UN PRIX CITRON QUI FAIT PARLER

L’article en anglais ci-dessous de Neil Herland du réseau anglais de Radio-Canada, le réseau CBC, expose les motifs qui justifient le « prix Citron – volet international » décerné par Impératif français, conjointement, à la décision de l’ONU de choisir un nouveau secrétaire-général, Ban Ki-moon, qui ne parle pas (ou peu) français, pourtant l’une des six langues officielles et des deux langues de travail de l’organisme, et au au gouvernement français pour ne pas avoir exercé son droit de veto lors de cette fâcheuse nomination.

Des extraits d’un article en anglais publié le 14 décembre 2006 dans le site Web du réseau de télévision CBC à l’adresse : http://www.cbc.ca/news/reportsfromabroad/herland/20061214.html

Is Ban Ki-moon a franco-phoney?

…in la Francophonie, Ban Ki-moon’s difficulty with French – when it’s supposed to be the second language of the organization he now heads – is definitely a diplomatic faux pas.

The incoming secretary general of the United Nations can barely speak a word of French.

Once considered the main language of diplomacy, le français has lost its élan.

Just moments after Ban Ki-moon recited his oath of office to become the eighth secretary general in UN history, he read a carefully scripted speech that included three paragraphs in French. However, during his first news conference with the UN press corps afterwards, he could barely muster a ‘pardon?’

The official languages of the UN are English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic and Chinese. But the main working languages of the UN have traditionally been English and French. In fact, France puts such importance behind its mother tongue that it will not support a candidate for secretary general who doesn’t speak French

Which brings us to Ban Ki-moon.

French government officials tell me that President Jacques Chirac only gave his nod to Ban when they learned he was taking French lessons. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, France was one of five countries with the power to veto the selection of the new secretary general.

Swearing-in ceremony on Dec. 14.(…) I asked Ban why he thinks French should remain the second official working language of the United Nations. A challenging question for any politician, much less one that doesn’t appear to understand French! Ban looked startled when I posed my question in French. (…)

The UN provided a live interpreter, but he still struggled. He said he had trouble hearing me, even though I was seated in the front row of the news conference. I repeated the question and he mumbled an indecipherable reply in mangled French.

The UN employee moderating the news conference tried to explain the question. Ban, whose resumé proclaims he speaks English and French, responded in English.

…in la Francophonie, Ban Ki-moon’s difficulty with French – when it’s supposed to be the second language of the organization he now heads – is definitely a diplomatic faux pas.

Pour plus de renseignements : http://www.cbc.ca/news/reportsfromabroad/herland/20061214.html

P.-S. Vous pouvez portant lire dans la biographie de Ban Ki Moon publiée dans le site Web de l’ONU à http://www.un.org/french/sg/biography.shtml « M. Ban est né le 13 juin 1944. Il est marié à Mme Yoo (Ban) Soon-taek, qu’il a connue au lycée en 1962, et avec qui il a eu un fils et deux filles. Outre le coréen, M. Ban parle anglais et français. » !!! (soulignement ajouté)