Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Ban Ki-moon Threatens Legal Action on ICP's Scoops on Brother Mining in Myanmar


By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Follow Up

UNITED NATIONS, January 17 – Ban Ki-moon has threatened to take legal actionagainst reports about his brother Ban Ki Ho mining in Myanmar, and being listed in connection with a UN delegation. 
Since even the South Korea media, perhaps afraid, cited Inner City Press' exclusive on this issue, we re-publish and amplify here - including after resubmitting the questions to the Ban Ki-moon spokesperson to whom the UN referred us, Yoon Won-joong.
Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho has done business in Myanmar through at least two companies, Inner City Press exclusively reported earlier this year. 
 The UN's response has been to refuse to answer the Press' questions and to require it to have “minders” to cover most events inside the UN. On December 16 as Inner City Press reported on this and Ban, its Periscope broadcasting camera was smashed directly in front of an event honoring Ban, as he moves to run for South Korea's presidency.
 Inner City Press' first story about Ban Ki Howas on November 3, 2016, in connection with Ki-ho's work in the United Arab Emirates with Han Seung-soo, the former South Korean prime minister who has been one of Ban's mentors. 
 As Inner City Press even earlier exclusively reported, Ban has allowed Han Seung-soo to be simultaneously a UN official, the Under Secretary General for Water and Disaster Risk Reduction, and on the boards of directors of Doosan Infracore and of Standard Chartered Bank which has contracts with the UN. 
Han Seung-soo, when Inner City Press asked him about it at a stakeout along with South African President Jacob Zuma, refused to answer: here, with video. Ban's spokesperson's response was to claim Inner City Press was "bullying" him, here.
In the final days of Ban Ki-moon's decade as UN Secretary General, covering up genocides in Sri LankaBurundi and Yemen and evicting the Press which asked about (t)his corruption, Inner City Press is reviewing Ban's end, year by year. See also this Twitter Moment.
  In 2006 after Ban was given the job since he was NOT “God's gift to humanity,” even then he was criticized for close business links with Myanmar, by Djoko Susilo among others. 
By 2008, Inner City Press asked Ban, here, "about the responsibility of private corporations doing business in Myanmar, giving the specific example of South Korea's Daewoo and its deal with Myanmar Oil and Gas. I cannot comment on specifics, Ban said, adding that 'whoever has influence' should try to convince Myanmar to improve its record."
As it turned out, Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho would do mining and other business in Myanmar, after being on a “UN delegation.” Ban Ki-moon's nephew Dennis Bahn is said to have used his uncle's name and position while trying to sell real estate in Vietnam. The Bans have yet to answer these questions. Here's the December 26 round-up story by Inner City Press.
And here, taken offline after inquiry but tweeted by Inner City Press, is a photo of Ban Ki-ho in Myanmar, for magnesium, under the banner Korea - Myanmar CEOs Partnership Plaza.
On the morning of December 27, a UN work day, Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's three top spokespeople questions including 
"please state the business activities in Myanmar of Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho, not only through KD Power which your Office has stated it understands Ban Ki-ho has left, but also through Bosung Powertec and any other company and again, all details of the “UN delegation” the link regarding which Inner City Press has previously provided your office in early November"
and
"Please state the date and separately content of the Secretary General last three communications with Park Yeon-cha or any other official or employee of Taekwang."
  More than a full day later, there were no answers, not even a confirmation of receipt. On the morning of December 28 on this Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's full paid Office of the Spokesperson:
"please definitely state that dates on which Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho began and if applicable ended employment with Bosung Powertec and KD Power or any of their affiliates, and during those time frames the companies' business activities in Myanmar."
  Five hours later, the spokespeople sheepishly closed their office and left, no answers. Having received calls from media in South Korea who have falsely been told that Bosung Powertec does no business in Myanmar, that there was no UN delegation, Inner City Press now publishes this:
Evidence (in a UN publication) of Bosung Powertec's involvement in Myanmar:

http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/unctad_asean_air2016d1.pdf

Annex 5.6. Selected Korean MSMEs (page 241)

Myanmar Bosung Powertec Co, Ltd Electronics and electric equipment and components  

Here is evidence of both Bosung Powertec and Ban Ki-ho's "previous" employer KD Power involved in Myanmar
http://english.etnews.com/news/article.html?id=20130911200006

Power instrument makers rush off to Myanmar, a land of opportunity

Yoo Chang-seon Sep 11, 2013

Small and medium power instrument makers are continually entering the Myanmarese market in order to take the Myanmarese government’s long-term power development plan as a business opportunity.

