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Cablegate: North Kivu Ceasefire Holding As Monuc Continues

VZCZCXRO5248
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHKI #0153 0422147
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 112147Z FEB 08
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7527
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN A DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/HQ USECOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

UNCLAS KINSHASA 000153

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PHUM MOPS KDEM PREL CG
SUBJECT: North Kivu ceasefire holding as MONUC continues
redeployment


1. (SBU) Summary: Ceasefire violations in North Kivu have been
minor since the Kivus Conference and are dwindling in number.
PARECO, perhaps with FDLR instigation, appears to be the main
offender. MONUC has substantially expanded its mobile bases, and
displaced persons have begun to return to those areas. MONUC
continues to redeploy peacekeeping troops to the province. End
Summary.

2. (SBU) Ceasefire violations have been "very minor" in the wake of
the signing of the Kivus Conference Acte d'Engagement January 23,
with even less activity over the past 10 days than the previous 10,
MONUC's North Kivu Brigade commander Brigadier General Indrajeet
Narayan told international facilitators during a briefing February
11 on the military situation in the province.

3. (SBU) A majority of the incidents involved PARECO's nocturnal
theft of cattle belonging to Tutsis in the Mohito area west of
Nkunda's stronghold at Kirolirwe, with resultant distant exchanges
of fire with no casualties. There had also been three incidents
over the past 10 days in the Tongo-Bambu area, north of Goma in
Rutshuru territory, also involving PARECO. Narayan said it appeared
that PARECO was instigating most of these incidents, and in MONUC's
analysis PARECO was working closely with or instigated by FDLR.

4. (SBU) Narayan said that the North Kivu Brigade had more than
tripled the number of its mobile operating bases (MOBs) in the
province, each consisting of two platoons of 70-75 men, around the
periphery of Nkunda's territory. Whereas prior to mid-January,
MONUC had nine MOBs (Bunagana, Kibumba, Kirolirwe, Mushake, and five
in the vicinity of Goma), it now has 19 (ten new ones at Ishasha,
Rugare, Rwindi, Nayanzale, Kaelgera, Tongo, Nyamalima, and three
around Sake). These have been now supplemented by three helicopter
operating bases (also two platoons each, at Kahuba, Ngungu, and
Rubaya) and seven smaller standing combat deployments (one platoon
each at Karambi, Kahira, Katale, Mohito, Karuba, JTN, and
Ntamugenga).

5. (SBU) Narayan described these deployments as a
"pre-disengagement," as true disengagement would not take place
before establishment of the Mixed Technical Commission on Peace and
Security, but the effect had been palpable. He said that there was
a noticeable return of displaced persons in the areas surrounding
the mobile bases, as the local population had confidence in MONUC's
presence. The bases had been responsible for what MONUC learned
about most of the shooting incidents, as the MONUC focal point for
ceasefire violations had not been utilized except once by PARECO.

6. (SBU) Narayan said that the North Kivu Brigade was also beginning
to focus on the threat posed by FDLR, which is why it had
established an MOB in Ishasha (near the Uganda border and Lake
Edward), one of FDLR's concentrations. He said the Brigade would be
establishing further MOBs in Lofo and Kasu in the Lubero area in the
Grand Nord and in Kashabera in Walikale territory, all designed to
put pressure on FDLR. The Brigade had been training eight FARDC
battalions at Nayalke (near Beni) and contemplated using these to
deal with FDLR. The training was of limited duration and value, but
it was hoped that these battalions at least would not have had the
habit of living in too close proximity to FDLR.

7. (SBU) Narayan said that the North Kivu Brigade was being
reinforced by more than a thousand troops (Senegalese, Bolivian,
Guatemalan, and the fourth Indian battalion in Katanga), of which 30
per cent had arrived and 80-85 per cent would arrive within two
weeks. He said that MONUC had not picked up information suggesting
re-supply or reinforcement by the FARDC or any of the armed groups.

GARVELINK

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