2ND LEAD (Adds links)

UN's Syria dead count questioned

[TamilNet, Thursday, 03 January 2013, 04:03 GMT]
Pointing to the published figure of number of Syrians dead at 60,000, as released by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) the day after the New Year, Innercity Press (ICP), an organization that covers United Nations, questioned the source of the figure. ICP said the figure was from an outside contractor, Benetech, allegedly paid by the OHCHR, and added that funders of Benetech included the U.S. State Department, and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). ICP questioned if Benetech is also involved in a similar study on Sri Lanka where the UN refused to disclose its own numbers-dead fearing that the exposure will backfire on the UN strategy to allow Sri Lanka to continue with the assault on civilians that led to more than 80,000 dead (Petrie Report).

U.S. State Department appears to be a significant funding source for Benetech directly, and indirectly with its close nexus to NED.

NED, a key funder of Benetech, is known to be funded primarily through an annual allocation from the U.S. Congress, within the budget of USAID, the U.S. agency for development assistance, which is part of the U.S. State Department.

A Security Council member has allegedly asked Inner City Press, how the UN was able to obtain the figures when there is "no presence in the field."

While a popular British daily The Independent quoted the 60,000 Syrian dead as "UN figures," U.S State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland referred to the figures as from "report by UN Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay." lending further credibiliity to a figure "generated" by U.S. State funded Benetech.

Benetech in covering its own report said, "[t]he report integrates information from six databases compiled by Syrian human rights monitors and one database collected by the Syrian government," and added that the UN has released a statement describing the report as "an exhaustive analysis."

ICP's request to Benetech and to OHCHR on whether an RFP was used in the selection of an outside firm to do the study has not been fully answered by either organization, ICP said.


Related Articles:
28.12.12   Takasu, Tamils' adversary in UN Security Council?
19.12.12   Holmes, UN's smokescreen to Mu'l'livaaykkaal killings?
18.11.12   UN culpable under "complicity clause," says Professor Boyle
24.09.12   UN complicit in Mu'l'livaaykaal killings, say UN humanitaria..
10.05.09   2,000 civilians feared slaughtered in a single night


External Links:
Wiki: Benetech
WP: Syrian death toll tops 60,000, U.N. says
ICP: UN's Syria Study Contractor Benetech Has "Anonymous" Funder
ICP: As Pillay Says 60,000 Dead in Syria, Qs of Benetech & US State Department
Wiki: National Endowment for Democracy

 

Latest 15 Reports
28.07.16 23:42  
Colombo continues to dilly-dally on processing political prisoners‘ cases
27.07.16 23:14  
UNP answerable for 1983 genocidal pogrom: Batticaloa UNP Organiser
26.07.16 23:38  
JUSU opposes police cases against Tamil students, SL military steps up surveillance
25.07.16 21:12   Photo
2009 genocide justice not going to come from UNP of 1983 pogrom: Shivajilingam
24.07.16 23:00   Photo
Saiva priests protest against Colombo constructing fishing jetty near Nakulesvaram temple
23.07.16 23:09  
Ethnic discrimination in student enrollment exposes reconciliation farce: Tamil academic
22.07.16 19:47   Photo
Tamil student leaders in Jaffna condemn SL Governor Cooray’s remarks in Colombo
21.07.16 01:26  
University engineers not learning lessons
21.07.16 00:21   Photo
Tamil politicians blame SL Military for enticing Sinhala students with triumphalist chauvinism
20.07.16 16:39   Photo
Tamil fishermen rise up against Colombo's move to permanently militarise Pa'l'li-munai in Mannaar
20.07.16 15:21   Photo
NPC demands CoI to go beyond criminal investigations on Jaffna University clash
19.07.16 23:15  
Sinhala-Tamil student clash in Jaffna exposes dangerous proportions of military occupation
18.07.16 18:01   Photo
‘SL President sanctioning 67-feet Buddha statue off Jaffna is act of aggression’
17.07.16 23:46  
Eastern University instructs assaulted Tamil student to attend investigations in Colombo
16.07.16 13:37   Photo
SL military-backed Sinhala students clash with Tamil students in Jaffna University
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=35903