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow up on Exclusives

UNITED NATIONS, January 1 -- When new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres came to take questions outside the General Assembly hall on October 13, he was first asked about Syria and cited his past as head of the UN refugee agency.

Inner City Press asked, “And Yemeni people?” - referring most recently to the double-tap airstrike on the funeral in Sana'a.

  Guterres took the question, adding in South Sudan as well, and said he will try to be an honest broker. That would be a welcome change, and one that we will closely cover as censorship restrictions are lifted. Recent Swiss Radio & TV here, translated.

 Now just after midnight on January 1, Guterres has made this statement: "On my first day as Secretary-General of the United Nations, one question weighs heavily on my heart.

How can we help the millions of people caught up in conflict, suffering massively in wars with no end in sight?

Civilians are pounded with deadly force. Women, children and men are killed and injured, forced from their homes, dispossessed and destitute. Even hospitals and aid convoys are targeted.

No one wins these wars; everyone loses. Trillions of dollars are spent destroying societies and economies, fueling cycles of mistrust and fear that can last for generations. Whole regions are destabilized and the new threat of global terrorism affects us all.
On this New Year’s Day, I ask all of you to join me in making one shared New Year’s resolution:

Let us resolve to put peace first.

Let us make 2017 a year in which we all – citizens, governments, leaders – strive to overcome our differences.

From solidarity and compassion in our daily lives, to dialogue and respect across political divides… From ceasefires on the battlefield, to compromise at the negotiating table to reach political solutions…

Peace must be our goal and our guide.

All that we strive for as a human family – dignity and hope, progress and prosperity – depends on peace.
But peace depends on us.

I appeal to you all to join me in committing to peace, today and every day.

Let us make 2017 a year for peace.

Thank you."

  It's a good statement. One simple step that comes to mind is to put Saudi Arabia, which has used cluster bombs to kill kids in Yemen, back on the UN's Children and Armed Conflict annex.

  To pay more attention to Burundi, to whose Pierre Nkurunziza Guterres has already written.

  To take some immediate action on the killing - and closing of the border on -- the Rohingya in Myanmar. There's more, but we'll begin pursuing this, including January 3 when Guterres speaks to UN staff on 9:10 am. Watch this site.

December 26, 2016

US Power Abstains on UNSC Settlements Resolution, As UN Talk Turns To Trump

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 23 -- In a final showdown before Barack Obama leaves office, the UN Security Council voted on December 22 at 2 pm on an anti-settlements resolution, below. The US abstained. Explanatory video here.

Amid applause in the chamber, Israel's Ambassador Danny Danon issued a statement that "It was to be expected that Israel's greatest ally would act in accordance with the values that we share and that they would have vetoed this disgraceful resolution. I have no doubt that the new US administration and the incoming UN Secretary General will usher in a new era in terms of the UN's relationship with Israel."

Donald Trump, much mentioned at the Security Council stakeout, tweeted: “As to the U.N., things will be different after Jan. 20th.” Voice of America at the UN quickly re-tweeted it, without commentary.

Outgoing US Secretary of State John Kerry, headed to the private sector, issued this (InnerCityPro.com published it immediately, here).

As obtained by Inner City Press, submitted to the UN Security Council president for December, Spain:

"I wish to inform that the co-sponsors who seconded the draft namely Malaysia,  New Zealand, Senegal and Venezuela have agreed that given the interest, urgency and importance of the issue, it is imperative for Council to act on this draft.
 
2.           Consequently and in accordance with applicable Council rules of procedure, our delegations request the Secretariat to recirculate the same draft in blue (S/2016/1095) with Malaysia, New Zealand, Senegal and Venezuela as co-sponsors.
 
3.           Our delegations further request the Presidency schedule the vote for the text ASAP today, please."

US Ambassador Samantha Power refused question on how the US would or will vote (and refused Inner City Press' question on the UN arming a South Sudan warlord); Russia's Vitaly Churkin said Russia would prefer an “orderly process.” 

Call it the ultimate lame duck session, along with Obama.  Watch this site.

  A diplomat who spoke with US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power on the afternoon of December 22 told Inner City Press Power said she for now had no instructions on how to vote. Whether the decision had not been made by Barack Obama, or there was a concern about the leaks, is not known. But there were no instructions. A diplomat said, We could vote tonight. Or never.

This came a day after Israel pointedly did not participate in the UN General Assembly vote on a Syria investigative mechanism, and a month before Donald Trump takes over from Obama.


December 19, 2016

On South Sudan, Watered Down Draft Passes 15-0, ICP Asked US Power of UNMISS Arming Warlord

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow Up to Exclusives

UNITED NATIONS, December 16 -- When the UN Security Council members met about South Sudan on December 15, the best they could do was extend the mandate of the UNMISS mission for a single day. Even then, there was already news of UNMISS having given arms to warlord, or “rebel general,” James Koang.

This was in a Small Arms Survey report, picked up in the Washington Post. Inner City Press tweeted it at UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric, requesting a comment. Nothing.

  On the morning of December 16, Inner City Press asked the Ambassadors of the UK and New Zealand about it, and both had heard of it and said it needed to be investigated. The Ambassador of France, the country that has run UN Peacekeeping for 20 years, did not comment. Video here.

  The US holds the pen, and more, on South Sudan. In the early afternoon of December 16, when US Ambassador Samantha Power held a stakeout about Syria, Inner City Press asked about the US South Sudan draft, and the Washington Post report. Power said she hadn't seen the Washington Post report, but that she thought the draft will pass. Video here.

At 4 pm the resolution, changed, was adopted 15-0. Afterward Egypt, for example, criticized the US for not consulting enough, and showing its draft(s) too late. Final adopted draft here.

Speaking for the US was deputy Isobel Coleman, who did not in her speech mention UNMISS arming Koang. (In full disclosure, she is also the USUN ambassador to whom the Government Accountability Project directed its request that the Mission opposed the UN's eviction and restriction of Inner City Press - and apparently did nothing.)

  There were already over 9,000 viewers of Inner City Press' Periscope of this South Sudan Q&A, but even after Inner City Press tweeted the Washington Post story to Power, her spokesman and the US Mission generally, there was no response.

None of these did ANYTHING when Inner City Press was evicted, and is still restricting, by the UN of Ban Ki-moon and Cristina Gallach this year, despite a request from the DC-based Government Accountability Project. We'll have more on this.
December 12, 2016

UN's Gallach Pays Public Funds To Call Detroit a 3d Rate Flyover City, Evicted & Restricts Inner City Press

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 9 -- This sample spectacle: UN Under Secretary General for Communication Cristina Gallach pontificating to a Gulf media to which she gives a large office in the UN about how “difficult” it will be under Trump, and blaming not only “fake news” but also “social media” for the “difficult” and “very controversial” roles they played in the US election. Video here, from Minute 10.

   This is an attempt by Gallach -- surrounded by corruption and mismanagement scandals -- to keep her UN position under incoming Secretary General Guterres. She should be fired.

Exhibit 2: on December 6, Inner City Press asked Gallach about the superseding indictment in the UN bribery case against Macau-based Ng Lap Seng, on whom Gallach did no due diligence - and she had no update, then on since.

Third strike: on December 8, Gallach used public money to pay a speaker to tell DPI-affiliated NGOs, in UN Conference Room 4, that Detroit, Michigan is a “third-rate” city, a “fly-over” city, baffled by how Trump won the election. Tweeted video here.

This with public money - questions on her use of which Ban Ki-moon's spokespeople have refused to answer for two weeks, on December 8 using a questions about Gallach's lawless eviction of Inner City Press as the justification for not answer the Gallach funding questions. See here. It is time to drain all of this from Turtle Bay.

 Tellingly, while outgoing Ban Ki-moon's spokespeople have told Inner City Press it is the practice for USGs like Gallach to tender their resignations at the end of their appointer's term, Gallach says only that she has given a “report” to Guterres and taken instruction on how he'd like the job down. Pro-tip to Guterres: end UN censorship, and Gallach's tenure.
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December 5, 2016

Ban Ki-moon To Fly For Anti-Corruption Award from Qatar After Promoting Son in Law to Top UN Post

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, December 2 -- Two weeks after Inner City Press formally gave UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric a link to an Internet page about Ban's brother Ki-ho engaged in mining in Myanmar's Shan state through South Korean firm KD Power -- as well as Bosung -- the response has been to have the page removed from the Internet.

This comes after Ban's son in law Siddharth Chatterjee, promoted by Ban without recusal to the highest UN position in Kenya, ordered an article about nepotism removed from the website.

On December 2, Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric blythely announced that Ban will travel from December 7 to 9 to receive an anti-corruption award presented by the Emir of Qatar.

Anti-corruption? Meanwhile Ban's spokespeople have refused to disclose the carbon off-sets Ban bragged about in a speech to Colombia's SIPA, and refused for a week to answer if Ban's chief of communications (actually, censorship) Cristina Gallach used UN funds to go get her own award in Barcelona. Nor has a requested list of Gallach trips on public funds been provided.

Is that anti-corruption? Or pro-corruption?

On November 28 Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric said, without any proof, that he understands Ban Ki-ho no longer works for KD Power. But when Inner City Press asked when was the last time Ban Ki-moon spoke with his brother Ki-ho, Spokesman Dujarric said glibly that he has no clue, and hasn't returned with any answer.

  While Team Ban, including the South Korean Mission to the UN which on November 10 asked Inner City Press for the since-disappeared KD Power link, and the Bosung links, think they have ended this particular inquiry into nepotism by asserting Ban Ki-ho is no longer with KD Power, they have not answered even once on Bosung.

  Bloomberg lists Bosung as Ban Ki-ho's current employer, and Bosung also does business in Myanmar, in connection with a "UN delegation."

Inner City Press has submitted questions to Ban Ki-ho at Bosung but they have not been responded to.

November 28, 2016

Ban Ki-moon's Brother Ki-ho Thrown Out of UN Global Compact, Mines in Myanmar

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, November 25 -- Two weeks after Inner City Press formally gave UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric a link to an Internet page about Ban's brother Ki-ho engaged in mining in Myanmar's Shan state through South Korean firm KD Power (as well as Bosung), the response has been to have the page removed from the Internet.

Now Inner City Press has discovered that Ban Ki-moon's brother Ki-Ho's firm KD Power was thrown out of the UN Global Compact, the UN's easy-to-stay-in blue-washing mechanism for corporations. See here.

  What does it say about Ban Ki-moon's actual commitment to human rights if he can't even get his own brother to meet the minimal requirements of the UN Global Compact?

KP Power's since-violated “Letter of Commitment” to Ban Ki-moon was signed by his brother Ban Ki-Ho, put on Scribd here by Inner City Press, without any disclosure of the direct family relationship, just as Ban's son in law Siddharth Chatterjee, whom Ban promoted to the top UN job in Kenya, never discloses this relationship in his self-serving, human rights up front-free pieces which are run by Thomson Reuters and some others as a way to curry favor with Ban Ki-moon.

Ban Ki-moon can't or won't even get his son in law Siddhart Chatterjee, whom he promoted to the UN Resident Coordinator position in Kenya, to comply with his post-Sri Lanka failure "Rights Up Front" scheme. Sidd stayed silent amid targeting of South Sudanese in Kenya, and killings by police. In fact, the UN and Sidd have refused to divulge his role in killings in Sri Lanka.

 Back on November 9 Inner City Press sent Dujarric and others this, of which Dujarric in the hallway confirmed receipt - note that the first link was then disabled, so that it leads nowhere:

"I am sending three links regarding Ban Ki-moon's brother Ki-ho (through Bosung and KD Power) doing mining in Myanmar and touring with a UN delegation.

1) http://www.brighttime.com.mm/bright-time-resources/2-uncategorised.html

"Memorandum of Understanding with KD Power of South Korea, which is managed by Mr. Ban Ki-Ho, brother of UN Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, for the exploration of Magnesium as well as cooperation in power sector in the eastern Shan State of Myanmar.  "

  Now the page is gone: "The server can not find the requested page." So how did that happen, now? But here it is in archive (search for Ban Ki-Ho). And there are photographs...

This is Ban Ki-moon censorship, this time to try to conceal nepotism and exploitation of resources in a war zone, using the UN's name.

November 21, 2016

On Myanmar, Where Ban's Brother Mines, US Accepts Outcome-Less Briefing By Nambiar, Who Says Give Them Time

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, November 17 -- Myanmar was the quiet topic of the UN Security Council on the evening of November 17, between meetings on South Sudan and Syria chemical weapons.

 Inner City Press is informed that while the US requested the closed door briefing, the US agreed as a condition that there would be no outcome to the meeting.

The briefer was Vijay Nambiar, Ban Ki-moon's envoy on Myanmar as he was, disasterously, on Sri Lanka. And sources tell Inner City Press that amid the burning of Rohingyas' homes and rapes and killings in Rakhine State, Nambiar advised the Council to go easy on Myanmar and give them time. This is is disgusting, all around.  As is this:

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in late August awarded the top UN job in Kenya to his own son in law, Siddharth Chatterjee, and did not even recuse himself.

  On September 27, Inner City Press directly asked Chatterjee about it, on Periscope. here. Vine here. Chatterjee hardly answered the long-standing questions; nor did Ban's spokesman. Neither set up the requested interview.

Likewise, Inner City Press' requests for a copy of Ban Ki-moon's October 14, 2016 speech to the Council on Korean Americans, for which $100,000 sponsorships were sought, and its questions about a UN Ethics Office opinion on that and on Ban's mentor Han Seung-soo being a UN official and on the boards of directors of Standard Chartered Bank and South Korea's Doosan have gone unanswered, even as reiterated at the November 4 UN noon briefing. Video here.

November 14, 2016

After UN Ban Ki-moon Censors Press, Expresses to Trump Confidence in Cooperation

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 11 -- Hours after Hillary Clinton conceded to Donald Trump past 2 am on November 9, Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon about his inaction on UN Peacekeeping's failures and rapes in the Central African Republic, and his dismissive response to Senate Foreign Relations Committee inquiries, including on UN censorship of the Press.

   Ban Ki-moon did not answer.

  Now on November 11, the UN says Ban spoke with Trump and "expressed confidence that the United States and the United Nations would maintain their traditional strong ties of cooperation." In censorship?

  On election night itself, Inner City Press reported what it heard regard former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton, his spokesman Richard Grenell, and SFRC chairman Bob Corker. Some in UN-World are circling the wagons; Ban is doling out interviews, just as he did for his now waning hopes to be South Korea's next president.

 How did the current US Mission taken not action on censorship by Ban and his Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach, even when asked to do so by the Government Accountability Project?  Why has the current US Ambassador wasted resources with no fewer than three bodyguards even when inside the UN?  We'll have more on this - watch this site.

when Inner City Press got to the United Nations later in the morning, it asked Yemen's Ambassador Khaled Hussein Mohamed Alyemany if he thinks under Trump the US will continue to fuel up Saudi warplanes for their bombing runs. Video here.

He said it's not for him to judge other countries and what happens in them.


   Inner City Press asked Iraq's Ambassador to the UN M A Alhakim about the idea outgoing President Obama will try to speed up action on Mosul and Raqqa before Trump takes over. He said a sped-up process would be good. Vine video here.

   Outgoing UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon came to read a statement; his outgoing spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Ban would not take questions. But one was yelled out on climate change; Inner City Press then asked about the criticism of Ban by Senator Bob Corker, a possible Secretary of State, over Ban's weak response to UN peacekeepers' engaged in sexual abuse. Video here; Vine here.

   When Inner City Press had asked Dujarric for Ban's reaction, Dujarric said dismissively that was just the opinion of one person. Impunity is impunity. Dujarric himself helped get Inner City Press thrown out of the UN Press briefing room, its UN office and the UN as a whole, see Paragraphs 9 and 10 of this UN memo to the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee. We'll have more on this.
November 7, 2016

Ban Ki-moon's Brother Ki-ho Involved in Myanmar Greenwashing, Like At COP 22 in Morocco

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, November 4 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in late August awarded the top UN job in Kenya to his own son in law, Siddharth Chatterjee, and did not even recuse himself.

  On September 27, Inner City Press directly asked Chatterjee about it, on Periscope. here. Vine here. Chatterjee hardly answered the long-standing questions; nor did Ban's spokesman. Neither set up the requested interview.

Likewise, Inner City Press' requests for a copy of Ban Ki-moon's October 14, 2016 speech to the Council on Korean Americans, for which $100,000 sponsorships were sought, and its questions about a UN Ethics Office opinion on that and on Ban's mentor Han Seung-soo being a UN official and on the boards of directors of Standard Chartered Bank and South Korea's Doosan have gone unanswered, even as reiterated at the November 4 UN noon briefing. Video here.

On September 24, Inner City Press put these conflict of interest questions to Han Seung-soo, who left after the briefest of answers, here.

Now this: Ban's brother Ban Ki-ho is involved with KD Power in mining projects in Myanmar's eastern Shan State, see below -- and in greenwashing "renewal energy" projects in Myanmar, here, consonant with Ban and his spokesman's silence on Morocco using corporate wind power projects to greenwash a land- (and map-) grab of Western Sahara for COP 22, here.

Ban's brother Ki-ho is vice president of electric equipment firm Bosung (a/k/a Bo Sung), which has been on Myanmar tours with (unnamed) UN officials. See (and translate) this government web page, here:

"Industry, Republic of Korea Minister U Maung Myint Bo Sung Powertec Co., Ltd, BUYANG INDUSTRIAL Co., Ltd, Germany Recycle Engineering Co., Ltd and visiting delegations from the United Nations"

Ban's former chief of staff and vanity press book editor Vijay Nambiar is Ban's envoy on Myanmar. Did he go on this trip?

In terms of mining, see this: "Bright Time has signed an Memorandum of Understanding with KD Power of South Korea, which is managed by Mr. Ban Ki-Ho, brother of UN Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, for the exploration of Magnesium as well as cooperation in power sector in the eastern Shan State of Myanmar."

 Is the UN's Special Rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar Yanghee Lee aware of this mining project in east Shan State, with the brother of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon? Is the UN Ethics Office?


As noted, Ban's brother Ban Ki-ho is VP of a Korean electric equipment company, Bosung.  The CEO of Bosung, Lim Jae-Hwang, is a former executive with Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO).   Bosung Power Technology supplies its products primarily to KEPCO, which recently signed a deal with the UAE to build a nuclear plant. 

Doosan is providing the nuclear reactor. Ban's friend and mentor Han Seung-soo, whom Ban appointed to a senior UN position (which conveys diplomatic immunity) is on the board of directors of Doosan and has engaged closely with UAE on issues of Korean trade promotion and business.  Han has most recently served on the jury of the UAE Energy Prize.  Meanwhile, Ban's other brother Ban ki-sang served as an advisor to Keangnam, which developed properties in UAE for South Korean expatriates and businesses.

We'll have more on this.October 31, 2016

Under New SG Guterres, Who Will Head UN Peacekeeping, Public Information?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 28 -- When new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres came to take questions outside the General Assembly hall on October 13, he was first asked about Syria and cited his past as head of the UN refugee agency.

Inner City Press asked, “And Yemeni people?” - referring most recently to the double-tap airstrike on the funeral in Sana'a.

  Guterres took the question, adding in South Sudan as well, and said he will try to be an honest broker. That would be a welcome change, and one that we will closely cover as censorship restrictions are lifted.

Beyond the UN Peacekeeping issues explored below, as to ending UN censorship who becomes Spokesperson, and who heads the Department of Public Information, will have an impact. On October 28 the UN told correspondents that Melissa Fleming, spokesperson for Guterres, should now be contacted through a UN.org and not UNHCR.org email address. Does this mean she'll be UN Spokesperson? Head of DPI?

The Free UN Coalition for Access has asked. One thing should be clear: Cristina Gallach must go. Beyond her no due process eviction of the Press, and the recent Wonder Woman as Ambassador debacle, she is named in the Office of Internal Oversight Services audit of the John Ashe / Ng Lap Seng scandal, as having done no due diligence. There must be accountability, even belatedly.

   (Later on October 28, the spokesman for Ban Ki-moon who not only threw Inner City Press out of the UN Press Briefing Room but who has also for two weeks resisted making publish a speech Ban gave on October 14 to a group, the Council of Korean Americans, which sought $100,000 sponsorships for the event, was glad-handing at an Upper East Side event. A lot of people are dusting off their c.v. or resume.)

  UN Peacekeeping has been controlled by France for 20 years, and many believe that it is and will be time to relinquish it. But when Inner City Press asked, if for example France will shift to DESA or even across First Avenue to UNDP, it was told “don't believe everything you hear.”

   Now the person who gave that answer or quip is reported as a possible replacement for Herve Ladsous, who has run DPKO into the ground.

Other names floated are Sylvie Bermann -- if France keeps it, a woman USG might be designed to address the sexual abuse issues that expanded and were justified under Ladous - or Jean-Maurice Ripert, without any mention of his issue when he was assigned to Pakistan humanitarian issues and remained on vacation. (In full disclosure, Ripert also confronted Inner City Press on a UN Security Council trip involving Chad and, by accident, Rwanda - but that's another story.) October 24, 2016

As Ban Ki-moon Conceals DC Speech & Is Protested at UN, Tells Reuters Of His South Korea Ambitions

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, October 21  -- What has Ban Ki-moon turned the UN into, as he seeks to run for President of South Korea?

For a week, Ban Ki-moon has refused to make public the speech he gave on October 14 before the Council of Korean Americans, which sought $100,000 sponsorships to hear Ban speak. On October 21, even as UN staff protested Ban's lack of judgment in naming a cartoon character, Wonder Woman, a UN ambassador, Ban made public to Reuters not this speech but his ambition to be president of South Korea. Reuters did not ask about the day's protest, much less the “private” speech.

  At the October 21 noon briefing, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric again for a copy of the speech - next question, Dujarric said - and about the Wonder Woman fiasco.

   What will Ban's platform be? At the UN, he he give the top job in Kenya to his own son in law, without recusing himself. He has allowed his mentor Han Seung-soo to be a UN official while on the boards of directors of Doosan and of Standard Chartered bank, which has UN contracts. He has evicted the Press which has asked about his nepotism throughout his tenure. See here. So: corruption, nepotism and censorship? We'll have more on this.

On October 17, Inner City Press asked Ban's outgoing spokesman Stephane Dujarric why his office had not made available Ban's speech in Washington DC on October 14 to the Council of Korean-Americans but had widely emailed out Ban's speech the same day while getting another honorary degree in Maryland.

    Dujarric replied, with characteristic defensiveness, that Ban's Friday evening speech at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center in DC was private. Vine video here. On October 18 when Inner City Press followed up and asked how much was charged or sought to hear Ban, Dujarric said to ask the organizers.

  Well, the Council of Korean Americans began promoting Ban's attendance, as UN Secretary General, as early as August - and sought $100,000 “platinum” sponsorships. Here's a tweet from September.

Here is the $100,000 pitch.

  Is this ethical?

October 17, 2016

ICP Asked New SG Guterres About Yemen, His Transition Team Here

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, October 14 -- When new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres came to take questions outside the General Assembly hall on October 13, he was first asked about Syria and cited his past as head of the UN refugee agency.

