Tuesday, 9 November 2010

UN G-20 Team Cuts Out UNDP & Jomo Kwame Sundaram of DESA, Ban 2nd Term in View, DC House Looming

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 9 -- As UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrived in South Korean for the G-20 meeting, UN sources in New York complained to Inner City Press about an “unprecedented level of micro-management” by Ban's office in the run up to the G-20.

South Korea having this G-20 is a laurel in the country's crown, as is Ban's position in the UN. But Ban wants to use this G-20 meeting, if possible, to get endorsements for a second term as Secretary General, publicly or privately. So nothing can go wrong.

For that reason, the sources tell Inner City Press, unlike before other G-20 meetings when a range of UN system officials have been involved, this time Ban's closest advisers seized control of preparations.

Excluded or elbowed out among others the sources tell Inner City Press were Norwegian Olav Kjorven, assistant secretary-general and director of policy at UNDP and Malaysia Jomo Kwame Sundaram, the assistant secretary general of DESA under Sha Zukang, the Under Secretary General who wined and dined with and gave an award to the Tiananmen Square general during Ban's recent trip to Shanghai.

This of course is bad form. But Ban is under pressure, especially after the controversy surrounding his craven suck-up to China during his four day visit, not once publicly mentioning the name of this year's Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo.

Ban &
Sagong Il of G-20 Korea Summit Coordination Committee, Jomo & Olav not shown

Even the generally liberal and pro-UN New York Times ran an editorial questioning whether Ban should be supported for a second term.

Now, after the November 2 election, Ban and his advisers know they face a buzz saw in the Republican controlled House Foreign Relations committee, probably under UN knowledgeable Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who may look into issues ranging from UN inaction in Darfur to Myanmar as well as UNRWA. Their tour guide to Washington Robert Orr, reportedly the crafter of the “US is a deadbeat” line, may lose his way in the new Committee. Will they hire a lobbyist? Watch this site.

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