Bosung Power entered into a contract to supply power transmission tower manufacturing facilities in 2009 and 2011 with MEC, a Myanmarese national steel company, and has already set foot into the market. Following a Myanmarese branch establishment in 2011, the company is promoting the local market entry in full swing. Recently, Bosung Power is preparing a site for its own production plant in an area at a 1.5-hour driving distance from Yangon.
KD Power has been promoting to supply photovoltaic power generation system and DC household appliances since May to suburban areas of Myanmar where the power supply conditions are poor. 
On December 26 it was reported in South Korea that even while Ban Ki-moon was UN Secretary General, he received $30,000 from a businessman, in a restaurant. See here, including Park Yeon-cha (as well as Vietnamese minister Nguyen Dy Nien) with this quote:
""It would have been early 2007, shortly after Ban took office as Secretary General of the United Nations. New York has a restaurant owner who knows him well. Park called the owner of the restaurant and said, "If Ban comes to eat, give me $ 30,000 as a gift to celebrate the inauguration of the secretary general." In fact, we know that money was handed to Ban. ""
Did the UN's Office of Internal Oversight Services ever look into this? We're still waiting to hear from them. As to Ban Ki-moon's spokespeople, they have refused to answer Inner City Press' written questions back to November 25 about Ban Ki-ho, etc.
 Ban Ki-moon has largely been immune from accountability for ten years, due to a mixture of sycophantry and, when seen as necessary in 2016, censorship, eviction and restriction of the investigative Press. But  in 2017...
It is reported that Ban Ki-moon will push the button to drop the Times Square ball on New Years Eve, seemingly arranged by NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio's relentlessly pro UN Office of International Affairs (which never answeredInner City Press about any de Blasio position on Ban Ki-moon having shirked accountability for his UN bringing deadly cholera to Haiti.)
  But the moment that ball drops, Ban Ki-moon's legal immunity is over. We'll have more on this.
 In his first year, 2007, Ban Ki-moon bought in numerous South Korean staffers. Inner City Press asked and was told there was only one, then that there were five, including Kweon Ki-hwan. 
Then Ban's spokespeople including Choi Soung-ha chastised Inner City Press for asking, and demanded that the names of 51 South Korea staffers of the Secretariat be removed from Inner City Press' reporting. 
Then Inner City Press received this:
Subject: Attn: Matthew Lee, Senior Reporter
From: [Anonymity requested]
To: Matthew.Lee [at] innercitypress.com

hi - good reporting and keep it up. On the Koreans in Secretariat story, I think the question to ask is this:

"No previous UN Secretary-General has brought more than a single national to work in his office, usually as a personal assistant or press officer (Kofi Annan brought zero, Boutros brought one Egyptian... to be his personal spokesman, Perez de Cuellar brought on junior diplomat to help him. Why has Ban Ki-Moon needed to bring so many and appoint them to such high positions (ASG, D1, etc)?  What is different?"

There is a Korean 'team' which is a virtual cabinet, shadowing and if necessary circumventing all normal systems.  good luck."
  We'll have more on this.
Ban's arly censorship, which culminated in 2016 with Ban evicting Inner City Press through Cristina Gallach, audio here, and Inner City Press' camera being smashed.
  Inner City Press even before Ban's Day 1 asked about financial transparency. It would end, a decade later, with Ban refusing to say who paid for his travel, even what “carbon offsets” he supposed bought.
   On Ban's first day at work, after walking in with Vijay Nambiar who would go on to cover up genocide in Myanmar after participating in it in Sri Lanka in the White Flag Killings, Ban was asked about the death penalty (for Saddam Hussein) and replied that it is “up to member states.” His first spokesperson Michele Montas tried to repair the damage. 
In late 2016 Inner City Press saw Montas in the UN, from the “focus booth” where it does what work it can after Ban and his Under Secretary General for Public Information Cristina Gallach evicted it from its long time UN office.
 
Meanwhile Kofi Annan's spokesman Stephane Dujarric, who played a role in the eviction, isbragging that he will remain. We'll have more on this.
   The UN refused to meaningfully answer on those conflicts of interest. On November 4, Inner City Press reported Ban Ki-ho's business in Myanmar, including that Ki-ho was on a “UN delegation” in the country and had done mining in Shan state, a war zone.
   The response to this story, tellingly, was for the South Korean Mission to the UN to write to Inner City Press requesting more information and any more internet links Inner City Press had. Inner City Press provided these to the Mission and to the UN. 
  Immediately after that, one of the links was disappeared from the Internet. Inner City Press found the archived page, here. And still, no answer.
   After Inner City Press asked the UN about Ban Ki-hi having writing and signed a letter to Ban Ki-moon to join the UN Global Compact -- involved in other Ban Ki-moon scandals -- and they refused to answer that, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesperson when was the last time Ban Ki-moon spoke with Ban Ki-ho. 
  Ban's spokesperson told Inner City Press he had “no clue.” 

Ban Ki-moon has similarly denied contacts with his nephew Dennis Bahn, recently fined over $500,000 for forging documents to sell real estate in Vietnam, in connection with which he was quoted that Ban Ki-moon could get Qatar's sovereign wealth fund to buy the building.
  As Ban Ki-moon's time at the UN ran down, and he closed the UN Press Briefing Room for a Korean-only press conference on December 20, his spokespeople said that Ban Ki-ho is no longer with one of the two companies, KD Power, then used this to claim he no longer does business in Myanmar. 
But Bosung Powertec still does, and the UN has refused to explain Ban Ki-ho being on a “UN delegation” in Myanmar, nor who else from the UN was on the delegation. 

Meanwhile Ban Ki-moon promoted his own son in law, Siddharth Chatterjee, to the top UN job in Kenya without recusing himself. But that is another story of Ban Ki-moon's nepotism and corruption, which we will pursue. Watch this site.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Ban Ki-moon Corruption Exposed By ICP on Seoul Radio, Nephew Qs, Power Cover Up



By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 16 – 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 Siddarth Chatterjee to the top UN top in Kenya. 

  Ban's scripted re-entry to South Korea has featured the kissing of babies, the mis-introduction of money into the express train subway, and claims he advocated for the downtrodden - despite selling out 10,000 dead Haitians, and more Yemenis than that.

  On January 16-17 Inner City Press, which Ban had evicted from the UN as it reported on his corruption, was interviewed on Seoul's TBS Radio show "News Factory of Kim Ou-Joon," their transcript here (just machine-translate), Periscope here.  

 The topics TBS Radio asked about included Ban Ki-sang, Dennis Bahn, Ban Ki Ho and Ban Ki-moon's eviction and restriction of Inner City Press, which remains ongoing under Ban's holdover head of DPI Cristina Gallach. Some excerpts: 

Q: It has been Mr. Ban 's brother since a few years ago. Mr. And Collier International, whose son Bahn Joo Hyun joined the company and sold the Vietnamese building. Does this company have anything to do with the United Nations?

Matthew: I have been suspicious of Dennis Bahn for a long time before this indictment. Because Denis Bahn was working for Collier International, Colliers International could be said to be a lease for a UN building. It is a company that receives rent from the United Nations. I used to ask the United Nations if Dennis Bahn could work at Colliers International. Before Mr. Ban Joo tried to sell a building in Vietnam, I think there is a problem in his own work that Ban Ki-moon has worked for a company that his relatives can call a lease of the United Nations. I was not convinced at all. I argued that there should be provisions for the benefit of UN affiliates for the relatives of senior UN personnel. I already asked Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for Ban Ki -moon in May 2015, about Ban 's nephew. Information about this case has been released since 2015. In fact, not only that, but Mr. Banjo knows that he has been fined for manipulating documents in addition to the charges. But the United Nations has not responded to this and other reporters in charge of the United Nations have not covered the case. To say that Ban Ki-moon does not know about this incident is not making sense at all.


