Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Postcard From #COP6

If you've not been able to keep up with the breathless excitement emanating from the WHO's anti-smoking conference in Moscow, here are a few highlights.

Day 1: A quite fantastic opener with the public excluded in case anyone looks at the delegates in an unapproved manner.

Delegates to Moscow were really happy to be able to distract attention from their being in Russia despite planes being shot down, human rights being liquidated, widespread sanctions, and the US and Canada boycotting the event ... by welcoming North Korea's best anti-smokers after paying for their travel expenses to be there.

Margaret Chan so happy to take a break from that boring Ebola stuff.

Everyone attending is dead happy about the catering. A bit steep at more than $12 for a tea and $45 for breakfast, but it's very nice and, who cares! It's taxpayers who foot the bill.

Twitter feed switched off because there is too much comment from the public, but other means of using the hugely expensive internet access have been devised.

And so to bed ... at cost to others of £200+ per night. Party with those crazy guys from Kim Jong Il's delegation from 9pm till late.

Day 2: Some guy wrote an article which didn't love the FCTC, so the press, obviously, have to be forcibly ejected too.
Reporters were forcibly removed and restrained Tuesday at the World Health Organization (WHO) meeting on tobacco control in Moscow. 
Washington Times editorial writer Drew Johnson told The Daily Caller that he was physically escorted out of the meeting’s convention hall by a guard while another reporter was physically restrained from entering the room, even though WHO never formally voted to restrict the media from the event.
The North Korean party animals loved that bit, made them feel right at home.

Margaret Chan was enjoying herself too, escaping all the tiresome paperwork in Geneva ...
... in favour of a well-deserved break fluttering eyelashes at a real macho man.

With all those people barred who could have raised objections, we got our work done in double-quick time too!
All indications were that the global tobacco tax would not pass until Thursday or Friday, if at all. Without the public and the media there to watch, delegates ratified the tax almost immediately.
Just the way we like it.

Looking forward to day 3 now. Party in the Libyan Health Minister's room tonight, his fascinating anecdotes of working with Gaddafi are to die for.
Anyway, excited as I am, I must stop writing now Jane, me and Deborah from ASH have lots to do tomorrow.

Andrew Black

PS You'd love the guys from Bhutan, on a freebie but with some great ideas.


Kathleen O'Connor said...

Thank you for the synopsis! Saves me from having to waste more brain power on these surreal events.

Pat Glass said...

Thank you very much Dick. It's a nightmare.

Dragonmum said...

Must feel like a real home from home for them - welcome to Villainy on the Volga! Any remaining shred of credibility they might have had is now well and truly eliminated.

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Dick_Puddlecote said...

Keep 'em coming :)

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Rory Sound said...

Omg. They are certifiably mad,