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Cablegate: Rwanda - Outreach to Activists for Democracy And

VZCZCXYZ0009
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLGB #0324 1270858
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 060858Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY KIGALI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 5290

UNCLAS KIGALI 000324

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR DRL/SEA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM PREL RW
SUBJECT: RWANDA - OUTREACH TO ACTIVISTS FOR DEMOCRACY AND
DISSIDENTS

REF: SECSTATE 44903

1. (U) Embassy Kigali has taken several strides to reach out
to activists for democracy and dissidents since the
Secretary's request for such action by Chiefs of Mission.
Ambassador and Embassy personnel have met frequently with
members of independent political parties, human rights and
civil society organizations, independent journalists, and
religious groups on issues of democracy and governance.
Mission officers conducted several prison visits, where they
observed and spoke with detainees, including prominent former
politicians. Mission staff conducted regular outreach
programs, including a workshop on political communication for
political parties, civil society, and the media, focusing on
democratic debate and pluralism, party organization, and
mobilization. Journalists also received training and
development on media in a democracy, ethics and social
responsibility through participation in the International
Visitor Program.

2. (U) The Ambassador and Mission staff were forceful
advocates in support of human rights and democracy and raised
concerns about human rights abuses with high-level government
officials, NGOs, and international agencies. Using a wide
range of diplomatic tools, the Mission closely monitored and
reported on human rights abuses; provided technical
assistance and training to promote government accountability
and respect for human rights; offered programs to strengthen
institutions, NGOs, and civil society; and was proactively
engaged in individual cases of concern. The Ambassador and
members of the Mission worked with the government to develop
strategies and programming designed to improve ruling justly
indicators, particularly political rights, civil liberties,
and voice and accountability, including in such areas as
judicial independence, civil society participation, and press
freedom as part of its Millennium Challenge Corporation
Country Threshold Plan.
ARIETTI

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