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Cablegate: May 21 Abyei Tidbits

VZCZCXRO0994
OO RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #0796 1431425
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 221425Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0903
INFO RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS KHARTOUM 000796

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/SPG, SE WILLIAMSON
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN
ADDIS ABABA ALSO FOR USAU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL EAID KPKO SU
SUBJECT: MAY 21 ABYEI TIDBITS

REF: Yesterday's Abyei Cable

Abyei Quiet, Kiir River Bridge Intact
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
1. (SBU) With the exception of sporadic, possibly random, firing,
Abyei is reported to have been quiet for the previous 24 hours as of
early May 24. Contrary to previous reports (reftel), according to
the SPLA the bridge over the Kiir River remains intact, although
supposedly two aerial bombs fell nearby on May 20. The Abyei Area
Joint Military Commission (AJMC) was unable to meet because the SAF
(a full colonel) reported that their representative had been killed
in the May 20 fighting.

SPLM Adopts Resolution on Abyei
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
2. (U) On its closing day (May 21), the SPLM National Convention
condemned the "atrocities" against and displacement of civilians and
called upon the SPLM Political Bureau to take action via the
following resolutions:

O Called for charges of crimes against humanity to be leveled
against the SAF 31st Brigade,
O Reasserted that the JIU should be the only armed force in Abyei,

O Condemned restrictions on UNMIS freedom of movement.
O Called on IGAD and friends of IGAD to press the NCP to implement
the ABC Report and Abyei Protocol generally,
O Noted with "utter dismay" the failure to implement the Abyei
Protocol and called for increased pressure on the NCP.

President Kiir promised in his closing remarks to personally
supervise the implementation of the resolution but he also expressed
regret for the loss of life of SAF soldiers (killed in an SPLA
attack although the obvious connection was not stated).

AEC Meeting Rescheduled for May 25
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
3. (SBU) The Assessment and Evaluation Commission (AEC) emergency
meeting to discuss Abyei planned for May 22 in Juba was postponed at
the last minute after the NCP announced that they were unable to
send a representative because they anticipated a possible conflict
with a meeting of the Ceasefire Political Commission or with the
daylong NCP Consultative (Shura) Council meeting scheduled for May
22). The Shura Council will discussed the NCP's policies on Darfur,
Chad and the confrontation over Abyei. The AEC meeting has been
rescheduled for Sunday, May 25 in Khartoum.

4. (SBU) UN SRSG Ashraf Qazi told CDA Fernandez late on May 21 that
the efforts of multiple players in the international community seem
to have encouraged some self-restraint from both sides at the 11th
hour but he is concerned that, absent a definitive compromise in the
near future, further violence is guaranteed and "each time it
becomes harder to return to the status quo."

FERNANDEZ

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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