Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the Inner City to Wall Street to the United Nations

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

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

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


Home -

Follow us on TWITTER

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


ICP on YouTube

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

UN Denies Re-Accreditation Bid of Inner City Press In Face of Sri Lanka Propaganda, Fueled by UNCA

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 4 -- After three times last week telling Inner City Press its request for re-accreditation to cover the UN would be granted on Monday, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit on June 4 reversed course and declined to process the renewal request.

  This comes after a June 3 article in the Sri Lanka government aligned newspaper Sunday Observer that "the United Nations Correspondents’ Association (UNCA) has initiated an inquiry against Inner City Press correspondent Matthew Russell Lee... The sources said if the allegations against Lee are proven, the UN headquarters will be made out of bounds for him."

  The article also discusses imprisonment, and has led to fall-out.

  In the run-up, which included UNCA President Giampiolo Pioli demanding that Inner City Press remove from the internet coverage of his prior financial relationship as landlord with Sri Lanka Permanent Representative Palitha Kohona, Inner City Press at least four times last week asked MALU to grant a renewal of accreditation, ideally for more than one year to take the issue of retaliation for the content of reports off the table.

  While there are a number of collegial UN staffers in MALU, the Unit had already this year cited UNCA as a basis to ban Inner City Press from covering whether meetings of Ban's Senior Advisory Group on Peacekeeping Operations continued to include the participation of Sri Lankan general and alleged war criminal Shavendra Silva.

   Inner City Press had become aware that Reuters' Louis Charbonneau, UNCA's First Vice President, had filed a complaint with MALU against Inner City Press, sending copies to Pioli, Voice of America's Margaret Besheer and AFP's Tim Witcher, but not to Inner City Press.

   Ironically, while MALU told Inner City Press on May 31 and June 1 that it was too busy with Rio Plus 20 preparations to even look at Inner City Press' request for reaccreditation, it is understood that Charbonneau on June 1 asked for re-accreditation and even new accreditation for four Reuters technicians -- and had the request approved that same day by MALU after a single phone call.

  They say the UN has double standards, but this too some is too much.

Inner City Press based and bases its request for re-accreditation on this:

I am writing now to renew my accreditation to cover the United Nations. While I have written exclusive articles such as on March 28, 2012 reporting that US official Jeffrey Feltman will come to work for the UN, used with credit by Foreign Policy's "The Cable" but without any credit by Reuters on May 21, I have become concerned that the current UN allows expulsion threats to media in order to censor critical coverage. So I am formally requesting that, today, my accreditation be extended -- for at least one year, but I am in context requesting a longer extension.

To explain this longer-than-one-year request, consider for example that after the Mission of Sri Lanka sent a letter to the President of UNCA, to whom he previously paid money, complaining about my coverage of the reported 40,000 civilians killed by his government in May 2009, the President of UNCA not only screen the Sri Lankan government's genocide denial film inside the UN, but threatened to have me "thrown out of the UN."

Similarly, after I reported that the French Mission to the UN was so out of touch with Paris that it did not know that Herve Ladsous and not Jerome Bonnafont was France's person to head UN Peacekeeping, Agence France Presse moved to get UNCA to denounce the reporting. Only yesterday, Ladsous himself on camera said he would refuse to answer my questions about the UN role in cholera in Haiti, and Sri Lankan alleged war criminal Shavendra Silva now advising Ban Ki-moon, because of my reporting.

In this context, it is imperative that you and the UN immediately provide a renewed accreditation for much more than one year.

That remains the request. Watch this site.

Share |

Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

Click for Mar 1, '11 re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

* * *

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

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-253, UN, NY 10017 USA Tel: 212-963-1439

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

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

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

            Copyright 2006-2012 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]