  Except to outgoing US Ambassador Samantha Power...

   On January 13, when Inner City Press asked outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power about the indictment of Ban Ki-moon's brother and nephew, who used Ban's and UN's name to try to sell a building in Vietnam.  

  Tellingly, Samantha Power said no comment, "that does not involve the UN." Video here.That is false - the indictment describes Ban Ki-moon's nephew Dennis Bahn using the UN General Assembly to angle to meet the Amir of Qatar, which Ban Ki-moon in fact did, on September 24, 2013.
  But it's a two-way streets. One of Ban's very first announcements in South Korea is that he supports the US' deployment of THAAD missiles. 
One hand washes the other. But one hand is leaving, and the other may well lose. Watch this site.
 Even on his main claim, of being a solution to the North Korea problems, Ban Ki-moon has been a failure. Click here for 2011 coverage from Inner City Press, which Ban Ki-moon is desperation in 2016 would have his head of "Communications" Cristina Gallach evict from the UN, and restrict still. How different is Ban Ki-moon from is portrayal of Kim Jong-un?
  Interest in South Korea is growing about Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho's mining in Myanmar, including Ki-ho not only being on a "UN delegation" as ICP first reported, but having a January 21, 2015 meeting with Myanmar officials - and UN officials. We'll have more on this: including on an upcoming South Korean radio program.
  Ban's moonlighting mentor Han Seung-soo was allowed by Ban to be a UN official while his Doosan Infracore sold desalinization equipment in the UAE, where Han gave speeches - and sold equipment to a gold miner(hmm) in Myanmar.
And after leaving the UN, Ban openly enlisted a person still in the UN job he'd given him, Jeffrey Sachs, to campaign for South Korea's presidency with him. This is now reported by CNBC as well, here.
Inner City Press on January 9 asked Ban's holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric about Sachs' comments and Dujarric said, as he so often does without coming back with anything, that he will look into it. Video here.
This while media reports link “full time” UN official Kim Won-soo to Ban's wannabe campaign.
  Ban Ki-moon has used and abused the UN, not only the General Assembly resolution he is ignoring by running, but by using public taxpayers' money to further his own ambition. 
In his final year Ban evicted Inner City Press from the UN, where still under his successor it remains restricted to minders to cover events on the UN's second floor.
  Back in 2009, when Inner City Press reported on Ban's nepotism in connection with a promotion of Ban's son in law, an invitation to lunch came from South Korea's Mission to the UN. 
Then deputy ambassador Kim Bong-hyun used the lunch to berate Inner City Press on how to cover (and not cover) Ban. (The article, and his full reply, are here). Now he's listed on Ban's campaign team, along with still UN official Kim Won-soo and former South Korean Ambassadors to the UN Kim Sook and Oh Joon.
  Oh Joon has just given an interview claiming that press criticism of Ban Ki-moon is of his "inclusive leadership." How about his nepotism: son in law promoted to top UN job in Kenya, nephew with UN landlord, brother Ki-ho mining in Myanmar after being on a UN delegation?
  Tellingly, the UN's Office of Internal Oversight Services never looked into or acted on these; Ban through still at the UN Cristina Gallach had Inner City Press evicted and still restricted, still even on January 9, 2017 harassed for daring to cover the UN...

Sachs, Ban and his fan club, UN Censorship Alliance, UN Photo
   In early January, Inner City Press asked Kim Won-soo directly, when will you be leaving the UN? He refused to answer, backing away smiling. But it is no joke, to take public funds while reportedly on the campaign team of a political candidate. We'll have more on this.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Exclusive: In UN, Guterres Memo Preaches Teamwork And Impacting Public Perception, ICP Publishes


By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, January 15 -- Two weeks into the tenure of Antonio Guterres as UN Secretary General, Inner City Press is exclusively publishing his four page memo of his vision for his Office, with - what else - an organogram at the back. Scribd here, pdf here.

