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Sunday, February 25, 2024

Foreign Minister Kemayah Is Behind Liberia’s Gaza Vote Confusion

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Outing Foreign Minister Maxwell Kemayah is leaving the country’s diplomatic service in a state of embarrassment after directing major foreign policy without the input of Liberian President George Weah.

Angry Weah rescinded his country’s no vote registered on Dec. 12 to block United Nations General Assembly resolution seeking humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza. The President said the country representative who issued the negative vote undermined his foreign policy position on the war in the Middle East.

“That Liberian that voted for war is wicked and he voted himself; not us and God will not spare that person’s life,” the President told worshipers at his private Chapel Sunday in Monrovia.

“They voted wrongly and we will fix it. Our vote will be with the other countries that voted for diplomacy and not war. Maybe, he was doing it to tarnish my character and government because we are leaving power. But I want to tell him or her that they are wasting time”, President Weah reacted.

It has now turned out that the Wicked diplomat whom the President cursed is his right-hand man Dee Maxwell Saah Kemayah following clarity from the country’s envoy at the UN.

Liberia’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Sarah Safyn Fyneah says Liberia’s diplomats at the UN operate under the guidance and instructions of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, ensuring that their actions align with the country’s stance.

Decisions are not made independently. Instead, guidance is sought to accurately represent Liberia’s position she said.

Ambassador Fyneah clarifies that the Government of Liberia’s initial vote on UN resolution A/ES-10/L.27 on December 12th was based on a prior directive from the Ministry, which, unfortunately, contradicted  President Weah’s and the government’s established stance.

The discrepancy raises concerns about misrepresentation, prompting a need for the President to seek clarification from the Minister, who seemingly did not adhere to his instructions issued since November 4th—over a month before the UN vote, she added.

“It’s important to highlight that on December 8th, I instructed the Deputy Permanent Representative to seek the Minister’s guidance to co-sponsor the draft resolution A/ES-10/L.27 but  received no response. On December 12th, I communicated with the Minister and the Acting Foreign Minister, to confirm their directive on the vote on the resolution. Acting on their affirmative response, I instructed a staffer to implement the directives”, Ambassador Fyneah recounted.

Ambassador Fyneah stressed that the responsibility for the inaccurate directive lies with the Ministry, and “it is crucial not to tarnish the reputation of Liberia’s diplomats at the UN who, despite challenges, continue to make sacrifices for Liberia’s visibility and contribution to the United Nations’ mandate”.

Additionally, since the UN is seized with the matter, and the Mission represents Liberia at the UN, it was neither informed nor received such an important policy decision of President Weah’s contained in his communication dated November 4th to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, emphasizing the call for a ceasefire and the establishment of humanitarian corridors.

This lack of communication on the part of the Ministry to the Mission on this crucial issue further underscores the need for a thorough review and clarification, the Statement said.

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