The UN Should Not Ban Stakeouts or Handpick Media, Needs A Freedom of Information Act, FUNCA Says

May 2, 2015 -- As the UN began its consultations about Syria in Geneva, it announced that for the full five weeks there will be no stakeouts, no photo­-sprays, no interviews. The Free UN Coalition for Access is opposed to this closing ­off of the UN, which still does not have any Freedom of Information Act procedure. This must change. So too must the UN allowing Under Secretaries General to say they will not answer questions from particular media. These are supposedly public servants. In read more [...]

Press Freedom at the UN Must Include the Right to Information, No Searches, No Set-Asides

   When any UN accredited journalist comes under fire from his or her home country, the UN should live up to its stated commitment to freedom of the press and support the journalist, rather than either take a hands-off approach as recently, or even solicit complaints as occurred and led to the forming of the Free UN Coalition for Access. Given a recent incident in which a UN member state tried to question the accreditation of a journalist for the questions he was asking, it is imperative that read more [...]

In 2015, UN Officials Should Answer Questions, Not Given in Advance, No Set Asides

In 2015 at the UN, senior officials should without exception answer questions from the media. Questions should not be requested or given in advance, the Free UN Coalition for Access posits; if for some reason for example language they are, it should be disclosed. On disclosure more generally, the UN system starting with its Secretariat should have and abide by a Freedom of Information policy. On the right to impart information, the UN should adopt and apply content neutral access and accreditation read more [...]

FUNCA Says All Accredited Media Should Be Treated Equally And Have Input

With media access and substantive answers in decline at the UN, there are also outright inconsistencies. The Free UN Coalition for Access is opposing these. For example, UN embargoed documents should at least be made available to all UN system accredited journalists, not only as just happened to those media organizations which can afford to have a correspondent at the UN in Geneva. When the UN in Geneva on November 24 purported to promote its Committee Against Torture concluding remarks on eight read more [...]

UNGA Access Cut-Back, from GA Stakeout to Photo-Ops, USG Banning Filming, Privatization of Press Briefing Room, FUNCA Says UNacceptable

September 29 -- The UN General Debate of 2014 has seen cut-backs and several negative precedents for media access, abetted by the UN itself. The absurdity of requiring, even after metal detectors, minders or escorts from the UN Media Accreditation and Liaison unit to get to the General Assembly stakeout has yet to be explained. A P5 member state's attempt to privatize the UN Press Briefing Room was challenged by the Free UN Coalition for Access. But since then, the UN Spokesman has claimed that read more [...]