  The memo begins: 

"The Secretary-General, Deputy Secretary-General, Chef de Cabinet, Senior Adviser on Policy and the Assistant Secretary-General for Strategic Coordination will function as a team and expect the staff of the Executive Office to do likewise.
"The role of EOSG will not be operational, nor will it supplant the functions of line departments. Rather it will aim to empower and draw upon the work of the Departments as well as Agencies, Funds and Programmes, fostering cooperation between them in pursuit of
the priorities set by Member States and the Secretary-General.
"EOSG will be forward-looking, open to new ideas and welcoming of dissenting views, drawing on and commissioning research and inputs from a wide variety of internal and external sources to support senior decision-making and strategic thinking.
"Strategic communications will be an integral part of EOSG functions, both internally for clarity of the leadership message within the United Nations family and externally for the
maximum impact in public perception."

  Inner City Press publishes the memo, obtained in the past two weeks from multiple sources, to increase public knowledge and transparency of the UN. One senior UN official who gave the memo to Inner City Press said that more substantial reforms, and personnel changes, are needed.
This comes after the UN Department of "Public" Information ordered Inner City Press to stop Periscope live-broadcasting Guterres' Town Hall meeting from the UN's own UN Webcast site, after DPI evicted and still restricts Inner City Press after it asked about the actions or lack of due diligence on corruption including by the head of DPI, Cristina Gallach. OIOS audit at Paragraphs 37-40, 20b.

While new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is behind the scenes planning a number of other structural changes, also reported on exclusively by Inner City Press, officials from the discredited Ban Ki-moon era are trying and in some cases succeeding in staying on.
  First, some proposed changes: the UN Department of Political Affairs, which had essentially been promised to Russia (in the person of Dmitry Titov) will be no more. 
  It will become "DPAP" (or as we call it, D-Papa), the Department of Political Affairs and Prevention Activities. And, contrary to the understanding reached just before Guterres got the SG position, it will NOT be Russian.
  Instead, Titov is slated to either become head of Counter-Terrorism, or of a combined Rule of Law and Elections unit. Some say, elections? And others say the electoral unit needs more "oomph," to stand up, say , to UNDP.
  Nor will the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, where Herve Ladsous is now ghoulishly trying to stay on until June, remain the same. It is to become DPO, Peace Operations, and Atul Khare's unit folded back in under it.
  On January 12, Inner City Press asked holdover UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric, UN transcript here: 
Inner City Press:  I wanted to ask you about… about… I guess some proposals of… of António Guterres.  Is it the… this idea of a DPAP, instead of being a DPA, being a Department of Political Affairs, and you know, prevented… prevention activities.  Is this… is this a done deal in his mind?  Is that what he's going?  And is the rule of law office going to be combined with the elections office currently headed by Craig Jenness?

Spokesman:  I think you're asking questions at a level of granularity which I'm not able to answer.  What I know, what the Secretary-General has asked for and what both departments, DPA… well, DPA, DFS [Department of Field Support] and DPKO [Department of Peacekeeping Operations], are working on is co-locating physically offices in units that deal with the same countries and the same areas.  And that's what we're working on.

Inner City Press:  Is DFS going to be eliminated and put back under DPKO…?

Spokesman:  As I said, this is where our focus is on and those are the instructions he gave.

Inner City Press:  And just something very specific.  You'd said a lot of the contracts run out in March.  And I wanted to know, I've heard that some USGs [Under-Secretaries-General] are lobbying to stay on until June.  So, just to know… Like I'd asked you yesterday about Mr. [Martin] Kobler.  You said you'd look into it.  Does it run out in March or is it June?  Mr. Ladsous, is it June…?

Spokesman:  As for Mr. Kobler, I don't have any update.  I think what you will see is… what we expect to see for most of the senior posts, including USGs, is vacancy announcements.  And I think that will give you an indication of when posts become vacant.
   So while Dujarric answered only two and a half of Inner City Press' 22 questions, here's another one: will the UN be publishing vacancy announcements for the Under Secretaries General of Peacekeeping? Of Political Affairs, seeming now extended? We'll have more on this.
Inner City Press:  And just finally, on the Jeff Sachs question, it's been about a week.  Is it permissible for a UN official to…?

Spokesman:  I owe you an answer on that.  I don't have anything.  
  Still no answer on Sachs. But on the "co-locating," Inner City Press is informed that on Mali, for example, there is substantial overlap and waste -- 40 people -- and so the Departments, as institutional protection, are pushing back. Guterres needs to reform now, or never, some say. Inner City Press asked specifically about Mali on January 13, without specific answer - yet.
  Inner City Press on January 11 asked Ban Ki-moon's holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric to confirm what P5 Ambassadors said, that the Libya Envoy Martin Kobler - whom we like, at least personally, in full disclosure -- will leave in March. Dujarric typically refused to answer or to follow up. But now we hear Kobler may stay until June.
   Several UN staff, from top to bottom, expressed frustration at Guterres keeping on at least for now such officials as Cristina Gallach, and for not yet providing leadership, rather saying he will listen. We are about to get slammed, one told Inner City Press. It's time for serious changes.  We agree.
When new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres held his first Town Hall meeting on January 9, Inner City Press went in early to stake it out - that is, stand in front and speak to attendees -- as it has in previous years.
   But this year, due to a retaliatory eviction by former Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's head of communications Cristina Gallach and Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric, Inner City Press could not pass through the turnstile on the UN's second floor. And there was no one in Gallach's Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit office. Inner City Press and its coverage were banned.
 But the Town Hall was on the UN's own external UN Webcast website, so Inner City Press from in front of MALU then the focus booth it has been reduced to working out of broadcast the screen by Periscope, with voiceover. 
  Three hours later, holdover spokesman Dujarric insisted in the day's UN noon briefing that it was only on the UN's "internal" website, to which Inner City Press does not have access. It's simple to check, but Dujarric didn't.  
  And here now some dispatches from the Town Hall meeting. A UN staff representative from Nairobi -- where Ban Ki-moon promoted his own son in law Siddharth Chatterjee to the top UN job -- complained of corruption and a lack of accountability.
  Guterres called the comments "tough" and pointed out that some say it is too hard in the UN to fire people for not working. It did not seem he meant Under Secretaries General like Cristina Gallach and Herve Ladsous, but rather lower level UN staff. He spoke about accountability. We'll see: those two particularly Gallach are litmus tests.
  A staff member from the UN Department of Management said that some 455 electronic questions or comments had been received. A speaker from the UN in Beirut said the online link should remain open. We agree - and note that one should be set up for the impacted public. Already people are asking Inner City Press and the Free UN Coalition For Access how to reach Guterres, like bkm [at] un.org.
  To a speaker from South Sudan, Guterres said that the country would be one of the topics at his lunch with members of the Security Council later in the day. (One wondered if Yemen and Burundi, even Western Sahara, will as well).
  UN Spokesperson Dujarric, who answers at best 10% of Press questions, late on Sunday highlight praise by British actor Tom Hiddleston at the Golden Globes award of aid workers in South Sudan. Fine, but why didn't the UN protect them at Terrain in Juba?
  As before, Dujarric seems to relish or benefit from absurd censorship threats hanging over the head of the Press. How long, in an ostenstibly new UN administration, will this be allowed?
  Inner City Press asked Dujarric at the noon briefing because another UN official came into the focus booth to order it to stop -- which it did -- and sent this:
"Dear Matthew,

Please note that the SG townhall meeting is for UN staff and is not an open meeting.

Therefore, broadcasting it is a breach of the guidelines.

With kind regards,

Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit "
   This is censorship: the meeting was on the UN's external website. Not a good start -- Gallach and Dujarric are leading even new SG Guterres down the garden path of censorship, at the world possible time for the UN. Watch this site.
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 Accessmember 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.