Inner City Press asked, “And Yemeni people?” - referring most recently to the double-tap airstrike on the funeral in Sana'a.

  Guterres took the question, adding in South Sudan as well, and said he will try to be an honest broker. That would be a welcome change, and one that we will closely cover as censorship restrictions are lifted. Now on October 14, Guterres announces this team:

"Following his appointment yesterday by the General Assembly of the United Nations as Secretary-General-designate, António Guterres announced the composition of a transition team that will help him prepare for the assumption of his duties on 1 January 2017. Here's some of the absurdities they should fix, on Haiti cholera and media restrictions.
 
The members of the team are:
 
Transition Team Chief: Ms. Kyung-wha Kang (Republic of Korea). She previously served as Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights and Director General of International Relations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of the Republic of Korea. She is currently Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator and Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs.

Senior Advisor/ Spokesperson: Ms. Melissa Fleming (USA). She has held leading international communications positions at the OSCE, with a focus on human rights, conflict prevention and reconciliation and at the IAEA on nuclear non-proliferation, safety and security. She is currently Head of Communications and Spokesperson for the High Commissioner at UNHCR.

Senior Adviser: Ms. Michelle Gyles-McDonnough (Jamaica). She has practiced privately as a lawyer, served as advisor to the Secretary General of the Organization of American States and has deep development experience within UNDP, including as UN Resident Coordinator for Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei Darussalam. She’s currently Deputy Assistant Administrator and Deputy Regional Director Designate for Asia and the Pacific.

Senior Adviser: Mr. João Madureira (Portugal). He has a distinguished career in his country’s Diplomatic Service. He is currently Minister Counsellor in the Permanent Mission of Portugal to the UN.

Senior Adviser: Mr. Radhouane Nouicer (Tunisia). He served at UNHCR for over 18 years in the field and as Director of the Middle East and North Africa Bureau. He was Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the Tunisian Transitional Government in 2011. He is currently Regional Advisor for the Yemen Humanitarian Crisis.  

The Transition Team will interact with UN officials, Member States and civil society to ensure an informed and smooth transition. "

  On October 14 inside the GA hall, speakers included Chile's Ambassador Christian Barros and the UK's Matthew Rycroft, who spoke of the process by which Guterres was selected (but not, perhaps understandably, about Yemen). US Ambassador Samantha Power joked that she had set aside time around Christmas in case more straw polls were needed.

   In the days and weeks ahead, Inner City Press will be running its “New UN” series, which today covered the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The need for change at UN Peacekeeping and the Department of Public Information is clear. But how will the UN become anything near to an honest broker? We are hoping for it. Watch this site.

October 10, 2016

On Yemen, ICP Asks UK, France, NZ & Saudi After Airstrike on Funeral, No Draft Yet

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS,  October 8 -- The Saudi led coalition bombed a funeral in Sana'a, Yemen, on the same day the UN Security Council met about airstrikes in Syria.

Inner City Press asked Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the UN Abdallah Yahya A. Al-Mouallimi to confirm it was an Saudi strike and explain it. He said, "I am not aware of it." Vine video here.

After the French resolution failed in the Security Council, its foreign minister Jean Marc Ayrault came to the stakeout. Inner City Press asked him, loudly, if he thinks the Saudi bombardment of Yemen should also be taken up by the Security Council, after an airstrike on a funeral most recently. He did not answer, despite the question being repeated. Vine here. He left.

   While Ambassador Matthew Rycroft of the UK, which holds the Council's “pen” on Yemen, also did not answer, Vine here, New Zealand's ambassador when Inner City Press asked if his country also thinks the Saudi-led coalition should stop bombing Yemen said, “I do.” Vine here.

But by the end of the meting, following a walk-out by the UK, US and others, the UK as "penholder" on Yemen in the Security Council had not, according to the president, circulated any draft Press Statement. Watch this site.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has let the Saudi led coalition off the Children and Armed Conflict annex on Yemen, while Saudi Arabia runs for a Human Rights Council seat. How much lower can the UN get?

After a UAE warship was hit - and sunk - off the Yemeni coast near Mocha, Inner City Press on October 3 asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq for a comment, and if the UN knows if it was a warship or as claimed an aid ship.  See October 6 US travel warning, below.

On October 4 Haq returned with, "it doesn't sound as if it was on a humanitarian mission." Vine video here.October 3, 2016

On Next SG, Of Kazakh Deputy & Nordic Dreamers, Russia To Get Political Affairs?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, October 1 -- With female Eastern European group candidates low in the Next UN Secretary General straw poll conducted by Russia in the Security Council on September 26, two days later on September 28 as predicted Bulgaria nominated and switched its backing to Kristalina Georgieva from Irina Bokova.

There was a four-member questioning of the switch, but within a day it was accepted and the letter went out. Georgieva's General Assembly interview was scheduled for October 3, with a press stakeout at 1 pm.

   The plot has thickened and Inner City Press can now go beyond its previous reporting on a possible deal NOT to veto Antonio Guterres if Russia gets the Deputy Secretary General spot, either for Vuk Jeremic who has indicted he would take it, or the now “personal” candidate Irina Bokova.

There may be another “dark horse” Deputy Secretary General candidate, from Kazakhstan - and female. We'll have more on this.

    Russia, Inner City Press is exclusively informed by well-placed but not Russian sources, also wants the UN Department of Political Affairs, held for the last two times by the United States. They say there is precedent, that the USSR held the precursor to DPA post. But how would giving DPA to Russia at this time be viewed?

  In other Under Secretary General musical chairs news and musing, China is “ready to move beyond DESA,” as one source put it to Inner City Press, and wants the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations, which Herve Ladsous, the fourth Frenchman in a row, has run into the ground.

  But what would France get? UK Stephen O'Brien wants to stay on in Humanitarian Affairs, and the US in this scenario would take back Management from  Japan. What would France be left with? Some say the Department of Public Information, and point to a candidate in waiting at UNESCO. We'll have more on that, and on the UNESCO race, as well.

   At DPI, Cristina Gallach who has mis-run the Department and linked it to the Ng Lap Seng UN bribery scandal as well as then turning DPI into an eviction shop has to go.

Spain is said to be trying to parlay the last three months of its Security Council membership into a position like Disarmament, which Kim Won-soo will vacate, reportedly to again campaign with Ban Ki-moon, this time for South Korea president.

   Even at this late stage there are dark horses and dreamers. Kevin Rudd doesn't hide it, and Inner City Press hears he's lined up a country other that Australia which could nominate him. Just gone PGA Lykketoft is said to dream of the post, as is Ban's current deputy (who until now has referred all mis-Communication issues back to Ms Gallach). From Lebanon, Sigrid Kaag is said to have been trying to convince her Dutch government to nominate her, but upcoming elections have not helped. There are elections everywhere. Watch this site.

  Ukraine's Ambassador to the UN Volodymyr Yelchenko on September 29, on Georgieva, said it's too late, that she won't be able to go through the process the others have. Inner City Press Vine here. Inner City Press heard that Georgieva's General Assembly interview or informal is tentatively scheduled for Monday, October 3, two days before the sixth, differentiated straw poll. Timing is everything.

   In January of this year, Inner City Press asked Georgieva some UN reform questions from the UN Press Briefing Room, here, prior to eviction by Old SG Ban Ki-moon. Georgieva has some powerful backers, but her EU role may be a problem for Russia. Some wonder if Bokova will in fact drop out, or now count on backing to become Deputy Secretary General. Watch this site.

The fifth round of straw polling for the Next UN Secretary General dealt another blow to the lofty rhetoric on gender, with the four top finishers all men. Vuk Jeremic of Serbia edged ahead of Miroslav Lajcak for second place. Inner City Press has heard Russia might NOT veto Antonio Guterres if Jeremic or Irina Bokova got the deputy SG spot. Here are the results:

Antonio Guterres: 12-2-1
Vuk Jeremic: 8-6-1
Miroslav Lajcak: 8-7-0
Danilo Turk: 7-7-1
Susanna Malcorra: 7-7-1
Irina Bokova: 6-7-2
Srgjan Kerim: 6-9-0
Helen Clark: 6-9-0
Natalia Gherman: 3-11-1

September 26, 2016

ICP Asks Ban Ki-moon's Mentor Han Seoug-soo of Moonlighting with StanChart & Doosan, He Says Banks Too

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, September 21 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan and of Standard Chartered Bank- both of which do business with the UN, including banking business.  Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Now it seems Yes. But should it have been?

On September 21, Inner City Press asked Han Seung-soo to square his position with Ban's UN and on the boards of Standard Chartered and Doosan, which sells water equipment. Beyond the Vine video here.

ICP Asks Ban Ki-moon's Mentor Han Seoug-soo of Moonlighting with StanChart & Doosan, He Says Banks Too

Han Seung-soo, given time to think about it until the end of the stakeout by Ban's chief of communications (and censorship), nevertheless entirely dodged, citing sustainability in the private sector including banks. Sustainability of corruption?

On August 29, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric (in writing since Dujarric suspended all noon briefings after previously throwing Inner City Press out of (t)his UN Press Briefing Room) to “please state whether the Secretary General asked Han Seung-soo, given his at least two board memberships, to make public financial disclosure.”

  To this, Dujarric replied, “He is under the same rules as other envoys.” 

   So all UN envoys can be on the boards of directors of companies in the UN Procurement data base, with UN contracts, companies that make sales to countries to which the envoy gives UN speeches?

Doosan, on whose board Han sits,  has billion dollar business with Saudi Arabia, to whose money Ban deferred in dropping the Saudi-led Coalition from the UN's Children and Armed Conflict Yemen annex. This is Ban's UN: see Inner City Press first-draft 47-minute film here, "Banning the Press: Corruption in the UN of Ban Ki-moon, John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng, Yemen."  And now, Part II: "BANning Transparency," here  and Version III, with Ban's son in law Siddharth Chatterjee
September 19, 2016

For UNGA, Ban Ki-moon Prints Book on Legacy, But Who Wrote & Paid For It?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, September 18 -- As Ban Ki-moon's time at the UN winds down and he prepares coyly to run for President in South Korea, his packaging of his legacy has become a vanity amateur operation.

Take for example the hard cover book on his conference table when he met on September 18 with Donald Tusk, President, European Council and Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President, European Commission. It was called “Highlights of the tenure of Ban Ki-moon, 2007-2016.” Inner City Press asks: who wrote it? Who paid for it? Why was this done?

Money shot: #BanKiMoon's beverage (UNlike press) and vanity press legacy book: who paid for it? pic.twitter.com/v23c58FVMZ

— Inner City Press (@innercitypress) September 18, 2016

  For the next meeting, with Denmark's Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen, another copy of the Ban vanity book was out, along with a pen to sign it.

By the last meeting of the day, after Inner City Press tweeted then first published this story, the copy of the book for UNASUR's Ernesto Samper Pizano was covered up with a file by Ban's staff. Is this on the level?

 In the hall was the office of Nardos Bekele-Thomas, moved out of the top job in Kenya so Ban's son in law could occupy it before Ban leaves. Legacy, indeed....

 The Friday before UN General Assembly week starts in earnest, reporters at the UN were told of some of the upcoming meetings and how, despite restrictions, to cover them.

Inner City Press asked the head of the UN's Department of Public Information Cristina Gallach why DPI says the non-resident correspondents, the vast majority of journalists covering the UN, will be placed in basement Conference Room 1 where no only food and beverages but even water is not allowed.

(In Ban's conference room there is water and, we've noted at his all-Korean meeting, tea.)

   Gallach's reply cited to “professionalism” and rules, both of which she invoked when she ousted and then evicted Inner City Press from the UN earlier this year.

Ironically, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric less that an hour later explained having violated the rules (about those without cameras not attending photo ops) so that South Korean print journalists could witness Ban's speech to politicians visiting from Seoul.

The UN's rules are selectively implied, in this case to censor.

  Last October 19, 2015 Inner City Press asked Gallach about her attendance at the South South Awards of Ng Lap Seng, the Macau-based businessman under house arrest for bribery at the UN.

  On September 16, Inner City Press asked Gallach about the since-released Office of Internal Oversight Services audit, which found that her DPI did not due diligence on events by Ng Lap Seng fundees.

  Gallach said that the outside event - the case in Federal court - is being followed. So Inner City Press asked for her response to testimony in the case that South South News, which unlike Inner City Press the rule-invoking Gallach left in its UN office despite or because of it not asking any questions at the UN, was named as a “conduit of bribery.” This, she did not answer.

   After the briefing, which included film maker Richard Curtis whom Inner City Press asked about the Next SG race, Gallach's staffer asked for further information about the water(less) issue.

  Inner City Press added the exclusion of non-resident correspondents from access to the UN's EZTV which shows more events than the UN webcast. See flier here of the Free UN Coalition for Access, also ejected and sign torn down under Gallach. What will change? We'll see. Watch this site.September 12, 2016

Ban Ki-moon & Son In Law Use Jaffna Massacre Commander As Nepotism Defense

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow Up on Exclusives

UNITED NATIONS, September 10 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in late August awarded the top UN job in Kenya to his own son in law, Siddharth Chatterjee, and did not recuse himself.

After Inner City Press asked about this textbook case of nepotism, video here, Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric replied that an inter-agency advisory panel had been involved, before Ban signed the letter appointing his own son in law to the post.

Meanwhile, an ally of Ban's son in law Chatterjee, Dalvir Singh, has called this series of articles, despite Ban's spokesman's stonewalling and refusal to answer, unfair -- "scurrilous, unfounded and mendacious accusations" by a "blogger."

He has re-upped his / Sid's / Ban's article on Huffington Post, saying Inner City Press - which Ban ousted and evicted -- is "a blogger of questionable credentials, poor ethics and a filthy office." Not anymore! Ban Ki-moon EVICTED Inner City Press in retaliation. NYT here; petition with links here.  And see this newly edited 24-minute emerging documentary.

Dalvir Singh writes that Inner City Press, “a blogger of questionable credentials.... has hurled scurrilous, unfounded and mendacious accusations of human rights violations against Chatterjee. Major Chatterjee was a star member of my battalion, the 10th Para Special Forces, and at no time was my battalion or any member of my unit ever involved in any form of human rights violation.”

    Thou dost protest too much. Beyond the Jaffna University heli-drop on October 11, 1987, there was the Jaffna hospital massacre ten days later on October 21, 1987.  Here is the Wiki-time line (some say this may explain Ban's willingness to let the Saudi led Coalition off the UN's Children and Armed Conflict annex for attacks on health and other civilian facilities in Yemen)

"October 21, 1987 - 11h – The hospital environment came under cannon fire from the vicinity of Jaffna Dutch Fort and from overhead helicopters.

September 5, 2016

Ban Ki-moon's Promoted Son In Law Sid Chatterjee Reportedly Posed With Dead Combatants, No UN Comment

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow Up on Exclusives

UNITED NATIONS, September 2 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in late August awarded the top UN job in Kenya to his own son in law, Siddharth Chatterjee, and did not recuse himself.

After Inner City Press asked about this textbook case of nepotism, video here, Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric replied that an inter-agency advisory panel had been involved, between Ban signed the letter appointing his own son in law to the post.

  So Inner City Press has asked Dujarric who was on this panel, to assess if they were independent from Ban, and who the other candidates, at least on the short list, were.

 Dujarric has refused to provide this information, and has refused all other Inner City Press questions about Ban's son in law, including about his activities in Sri Lanka as part of the Indian Peace Keeping Force.

Dujarric has refused to answer; on September 2, he did not even acknowledge receipt of Inner City Press' questions, including about Ban's meeting with Sri Lankan President Sirisena.

   As Ban's spokesman knows, Ban is in Sri Lanka; the story can't wait. So today Inner City Press reports that it has been told of Siddarth Chatterjee posing with dead and disfigured Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam; this has been described as a war crime.

   Inner City Press twice this week asked Dujarric to describe and comment on Ban Ki-moon's son in law's activities in Sri Lanka; it is all the more pressing given the most recent UN promotion without recusal. Inner City Press also asked what forms and rules apply, a question also ignored by Dujarric with respect to a fundraiser held in the UN with Ban's past envoy to Sri Lanka, Vijay Nambiar. Inner City Press asked Dujarric to comment in this context on this, authored by Ban's son in law Sid Chatterjee: no answers.

   And so in common journalistic practice, to assist reader in deciding whether to believe or not believe these reports of Chatterjee posing with dead and disfigured combatants in violation of the Geneva Conventions, we disclose that one of the sources clearly has an interest: Chatterjee's ex-wife Shirpa Sen.

She is a medical doctor; she has said Chatterjee threatened her to stop providing any information to Inner City Press and an Indian journalist whose publication Chatterjee got to remove a report about one of his promotions under Ban from the Internet. (Censorship seems to run in the family.)

The allegation is that Chatterjee dropped her and then saw his career path advance under his new father in law, Ban Ki-moon; he made threats to make the issues of the past go away.

   We disclose this because readers have a right to know of the interest or animus of the source of information. Here is another online report; here on a court website is the decision on the divorce appeal. And here is an earlier report of Inner City Press asking Ban's spokespeople about Chatterjee's military record, in Sri Lanka Ban's 2009 visit to which Inner City Press covered in-person (Inner City Press has since been BANned, restricted.)

  A direct comment of any kind from Ban Ki-moon's spokesman, requested all week, would have been preferable.

 But Ban and his Under Secretary General for Public Information Cristina Gallach should not be able to censor by throwing the Press into the street, New York Times here, audio here.

Likewise Ban's spokesman cannot be allowed to prevent a timely article by simply refusing to even acknowledge questions submitted in writing, especially after he began the week telling Inner City Press (and the Free UN Coalition for Access which asked for in-person briefings) that he would be answering questions all week.

Ban Ki-moon's Spokesman did not answer these questions, nor on September 2 even acknowledge receipt of them.
August 29, 2016

Ban Ki-moon Signed Letter Giving Son-In-Law Top UN Job in Kenya, Confirmed to ICP

By Matthew Russell Lee, Follow Up on Exclusives

UNITED NATIONS, August 26 -- Under Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, the UN has become so lawless that Ban's son-in-law Siddharth Chatterjee was just named UN Resident Representative in Kenya without Ban recusing himself.  Inner City Press reported and asked about this on August 25. On August 26, Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric confirmed that Ban had not recused himself, had in fact signed the letter giving his own son in law the job, see below.

 How is this acceptable in an international organization? Or this: Ban's mentor Han Seung-soo is a UN official allowed to be on the boards of directors of Standard Chartered, which has UN banking contracts, and Doosan which makes sales to countries Han gives “UN” speeches to.

   On August 25, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric if Ban had recused himself from any role in his son-in-law's promotion, video here.

From the UN transcript:

Inner City Press: Mr. Chatterjee was named the UN representative in Kenya.  So I wanted to know, what’s the process for the naming of a resident representative?  And given this he’s the son-in-law of the Secretary-General, was there any recusal made?  I’m not saying he’s not qualified.  I’m not saying he’s not a long-time official.  I’m just wondering what is the process…[inaudible]… for someone being named…

Spokesman:  The regular process was used.  The fact that he is, indeed, the son-in-law of the Secretary-General, I think, does not take away anything from his very strong service over the years…

Inner City Press: I’m asking about the process.

Spokesman:  Thank you.

Dujarric's only response is that Chatterjee is qualified. That was not the question. After Inner City Press highlighted this, Ban's spokesman Dujarric returned on August 26 with a "supplemental" statement, which still confirmed that Ban had not recused himself, had in fact signed the approval of his own son in law for the promotion. Video here. From the UN Transcript:

Spokesman Dujarric: I also just wanted to give you a little bit more details on the issue you had raised yesterday with Mr. Chatterjee and expand on what I'd said.  Mr. Chatterjee was chosen through the regular process which is basically that the candidates are chosen by an interagency advisory panel which… which does not… and especially in this case… did not involve the Secretary-General.  I think he has been fully aware of the situation and has kept well away from the selection process.  For RCs, the candidates are chosen and recommended by the interagency panel.  The name of the recommended candidate is then given to the Secretary-General to sign off on.  He does not involve himself… and as I said, especially in this case… involve himself in the selection… in the selection process.  And I would just, again, reiterate Mr. Chatterjee's, I think, very strong qualifications in his career with ICRC and the UN over the years.

Inner City Press: I looked into it, too.  It seemed like they sent it to the UNDG Chair and the Secretary-General.  That's why I was asking yesterday.

Spokesman:  No, I understand.  The Secretary-General… the Secretary-General is very aware of the sensitivities of this case and has stayed well away from it.  The final signature… because the way this works is the Resident Coordinator represents the UN, and it needs the agreement of the host country.  So, the letter of appointment, in a sense, has to be signed by the Secretary-General.  But, his name is given to him by the interagency panel.

ICP Question:  Can I ask you one other?

Spokesman:  I’ll come back to you.  Video here.

Nor have the questions about Han Seung-soo, who refuses Ban's supposed call for public financial disclosure, been answered.

  Instead, Inner City Press which has asked about each of Chatterjee's promotions though the UN system under Ban (for example to and from UNOPS including censorship by the son in law, like Ban) and in the past ten months about Ban's and his head of communications Cristina Gallach's links with the John Ashe / Ng Lap Seng UN bribery scandal, was ousted from the UN in February 2016 (audio here) and had its investigative files evicted onto First Avenue in April (video here). NYT here.

   Since then Inner City Press has been BANned from covering UN events on the second floor unless it has a minder which stays with it all the time; sometime Inner City Press is told there are not enough minders, and coverage is entirely prohibited. This is censorship under Ban Ki-moon.August 22, 2016

Why Ban Ki-moon Dropped from Public List Officials Who Refuse to Disclose UNexplained

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, August 18 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan and of Standard Chartered Bank- both of which do business with the UN, including banking business.  Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Now it seems Yes. But should it have been?

Especially when, as now, it is exposed that Doosan has billion dollar business with Saudi Arabia, to whose money Ban deferred in dropping the Saudi-led Coalition from the UN's Children and Armed Conflict Yemen annex? This is Ban's UN: see Inner City Press first-draft 47-minute film here, "Banning the Press: Corruption in the UN of Ban Ki-moon, John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng, Yemen."  And now, Part II: "BANning Transparency," here.

While the UN claims Ban Ki-moon urges his officials to make public financial disclosure, now Ban has allowed the names of the officials who refuse to make any disclosure to no longer even be mentioned on the list of officials.

 For example, while in 2013 Herve Ladsous the head of peacekeeping was listed, and said he was maintaining confidentiality, in 2015 he is not listed at all.

