Friday, May 20, 2016

On Burundi, ICP Asks UN 4th Time Of Nduwumusi In AMISOM, Spox Says Left 2012

By Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, May 20 -- With Burundi troops accused of raping children as part of UN Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous' MINUSCA mission in the Central African Republic, as well as accused of abuses in Burundi itself, a new funding question has arisen, involving Commerbank.

  And the UN of Ban Ki-moon moved to evict Inner City Press, which is asking the question. It happened on April 16, video here and here (Periscope). The New York Timescovered it on May 14, here.

On May 17, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric this question about Audace Nduwumusi -- a name conveniently left out of the UN transcript here. 

On May 18, Inner City Press asked again, and Dujarric said, "I failed to get… I failed… I probably asked and I didn't have the answer.  So, I will try to get you something tomorrow."

But the next day, May 19, Dujarric announced nothing. So Inner City Press asked for a third time, video here, UN transcript here: 

Inner City Press: Third day in a row on this deployment of Mr. [Audace] Nduwumusi to AMISOM [African Union Mission in Somalia].  You'd said that you would look into what the role is of the UN support to AMISOM given that this individual was in the leaked memo and there's now a second individual, Francois Niyonzima, who's said to have been involved in the Mugamba killings of late in Burundi.  What is the UN's position…

Spokesman:  I don't have any information on the two individuals you gave me.  What I was told is that under the UN human rights due diligence policy, UN support to non-UN security forces must be consistent with the UN's purpose and principles.  Support cannot be provided when there's a real risk of the receiving entity coming… committing grave violations of International Humanitarian Law or Human Rights Law.  The policy outlines the following steps the UN takes when it is requested to provide support, assess the risk and identify mitigation measures of the recipient committing violations, ongoing monitoring of the recipient support, establish procedures for intervention when violated… violations are reported, and in the case of AMISOM, risk assessments are regularly updated and the UN presence on the ground monitors AMISOM and is implementing a number of mitigating measures to prevent violations and ensure accountability when violations occur.

Inner City Press:  Sure.  And I… and thanks for reading that out.  My question is, if Mr. Nduwumusi appears in a UN-written leaked cable as a person that was distributing weapons to the youth wing of the ruling party in Burundi, doesn't his deployment to AMISOM to receive UN support…?

Spokesman:  I'm not debating your question, but I have no information or confirmation on the personnel issues.  So, I will try to find out, and I will let you know.

  Dujarric didn't say anything about it on May 20, So Inner City Press asked again, video hereUN transcript here: 

Inner City Press:  it sounds from what you said yesterday that the human rights due diligence policy may be different as to AMISOM [African Union Mission in Somalia] than as to, for example, the Central African Republic.  I ask because the Burundian military official I have asked you about is in a UN-written cable as distributing weapons to the youth wing.  So if that isn't foreseeable harm if the UN provides support… do you have an answer on this personnel question?

Spokesman:  Well, the information I have on General [Audace] Nduwumusi is that he departed in 2012, having previously served in the position of deputy force commander.  We're not currently aware of any plans for him to return.

Inner City Press:  And Francois [Inaudible]? [That's Niyonzima] Because there's a list.  I published it.

Spokesman:  I don't disagree with you.  I’m just telling you, in my binder…

 Inner City Press previously published the leaked cable naiming Nduwumusi, here - and has been evicted by the UN, NYT here.