"....The staff is sick and tired of the impunity extended by the office of the Secretary-General to senior managers for their failings especially in situations where it has led to death and disability....."
- UN Staff Union
Friday, June 17, 2011
U.N. Approves Iran's Disaster Center Proposal Which Some Fear Could Boost its Ballistic Capabilities
EXCLUSIVE:Even as the United Nationstries to use sanctions to block Iran’s developing nuclear weapons program, one of the U.N.’s own organizations has quietly green-lighted the Islamic Republic’s proposal to build a “disaster information management center” that could, some experts fear, advance its ballistic capability.
The decision puts the U.N. seal of approval on a controversial project that the United States has, until now, successfully blocked since Iran first proposed it in 2006.
As if to underscore its victory, Iran this week announced that it had launched its own observation satellite, Rassad-1, which will remain in orbit for the next two months.
The decision to approve the Iran proposal was taken without a vote on May 25 by the U.N. Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the self-described “regional development arm of the United Nations for the Asia-Pacific region.”
Establishment of the center was not mentioned in the ESCAP press release after the meeting where the vote was taken. The release said only that the commission “adopted a set of resolutions on issues ranging from bridging wide development and infrastructure gaps within the region, to cooperation for energy security and disaster preparedness.”
While little-known in the U.S., ESCAP is a major player in Asian development. Its membership includes 62 nations, among them China, India, Pakistan, Russia and North Korea, and its mandate covers a huge swath of territory, from Turkey across the Pacific. There are a sprinkling of Western nations and their Commonwealth allies on the ESCAP roster, includingFrance, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand, as well as the U.S.
“This is a very clever move by Iran,” said Elliott Abrams, a former deputy national security advisor in the George W. Bush Administration, who is now a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington. “It’s outrageous that a country that has been denounced repeatedly by the U.N. Security Council and the International Atomic Energy Agency should be rewarded in this fashion.”
Abrams was responding to an inquiry from Fox News, which learned of the unannounced ESCAP decision
“We are trying to make them into a pariah state, and this sends the opposite message,”Abrams said. “ It will require lots of visits to Iran by other governments. And there are always concerns that some aspect of this will help their military or intelligence agencies.”
Former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton, a Fox News contributor, when informed of the development, said he found the decision “unbelievable. This puts Iran in a very high profile. What technology Iran will get as a result I don’t know, but it would give their people more experience with satellite imagery. It’s like being involved with peaceful nuclear power: just having your people involved gives you more experience that can be turned to non-peaceful uses.”
In New York, a spokesman for U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon told Fox News that “our records indicate that there was no advance notice to the Security Council Sanctions Committee regarding the creation of the center (nor an ex post facto endorsement thereof), and there were no notifications or requests for exemption regarding the provision of any items to the center.”
The U.N. endorsement of Iran’s disaster center was a diplomatic defeat for the Obama Administration, which strenuously opposed the proposal at the commission’s forum in Bangkok. The U.S. has managed to block several previous attempts by Iran to establish the facility on its territory.
“The United States and our allies have fought hard to prevent the center,” a U.S. State Department spokesman told Fox News. “We did not and do not support this.”
The controversial facility is described in ESCAP records as a “regional center for information, communication and space technology-enabled disaster management In the Islamic Republic of Iran,” to be installed as a “subsidiary body” of ESCAP. Its aim, according to a detailed Iranian proposal supporting their plan, is to enhance early warning of impending calamities, and provide data collection and analysis for disaster recovery, among other things.
The Iranian document cites the country’s relatively low capability in sending and receiving satellite observation data, especially in disaster recovery situations, as a reason to support the institution, in order to fill “gaps” in regional coverage.
In response to questions from Fox News, ESCAP’s Executive Secretary, Noeleen Heyzer, declared that despite the references to space-satellite technology in the Commission’s documents, “the focus of the center is on disaster related information sharing and does not have a role with regard to space or satellite technology.”
