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Cablegate: We Need a Ceasefire Commission, Says Frustrated Dpa

VZCZCXRO6642
PP RUEHGI RUEHMA RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #0568/01 1050609
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 140609Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0547
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0153
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KHARTOUM 000568

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/SPG, S/CRS
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM KPKO SOCI AU UNSC SU
SUBJECT: WE NEED A CEASEFIRE COMMISSION, SAYS FRUSTRATED DPA
SIGNATORY GROUP

REF: (A) KHARTOUM 557

(B) KHARTOUM 538

1. (U) SUMMARY: On April 9, three members of SLM-Free Will (SLM-FW)
informed emboffs about recent Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) bombings
in their areas of control in North Darfur, emphasizing that there is
no mechanism for them to report these incidents, since the Ceasefire
Commission (CFC) remains dormant. The SLM-FW leaders, including one
former AMIS CFC member, appeared confused about how to inform UNAMID
of ceasefire violations, complaining that UNAMID ignores their
reports and that they no longer have access to the UNAMID compound
and its leaders. END SUMMARY.

2. (SBU) On April 9, Abdalla Eisa Abdalla, a rebel commander in the
Abu Garan sector of North Darfur (SLM-FW's main area of control);
Jouda Adam Fadul Jouda, a SLM-FW CFC representative; and Abdalla
Bedairi (aka Bedairi Adam Bedairi), another SLM-FW military
commander, came to the Embassy field office in El-Fasher. Abdalla
opened the meeting stating that "the recent events in North Darfur
have pushed us to come to speak to you, as things are getting
worse." Abdalla stated that he is very worried about the recent
janjaweed shootings in the El-Fasher market and a number of bombings
in the north (reftel).

SAF BOMBINGS IN THE NORTH
- - - - - - - - - - - - -
3. (SBU) The SLM-FW leaders reported that at approximately 16:30 on
April 8, Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) planes bombed SLM-FW areas in
Mellit, Mado, Sayah, and the Abu Garan Mountains. They stated that
there were no casualties resulting from these bombings. They added
that the Government of Sudan (GoS) has a special interest in the
lattermost area, as the mountains provide protection for a large
number of people there, many of whom the GoS believes are rebels.
The SLM-FW leaders insisted that only civilians are living in these
areas and that the GoS bombing of these areas shows its lack of
regard for signatories to the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA).

4. (SBU) According to the SLM-FW reps, the April 8 bombings follow
other SAF bombings in these northern areas. They reported that
approximately ten to 15 days earlier, SAF airplanes bombed Abu Garan
and Mado, killing two children and razing one house [NOTE: Separate
sources confirmed the Mado bombing. On April 4, one Italian
employee of Cooperazione Internazionale (COOPI) told emboff that
during a recent survey trip to North Darfur, he passed through Mado
"only two hours after it was bombed, when the smoke was still rising
from the earth." This INGO worker added that "It makes no sense to
bomb a village that has absolutely nothing, as the value of all the
possessions in the village was probably less than the cost of the
bombs." END NOTE]. SLM-FW rep Abdalla stated that "the government
bombs areas irrespective as to whether they are controlled by the
signatories or non-signatories of the DPA."

NEED FOR CEASEFIRE COMMISSION
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
5. (U) The SLM-FW representatives stated that they had not reported
the bombings in their areas to anyone before the meeting with the
emboffs. They said that they previously sent many reports of such
violations to UNAMID, but "that all the reports all have been
ignored." Jouda, SLM-FW's representative to the CFC, specifically
complained that his access to the UNAMID compound (and to its
leadership) had been cut off since AMIS's authority was transferred
to UNAMID on January 1st. These leaders also said that UNAMID needs
to travel to remote areas to access civilians in need, and stated
that neither AMIS nor UNAMID has been effective in areas that are
not controlled by the GoS.

6. (SBU) Emboffs agreed that there is an urgent need to
re-invigorate the CFC and that all incidents should be reported to
the Force Commander and his Deputy. Emboffs agreed to facilitate
passing on this information to UNAMID leadership and to help provide
SLM-FW with appropriate contact information at UNAMID. Emboffs also
stressed that SLM-FW as a DPA signatory had a responsibility to be
proactive in reporting these incidents and following up with UNAMID
on its own.

COMMENT
- - - -
7. (SBU) It is notable that these DPA signatories see the small U.S.
Embassy presence in Darfur as more accessible, receptive, and able
to act on information about ceasefire violations than the large
UNAMID contingent. Although SLM-FW is not a serious force on the
ground, their criticism of the non-functional CFC follow other
complaints by larger DPA signatory groups. Restarting the CFC must
be a top priority for senior UNAMID leaders. Until the CFC is
re-started, it is important to empower the DPA signatories to be
proactive in reporting directly to UNAMID or they may ultimately

KHARTOUM 00000568 002 OF 002


follow the path of the non-signatories.

FERNANDEZ

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