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Chairman Mo pinkslipped

By Judi McLeod
Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Toronto-- The April 20 "temporary" leave of absence from his post as top United Nations envoy to North Korea became a permanent one for Canadian tycoon Maurice Strong yesterday.

UN spokesman Marie Okabe said in response to a reporter's question that Strong's contract expired last week "and has not been renewed". The admission came amid questions about Strong's connection to a well-publicized suspect in the ongoing UN oil-for-food scandal. (See: 'The Maustro' admits connection to `Koreagate Man')

In the politically correct, neutered lexicon of the UN, Strong, chief architect of the Kyoto Protocol, "has not been renewed". To the outside world, Strong has been pink-slipped.

The UN decision not to renew follows closely on the heels of Strong only last week being awarded the prestigious Order of Manitoba. Strong was one of 12 individuals awarded the Order in the Manitoba legislative building on Monday, July 15. In June, Strong was appointed to the board of directors for the $300-million Winnipeg Museum for Human Rights. One hundred million of the $300-million pledged comes from the Canadian federal Liberal government--courtesy of the Canadian taxpayer.

"Mr. Strong's office in Ottawa said he was not there on Monday and no one else was available for comment." (Globe & Mail, July 18).

Small wonder. Strong, after all is a longtime mentor and official senior advisor to Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin.

Strong stepped down "temporarily" from his post as UN pointman on the six-nation talks aimed at persuading North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program on April 20.

On April 21, his stepdaughter Christina Mayo resigned after a UN review discovered that she had worked for her stepfather for two years.

In a brief statement, Strong acknowledged his ties to Tongsun Park, a native of North Korea and citizen of South Korea, charged in the U.S. in April with allegedly accepting millions of dollars from Saddam Hussein's government to lobby illegally for Iraq in the U.S. on behalf of the oil-for-food program.

In his statement, Strong admitted that Park had advised him on Korean issues, but denied any involvement with the $64-billion oil-for-food program.

U.S. prosecutors said Park had invested $1-million in a company run by the son of an unidentified senior UN official.

Strong acknowledged that Park invested in a company run by his son, Fred.

Cordex Petroleums Inc., the company, which accepted Saddam's $1-million investment, was among Prime Minister Paul Martin's declaration of declarable assets, provided to the federal ethics committee on November 4, 2003. (See Saddam invested one million dollars in Paul Martin-owned Cordex).

Strong had been involved in UN environment and development measures since 1970. In January 1977, he was appointed senior advisor to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan with the express mission to reform the United Nations.

Neutral UN lexicon notwithstanding, Kofi Annan pointman and Prime Minister Paul Martin senior advisor/mentor Maurice Strong was pinkslipped at the world's largest bureaucracy yesterday.


Canada Free Press founding editor Most recent by Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years experience in the print media. Her work has appeared on Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, Glenn Beck. Judi can be reached at: judi@canadafreepress.com


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