WASHINGTON, DC – Accuracy in Media revealed today that the United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA) may have violated U.S. immigration law by hiring an office manager who subsequently resigned under fire. The individual, Anora Mahmudova, who is not a U.S. citizen but a Muslim from Asia, is the wife of prominent UNCA member and past UNCA president Ian Williams, the controversial U.N. correspondent for The Nation magazine. She collected more than $15,000 from UNCA before questions were raised about her immigration status and she abruptly resigned.
AIM broke the story last week that Ian Williams has been getting paid by the U.N. for writing articles for the world body and training its officials on how to deal with the press. However, he has not disclosed the total amount of money he has received from the U.N. Like her husband, Anora Mahmudova has written for U.N. publications. They have both been active in the organization of “Socialist Scholars.”
“The Ian Williams household was the single biggest item of spending by UNCA last year,” said AIM editor Cliff Kincaid, referring to UNCA payments to his wife. “But in the rush to get her on the UNCA payroll and benefit the Williams family, UNCA ignored the fact that she was on a special journalist visa that did not permit her to work for the organization,” Kincaid said.
UNCA’s president, Jim Wurst, has refused to comment for the record about the controversy. But Kincaid said that apparent violations of U.S. immigration law are not a trivial matter and deserve serious scrutiny by the appropriate U.S. authorities. “The U.N. and its reporters are not above U.S. law,” said Kincaid.
Accuracy In Media (AIM) is a non-profit, grassroots citizens watchdog of the news media that critiques botched and bungled news stories and sets the record straight on important issues that have received slanted coverage.