A U.S. statement issued at the Bangkok meeting argued that the Iranian proposal “did not clearly articulate a vision for the center, define existing gaps the center would fill, identify the geographic focus of the center, explain how the center would work with existing bodies to avoid overlap and duplication of effort, or set out the human and technological resources needed to operate the center to fulfill its mission.”
The U.S. strategy of opposition at the meeting, was based on “legitimate management concerns,” in the State Department spokesman’s phrase, rather than concerns about Iran’s weapons intentions.
That said, the spokesman agreed that there were “other concerns” about the center, then added, “a lot of those, we can’t get into.”
When asked by Fox News about such issues as technology that might also be useful in Iran’s missile programs, or the possibility that the center could be used as a “cover” for other ballistic missile work that has been banned by the U.N. Security Council, the spokesman declared, “Those are all legitimate questions. But we can’t talk about them.”
One reason, perhaps, is that “disaster management” has become a major theme at many U.N. gatherings around the world, usually with U.S. backing, in part because of the role that climate change has been assigned in wreaking havoc with humanity. In Asia, the suffering has been particularly acute, due to typhoons and the ravages of earthquakes and massive tsunamis. The idea of notion of linked disaster preparedness centers, backed by sophisticated information from advanced satellite observation, is now a mainstay of humanitarian and development relief.
The spokesman in effect said the U.S. had been out-maneuvered by Iran at the Bangkok meeting, as Iranian diplomats “repackaged” their proposals so that they managed to “chip away” at the bloc opposing the idea. Among other things, the Iranians emphasized “gaps” in regional disaster management efforts and offered to pay the entire $50 million cost of the center for its first five years of operation.
The spokesman declined to identify which nations changed sides as a result of the Iranian diplomatic offensive.
In the end, however, the State Department itself stood aside as ESCAP made the decision, because “we do not want to stand in the way of the long tradition ESCAP has of adopting resolutions by consensus,” according to the statement issued at the meeting.
The U.S. instead declared that it “dissociated” itself from the decision. “Dissociation is a practice the United States employs to allow consensus to occur while ensuring the text is not binding domestically,” according to the statement.
Indeed, the State Department spokesman in Washington argued that the diplomatic defeat was actually a victory. He claimed that the U.S. had actually “prevented” creation of the center, because the resolution that allows Iran to “initiate the process for the establishment of the [center]” also calls for an “evaluation” by ESCAP of the need for the facility and the benefit of creating it as a “subsidiary body” of ESCAP—in 2013.
In reply to questions from Fox News, ESCAP’s Hayzer also emphasized that so far the center is not an official Commission “subsidiary body.”
Or, as the State Department spokesman put it, the center “does not exist at least for the next two years,” the spokesman said.
Iran doesn’t see it that way. A proposed timetable for establishment of the center, included in a 28-page technical report submitted by Iran at the meeting, calls for getting all the legal, administrative and regulatory arrangements for the center out of the way by February, 2012.
The Iranian timetable calls for construction, equipping, hiring staff, and everything else to be out of the way in time for the opening of the center in November, 2012—the time of the next U.S. Presidential election.
637 UNDP Staffers are Millionaires, and another 1041 UNDP staffers have enough salary (income) to justify million dollar homes in New York (or tri-state area NY/NJ/CT).
UN/UNDP's budgets are untransparent !
U.N. budget is “utterly opaque, untransparent and completely in the shadow” and would benefit from being consolidated and audited from the outside. MMB from NyTimes
JOSE RAMOS HORTA - PRESIDENT OF EAST TIMOR
‘‘You know how many layers of bureaucracy there are when the European Union wants to help East Timor? Well, they don’t provide the funds to us, the funds allocated are managed by world bank. And the world bank has its own layers of bureaucracy. And they charge for that. The project is then managed by UNDP. But UNDP is only good at doing studies, they don’t execute projects.’‘
Boutros Boutros-Ghali on UN:
"perhaps half of the UN work force does nothing useful"
Can Helen Clark be trusted on Climate Change ?
