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Cablegate: Chad Chronicle: August 2008

VZCZCXRO3899
RR RUEHGI RUEHTRO
DE RUEHNJ #0381/01 2461742
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 021742Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6425
INFO RUEHYD/AMEMBASSY YAOUNDE 1716
RUEHGI/AMEMBASSY BANGUI 1530
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 2331
RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI 0476
RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM 0510
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 1778
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0998

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 NDJAMENA 000381

SIPDIS

PARIS AND LONDON FOR AFRICA WATCHERS, STATE FOR AF, AF/C, AF/EPS,
AND AF/RSA
ADDIS ALSO FOR AU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PREF ECON EFIN IBRD PHUM UN LY CD
SUBJECT: CHAD CHRONICLE: AUGUST 2008

--------------------------------------------- ------
PRESIDENT DEBY GETS INVESTIGATIVE COMMISSION REPORT
--------------------------------------------- --------

1. INVESTIGATION INTO THE JANUARY AND FEBRUARY 2008 EVENTS:
PRESIDENT DEBY SAYS HE WILL "FOLLOW UP" RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE
REPORT. THE COMMISSION INVESTIGATING THE EVENTS OF JANUARY AND
FEBRUARY 2008 SUBMITTED ITS REPORT TO PRESIDENT DEBY ON TUESDAY,
AUGUST 5. IN RECEIVING THE REPORT, PRESIDENT DEBY DECLARED THAT HE
WILL STRICTLY FOLLOW THE RECOMMENDATIONS CONTAINED IN THE DOCUMENT,
AND THAT THE GOVERNMENT WILL "CAREFULLY FOLLOW IT UP." NO INDICATION
WAS GIVEN AS TO THE DATE WHEN THE 160-PAGE REPORT WOULD BE RELEASED
TO THE PUBLIC. IN RECEIVING THE REPORT, PRESIDENT DEBY TOLD THE HEAD
OF THE COMMISSION, MR. ALLAISSEM DJAIBE, THAT THE GOC WOULD
ESTABLISH A MINISTERIAL-LEVEL FOLLOW-UP COMMITTEE. (SEE PARA 11
BELOW.)

--------------------------------------------- -
CHINESE FIND OIL DEPOSIT IN SOUTHWESTERN CHAD
--------------------------------------------- --

2. HIGH-QUALITY OIL DEPOSIT DISCOVERED IN THE BONGOR AREA. THE
MINISTER OF OIL, MR. MAHAMAT NASSER HASSANE, ANNOUNCED ON AUGUST 13
THAT A DEPOSIT OF HIGH-QUALITY PETROLEUM HAS BEEN DISCOVERED IN
SOUTHWESTERN CHAD NEAR THE TOWN OF BONGOR BY THE CHINESE NATIONAL
PETROLEUM COMPANY (CNPC). HE DECLARED THAT, ONCE EXPLOITED, THIS OIL
WOULD BE REFINED AT A REFINERY TO BE LOCATED IN DJERMAYA ON THE
OUTSKIRTS OF NDJAMENA IN ORDER TO SATISFY INTERNAL DEMAND.

----------------------------------------
HIGH COURT CONDEMNS REBEL CHIEFS, HABRE
----------------------------------------

3. HIGH COURT CONDEMNS REBELS, EX-PRESIDENT HABRE IN ABSENTIA.
(AUGUST 13-15): DURING ITS FIRST SESSION AUGUST 12-15, THE CRIMINAL
COURT PRONOUNCED HARSH SENTENCES AGAINST CURRENT CHAD REBEL LEADERS
AS WELL AS FORMER PRESIDENT HISSEIN HABRE. TWELVE REBEL LEADERS AND
HABRE WERE SENTENCED TO DEATH IN ABSTENTIA. AMONG THOSE SENTENCED TO
DEATH WERE MAJOR REBEL LEADERS MAHAMAT NOURI, TOM ERDIMI, TIMAN
ERDIMI, AHMAT HASSABALLAH SOUBIANE, AND ABDOUL-WAHID ABOUD. LIFE
SENTENCES WERE PRONOUNCED AGAINST FORTY-TWO OTHER REBELS. THE COURT
ALSO ORDERED THE CONFISCATION OF THE PROPERTY OF THE CONDEMNED. IN
REACTION TO RUMORS THAT THE SENTENCING OF HISSEIN HABRE BY THE
CHADIAN CRIMINAL COURT WOULD PUT AN END TO HIS TRIAL PROCESS
UNDERWAY IN SENEGAL, THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, JEAN ALINGUE BAWOYEU
DECLARED ON AUGUST 15 THAT THE NDJAMENA CRIMINAL COURT'S DECISION
DOES NOT AFFECT THE TRIAL PROCESS IN SENEGAL. HE EXPLAINED THAT
HISSEIN HABRE WAS CONVICTED IN CHAD FOR HIS SUPPORT TO THE CHADIAN
REBELS, WHILE HIS TRIAL IN SENEGAL IS RELATED TO "CRIME AGAINST
HUMANITY AND OTHER ATROCITIES."

