Search

 

Cablegate: Embassy Khartoum Response On Abyei Next Steps

VZCZCXYZ0000
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHKH #0936/01 1761212
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 241212Z JUN 08 ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1143
INFO RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0237
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 0106
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0077
RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 3398
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO 0027
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0077
RUEHTC/AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE 0040
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS 0079
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0245

UNCLAS KHARTOUM 000936

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF A/S FRAZER, SE WILLIAMSON, AF/SPG
NSC FOR HUDSON AND PITTMAN
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN
ADDIS ABABA ALSO FOR USAU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPKO PGOV PREL EAID SOCI UNSC AU SU
SUBJECT: EMBASSY KHARTOUM RESPONSE ON ABYEI NEXT STEPS

REF: STATE 66284

1. (U) This message responds to reftel request for post views on
next steps to support implementation of the Abyei Roadmap.
Responses are keyed to the questions posed in para. 12 of reftel.

Provision of U.S. Legal Advisor
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
2. (SBU) Post strongly supports the provision of a USG legal
advisor to assist in developing Terms of Reference (TOR) and for
other issues related to Abyei boundary arbitration. By sending a
lawyer to assist the parties as necessary, the State Department
shows that the US is committed to assisting the parties on this
issue. The SPLM especially would appreciate the legal advice, and
meetings with both parties should help continue momentum and build
confidence. This individual should coordinate closely with similar
experts offered by the Netherlands and UK.

Increased Military Support
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
3. (SBU) The Joint Integrated Units (JIUs) are woefully short in
just about every category necessary for them to become fully
operational. The GoS is funding only 40% of the JIU's budget,
enough to pay salaries and little else. The JIUs lack the most
basic infrastructure and equipment. For example, many JIUs are
forced to draw water from public wells in neighboring villages, a
situation that in the past has led to violent clashes between JIU
soldiers and civilians. JIUs also lack adequate housing, transport,
and communications equipment, among other things. Until these basic
needs are addressed, the JIUs are unable even to begin to address
their envisioned mission.

4. (SBU) The GOS should be pushed to more fully support the JIUs.
In addition, UNMIS created the "JIU support cell" to seek support
from donors with material for the JIUs. The JIU support cell has
been inactive recently, and should be revitalized. The US should be
creative and identify some areas of tangible support despite our
sanctions, otherwise we cannot credibly provide leadership in this
area. Other donors can be encouraged to provide additional support
and it would be worth following up with capitals (London and The
Hague have been particularly forward leaning) to check on what
support was actually provided to the JIUs.

UNMIS Mandate Review
- - - - - - - - - - -
5. (SBU) In a meeting with emboffs on June 22, UNMIS Force
Commander General Thapa described the UNMIS mandate as "protection
of civilians without jeopardizing the authority of the GoS," in
accordance with the authorizing UNSCR and the CPA. This mandate
does not include protection of property, according to Thapa. Thapa
told emboffs that, following the fighting in Abyei, UNMIS offered to
assist the SAF in stopping looting and vandalism, but was told that
the SAF already was taking action and did not require assistance.
Thus, UNMIS appears to have felt itself constrained from intervening
in the Abyei situation both by the perceived lack of authority to
protect property and by the prohibition against undermining GoS
authority.

6. (SBU) UNMIS lack of assertiveness likely stems as much or more
from the risk aversion of the Troop Contributing Countries, as
discussed below, as from any lack of formal authority to act.
Although it is unrealistic to expect UNMIS to intervene directly
when the SAF and SPLA are facing off with tanks and heavy artillery,
UNMIS could more clearly define its current rules of engagement,
which allow it to fulfill its mandate to protect civilians; UNMIS
should communicate clearly to its forces the expectations for how
and when to intervene. UNMIS could also better use its existing
mandate by increasing the tempo of its patrols in an around Abyei
town. In addition, UNMIS could make better use of its existing
police mandate to add civilian police and police trainers, which
would help to better protect civilians and keep a closer eye on
events in Abyei.

Evaluation of Current UNMIS Military Leadership
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
7. (SBU) Newly-arrived UNMIS Force Commander Thapa has been on the
job for only about one month, was immediately thrust into a major
crisis in Abyei, and still is very much getting a grasp of his
command. UNMIS Chief of Staff, Col. Jeremy Drage (UK), also is
brand new. Although some have compared General Thapa unfavorably to
his charismatic predecessor, General Lidder, we think it is far too
early to tell how he will perform once he has become fully
acclimated to his assignment and had an opportunity to establish his
authority. Although more subdued than Lidder, he so far has showed
admirable energy in trying to deal with the Abyei emergency.

8. (SBU) A more deeply rooted, structural problem (by no means
unique to UNMIS) is the FC's limited ability to assert his command
authority over the component sector commanders in the field and
direct their operations. The five sector commanders (each of a
different nationality) are naturally more responsive to the guidance
they receive from their capitals than to the FC's instructions.
Even the dynamic General Lidder had difficulty motivating his sector
commanders to be more proactive. The actions of the sector
commanders will be governed/constrained more by the priorities set
by their home governments, which have been in the past and are
likely to remain risk averse. This UN peacekeeper mentality is not
unique to Sudan.

Support to Abyei
- - - - - - - - -
9. (SBU) It remains to be seen whether the two parties have the
will to implement the June 8 agreement. Although the JIUs have
deployed, their effectiveness is yet to be determined. Already,
announcement of the interim administration has been delayed, raising
questions as to whether the two parties will be able to overcome
their previous differences and implement the Roadmap. In the short
term, continued humanitarian assistance to the IDPs is critical.
Rapidly putting in place the JIUs, integrated police, and interim
administration are the primary requirements to successfully
implement the Roadmap; therefore support to moveg>Stted
through local leaders on both sides. There is a need to keep
aggrieved Misseriya busy with some development projects and at least
the appearance of evenhandedness.

10. (SBU) If the Roadmap is implemented, the interim administration
will have access to significant oil revenues. Therefore, support
for the interim administration's technical capacity to assure that
resources are used efficiently, transparently, and accountably will
be more useful than direct infrastructure support. In this regard,
the Ngok Dinka and Misseriya communities will also soon start
receiving their 2% of the oil revenues, and it is not yet clear who
will receive, manage, and allocate these funds for projects. There
are likely to be significant capacity issues in this regard, and the
USG could assist these communities in the same way that it is
assisting the GOSS with financial and administrative capacity. If
the agreement is not implemented, the risk of a return to conflict
is high and money spent on infrastructure support could have been
wasted. At the same time, some early tangible deliverables from the
international community can help calm tensions and lower the
rhetoric between two polarized communities while the mechanism for
sharing oil revenues and the mechanics of arbitration are worked
out.

FERNANDEZ

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC