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Cablegate: Goma Situation Update

VZCZCXRO7421
PP RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHKI #0563/01 1831548
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 011548Z JUL 08
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8175
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KINSHASA 000563

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS KPKO CG
SUBJECT: GOMA SITUATION UPDATE

1. (SBU) Summary: The recent absence of the principal Congolese
actors from Goma has resulted in lost time and inefficiencies in the
Amani process. The Joint Technical Commission on Peace and Security
is now not meeting, but the International Facilitation and MONUC are
mapping out a plan for revitalizing the disengagement plan
development process. Joint Monitoring Group Task Force sessions
continue to be productive and working relationships between the
participants appear to be developing nicely. At the same time, the
number of FDLR members returning to Rwanda or entering a return
process remains low. There has been a recent large turnover within
the Facilitation, and overall MONUC is weaker on the facilitation
front than in the recent past. End summary.

Goma Process Update
-------------------

2. (SBU) The recent absence of the principal Congolese actors from
Goma has resulted in much loss of time and inefficiencies with
regard to the Amani process. Father Apollinaire Malu Malu is
currently in South Africa; Admiral Etumba is in Kinshasa; and
Machako, head of humanitarian assistance, is out of the country.
General Vainqueur Mayala, Commander of the 8th Military Region,
while in Goma, appears relatively uninterested in the process.
While the U.S. Facilitation in Goma has been told that Malu Malu,
Etumba, and Machako should all have returned to Goma by next week,
the recent lack of progress on the Amani program is connected to
their absence.

3. (SBU) The Joint Technical Commission on Peace and Security
(JTCPS) is not meeting currently, although the Military
sub-Commission will in theory meet to move the "disengagement plan"
forward. The CNDP continues to boycott the sub-Commission, and FRF
remains on strike in Kamombo. The North and South Kivu mai-mai take
turns failing to turn up for scheduled meetings or insisting that
their demands (mostly related to per-diem payments and other
benefits) be dealt with before they will participate in the actual
work of the sub-Commission. At the same time, for reasons that
remain unclear, the South Kivu mai-mai engineered a meeting of the
plenary JTCPS on July 1, which was stillborn as the Facilitation
members who showed up outnumbered the armed groups two to one and
thus no quorum was attained.

4. (SBU) In an effort to move the process forward, the
International Facilitation and MONUC are mapping out a strategy for
revitalizing the disengagement plan development process. Although
not completely fleshed out, the strategy will be to have the
sub-Commission begin working again (even without CNDP participation)
by means of moral suasion and withholding of salaries, and at the
same time hold a parallel track with the CNDP. The idea is to bring
Nkunda and the CNDP to Kimoka, where substantive discussions
regarding CNDP's vision of disengagement will take place with the
Facilitation and Malu Malu. Once these two processes are
operational, the Facilitation and MONUC will determine how to merge
them. The Facilitation will contact Malu Malu to ensure his buy-in
into this plan.


Nairobi Process Update
----------------------

5. (SBU) Joint Monitoring Group Task Force meetings continue to be
productive and working relationships between the participants appear
to be developing nicely. At the same time, the number of FDLR
members returning to Rwanda or entering a return process remains
low. The large numbers of defecting/returning FDLR that were
anticipated after the Kisangani conference have not materialized.
However, MONUC and the World Bank are counting each repatriation as
a signal that returns are increasing. Rwanda's figures for actual
combatants who have returned continue to be significantly lower than
the figures provided by MONUC. Part of the difference is explained
by the more exhaustive verification performed in Rwanda that
purportedly identifies significant numbers of non-combatants mixed
among the returnees.

Military Developments
---------------------

6. (SBU) There are unverified reports that the Rwenzori mai-mai are
collaborating with the Ugandan rebels ADF/NALU in the Grand Nord,
and that the Ugandans are reacting strongly to this claim. There
are likewise unconfirmed reports that Bosco Ntaganda may be on the
move - to Walikali or to South Kivu - with a battalion-sized force.
The Kifuafua mai-mai is reportedly taking note of this CNDP
'advance' but has not engaged militarily.

KINSHASA 00000563 002 OF 002


Facilitation and MONUC Staffing
-------------------------------

7. (SBU) There has been a recent large turnover within the
Facilitation, and overall MONUC is less robust on the facilitation
front than in the recent past. Colonel Pecheux of EUSEC has
departed Goma, while two new EUSEC officers (Dagna and Rudi) have
recently arrived. Bernard Sexe, representing the French Embassy,
will arrive in Goma this week. MONUC has strengthened its eastern
division staff at the mid-levels with the arrival in the past two
weeks of Philip Winter and Spiros Dimitrios, working mostly on the
stabilization plan but picking up some of the slack on the
facilitation side. The position of Chief of Staff, held until
recently by John Almstrom, has yet to be filled. Almstrom's deputy
- Menada Wind Andersen - has departed Goma permanently. Alpha Sow,
North Kivu Head of Office, continues to do double duty standing in
for Almstrom and also continuing to run MONUC in North Kivu.

GARVELINK

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