---------------------------------------------
NON-RESIDENT AMBASSADORS PRESENT CREDENTIALS
--------------------------------------------- -

4. EIGHT NON-RESIDENT AMBASSADORS PRESENT CREDENTIALS. ON AUGUST
15, AMBASSADORS FROM CANADA, JAPAN, AUSTRALIA, MALTA, GHANA, SPAIN,
IRELAND, AND THE UNITED KINGDOM, PRESENTED THEIR CREDENTIAL LETTERS
TO PRESIDENT DEBY. FIVE OF THE AMBASSADORS RESIDE IN YAOUNDE,
CAMEROON, WHILE THE THREE OTHER HAVE THEIR RESIDENCES IN ABUJA,
NIGERIA.

-----------------------------
MORE RFC REBELS RALLY TO GOC
------------------------------

5. ELEMENTS OF THE RFC REBEL GROUP AGREE TO END ARMED STRUGGLE.
THE GOC ANNOUNCED AUGUST 18 THAT THE CHADIAN GOVERNEMENT AND
ELEMENTS OF THE "RASSEMBLEMENT DES FORCES POUR LE CHANGEMENT" (RFC -
RALLY OF FORCES FOR CHANGE), SIGNED A PROTOCOL AGREEMENT IN
APPLICATION OF THE SIRTE ACCORD. THE AGREEMENT WAS SIGNED BY THE
NATIONAL MEDIATOR REPRESENTING THE GOC AND THE RFC DEFENSE
COMMISSIONER IN THE PRESENCE OF THE LIBYAN AMBASSADOR TO CHAD. THE
TERMS OF THE AGREEMENT INCLUDE AN IMMEDIATE CEASE-FIRE AND ASSEMBLY
OF THE RFC FIGHTERS TO BE FOLLOWED BY THEIR INTEGRATION INTO THE
CHADIAN NATIONAL ARMY OR (FOR CIVILIANS) INTO THE CHADIAN CIVIL
SERVICE. INTEGRATION IS TO OCCUR WITHIN TWO MONTHS FROM THE DATE OF
THE SIGNING OF THE AGREEMENT. THE FIGHTERS WILL ASSEMBLE IN IRIBA,
WHERE THEY WILL BE COUNTED. ONCE THEIR NUMBER IS KNOWN, THE
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY WILL INITIATE AN AMNESTY LAW FOR THOSE WHO HAD
PREVIOUSLY BEEN SANCTIONED BY THE GOVERNMENT.


NDJAMENA 00000381 002 OF 003


------------------------------------
GOC MICR-FINANCING PROJECT LAUNCHED
------------------------------------

6. NATIONAL MICRO-FINANCE STRATEGY: AT LEAST 500,000 TO ACCESS
LOANS BETWEEN NOW AND 2013. DURING THE OPENING CEREMONY OF A SEMINAR
ON THE NATIONAL MICRO-FINANCE STRATEGY ON AUGUST 18, THE
VICE-MINISTER FOR ECONOMY AND PLANNING, MS. AZIZA BAROUD ANNOUNCED
THAT AT LEAST 500,000 LOW INCOME PEOPLE WILL HAVEACCESS TO
MICRO-CREDITS BETWEEN NOW AND 2013. TE PLAN IS PART OF A GRAND
POVERTY REDUCTION STRAEGY TO MAKE CREDIT AVAILABLE TO LOW INCOME
CITIZNS WHO OTHERWISE DO NOT HAVE ACCESS TO REGULAR BAN LENDING.

------------------------
FINANCE MINSTER FIRED
------------------------

7. FINANCE MINISTER DISMISSED. ON AUGUST 19 PRESIDENT DEBY
UNEXPECTEDLY FIRED MINISTER OF FINANCE, MR. ABAKAR MALLAH MOURTCHA.
ACCORDING TO L'OBSERVATEUR, A LOCAL NEWSPAPER, THE MINISTER WAS
ACCUSED TO SELLING STATE LETTERS OF CREDIT TO A LOCAL BANK WITH THE
AIM OF PERSONAL PROFIT, THUS CAUSING DELAY OF PAYMENTS TO THE
RECIPIENTS OF THOSE LETTERS OF CREDIT, MOST OF WHOM ARE RETIRED
CIVIL SERVANTS AND OTHER NEEDY PERSONS. SUCH CORRUPTION, ACCORDING
TO THE NEWSPAPER, IS CONTRARY TO THE PRESIDENT'S DECLARED SOCIAL
MANDATE.