President Obama's answer to Helen Clark's appeal for US to do more on climate change was : "I think the American people right now have been so focused, and will continue to be focused, on our economy and jobs and growth that ... if the message is somehow, we're going to ignore jobs and growth simply to address climate change, I don't think anybody's gonna go for that," he said. "I won't go for that."
In 2011 Rami Makhlouf - a trusted development partner of UNDP in Syria
In 2008 U.S. Treasury designation: Rami Makhluf Designated for Benefiting from Syrian Corruption (Click on photo to see US Treasury page)
"Screwed" How Foreign Countries Are Ripping America Off
A full chapter (7) dedicated to UNDP and UN Secretariat. But it today at Amazon.com (click above picture)
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Asma al-Assad is UNDP's champion of reform in Syria
UNDP's special relations with dictators and terror is well documented. Yet, they continue to operate covered by UN Immunity. Click on immage for story.
Aicha Gaddafi You are Fired !
UNDP continues to be in bed with other dictators. Will clean it one at a time.
Where is NETAID money David Morrison?
UNDP Transparency Censored
UNDP's moto is: - eliminate the uncomfortable, frighten those who disagree, "educate" the perplexed..
UNDP Chief Finance Officer
The UNDP is a secretive organization and so far has kept in the dark every information related to its Chief Finance Officer and Deputy Assistant Administrator, Mr. Darshak Shah. Click on the picture for more on Finance Office of UNDP.
UNDP Belarus - best breast corner
Should tax-payers dollars be used to photograph beautiful breasts - even when making a valid point?
Uncle Helen turning UNDP into a cove of corrupt NZ labour politicians
CLICK ON PICTURE TO SEE Chris Carter's latest Credit Card scandal - can he work at UNDP after that? It seems YES he is full tested!!
Helen Clark says: "No more cars"
Thinking about buying a new car this year? Why, you evil Westerner! You don’t need that. You are demanding your new car off the sweat, toil, and exploitation of the world’s poorest people in developing countries.
Eveline Herfkens belongs to Jail - she should return imemdiately Dutch Taxpayers money.
if anyone else would have done what Eveline Herfkens did, would have long been in jail. We denounce this impunity and demand justice.
Andrew Mitchell - says Helen Clark is up to no good!
1. UNDP’s partnership with the World Bank needs to be more effective, particularly in fragile and crisis-affected countries. 2. UNDP’s near universal mandate means its technical resources are spread very thinly. The Board does not provide strategic direction. HR management is weak. It has a weak results chain. 3. There is limited evidence of active senior management consideration of cost control. Country evidence points to mixed progress on demonstrating cost-efficiency. 4. The Executive Board is politicised and there is a lack of consensus on the key areas for reform. It is not clear that current plans for change will deliver the required depth and breadth of reform. 5. Evidence gathered at country level was highly critical of UNDP’s ability to deliver results. Its delivery can be undermined by staffing issues and bureaucratic processes. 6. Its performance in fragile states is mixed. It has reasonable training and a range of guidance and analytical tools but struggles to fill posts. 7. There is no evidence that the Climate Strategy was directly guiding resource allocation decisions
Mark Malloch Brown outraged over Aicha Gaddafi
“I hope she's not a UNDP Ambassador,” ...“I don't think it's UNDP. I was surprised when I saw that... she was an Ambassador to any part of the UN system.”
Travel Palestine - Rediscover Your Senses
Get ready to a sensual feast of ...sounds...scents of The Land of حماس Ḥamās Documentary sponsored by UNDP Funds (click on picture for video)
Helen Clark on UNDP's own corruption (Can she be trusted?)
