The controversy involving a United Nations-affiliated organization that uses members of President Barack Obama’s Kenyan family to tout its anti-hunger campaign deepened this week, when Fox News learned that the two treaties upon which the group bases its U.N. credentials may be fakes.
The government of Italy, which supposedly signed the treaties used to give the organization international standing, told Fox News this week that it never did so. And neither treaty is included in a database maintained by Italy’s Foreign Ministry of treaties that Italy considers binding and valid.
Fox News questions to the U.N. about the matter earlier this week produced one immediate result: by January 13, the two documents had disappeared from the U.N.’s official registry of international treaties, where they were installed in 2001, as ordered by the U.N. Charter itself, which ordains in Article 102 that “Every treaty and every international agreement entered into by any Member of the United Nations…shall as soon as possible be registered with the Secretariat and published by it”…
The strange case of the tainted treaties adds a new dimension to the controversy surrounding the Intergovernmental Institution for the Use of Micro-Algae Spirulina Against Malnutrition (IIMSAM), which claims its main purpose is to make spirulina, a type of algae, “a key-driver to eradicate malnutrition, achieve food security and bridge the health divide with a special priority for the developing world and the least developed countries.” Fox News first raised questions about the organization’s supposed connection to the United Nations earlier this year.
IIMSAM has reinforced its claim of U.N. affiliate status with a steady flow of press releases since 2006, urging support for its work; extolling the health and nutritional advantages of spirulina platensis, a common algae that is used as a dietary supplement and fish food; issuing elaborate statements on various U.N. issues; and announcing partnerships and projects involving various organizations, corporations international institutions and individuals—including the Obama family. IIMSAM claims an office address in Rome and maintains a suite of offices in mid-town Manhattan…
IIMSAM not only advertises that President Obama’s grandmother, Sarah, and his uncle, Saidi, are “goodwill ambassadors” for the organization, but told Fox News in an interview last month that President Obama himself knows about IIMSAM and his family’s involvement. The White House has denied any knowledge of the organization.
After Fox News publicized the White House position, IIMSAM removed a photo from its website showing a youthful Barack Obama with his grandmother in Kenya, but continues to tout the Obama family connection. The Obama photo currently remains in a video clip extolling spirulina on the IIMSAM website.
IIMSAM claims something called “de facto diplomatic status on U.S. soil,” something a State Department official told Fox News he had never heard of.