On August 18, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq about the continued decline of transparency under Ban, Vine here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: you've referred a couple times in recent days to the idea of… of public financial disclosure by… by officials.  And I've seen on the website that Ban Ki-moon says that he urges his officials to do it, but, of course, it's not required.  That I understand.  But, what I've noticed is that until recently, in previous years, there's been a list of all officials.  And if you click some names, it says, "I choose not to disclose."  For 2015, the most recent year, the officials who don't disclose aren't even listed.  So, it seems like it's a step back.  And I wanted to know, for example, Mr. Hervé Ladsous was listed in 2013 as declining to disclose.  He's the head of peacekeeping, as you know.  I don't know how the urging of Ban Ki-moon resulted in that.  But, in 2015 he's not even on the list.  So, maybe you know or you can ask them, how is it decided to drop the names from the list of officials who choose not to disclose?  Because it makes it even more opaque, obviously, because you can't even tell that they didn't disclose.  They're not listed, unless you do cross-reference back…

Deputy Spokesman:  No, well, you know who the officials of the UN are.  They either choose to make their disclosure on a voluntary basis or not.  That is their decision.  However, regardless of whether they make it public or not, they do make disclosures to the UN, and those are reviewed.

ICP Question:  Right.  Was it specific… was it a change in policy, from all the years, 2000… for example, Mr. [Mathew] Nimetz appears in 2007, but he doesn't appear in 2015.  Mr. Han [Seung-soo] doesn't appear.  So, who decided… I guess it's the ethics… on whose authority was it decided to make it less opaque which officials are not following Ban Ki-moon's ostensible urging to disclose?

Deputy Spokesman:  Well, like I said, there's still financial… the public financial disclosures are still available, and that's the basic point.  If they choose to make them public, they're available on the website.

The conflicts of interest allowed by Ban Ki-moon in his UN are extensive. Today's example is  Matthew Nimetz, Ban's Personal Envoy for the talks between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

    Nimetz is Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of General Atlantic LLC which, among other things, has invested in Studio Moderna Holdings B.V., a for-profit company that operates in FYROM. This is Ban's UN. It doesn't even answer.

August 15, 2016

Ban's Adviser Han Seung-Soo With UN StanChart, Spox Claims Bullying

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, August 11 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan Infracore - which does business with the UN. Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Now it seems Yes. But should it have been?

Especially when, as now, it is exposed that Doosan has billion dollar business with Saudi Arabia, to whose money Ban deferred in dropping the Saudi-led Coalition from the UN's Children and Armed Conflict Yemen annex? This is Ban's UN: see new Inner City Press 47-minute film here, "Banning the Press: Corruption in the UN of Ban Ki-moon, John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng, Yemen."

As Inner City Press first reported and asked about on August 11, Han Seung-soo is on the board of directors of Standard Chartered bank, awarded the UN's master banking services contract (see this UN document, at Paragraph 50), and a brokerage contract (UN Procurement website, here).

When Inner City Press asked about this and how many OTHER board Han is on that do business with the UN, Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq cut off the questions and claimed Inner City Press was “bullying” him. Video here; UN Transcript here
August 8, 2016

Ban's Adviser Han Seung-Soo Is Director of UN Contractor Doosan, UNethical?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series

UNITED NATIONS, August 5 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan Infracore - which does business with the UN. Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Could it be?

After publishing these links, Inner City Press on August 4 asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about it, and about Jane Holl Lute for the second time -- this time, answered unlike the five days of questions about UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan being on an outside board of a corporation which has held events for, among other things, sneakers in the UN.

So does the UN only answer when it can say that Yes, Ban Ki-moon approved? On August 5, Inner City Press asked again, video here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: Yesterday I'd asked about Han Seung-soo and whether he's the Special Adviser.

Deputy Spokesman:  Yes, yes, he remains Special Adviser.  I've put in a request to the Ethics Office to see whether he's made any notifications of different business dealings.  I believe he may have done some, but I'm trying to get it from the Ethics Office.  Alas, at this time of summer, there are some offices that are… will be harder to get replies back from so I'll let you know once I have it.

Question:  Sure.  I guess I want to understand.  There's a rule that says a person needs approval from the Secretary-General for outside.  Does that apply here, or is it just a matter of saying that you're doing it?

Deputy Spokesman:  Well, first I need to check, again, whether the Ethics Office has had any notifications of any other activities. 


 Video here. From the August 4 UN transcript:


August 1, 2016

On DSS Scandal, UN Refuses To Name Sponsor, If Ban Approved Or Just Negligent

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, July 29 -- As the UN bribery scandal gathered force Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called for an audit by the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services of the Global Sustainability Foundation (GSF), David Ng Lap Seng's Sun Kian Ip Group and its affiliates including the "World Harmony Foundation" and pleaded-guilty Francis Lorenzo's South South News, among others.

While as of July 27 Ban and his Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach still have this last "bribery conduit" in a UN office after evicting Inner City Press for investigating it, and them, more dubious events are scheduled for Ban's UN. (Gallach, who appeared with Lorenzo, spoke in the GA Hall on July 29 - given her retaliatory evition of Inner City Press, it would only half cover the event with one of Ban's minders.)

On July 29 Inner City Press asked Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, for the second day in a row, if UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan's position on the board of the directors of the sponsor of an August 2 event, which has links with pleaded-guilty Francis Lorenzo, was approved by Ban Ki-moon as required by UN rules.

  Rather than answer this simple question, Haq said he is not aware of any problem with the individual. Does that mean that Ban Ki-moon has given up even pretending to enforce UN ethics rules? Or that Ban Ki-moon has approved this UN Inspector's moonlighting with entities linked with the UN's Lorenzo / John Ashe (RIP) / Ng Lap Seng bribery scandal?  

One of the links is through an event held in the UN in January 2015 which Inner City Press has reported about and asked about, by “Reelcause” - the UN speakers included not only UN DSS Inspector Matthew Sullivan, a JBF board member, but also UN DSS Officer Anthony Barzelatto. We'll have more on this, as the UN is refusing to answer the most basic factual questions.

   Even the simple question of who sponsored the use of the UN on August 2, a mission or a UN department, was stonewalled by Ban's Haq. He said, ask the group holding the event. Well, no. The UN premises are being used, and this requires a sponsor.

   In fact, the head of the group now in a press release identifies himself as a UN Ambassador for Peace and Sport. Did Ban Ki-moon give him this title? Or does anything go, now that Ban's own Secretariat sold documents to Ng Lap Seng and Ban only wants to run for President of South Korea?

Now that Ban's UN goes so far as to evict the Press asking the question and "mis-speaks" to the UN Special Rapporteurs on Freedom of Expression and on Human Rights Defenders, and to either the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee or to Nobel Peace Prize laureate Jose Ramos-Horta?

Inner City Press and @InnerCityPress first reported on the dubious concussions event in the UN, involving Matthew Sullivan in 2014, before he and Ban and Gallach ousted and evicted Inner City Press from the UN.

Here is a notice of a for-profit event in the UN announced for August 2 by the Jack Brewer Foundation including JBF (UN) authorized board member UN Department of Safety and Security Inspector Mathew Sullivan, who on February 22 told Inner City Press Ban and Gallach had Banned it from all UN premises worldwide, audio here and petition here, and who further censored Inner City Press on July 26 from covering South Sudan and Haiti meeting.

Significantly, Sullivan was listed for a UN event by “Reelcause,” whose shareholders include not only Jack Brewer Foundation but also the “Montessori Model UN,” founded by Francis Lorenzo who had pleaded guilty to UN bribery charges (while Gallach leaves Lorenzo's South South News in an office after evicting Inner City Press as it investigated it, and her and Ban's links).

The JBF, on whose board of director UN Matthew Sullivan serves, has appeared with South South News, here and Lorenzo, here (and photo).

  So l'affaire Matthew Sullivan, which Ban's spokesman is trying to stop investigation of by calling even Googling unethical, is connected to the Francis Lorenzo UN bribery scandal. Perhaps this explains Ban's spokesmen stonewalling. Lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric stonewalled Inner City Press' previous questions about Montessori Model UN.

   We also note that Jack Brewer Foundation is a shareholder of a company called "Immune Therapeutics," for which Brewer opened doors (including, literally, the UN's) to help the company sell pharmaceuticals. Immune Therapeutics' CEO is named Noreen Griffin, and she is linked to bribing imprisoned ex-Congressman William Jefferson. Why has Ban authorized one of his Security officials to be on this board of directors and to use the UN?

On July 28 when Inner City Press for the second time asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about the specifics of for-profit events in the UN and Sullivan's presence on the board of directors of the events' sponsor, rather than answer Haq tried to call Inner City Press' research and reporting “unethical,” going so far as to ask if it had started research AFTER it was Banned from covering UN meeting on Haiti and South Sudan.

   In fact, Inner City Press reported on the “concussions” event long before Ban and Cristina Gallach ousted it on February 19, and Sullivan on February 22 told Inner City Press it was Banned from UN premises worldwide.  Haq's boss Stephane Dujarric claimed that day that Sullivan had gone beyond the ouster ordered by Gallach. If so, why did Sullivan do it?

  Ban's UN has become a place where officials at all levels think they can sell access to the UN, since Ng Lap Seng so easily bought it. The scandal, as Inner City Press will shortly report, are connected. Ban's UN's response to reporting is to evict the Press, then to question whether Googling is somehow unethical. Vines here and here and here and here. Then video hereFrom the UN Transcript:

Inner City Press: yesterday I asked you about this event that is scheduled for 2 August and you told me to speak to the group and Mr. Sullivan didn't know he was on the list, and wouldn't speak at it.  Since then I've seen there are at least three other events at which he did speak by the same group, involving the same group and that he is on board of directors of the sponsor of the 2 August thing, that Jackie Brewer Foundation.  So I guess what I wanted to know is, one, to me it seems strange that he didn't know that he was listed by them if he is on the board of directors.  But I also wanted to ask, I've seen the Secretary-General orders called outside activities that say staff members should not engage in outside these activities without the approval of the Secretary-General.  So I wanted to know, since this is a private, for-profit company that has had its stock pitched based on the involvement of UN DSS (Department of Safety and Security), whether the Secretary-General has, in fact, approved this or not?  And, if not, what happens next?

Deputy Spokesman:  As I told you, he is not appearing at their function.  He was not aware of this.

ICP Question:  Did you look into it?  He is on the board of directors of the group, so I'm asking.

Deputy Spokesman:  This person who, by the way, has informed me that you apparently have taken some sort of gripe with him because he tried to talk to you at a stakeout.  I'm aware…

ICP Question:  It's not a gripe.  I'm asking you about an official DSS official on the board.  You are cutting me off.  I thought that was unprofessional.  I'm asking a question, how does this regulation apply?

Deputy Spokesman:  I was actually in the process of answering you, and then you can talk.  This is how conversations go: I talk and you talk and so forth.

ICP Question:  Just that you walk away, so that is why I'm making sure I want to ask, there are number of other questions on this.

Deputy Spokesman:  Matthew, that is not fair.  I take a huge amount of questions from you, as every transcript and every video will show.  Now, I have no problem with you asking questions.  I do not think that you should try to use the briefing in terms of personal vendettas against people.  If that is what you are doing, it's unethical and I would have a problem with that.

ICP Question:  You can say whatever you want.  Okay, what I'm asking, a senior UN DSS official is, this is all online, these are all… you could have found them yourselves with ten minutes of Googling.  He is on the board of directors of a group that you said didn't know put him on the list and there have been three separate events, one about sneakers, one about concussions in the NFL (National Football League), and these have all taken place in the ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council) Trusteeship Chamber.  So my question is for the service of this individual on the board of directors of a for-profit company for a for-profit event, has the Secretary-General given permission?  And, if not, is this reflective of a lack of due diligence as in the Ng Lap Seng case, "Yes" or "No"?

Deputy Spokesman:  First of all, to the extent that DSS ever gives briefings at these, there are briefings about security conditions.  Those are standard; outside of those, I'm not aware…

ICP Question:  I urge you to look at the press releases.

Deputy Spokesman:  I'm not aware of anything that is not a standard briefing.  Second of all, did you do any of this Googling before you had your conversation in the corridors with him?

ICP Question:  Yes, I have.  I've been actually following… I wrote about the concussion event because it's a joke these events take place in the UN that are raising money, so I'm now I'm asking you about these events because you said he didn't know and it's not credible.  He has done three events.  Look at them and see whether there were safety concerns.

Deputy Spokesman:  Like I said, I have talked to this person and this is what he said.

When after publishing a story exposing the notice and Sullivan's listed involvement Inner City Press asked Bna's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about it, Haq said he had spoken with Sullvian who said he had not been aware he was listed, and is not involved. Haq refused ot answer more about the event, and cut off Inner City Press' questions. Video here.

This is not credible. In fact, Matthew Sullivan is on the board of directors of the group holding the event, which is either a violation of UN rules or was approved by Ban "Fast and Loose" Ki-moon. The applicable rule:

"ST/AI/2000/13    Outside activities

      Section 2  Staff members engaging in outside activities authorized under the present instruction shall make clear to the organizers and participants in such activities, including any employers, that they act in their personal capacity and not as representatives of the United Nations.
 
Section 3 3.1     Under staff regulation 1.2 (o), a staff member shall not engage in any outside occupation or employment, whether remunerated or not, without the approval of the Secretary-General. For the purposes of the present instruction, the expression 'occupation' shall include the exercise of a profession, whether as an employee or an independent contractor."

 Here is a photo of Sullivan with the people he says he doesn't know listed him for the August 2 event.



There are been other events with Sullivan, for example here: "MagneGas Announces Panelists for World Water Day Summit at the UN... The Summit will begin with a welcome from the CEO of MagneGas Corporation Ermanno Santilli and Inspector Matthew Sullivan of the United Nations Department of Safety and Security."

And another ("Reelcause," here in PDF) and yet another: "Discussing the GTX SmartSoles with various officials including Inspector Matthew Sullivan of the United  Nations’ Department of Safety and Security."

In fact, the for profit company has had it stock touted citing UN Sullivan's involvement, here: DirectView Holdings, "facilitated a number of introductions and collaborative meetings for DirectView executives throughout the course of the week including with the United Nations' Inspector of Operations from the Department of Safety and Security."

While Ban Ki-moon cited immunity / impunity for 10,000 killed by cholera in Haiti, a meting on which Sullivan Banned Inner City Press from on July 26, doesn't this implicate at least US securities laws?

Since the above is easily available online, Ban Ki-moon's Office of the Spokesperson's denial and stonewalling is worse then negligent.

 Under Ban Ki-moon, as shown in the Ng Lap Seng / John Ashe case investigation of which resulted in Ban evicting Inner City Press from the UN in retaliation, using Sullivan, everything has become for sale.

Detailed evidence presented, including about Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach who signed the ouster and eviction orders, has been sitting unacted on at Ban's Ethics office, and OIOS for months. Here was Gallach at Ng's South South Awards, and here was Inner City Press questioning her about it, and her passing the buck to Ban's lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric, before her ouster of Inner City Press from which she should have been recused.

How high does this particular scam go in the Department of Safety and Security, whose Captain McNulty and seven officer physically ousted Inner City Press on February 19? Audio here; McNulty initially refused to identify himself.  DSS later cited a non-public Handbook to justify Inner City Press' ouster, here. Is USG Peter Drennan in on this? Michael "Mick" Brown, who oversees McNulty? There are some fine people in DSS, but it must be cleaned up, and all retaliation reversed and addressed.

 How about the Department of Management which is titularly in charge of these events in the UN, including Andrew Nye, Craig Boyd and British Assistant SG Stephen Cutts? Ban Ki-moon's UN is corrupt throughout, and retaliates against the Press which pursues and reports on it.  The UN's ouster and eviction of Inner City Press, and harassment and censorship since, has been pure retaliation. Now what?

Here's the notice for the August 2 event, followed by the UN's transcript of Ban's Haq's denials:

"COPsync Co-sponsors #Stand2Protect Peace Summit at the United Nations

DALLAS, July 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- COPsync, Inc. (NASDAQ: COYN), announced today that they are co-sponsoring the #Stand2Protect Peace Summit in conjunction with UN Ambassador Jack Brewer, the Blue Alert Foundation, the United Federation for Peacekeeping and Sustainable Development, and Trust 2 Protect. The Summit will be held at the United Nations Headquarters on August 2, 2016, from 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm EDT.

The goal of the United Nations #Stand2Protect Peace Summit is to bring together community and global leaders, law enforcement, politicians and influencers to discuss real solutions to end the growing distrust between communities and law enforcement. Prominent speakers at the Summit will include ... Inspector at the United Nations Headquarters Mathew Sullivan"

  This is a for-profit company, selling services to Police Departments. Why is UN DSS Matty Sullivan involved?

Inner City Press after publishing the above asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, UN transcript here and below; video here
July 25, 2016

On Next SG Straw Poll, Results & Questions of Dual Nationalities, Exclusive

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, July 21 -- As the UN Security Council held its first closed-door straw poll on the 12 current candidates to replace Ban Ki-moon as UN Secretary General on July 21, Inner City Press asked UK Ambassador Matthew Rycroft if it was too late for Australia's Kevin Rudd or others to get into the race. Video here. Rycroft replied that it is not too late, candidates can enter after the first straw poll pursuant to the Council's earlier letter.

Here from multiple sources are the results of the first straw poll; Inner City Press can also exclusively report that questions have arisen about dual nationality of some candidates, including Christiana Figueres, Vuk Jeremic and Susana Malcorra (Italy / Spain),  beyond their listed countries which nominated them. It should be noted that the UN's “PHP” forms require such disclosures.

From multiple sources, results of the first straw poll, in the format of Encourage - Discourage - No Opinion:

Antonio Guterres: 12-0-3
Danilo Turk: 11-2-2
Irina Bokova: 9-4-2
Srgjan Kerim 9-5-1
Vuk Jeremic: 9-5-1;
Helen Clark: 8-5-2
Miroslav Lajcak: 7-3-5
Susanna Malcorra: 7-4-4
Christiana Figueres: 5-5-5
Natalia Gherman: 4-4-7
Igor Luksic: 3-7-5
Vesna Pusic: 2-11-2

After the straw polling, Ambassadors said no comment and it went well; Council President Koro Bessho said much the same on UNTV. Inner City Press asked him if the actual results had been given to the President of the General Assembly. Bessho began to say yes, then clarified, no.

At least he took Press questions. The candiates most recently appeared in an event for which the UN did not even provide a UNTV camera at the stakeout so these qustions culd be asked. Inner City Press was Banned from streaming Periscope from the exit of the General Assembly hall after the event.

The "frontrunner" Antonio Gutteres is the one without a Twitter account; the runner-up Danilo Turk to his credit wants whistleblower Kompass back in the UN.

It's worth remembering that Gutteres was dissed by Ban Ki-moon when he asked for one more year atop UNHCR. Sources say Malcorra and Andrew Gilmour, recently promoted without proper process, were involved in the decision on Gutteres.  Revenge? Or just more of Ban's bad judgment, like he and his head of "Public Information" Cristina Gallach evicting Inner City Press as it covers the UN?

July 18, 2016

ICP Asks Ban's Spox Why 6 UN Guards Hindered It, Spox Replies He Was Stalked While NHK

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 14 -- When Inner City Press went to cover UN Security General Ban Ki-moon's speech on human rights on July 12, it was required to be escorted by one of Ban's minders, due to its eviction earlier this year by Ban and his Under Secretary General for Public Information, Cristina Gallach.

  But even after escort by a minder, just before Ban Ki-moon's speech Inner City Press was surrounded by six UN Security officers who demanded that it leave.

When Inner City Press pointed out that the Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit does not have enough staff, the officer in charge said Inner City Press would be confined to “covering” the meeting from the third floor - that is, unable to speak with any diplomats (several of whom, even on July 12, approached to speak with Inner City Press, at least until Ban's guards targeted Inner City Press for censorship.)

   The UN officers claimed Inner City Press misspoke, so since Inner City Press was, as it told MALU and as other correspondent can do but didn't on July 12, stakeout out the meeting, here is the audio.

When the same thing happened on July 14 while Inner City Press, escorted by MALU, staked out and covered the General Assembly's Next SG session with Christiana Figueres, Inner City Press went -- delayed by the harassment -- to the day's noon briefing and after questions on Yemen, Kosovo, Burundi, South Sudan and Thailand asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric what the rules are on not being hindering from covering such meetings once escorted by MALU.

    Rather than provide any UN rule, Dujarric said as his response that Inner City Press had “stalked” him on the sidewalk, a reference to Inner City Press, being informed that Dujarric had arranged to be filmed by NHK for a profile of himself, and streaming a Periscope of Dujarric's already-agreed to session with a media he likes. July 14 audio here, video here.

   In essence, Dujarric called critical coverage “stalking,” despite being a spokesperson. And he uses the UN podium response to the Press' question about media access rules to try to discourage critical coverage and questions, and to send a message to UN Security that it is fine to target Inner City Press. Previously, Dujarric while withholding Inner City Press' accreditation, said he didn't like its coverage of Ban Ki-moon or Herve Ladsous. This is censorship, by a supposed spokesperson for the UN. We'll have more on this.

July 11, 2016

In S Sudan Leaked UN Memo Says 150 Soldiers Dead As Some Joined Kiir's Tiger Force

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, July 9 -- In the UN's continued withholding of news and answers about South Sudan, the reports of the UN's own knowledge of abuses are now being withheld from its own impacted national staff.  So Inner City Press has published below multiple leaked documents from inside UNMISS and from non-governmental organizations - and compares them to contradictory official statements by the UN.

The UN has responded by evicting Inner City Press from its long-time shared office in the UN on April 16, video here and here (Periscope). Still, here exclusively from inside UNMISS is a UN memo on the most recent violence, even as the UN Security Council held no meeting on July 7, see below:

“JUBA Nearly 150 soldiers are reported dead from Friday's clash between South Sudan's rival forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and those loyal to  the First Vice President Riek Machar.
 
The heavy fighting occurred on Friday near J1, the Presidential Palace, between troops of the South Sudanese army (SPLA) and protection unit of the First Vice President, Machar, of the SPLA in Opposition.
 
35 of the SPLA-IO soldiers lying dead and over 80 died from the SPLA’s side.
 
All the bodyguards of the First Vice President who were deployed on the street outside J1 were killed, said a senior SPLA officer.
 
A huge force came from nowhere and joined up with President Kiir’s tiger force and opened fire on Machar’s bodyguards deployed outside the Palace for protection."

On July 8 amid the surge in violence in South Sudan, the UN Ambassador of Lithuania, until recently on the UN Security Council, tweeted on Friday that the Council would meet that afternoon about the crisis. But when ICP asked the month's President of the Council, Koro Bessho of Japan, he said there would be no Security Council meeting that afternoon. The Lithuania ambassador deleted the tweet; the UNTV crew took down their camera. This as, for example, World Vision went on lock-down in Juba. Ban Ki-moon, in China, issued a canned statement - this as his spokesman refuses Press questions about South Sudan, calling them "too granular."July 4, 2016

As UN Bribery Ng Case Expands, Ban Ki-moon in Para 12, His Spox Covers Up

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 1 -- As the UN bribery scandal gathered force Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called for an audit by the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services of the Global Sustainability Foundation (GSF), David Ng Lap Seng's Sun Kian Ip Group and its affiliates including the "World Harmony Foundation" and South South News, among others. The UN Development Program began its own audit, which Inner City Press published here, and asked Ban's spokesman for a press conference about.