“When funds intended for life-saving treatment and prevention are stolen, that theft is tantamount to murder.” CLICK ON PICTURE FOR MORE
Scandal in Rwanda with Human Development Report
Aurelien Agbenonci, UNDP's RR in Kigali accuses Khalid Malik of making up data without UNDP Rwanda's knowledge. Rwanda Government is unhappy !!!
H.E. Dirk Niebel - German Development Minister
"I take the accusations made in the media concerning corruption and breach of fiduciary duty at the Global Fund very seriously and I am sure that the Fund will clarify the matter without delay. Germany is one of the biggest donors to the Global Fund. I have therefore seen to it that a special review will be held. I have frozen all further disbursements to the Fund until matters have been fully clarified, and I will ask a representative of the Fund to come to the BMZ to discuss the matter."
US Amb. Joseph Torsella blows the whistle on UN budgets
U.N. Secretariat’s proposed $5.2 “regular” budget for 2012-2013, was “simply loosening our belt a little less than we originally planned.”
The U.N. Exposed
How the United Nations Sabotages America's Security and Fails the World (Click in picture to purchase the book)
Share now information about illegal dealings at United Nations
If you are in possession of UNDP or any other United Nations Agency' contracts, correspondence, financial records or databases, which you believe detail wrongdoing such as fraud, mismanagement and abuse of authority, and you have failed to have UN's internal control, oversight and justice systems respond and/or react to your claims, you can send them to UNDP-WATCH and we will make them public keeping your identity anonymous and confidential.
Send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Helen Clark is watching you!
Gaddafi aint got nothing on UNDP - Click on the picture for more!
Malakia: A Turk advises Greece on Economy
Kemal Dervis (Turkish) and George Papandreou (Greek) share many late-night phone calls together (Click on picture to read story)
Where does Ban stand on Libya?
C'est vraiment ce que tu veux pour ta carriere?
United Nations Dispute Tribunal finds Ethics Office decisions Appealable
Because UNDT is the first level of the UN’s two-tiered justice system, there is a possibility that this decision may be appealed. Hopefully, the Secretary-General will not be “absurd” enough to do so. Click above to go to GAP page.
Andrew Mitchell Demands Transparency from United Nations
And I promise you as well that in future, when it comes to international development, we will want to see hard evidence of the impact your money makes. Not just dense and impenetrable budget lines but clear evidence of real effect
YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT UNITED NATIONS
Ban Ki Moon supports Ethics Decision on UNDP North Korea
Question: He recommends strongly that UNDP pays 14 months back pay to the whistleblower. Does the Secretary-General stand behind that recommendation? Should UNDP in fact pay that money, or are they free to rebuff that recommendation? Spokesperson: We will see what is going to happen. The Secretary-General of course is behind Mr. Benson on his report. There is no doubt about it. What UNDP will do, we will be seeing this; how they will implement that report.
UNDP Watch is a grouping of United Nations Staff committed to openness. We believe that everyone has the right to access information held by United Nations.
Despite a stated commitment to openness, UNDP remain a highly secretive agency.
Although a wealth of information is available on some UNDP websites, its Executive Board operate behind closed doors, much important programme and administrative information is never made available and, as a rule, information that is disclosed is provided only after relevant decisions have effectively been taken.
While UNDP has adopted “internal policies” on information disclosure, they in fact operate on precisely the opposite presumption. For the most part, they list which documents will be disclosed and when, and there is a presumption against the disclosure of all the other information they hold. They do not establish right of access, the lists of documents subject to disclosure is limited, they do not set out clear and narrow grounds for refusing access and they do not provide for independent oversight mechanisms to ensure proper implementation of the policy.
The UNDP WATCH is calling for the complete overhaul of these policies.
"...We believe that without accountability, there is impunity. We ask that you (Secretary General) not be complicit in cover-up of what happened prior to 11 Dec attack. The staff is sick and tired of the impunity extended by the office of the Secretary-General to senior managers for their failings especially in situations where it has led to death and disability."