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On Verge of 2d Term, Ban Still Hasn’t Watched Sri Lanka Killing Fields Film, Called Not Correct

[Inner City Press, Wednesday, 22 June 2011 08:28 No Comment]

As the film Sri Lanka Killing Fields was screened Tuesday on the west side of First Avenue in New York, across the street at the UN Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesman Martin Nesirky if Ban has yet seen the film, and for the UN’s response to its conclusion that Ban has not implemented the recommendation of his own Panel of Experts on war crimes in the country.

  Nesirky, while stating that Ban has not seen the film — available online including here — said that Ban’s role is “something not correctly portrayed in that film.” But when asked by Inner City Press if even the review of the UN’s own actions, committed to by Ban in April, has in fact begun,

Nesirky said only that “the process of coordinating between different parts of the UN system, to ensure that kind of internal look, is being coordinated between different agency and diff parts of the Secretariat at the moment.”

  Among the UN actions to be reviewed are withholding casualty figures, pulling out of Kilinochchi, and the role of Ban’s own chief of staff Vijay Nambiar in conveying assurances of safety to surrenderees, who were in fact killed in the so-called White Flag incident.

With whom will Ban coordinate about that one, some have asked — Nambiar?

ban1rajapaksa092410

Ban & Mahinda Rajapaksa, Killing Fields and chopper offer not shown

  Then Nesirky told Inner City Press, “you were there with the Secretary General in Sri Lanka [in May 2009], you know well yourself it was more than a whistlestop tour to one refugee camp. You were a witness to that yourself.”

  Yes — and that’s one of the reasons to be pursuing these questions, even on the day Ban is slated to get a second five year term as Secretary General. We’ll be covering that as well — watch this site.

Footnote: at the screening in the Church Center, five men in suits at the back of the room said they had a stack of Sri Lanka’s response to the film. Inner City Press, on the way to the UN noon briefing, asked for a copy. “You’ll get it afterward,” one of them said, refusing to provide a copy. It’s said that Sri Lankan Ambassador Palitha Kohona was going to respond. He too was involved in the White Flag incident; separately the Mission he heads often urges more positive coverage of Sri Lanka. But why not provide the response? We’ll see.

[Full Coverage]

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