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Cablegate: Tsvangirai Updates Oecd Heads of Mission On

VZCZCXRO2232
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHSB #0955/01 2970950
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 230950Z OCT 08
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3597
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 2369
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 2489
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0995
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1765
RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 2120
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 2541
RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 4973
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1638
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 000955

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

AF/S FOR B. WALCH
DRL FOR N. WILETT
ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU
ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS
STATE PASS TO USAID FOR E. LOKEN AND L. DOBBINS
STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR B. PITTMAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL ASEC PHUM ZI
SUBJECT: TSVANGIRAI UPDATES OECD HEADS OF MISSION ON
DEADLOCK

-------
SUMMARY
-------

1. (SBU) MDC leader and prime minister-designate Morgan
Tsvangirai updated heads of OECD missions on October 22 and
stated that no progress had been made towards concluding
negotiations between ZANU-PF and the MDC on a power-sharing
government. While disappointed that Mugabe was not
negotiating in good faith, he indicated he will attend the
rescheduled SADC Troika meeting in Harare on October 27.
According to Tsvangirai, newly-appointed South African
president Motlanthe will be present as well. END SUMMARY.

----------------------------------------
Neither Progress, Nor Good Faith Efforts
----------------------------------------

2. (SBU) The Ambassador attended a gathering of OECD heads
of mission on October 22 at which MDC leader and prime
minister-designate Morgan Tsvangirai delivered an update on
the status of the deadlocked negotiations between the two MDC
formations and ZANU-PF. Tsvangirai was quick to declare that
no progress had been made and described the negotiations as
being "like trench warfare: one step at a time." According
to Tsvangirai, President Mugabe and his negotiators were
still insisting on all key ministries, which had forced him
to request that the Southern African Development Community
(SADC) and the African Union re-engage as the guarantors of
the agreement.

3. (SBU) Tsvangirai also discussed his decision not to
attend the October 20 meeting of the SADC Troika--composed of
Swaziland, Angola, and Mozambique--in Mbabane. He explained
that while he was granted an emergency travel document, he
wanted to draw attention to the continued denial of his
passport application. Tsvangirai asserted that Mugabe had
directed the Registrar General to refuse his application, and
that it was "not an issue of a passport, but a test of the
sincerity of Mugabe's and ZANU-PF's willingness to cooperate
in good faith." (NOTE: The daily newspaper and government
mouthpiece, the Herald, has portrayed Tsvangirai's decision
as evidence that he is not serious about addressing the
crisis facing Zimbabwe. The Registrar General and Mugabe's
spokesman George Charamba blamed western sanctions resulting
in a lack of passport paper for failing (since August) to
provide Tsvangirai with a passport. Passports have been
regularly issued to other Zimbabweans over this period. END
NOTE.)

--------------------------------------------- --
Tsvangirai and Motlanthe to Attend Next Session
--------------------------------------------- --

4. (SBU) The SADC Troika discussion of Zimbabwe has now been
rescheduled for October 27 in Harare. Tsvangirai intimated
he will attend, but said he will first confer with advisors
and discuss his participation with the MDC national executive
on October 24. Tsvangirai mentioned that newly-appointed
South African president Kgalema Motlanthe will attend the
Troika session on October 27, despite not being an official
Troika member. Tsvangirai was straightforward in stating
that he believed that Mbeki was rapidly becoming irrelevant
to the process.

--------------------------------------------
Other Sticking Points, Mugabe, and Demarches
--------------------------------------------


HARARE 00000955 002 OF 002


5. (SBU) Tsvangirai also stated that the negotiations were
not solely concerned with the division of ministries.
Additionally, the appointment of governors and ambassadors
was being discussed, as well as policy issues including how
best to reverse the economy's slide and hyperinflation.

6. (SBU) When asked if he was still convinced Mugabe would
implement a deal, Tsvangirai answered that the president was
desperate and had no other option. He added that he had
received MDC intelligence reports that if the deal failed,
there was a chance of the military stepping in. He did not
elaborate further on that scenario.

7. (SBU) Although Tsvangirai did not directly ask for our
intervention, he hinted that a series of coordinated
demarches from OECD nations to SADC capitals would be
welcomed.

MCGEE

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