On July 1, Inner City Press asked this Ban Ki-moon spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, about the superseding indictment of Ng Lap Seng to include UNDP and all acts through September 2015. Paragraph 12 names the Secretary General. Video here;
UN Transcript here:

Inner City Press: the UN bribery case of Ng Lap Seng has now had a superseding indictment that accuses Mr. Ng of buying benefits from UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) and expands the time limit of the case up to September 2015.  So, one, I'm wondering if you have any comment on this, as it seems to be an expanding case.  And, two, I want to reiterate the request now for several months that UNDP hold a press conference, at least on the audit that it released, and… and state where… why the money that was given…

Spokesman:  I think on your… on your second part, you can address that request to UNDP.

Inner City Press:  I have.

Spokesman:  I have not seen the new indictment, so I cannot comment on it.

Inner CityPress:  You had said from here that they would do it.  I've spoken to the head of the office, and he hasn't done it.  I'm wondering, has the Secretary, Ban Ki-moon, head of the system…

Spokesman:  I know where we are.

Inner City Press:  Cover up.

Spokesman:  You're always free and have always been free to express your opinions. 

Dujarric said Inner City Press is free to say what it wants . Yes: from the street, to which Ban and his Head of Communications, with an assist from Dujarric, first threw Inner City Press on February 19 (audio here) then evicted its files (Video here.) On July 1, Dujarric at noon said he hadn't read the superseding indictment. Then he left the UN just after 3 pm, with no briefing for six days. This IS a cover up, on which we're have more.
June 27, 2016

Brexit's UN Fall-Out, UK Less Likely to Veto Malcorra, Scottish P5 Q? 

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 24 -- With the world awash in Brexit punditry, how will the UK vote to leave the EU impact the UN? Ban Ki-moon came out with a wishy-washy statement from his meeting with six ad agencies in Cannes, linking the EU with humanitarian and the UK with development.

   The UK's Stephen O'Brien, said by other senior UN humanitarian officials to be trying to stay on atop OCHA under a Next SG, may find it more difficult.

   And speaking of Next SG, how might this impact the chance of Susana Malcorra, campaigning for Malvinas only this week as Argentina's foreign minister? A trusted Inner City Press British observer opines Brexit helps Malcorra, moaking the UK more reluctant to veto or openly oppose her, amid questions of its Permanent Security Council seat if Scotland breaks away.


Malcorra this week chaired a meeting about sexual violence in conflict, which some found ironic. We'll have more on this. For now, Inner City Press entrance Periscope here. In the UN system, UNHCR and IOM rushed this video out, and UNTV broke out the reading of Ban's statement, here.
June 20, 2016

UN Rapporteurs Mistold by Ban's Gallach Of "Altercation," Press Eviction Pretext

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 16 -- How does the UN under Ban Ki-moon and his "Public Information" chief Cristina Gallach pretextually evict the critical Press from its long time office and confine it to minders, hindering further reporting on their corruption?

This UN "Aide Memoire," which Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric called "leaked" and refused to answer questions on, shows how - as does this Gallach's letter of May 25, 2016. On June 16, Inner City Press was belatedly provided with a copy of the questions UN Special Rapporteurs Kaye and Forst sent to Gallach on February 25, put it online here:

So Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's Spokesman Stephane Dujarric about the letter(s), Video here, Vine here, UN Transcript here:

Inner City Press: I've become aware today of a letter that was sent by Special Rapporteur David Kaye and Special Rapporteur Michel Forst to Ms. [Cristina] Gallach of DPI [Department of Public Information] on 25 February, asking about ouster and eviction of Inner City Press.  And her response was two months later, and she referred to an altercation in this room that required… so I'm asking you.  You were here.  Other than you turning off my phone, was it an altercation?  Is that an accurate statement?

Spokesman Dujarric:  Matthew, Matthew… I have not… I will not comment on your personal issues.

Inner City Press:  You're saying it's a personal issue.  This was a letter sent to the Special Rapporteur.

Spokesman:  And the letter, if you want to ask for the letter, you could ask the Special Rapporteur.

Inner City Press:  No, I've seen the letter. 

And below is Gallach's letter, here, which itself calls for action.

UN's Gallach Claims Evicted ICP Because Of “Altercation” When Video Shows None, Except Ban Spox Trying To T... by Matthew Russell Lee

It was provided to Inner City Press only on June 16, by a UN / Kaye staffer, under this cover letter:
And herebelow is Gallach's letter, which itself calls for action. It was provided to Inner City Press only on June 16, by a UN / Kaye staffer, under this cover letter:

"Two UN Special Rapporteurs communicated to ask for clarification on your case last February. The letter was made public just recently in the report of all communications sent by rapporteurs in the period accessible here (communications of this type remain confidential initially and are made pubic every HRC session):


UNDPI responded to your letter only in May (and this is why the response is not made public online - it will come only in September). In any case, the SR encloses here the response received. Again, sorry for the slow communication. With thanks and regards,
Marcelo Daher, Human Rights Officer, Special Procedures Division, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

And here is from Gallach's highly problematic letter:

“The privilege of the use of such office space was withdrawn after an incident in which Mr Lee trespassed in a closed meeting of the United Nations Correspondence [sic] Association. The disturbance and altercation that his behavior caused required the presence of United Nations Safety and Security Officers to defuse. Thus, as was made clear in my letter of 19 February 2016 to Mr. Lee his behavior did not comport with the express requirements of the United Nations Media Accreditation Guidelines, which are applicable to all journalists to the United Nations. These circumstances, consequently, occasioned the withdrawal of Mr. Lee's resident correspondent accreditation.”

  This paragraph is full of lies. There was no altercation - the only physical contact was Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric stabbing at Inner City Press' cell phone to try to turn off the Periscope live stream.

  It was Inner City Press which asked for a UN Security guard to come, to rule if it was a closed meeting or not. The UN has separately told the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee that it has no written record that it was a closed meeting -- so how did Inner City Press “trespass,” as Gallach alleges and misstates to the Special Rapporteurs?

June 13, 2016

UN Told Nobel Winner Ramos-Horta ICP "Openly" Broke UNpublished Rule, Geneva Next

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 11 -- For ten years as Inner City Press covered the UN in ever greater detail, showing Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's Herve Ladsous' inept overseeing and cover up of sexual abuse and exploitation by peacekeepers, disparate treatment in Mali, dalliance with genocide in Sri Lanka and prospectively Burundi, impunity for cholera deaths in Haiti and until now for UN lead poisoning in Kosovo and cravenly pro-Saudi position on Yemen amid the airstrikes (BBC this week here from Min 6:18), it was never thrown out of the UN.

Now in 2016, Ban Ki-moon's last year at the UN, it has been. New York Times of May 14 here. 

The issue is to be raised at the UN Human Rights Council this coming week. Here is what UN Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach told Nobel Peace Prize winner Jose Ramos-Horta, that Inner City Press has "open" violated a rule - when the Aide Memoire, here, shows the UN says it has no written record the meeting was closed and the Handbook allegedly violated is not public:

"Dear mr Ramos-Horta,

Many thanks for your message which allows me to inform you about the
decision I have taken on the type of accreditation that Mr Lee has and will have in the future.

Recently mr Lee openly broke the rules that guide all the resident correspondents. After careful consideration of the internal report elevated to me, I decided to continue providing him with a press pass that allows him to work without any impediment at the UN, as the vast majority of
journalists. What the UN cannot do is to let him use an space exclusively for  him, after the mentioned events.

As you can see, mr Lee will have a valid press card as soon as he presents himself to the accreditation premises.

Rest assured that I am the first person to be interested in ensuring totally free and safe reporting from the UN HQ and about the UN. This is what mr. Lee will be able to do.

I remain at your disposal for any further clarification that you might need and want. My warmest regard, Cristina"

But the UN says it has no written record the meeting was closed; the Handbook allegedly violated is not public. And "without impediment" has turned out to mean "with minders," and even not permitted to cover a Western Sahara briefing Inner City Press was invited to, only on June 10.

 The UN is trying to give Inner City Press' long time shared office to an Egyptian state media, Akhbar Elyom, whose correspondent hasn't come close to meeting the three day a week requirement and never asks any questions. It rewards others like this, while retaliating against and trying to censor the critical Press.

This will be raised this week at the UN Human Rights Council; the UN in continued attempt to censorship has not responded to Inner City Press' formal requests submitted more than two week ago. Watch this site. 

On June 8 Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric outright refused to provide a copy of, or any answer questions about, the "Handbook" the alleged violation of which the UN told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was the basis for evicting Inner City Press. Aide Memoire to SFRC here.

Before Inner City Press was even able to ask the question, Dujarric cut it off, and later disallowed an unrelated Press question about other UN corruption. Video here, transcript here and below, with quotes from Ban Ki-moon later on June 8.

Ban later on June 8 said: "I will continue to defend the rights of journalists and to do everything possible, publicly and privately, to ensure that journalists have the freedom to work...I will also continue to stand up for the rights of journalists and their defenders to be represented here at the United Nations.

"I am extremely disturbed by recent remarks by the President-elect of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte. [Inner City Press had asked, here.] I unequivocally condemn his apparent endorsement of extrajudicial killing, which is illegal and a breach of fundamental rights and freedoms.  Such comments are of particular concern in light of on-going impunity for serious cases of violence against journalists in the Philippines. I have expressed my disappointment that the Non-Governmental Organization Committee voted to deny the Committee to Protect Journalists consultative status with the Economic and Social Council...I have presents for each of you [segue to presentation]. "

e This is what it has come to: censorship while Ban exchanges gifts and drinks champagne with his friends and sells out the UN human rights lists to the highest bidder (for now, Saudi Arabia.) From the June 8 transcript:

Inner City Press:  I've asked you about this aide-mémoire that was sent by the UN to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.  So I want to ask you about it again.  What I want to ask you about…

Spokesman:  My answer's not going to change.

Inner City Press:  No, here's what I want to ask you about specifically.  You call it a leaked document.  It's hard to understand if it's sent from the UN to a committee.  It's leaked.  But this is my question.  And it's sort of a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) like question.  The document says that what was violated is something called the UN Handbook for Safety and Security Personnel.

Spokesman:  Matthew, Matthew, your personal issues will not be discussed here.

Inner City Press:  You're calling it personal…

Spokesman:  Thank you.  Masood?

Inner City Press:  But if you can punish journalists, where is the document?  I'm requesting the handbook.

Spokesman:  Talk to DPI (Department of Public Information).

Inner City Press:  I did, and they don't have it.

Spokesman:  Talk to them again.

Even as groups like the Government Accountability Project tell Ban to reverse the eviction and give Inner City Press back its long time office and Resident Correspondent pass, Ban's UN tellingly moved to award Inner City Press' office to Egypt state media Al-Akhbar / Akhbar Elyoum. 

While Ban told Inner City Press "That is not my decision," and his Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach has yet to explain anything to Inner City Press, on June 5 we published the UN's "Aide Memoire" which claims that the "rule" against being in an interpreters booth is in a UN Security handbook that is not available to the public - it is not on the Internet, not on the UN's in-house iSeek and on June 6, UN MALU did not have it -- and states there is no paper work for the underlying meeting being closed. 

On UN Eviction of ICP, UN Aide Memoire to Senate Foreign Relations Committee Admits No Written Record, Oral... by Matthew Russell Lee

June 6, 2016

ICP Asks Ban's Spox of Ng & Corruption, Request for Q&A, "All the Time You Need"

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 31 -- When Ban Ki-moon wrapped up his five day campaign trip in South Korea with a three-question "press conference" at the UN's DPI-NGO conference, without irony he cited media freedom.

Then Ban criticized "coverage of what was supposed to be off-the-record meeting with the Kwanhoon Club" of political correspondents. Even during Ban's long visit to South Korea, Inner City Press in New York where it has been evicted from its long time shared UN office and confined to minders, told not to question diplomats asked the UN why no transcript was provided of Ban's session with the Kwanhoon Club.