----------------------------
INDIAN FIRMS INVEST IN CHAD
----------------------------

8. INDIAN COMPANIES TO INVEST IN THE CHADIAN AGRICULTURAL SECTOR.
ON AUGUST 22 THE CHADIAN GOVERNMENT AND AN INDIAN COMPANY SIGNED TWO
AGREEEMENTS TOTALING 10 MILLION US DOLLARS. ONE RELATES TO THE
PRODUCTION OF FERTILIZERS, AND THE SECOND TO THE PROCESSING OF GRAIN
INTO CEREAL AND FLOUR.

-----------------------------------
WORLD BANK DELEGATION VISITS CHAD
--------------------------------------

9. A WORLD BANK DELEGATION LED BY ITS AFRICA REGION VICE PRESIDENT
VISITED CHAD FROM AUGUST 23-25, 2008. ACCORDING TO A COMMUNIQUE
DATED AUGUST 25 RELEASED BY THE MINISTRY OF ECONOMY AND PLANNING,
THE VISIT ENABLED THE TWO PARTIES (GOC AND WB) TO CLEAR UP SEVERAL
MISUNDERSTADINGS ABOUT PAST AGREEMENTS. THE COMMUNIQUE ADDED THAT
FRANK TALKS HAVE ENABLED THE TWO PARTIES TO IRON OUT FINANCIAL
LITIGATION STEMING FROM THE WORLD BANK'S PARTICIPATION IN THE
CHADIAN OIL PROJECT, AND TO CONSIDER RE-LAUNCHING THEIR COOPERATION
AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, INCLUDING THE RE-OPENING OF THE BANK'S
REPRESENTATION IN CHAD. (THIS COULD JUST QUOTE THE COMMUNIQUE,
INSTEAD OF BADLY SUMMARIZING ITS CONTENT.)

------------------
EUFOR AIR ASSETS
------------------

10. EUFOR UTILIZING HELICOPTERS TO EXTEND ITS REACH, WORKING WITH
LOCAL TRADITIONAL AUTHORITIES TO COUNTER BANDITRY. THE PEACE-KEEPING
EUROPEAN MISSION (EUFOR) ANNOUNCED IN A PRESS RELEASE THAT IT NOW
HAS ELEVEN HELICOPTERS THAT WILL ENABLE ITS FORCES TO BETTER SECURE
THE CONFLICT ZONE IN SPITE OF THE RAINY SEASON THAT HAS MADE ROADS
IN THE REGION DIFFICULT TO NAVIGATE. ADDITIONALLY, THE EUFOR
SPOKESMAN SAID THAT PATROLS HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH CHIEFS AND LOCAL
AUTHORITIES IN ORDER TO REDUCE BANDITRY. EUFOR CONTRIBUTING
COUNTRIES ARE: FRANCE, IRELAND, POLAND, SWEDEN, AUSTRIA, ROMANIA,
ITALY, BELGIUM, SPAIN, ALBANIA, FINLAND, PORTUGAL, SLOVENIA, THE
NETHERLANDS, AND THE UNITED KINGDOM.


--------------------------------------------- ------
GOC NAMES COMMITTEE TO FOLLOW UP COMMISSION REPORT
--------------------------------------------- ------

11. GOC ANNOUNCES "FOLLOW UP" COMMITTEE TO IMPLEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS
OF INVESTIGATIVE COMMISSION. THE GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCED AUGUST 28
THAT A MINISTERIAL LEVEL
TEAM HAD BEEN ESTABLISHED TO BE THE "COMITE DE SUIVI" (MONITORING
COMMITTEE) FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE INVESTIGATIVE COMMISSION
INTO THE EVENTS SURROUNDING THE REBEL ATTACK ON THE CAPITAL IN
FEBRUARY. THE MINISTERS OF DEFENSE, FOREIGN AFFAIRS, JUSTICE,

NDJAMENA 00000381 003 OF 003


COMMUNICATION, INTERIOR, SOCIAL ACTION, HUMAN RIGHTS, AND THE
SECRETARY-GENERAL OF THE CABINET CONSTITUTE THE COMITE. THE
COMMISSION'S REPORT
WAS BEING TRANSLATED INTO ARABIC AND WOULD BE PUBLISHED "SOON."

NIGRO

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