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Cablegate: Uganda: Acota Training Strategy Conference Shapes Peace

VZCZCXRO0894
RR RUEHDE RUEHGI RUEHRN RUEHROV RUEHTRO
DE RUEHKM #0778/01 1300523
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 100523Z MAY 07
FM AMEMBASSY KAMPALA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8713
INFO RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE
RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUCNSOM/SOMALIA COLLECTIVE
RHMFIUU/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KAMPALA 000778

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL MOPS MARR KPKO UG
SUBJECT: UGANDA: ACOTA TRAINING STRATEGY CONFERENCE SHAPES PEACE
SUPPORT OPERATIONS STRATEGY

1. (SBU) Summary: Ugandan military leaders and planners and African
Contingency Operations Training and Assistance (ACOTA) Program
officials and training specialists joined a four-day Training
Strategy Conference (TSC) in Jinja, Uganda, to develop a strategy
for near and mid-term Peace Support Operations (PSO) training and
equipping. Brigadier General Silver Kayemba, Chief of Training and
Operations for the Uganda Peoples Defense Forces (UPDF) led a team
of 30 military planners and ACOTA facilitators to develop the
strategy. The program calls for May 2007 commencement of ACOTA PSO
training for the next UPDF "Battle Group" of 1500 peacekeepers
slated to deploy to Somalia, as well as expeditious ACOTA equipping
for each peacekeeper. The UPDF strategy calls for ACOTA training
and equipping for future UPDF Somalia-bound battle groups, and
immediate commencement of ACOTA's "train the trainer" program to
enable Uganda to achieve full self-sufficiency in PSO training
within 18 months. End Summary.

2. (SBU) Uganda's PSO Training Strategy Conference (TSC). At the
UPDF Jinja Command and Staff College during April 24-27, 2007, UPDF
Brigadier General Kayemba led a team of 25 UPDF military planners
and five ACOTA training specialists to develop a detailed strategy
for UPDF PSO training and equipping activities through 2009.
Department of State ACOTA Program and Policy Coordinator Chip Beck
joined General Kayemba in opening and setting the agenda for the
conference. The four-day conference resulted in the drafting of a
UPDF PSO Strategic Training Action Plan to be submitted to the UPDF
Land Forces Commander, Lieutenant General Katumba Wamala. The
strategy calls for ACOTA PSO training for the next and succeeding
UPDF battle groups deploying to Somalia and immediate commencement
of ACOTA "train the trainer" training for 40 UPDF personnel. The
strategy also calls for provision of training support equipment and
limited individual-soldier equipping for the UPDF peacekeepers
undertaking the training through ACOTA.

--------------------------------------------- -----
BRITISH PEACE SUPPORT TEAM'S EASBRIG PRESENTATION
--------------------------------------------- -----

3. (SBU) On April 24, British Peace Support Team (East Africa)
Commander Colonel Andrew Mason provided a briefing that proposed
UPDF long-term development (by 2010-2012) of a battle group to form
a maneuver element of the East Africa Brigade (EASBRIG) of the
Africa Standby Force (ASF), along with contingents from Kenya,
Rwanda, and Ethiopia. The briefing provided an approach to long
term PSO strategy for the UPDF. General Kayemba's responded that
the UPDF's primary and immediate focus was on Somalia, but he noted
that the British proposal provided a reference point for the UPDF's
long-term thinking.

--------------------------------------------- ------
ACOTA TRAINIGN FOR UPDF SOMALIA-BOUND PEACEKEEPERS
--------------------------------------------- ------

4. (SBU) ACOTA training for the next UPDF contingent that will
deploy to Somalia, including a battle group headquarters (PSO Force
Headquarters) and two battalions that will maneuver elements for the
battle group, will be conducted at the UPDF's Singho Military Base
during May 21 - July 27, 2007. The strategy also calls for ACOTA
PSO training and limited equipping for future Somalia-bound UPDF
Battle Groups. All ACOTA training will include PSO command and
staff training for the Battle Group, PSO command and staff training
for the two battalion commanders and staffs of the battle group, and
PSO peacekeeping skills training for every soldier. The ACOTA
training will be tailored to include PSO training for the attached
elements of the battle group, to include armor, engineer, signal,
intelligence, and medical units. Further, ACOTA will include
specific areas of emphasis requested by the UPDF planners, to
include military operations in urban areas, counter-improvised
explosive device operations, counter-sniper operations,
counter-suicide bomber operations, and a Somalia area analysis.
ACOTA PSO "train the trainer" training will be conducted
concurrently with all PSO training, with the goal of enabling Uganda
to achieve a fully indigenous PSO training capacity by 31 December
2008.

--------------------------------
UPDF SOMALIA DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE
--------------------------------

5. (SBU) General Kayemba stated that the decision about when to
deploy the next battle group to Somalia has not been made
definitely, but that it could occur as early as August 2007.
General Kayemba lamented that additional contingents of peacekeepers
from other countries have not deployed to Somalia as Uganda had
"hoped for and expected".

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KAMPALA 00000778 002 OF 002


COMMENT
-------

6. (SBU) Plans for training and equipping Uganda's next battalion
for Somalia are off to a good start. We will follow up with senior
military officers on whether or not the UPDF Training Action Plan
was approved by Lt.Gen. Wamala and with BG Kayemba for the names of
the senior officers for the Leahy Human Rights vetting process.

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