By Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, February 22 – When the UN Security Council met on February 21 on “Conflicts in Europe,” it began with a minute of silence for Vitaly Churkin, Russia's Ambassador who'd died the day before. Inner City Press obituary here. Then came a briefing by OSCE Secretary-General Lamberto Zannier and a series of speeches.
Inner City Press asked Zannier, at his press conference, to specify the dangers he sees in the recognition of travel documents from Donetsk and Lugansk. He said there might be some humanitarian benefit, but it reminded him of Georgia, Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
Zannier said OSCE has had eight drones shot down, at a cost of $1 million each, and is now using drones with a medium range of 50 to 60 kilometers as well as cameras. Inner City Press asked, since he said OSCE will do procurement through the UN Peacekeeping base in Brindisi, if OSCE can share some technology with UN Peacekeeping contingents like Chad's, which suffers deaths in Mali under Herve Ladsous due to insufficient equipment.
On the morning of February 22, Inner City Press posed a simple question in writing to UN holdover spokesman Stephane Dujarric, who had canceled the day's noon briefing: "Please describe any cooperation between the UN / DFS / Brindisi and the OSCE, as spoken about yesterday by the OSCE's Lamberto Zannier."
More than two hours later, having no response at all, Inner City Press posed a question to new Secretary General Antonio Guterres, adding audibly that his spokesman Dujarric is not answering basic Press questions. Video here. Two more hours later, still no answer. Seems Dujarric should go the way of Ladsous. Watch this site.
In the Council Chamber on February 21, US Ambassador Nikki Haley spoke not only on Ukraine but also Moldova, Nagorno-Karabakh and Cyprus. (At noon Inner City Press asking about Cyprus giving citizenship to a member of the UNFICYP mission there; there was no answer). As Haley began to speak, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres had to leave, to sign the condolence book for Churkin. There are many changes and reforms needed at the UN. Watch this site.