Is the UN exempt from paying its bills?

A court case may soon determine if the UN has a legal obligation to pay the contracts that it enters into.

A federal judge in New York has issued an order that could lift the U.N.’s long-recognized diplomatic immunity in the United States involving contract disputes, opening the doors for claims of “hundreds of millions of dollars” against the world body, according to lawyers involved in the case.
Following a ruling by Judge P. Kevin Castel, both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times on Wednesday published legal notices on behalf of Kahraman Sadikoglu, a Turkish billionaire businessman who is suing the U.N. Development Program (UNDP) for $150 million. . . .
The notices are a legal substitute for the process of officially serving the lawsuit to U.N. officials, who have refused to accept the authority of U.S. courts in this and other legal matters.
Sadikoglu was hired by the UNDP to clear the Iraqi harbor of Um Qasr, Iraq’s largest port in 2003, so that supplies could be delivered to the war-shattered nation. He has fought since that time to be paid for the work, and according to his lawyers is suing now because the U.N. failed to honor the terms of a 2008 agreement that would have settled the matter. . . .



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