On June 2 Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric about indicted UN briber Ng Lap Seng, if the Department of Public Information has followed up on the failures identified in the UN' s audit, and for Q&A with Ban. Video here, from the UN transcript:

Inner City Press: Two related questions.  One is actually about New York.  There's a front-page story in the Times today about the pattern of extremely affluent defendants being allowed to build themselves, quote, gilded cages.  One of the three examples is Ng Lap Seng, who's charged with bribery at the UN, $50 million bond living in his apartment quite near here, GPS.  So I wanted to know, as a matter of sort of rule of law, does the UN system or the Secretary-General have any view of the justice of the most affluent defendants being able to essentially hire their own guards and live in their own apartment?

Spokesman: I have no specific comment at this point on this very interesting story on the front page of the New York Times.

Inner City Press: Maybe you'll have this or can get this.  The OIOS [Office of Internal Oversight Services] audit of the Ng Lap Seng or, alternately, John Ashe scandal set a deadline of May 31st for… for the Secretary-General to ensure that DPI [Department of Public Information] improved its procedures for uses of the lobby and of due diligence.  So I wanted to know, can you state that it's been done, and can the letter that went out to the departments be released in the spirit of transparency?

Spokesman:  I'm sure all our colleagues in the departments and DPI are in contact with OIOS to full implementation of the audit.  If I can share more with you, I will. Then a welcome follow up, video here: "as Matthew just mentioned, the ongoing corruption story.  There are questions at this time, so it would be really nice to hear the Secretary-General respond on topics that we have… don't have him on the record at all on camera or audio."

Finally, after Dujarric cut off the question, this:

Inner City Press: follow-up in the form of request of a question.  How long… even though some of it was off the record, how long was the Secretary-General's press conference or press encounter with the Kwanhun Club in Jeju island?  And can we get that amount of time sometime between now and the end of the term…?

Spokesman:  You will get… you will get all the time that you need."

   Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq - his lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric accompanied him for the whole Korea trip -- replied that sometimes Ban gives “exclusives” even to small groups of journalists. But the photo with the Kwanhun Club shows more than a dozen journalists.

So on May 31 Inner City Press asked Ban's lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric, video here, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: the Secretary-General, I saw that when he left South Korea, he said that he’d been misunderstood; there had been too much coverage of his… what was widely, widely reported as his seeming intention to run for President.  And so he said, “I would add that the coverage of what was supposed to be an off-the-record meeting with the Kwanhun Club has led to over-reaction, over-interpretation.”  I forget…  Apparently, you were there.  Was it off the record?  Because I’d asked about it here whether a transcript would be released.  It was said that it would be exclusive sometimes with groups of journalists.  I saw a photo.  It’s like a lot of journalists, like more than a dozen.  If, in fact, it was misunderstood… many people reported it.  They were there.  Was it off the record?  Was it an exclusive?  What did he say?

Spokesman:  There was a meeting that he organized with a group of senior Korean journalists.  Part of it was on the record.  Part of it was off the record.  Whether it’s a one-on-one interview or a group interview, we would not release a transcript.  I mean, we release transcripts of his press conferences.  The basic message from the Secretary-General is that, up until the very last day of the mandate that’s been given to him by Member States, he will focus on being Secretary-General and fulfilling that mandate.  Once that mandate is over, he will then decide how best to be a productive global citizen, but his… that decision will come after he leaves office.

Inner City Press:  But since he’s the Secretary-General now, I wanted to ask you about that 1946 General Assembly resolution.  There seems to be a resolution that’s still on the books that says that, even… particularly right after retirement, a Secretary-General should not have a position in a Government, given confidences he’s received from Governments.  So that’s on the books now.  Does it apply?

Spokesman:  Obviously, he’s aware of the resolution, and the rest is just speculation, because he will make up his mind as to what he will do after his term as Secretary-General ends.  Photo here.

   To read a canned statement purporting to defend press freedom while not only evicting the Press but trying to manipulate the media with different private and public messages is noteworthy. To talk about “authoritarian impulses” while having the investigative Press ousted and its files dumped onto First Avenue is doubly so. Background here.

This while at the UN in New York, the investigative Press has been oust and then evicted, with its long time office being given to Egyptian state media Akhbar Elyom, which never comes in, much less asks any questions. Click here for background.

   Ban spoke about freedom of movement, while Inner City Press is now required to have minders in order to cover meetings on the second floor of the UN Conference building, in the ECOSOC and Trusteeship Council Chambers, and has been told not to ask questions of diplomats.

  Ban went out of his way to praise the current African trip of South Korean President Park - he did not mention her Iran trip - and directly addressed South Korean youth, some of whom may be old enough to vote in 2017. Opening speeches, particularly by the national organizer(s), were largely about Ban Ki-moon.

  Those present marveled at how actual NGOs were pushed to the back of the room, with the front rows devoted to South Korean official (including some from the UN). Tweeted photo here, reply here. Will Ban Ki-moon endeavor to live up in New York, in his remaining time at the UN, to what he said at the DPI-NGO conference? Watch this site.
May 30, 2016

As Ban Politics in S. Korea, Hankyoreh Notes ICP's Qs About Kim

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 28 -- Soon to be ex-UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is in his native South Korea, where there is a Presidential election in 2017. On May 19, only to South Korean correspondents, Ban Ki-moon's senior adviser Kim Won-soo said and was quoted that Ban's is NOT a political trip. Clearly it is. Ban's "exclusive" comments to more than a dozen journalists in South Korea, photo here, were not transcribed despite the request of the Free UN Coalition for Access.

But there's a problem: not only Inner City Press -- see article in the Kyunghyang Daily News, robo-translated -- but now The Economist calls Ban Ki-moon the worst and weakest Secretary General ever.

 And as Inner City Press has asked basic questions about Ban's use of UN resources and had them dodged, now the media in South Korea is taking notice. The Hankyoreh of May 28, here, reports on Inner City Press asking "whether Ban was aware of UN Resolution II (I), which was adopted at the first General Assembly in 1946 and restricts secretaries-general from taking government positions soon after their term ends... But Haq’s response appeared to be to a completely different question - neither communicating Ban’s response nor mentioning the resolution." Slippery or greasy eel.

(Hankyoreh also says "The unusual spectacle of the Secretary-General’s actions becoming the major issue in a UN briefing - which is typically reserved for major worldwide issues - hints that the controversy over Ban’s political plans could be shaping into an international diplomatic issue." A simple review of recent UN noon briefing transcripts or videos would call this into question - but it has become the party line, as in the New York Times of May 14.)

Meanwhile on May 28 Ban continued his politics, meeting with retired politicians, such as former Prime Minister Kim Jong-pil. On May 29 he'll speak at " Rotary International Convention in Goyang, just outside of Seoul, and visit the ruling party stronghold of Gyeongsang to tour a UNESCO-listed folk village on Sunday." Since these are NOT on his public UN schedule, does it mean they are personal / political? And then the UN DPI NGO conference, on which we'll have more. Watch this site.

Ban can and has evicted Inner City Press from its long time office at the UN -- but he can't change the track record, from his victory lap in Sri Lanka in 2009, which Inner City Press reported on, to further damaging the UN's reputation in Haiti by insisting on impunity for cholera, to his negligent overseeing of rapes in the Central African Republic. For the record, what Inner City Press told the Kyunghyang Shinmun, when asked about the eviction and ouster, was not entirely negative. But more on that to follow.  May 23, 2016

UN Censors Q About Ban & Freedom of the Press from Transcript, New Low

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 20 -- For ten years as Inner City Press covered the UN in ever greater detail, showing Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's Herve Ladsous' inept overseeing and cover up of sexual abuse and exploitation by peacekeepers, disparate treatment in Mali, dalliance with genocide in Sri Lanka and prospectively Burundi, impunity for cholera deaths in Haiti and until now for UN lead poisoning in Kosovo and cravenly pro-Saudi position on Yemen amid the airstrikes, it was never thrown out of the UN.

Now it has been. New York Times of May 14 here.  And even as groups like the Government Accountability Project tell Ban to reverse the eviction and give Inner City Press back its long time office and Resident Correspondent pass, Ban's UN tellingly moved to award Inner City Press' office to Egypt state media Al-Akhbar / Akhbar Elyoum.  Tweeted photograph here.

On May 19, a sign for "Al Akhbar Yom" went up on Inner City Press' office - Inner City Press has STILL never seen the correspondent being given the stolen office.

So on May 20 Inner City Press went to get an on the record explanation from Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Duajrric, before Ban sets out on a campaign trip to South Korea (denied by his senior adviser Kim Won-soo). But not only did Dujarric refuse to answer the question - Gallach's DPI intentionally omitted from the transcript Inner City Press' entirely audible question about Ban Ki-moon's commitment to freedom of the press. The question then, answer itself.

Since the spin to the NYT is that Inner City Press' questions on corruption and censorship somehow block questions other correspondents want to ask, Inner City Press twice told Dujarric it would hold one question to the end. But Dujarric, showing that the spin is a scam, insisted: go ahead. Video here. From the UN Transcript:

Inner City Press: I have another question, but I don't want to…

Spokesman:  Well, just ask it.

Inner City Press:  No, no, I'll wait.

Spokesman:  I'd like you to ask it now.

Question:  Okay.  Stay where you are and I’ll do it as fast as I can.  I wanted to ask you, you sometimes say you don’t have a long memory, but you’ve been a Spokesman for a while.  When is the last time, to your knowledge, that the publication Akhbar al Youm has been in this room and asked a question?  And the reason I asked… you said I could ask.  I’ll do it quickly.  The office that was formerly "Inner City Press", has been given to this organization.  I've never seen them here.  I'm aware there's a rule of being three days a week here.  So, I’m wondering… and you used to implement that rule.  And the reason I’m asking you, and you’re going to say, ask MALU [Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit], I want an on the record quote.  This is a media organization that CPJ [Committee to Protect Journalists] says targets other medias for arrest for not agreeing with the Government.

Spokesman:  I will tell you that I do not have in my head the attendance records of journalists here.  Some of you are here every day.  But, for the rest of you, I don't keep tabs in my head.  And again, that’s a question for you to ask MALU.

Inner City Pres:  But, I'm asking for an on-the-record comment.  What does it say about freedom of the press…

Spokesman:  I’ve given you… Nabil?

Inner City Press' last line, "What does it say about freedom of the press," was intentionally mistranscribed and censored: it said, What does it say about Ban Ki-moon's commitment to freedom of the press."


This is today's UN: ham-handed censorship. 

The UN says Resident Correspondents must be at the UN three days a week, but Inner City Press has never seen this person, former UN Correspondents Association president Sanaa Youssef, much less asking a question in the UN noon briefing. 

The point, of course, which Dujarric did everything he could to cut off, including walking out of the brieifng room and not returning, is what does it say about Ban Ki-moon's supposed commitment to free press to evict the investigative Press here every day for a state media never here, never with questions, which targets other journalists for arrest?

The question is answering itself, but we will continue. Dujarric's deputy Farhan Haq after the briefing was heard telling DPI staff under Gallach that he had predicted Inner City Press would "go after" Akhbar Elyom.

This is today's UN: here's Haq on Jan 29, video here, and before. Haq claimed incorrectly that "non resident correspondent" passes get one through to the second floor: either years out of date or intentional inaccurate. This too is today's UN.

Scribes speaking off the record according to the New York Times of May 14 "accused [ICP] of printing gossip, rumors." That UNCA's president rented an apartment to Palitha Kohona then granted his request to screenin the UN his government's war crimes denial film is no rumor or gossip.

But Akhbar Elyom, to which Gallach's and Ban's MALU and UNCA have given Inner City