Ban Ki-moon Supports THAAD & US-Saudi Coalition, US Power Downplays Ban Family Indictments



By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, January 15 – 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 Siddarth Chatterjee to the top UN top in Kenya. 

  Ban's scripted re-entry to South Korea has featured the kissing of babies, the mis-introduction of money into the express train subway, and claims he advocated for the downtrodden - despite selling out 10,000 dead Haitians, and more Yemenis than that.

   Ban, explicitly for money, removed the Saudi-led, US-supported coalition that has been bombing Yemen from the UN's Children and Armed Conflict annex of shame.

  And on January 13, when Inner City Press asked outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power about the indictment of Ban Ki-moon's brother and nephew, who used Ban's and UN's name to try to sell a building in Vietnam.  

  Tellingly, Samantha Power said no comment, "that does not involve the UN." Video here.

That is false - the indictment describes Ban Ki-moon's nephew Dennis Bahn using the UN General Assembly to angle to meet the Amir of Qatar, which Ban Ki-moon in fact did, on September 24, 2013.
  But it's a two-way streets. One of Ban's very first announcements in South Korea is that he supports the US' deployment of THAAD missiles. 

One hand washes the other. But one hand is leaving, and the other may well lose. Watch this site.

 Even on his main claim, of being a solution to the North Korea problems, Ban Ki-moon has been a failure. Click here for 2011 coverage from Inner City Press, which Ban Ki-moon is desperation in 2016 would have his head of "Communications" Cristina Gallach evict from the UN, and restrict still. How different is Ban Ki-moon from is portrayal of Kim Jong-un?
  Interest in South Korea is growing about Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho's mining in Myanmar, including Ki-ho not only being on a "UN delegation" as ICP first reported, but having a January 21, 2015 meeting with Myanmar officials - and UN officials. We'll have more on this: including on an upcoming South Korean radio program.
  Ban's moonlighting mentor Han Seung-soo was allowed by Ban to be a UN official while his Doosan Infracore sold desalinization equipment in the UAE, where Han gave speeches - and sold equipment to a gold miner(hmm) in Myanmar.
And after leaving the UN, Ban openly enlisted a person still in the UN job he'd given him, Jeffrey Sachs, to campaign for South Korea's presidency with him. This is now reported by CNBC as well, here.
Inner City Press on January 9 asked Ban's holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric about Sachs' comments and Dujarric said, as he so often does without coming back with anything, that he will look into it. Video here.
This while media reports link “full time” UN official Kim Won-soo to Ban's wannabe campaign.
  Ban Ki-moon has used and abused the UN, not only the General Assembly resolution he is ignoring by running, but by using public taxpayers' money to further his own ambition. 
In his final year Ban evicted Inner City Press from the UN, where still under his successor it remains restricted to minders to cover events on the UN's second floor.
  Back in 2009, when Inner City Press reported on Ban's nepotism in connection with a promotion of Ban's son in law, an invitation to lunch came from South Korea's Mission to the UN. 
Then deputy ambassador Kim Bong-hyun used the lunch to berate Inner City Press on how to cover (and not cover) Ban. (The article, and his full reply, are here). Now he's listed on Ban's campaign team, along with still UN official Kim Won-soo and former South Korean Ambassadors to the UN Kim Sook and Oh Joon.
  Oh Joon has just given an interview claiming that press criticism of Ban Ki-moon is of his "inclusive leadership." How about his nepotism: son in law promoted to top UN job in Kenya, nephew with UN landlord, brother Ki-ho mining in Myanmar after being on a UN delegation?
  Tellingly, the UN's Office of Internal Oversight Services never looked into or acted on these; Ban through still at the UN Cristina Gallach had Inner City Press evicted and still restricted, still even on January 9, 2017 harassed for daring to cover the UN...

Sachs, Ban and his fan club, UN Censorship Alliance, UN Photo
   In early January, Inner City Press asked Kim Won-soo directly, when will you be leaving the UN? He refused to answer, backing away smiling. But it is no joke, to take public funds while reportedly on the campaign team of a political candidate. We'll have more on this.