Sign in to follow this  
Mintid Farayar

Diplomatic Eyesore Causing Uproar in NY

Recommended Posts

Aug 20, 2008 7:45 pm US/Eastern

Diplomatic Eyesore Causing Uproar In New Rochelle


Abandoned Home Owned By Somali Government Has Turned Into Haven For Mosquitoes, Teenage House Parties

Sen. Clinton Asks Secretary Of State Rice To Intervene

Reporting Tony Aiello

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBS) ― A diplomatic dilemma has residents in New Rochelle turning to Sen. Hillary Clinton for help. People who live near 250 Elk Ave. say the home -- owned by a foreign government -- is a threat to their health, safety and property values. It sits on a lot choked with weeds, the paint is peeling and the porch ceiling is falling down. The "home" sits in stark contrast to its elegant, well-tended neighbors. "It's an eyesore in the community," Forest Heights resident Stephen Landon said. "It's a health risk, and it's a safety risk." Landon said people are fed up with conditions here. The stockade fence has fallen down, allowing easy access to the decrepit backyard with its abandoned swimming pool. "Probably a haven for mosquitoes," Landon said. "More recently we've had teenagers having parties in the basement."


The home is owned by the government of Somalia, which doesn't even have diplomatic relations with the United States.


Somali United Nations diplomats moved out of the house five years ago and no one has cared for it since. But whacking down the weeds, cleaning up the yard, and fixing up the house is not a straightforward proposition, according to the Somali government. A spokesman said: "it is a complex issue" tied to a claim that the U.S. owes Somalia money for the sale of its former ambassador's residence in Washington. In other words, the New Rochelle house is a pawn in a diplomatic chess game. This week, Sen. Clinton wrote to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, complaining that "the Somali UN mission is abusing its privileges," and asking Rice to "revoke the diplomatic status of the home." That would allow the city to clean it up, send a bill to the Somalis and eventually seize the property if they don't pay up. While diplomats dither the weeds grow higher and residents grow ever more frustrated. The Somali real estate issues also extend to Manhattan. Two Midtown landlords are trying to collect more than $50,000 in unpaid rent from the Somali government. (© MMVIII, CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.)



This article among others settles the recognition issue that so many TFG-supporters throw around as a talking point. The TFG is allowed to sit at the UN seat but has no official recognition from the U.S. or any of the E.U. countries.


CBS News web page

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this