Search

 

Cablegate: Chad: Mixed Signals On Godbold Case

VZCZCXRO7456
RR RUEHTRO
DE RUEHNJ #0886 3191550
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 151550Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5889
INFO RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 1754
RUEHNM/AMEMBASSY NIAMEY 3015
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 2276
RUEHRB/AMEMBASSY RABAT 0110
RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI 0445

UNCLAS NDJAMENA 000886

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

RABAT FOR LEGATT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CASC PTER CD LY
SUBJECT: CHAD: MIXED SIGNALS ON GODBOLD CASE

REF: NDJAMENA 856

1. (SBU) Summary: Despite indications that he might be
released shortly, seized American missionary Steve Godbold is
still in the hands of MDJT rebels in the Tibesti region of
Chad. End summary.

2. (SBU) On November 8 the Al-Wihda website announced that
the MDJT splinter group claiming to hold seized Amcit Steve
Godbold had posted a message stating that they intended to
release Godbold in the coming days. At a meeting with Deputy
Interior Minister Djasnabaille the same day, Djasnabaille
informed Charge that he was under the impression that Godbold
would soon be released based on an unexpected phone call from
MDJT leader Choa Dazi the night before. (Note: As a former
member of the opposition, Djasnabaille explained that he
previously had contact with Dazi. End not).

2. (SBU) Subsequently, however, phone contact with Choa
Dazi dropped. The Red Cross has not heard from him, and
Godbold's missionary colleagues in N'Djamena have been told
that Dazi's Libyan cell phone is no longer being used.
Godbold's colleagues do not have any first hand information,
but they speculate that Dazi himself may no longer be calling
the shots, and that the small group of MDJT rebels holding
Godbold deep in the Tibesti are now the lead actors in
determining Godbold's fate. If this is the case, Godbold's
colleagues believe that these individuals are primarily
interested in a ransom. They have also heard through
intermediaries that Godbold is depressed and is not eating.
If there are no new developments, TEAM (the Evangelical
Alliance Mission) may request Red Cross (ICRC) assistance in
monitoring Godbold's state of health (if the hostage takers
permit).


3. (SBU)In a meeting with TEAM members on November 14 we
discussed the possible role of Libya in Dazi's apparent
change of heart. TEAM members had heard that the quote
American request to Libyan authorities for assistance end
quote may have spooked Dazi. Charge clarified that we had
asked Libyan authorities for information, not assistance and
that nothing had been reported back to N'Djamena. TEAM
members also informed us that Dazi and possibly others in the
group are dual nationals holding French passports.

4. (SBU) Godbold's local organization is being assisted by a
representative from Crisis Consulting International (CCI),
Bob Klamser, scheduled to arrive in Chad on November 15.
Charge, RSO and DATT will meet with TEAM and Klamser on
November 16. Charge will request a meeting with GOC
authorities for an update on the situation and report on any
new developments.

Comment

5. (SBU) Quiet pressure by the Tubu community continues to
be seen as the best way to advance Godbold's release,
although the MDJT rebels holding him are described as
renegades who are less susceptible to community pressure.

6. Minimized considered.
TAMLYN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Chemical Weapons Attack (and Response) In Syria

The past week’s headlines about the chemical attacks in Syria – and the military response by the US, France and Britain – have tended to overshadow a few of the downstream outcomes. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific Moves: China, Vanuatu And Australia

Washington’s vigilant deputy, doing rounds on the beat in the Pacific, has been irate of late. The central issue here is the continuing poking around of China in an area that would have been colloquially termed in the past “Australia’s neighbourhood”. More>>

ALSO:

Diplomatic Madness: The Expulsion of Russian Diplomats

How gloriously brave it seemed, some 23 nations coming together like a zombie collective to initiate a fairly ineffectual action in of itself: the expulsion of Russian diplomats or, as they preferred to term it, intelligence operatives. More>>

ALSO:


Campbell On: the US demonising of Iran

Satan may not exist, but the Evil One has always been a handy tool for priests and politicians alike. Currently, Iran is the latest bogey conjured up by Washington to (a) justify its foreign policy interventions and (b) distract attention from its foreign policy failures. More

ALSO:

Cyclone Gita: 70% Of Tonga Population Affected

The full scale of destruction is beginning to emerge from Tonga in the aftermath of the severe tropical cyclone Gita. Around 50,000 people, or almost 70% of the country’s population, have been affected, a third of whom are children. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC