Search

 

Cablegate: Goma Report October 3: Belligerent

VZCZCXRO8119
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHKI #0838/01 2771605
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 031605Z OCT 08
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8538
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 000838

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS KPKO PHUM PREF CG
SUBJECT: Goma Report October 3: Belligerent
Statements, Quiet Battlefield

1. (SBU) Summary: North Kivu has had it fourth quiet day
militarily October 3, even while Nkunda has called for national
liberation, and FARDC claims an imminent CNDP attack, for which
North Kivu brigade sees no evidence. The little ceasefire augurs
well, but the belligerent language augurs badly, for military or
political dialogue. End Summary.

2. (SBU) The ceasefire held on October 3, for the fourth straight
day without any exchange of fire in any of the four sectors around
the CNDP territory, nor any significant move of forces by either
side observed by the North Kivu brigade. However, FARDC's General
Mayala warned North Kivu brigade commander Rawat on the morning of
October 2 that FARDC had information that "CNDP was massing for a
large offensive" against the newly-held FARDC position at Tongo, as
well as near Rutshuru and Masisi, and that FARDC would have to react
to "protect itself."

3. (SBU) Mayala made this warning before Nkunda's BBC interview,
broadcast on the afternoon of October 2. Mayala repeated it to
Rawat October 3. North Kivu brigade continues to observe no
significant CNDP build-up. Humanitarians who recently traveled
through CNDP territory in Masisi and Rutshuru also did not notice
signs of any military build up. Rawat noted to poloff October 2
that when either side speaks of imminent attacks by the other, such
language often means it is about to attack the other. Rawat said he
was blunt with Mayala, that if FARDC commenced further attacks,
North Kivu would leave FARDC entirely to its own fate and could
expect no assistance from MONUC. He also made it clear that FARDC's
continued occupation of Tongo was an extremely serious violation of
the disengagement plan and impediment to dialogue and that North
Kivu brigade had confirmed that CNDP had withdrawn from both Kanombe
and Himbi Height in the Rutshuru corridor.

4. (SBU) In Nkunda's telephonic interview with BBC October 2,
Nkunda said that an extraordinary congress of the CNDP had occurred
the previous day, which had decided that CNDP would transform itself
from a movement of "revendications" (demands) to one of national
liberation. Reflecting recent CNDP statements, it characterized the
Amani program as dead (citing in this case the change of government
in Kinshasa). BBC interpreted the interview to mean that CNDP had
changed its name (to Mouvement de Liberation Totale du Congo, or
Mouvement de Liberation Totale de la Republique).

5. (SBU) CNDP spokesman Bertrand Bisimwa affirmed to Deputy Eastern
Coordinator M'hand Ladjouzi October 3 that CNDP had not changed its
name, but only expanded its focus to national liberation. There has
been much speculation in Goma whether the interviewee really was
Nkunda, as several francophones who had previously met Nkunda say
the interviewee did not sound like Nkunda. However, Bisimwa assured
Ladjouzi that the interview was indeed with Nkunda. It is not known
where Nkunda was during the telephonic interview, nor where the
claimed congress took place. General Rawat personally helicoptered
to Kirolirwe and Kitchanga on October 2 to investigate whether
anyone there had recently detected Nkunda or any significant CNDP
military or political movement, with nil evidence of either.

6. (SBU) Such pronouncements (Defense Minister Chikez and even
Father Malu Malu have also made unhelpful statements) send a chill
over efforts of the previous days to coax both sides toward
dialogue. General Etumba, in separate conversations with Ladjouzi
and EU representative Dumont before departing to Kinshasa September
30, had seemed convinced that there was no military solution and
amenable to conducting talks on the disengagement plan with CNDP.
In several telephonic contacts with CNDP (variously, Abandi,
Bisimwa, Muiti, and Kambasu), Ladjouzi had communicated FARDC's
desire to have dialogue. CNDP had given Ladjouzi a positive, if
noncommittal, response. British representative Pravda had also
apprised CNDP of the arrival October 4 of EU Special Envoy van de
Geer and his desire to meet Nkunda (with of course no response yet
from Nkunda).

7. (SBU) Meanwhile, for the first time since the Task Force of the
Joint Monitoring Group began its weekly meetings in Goma last
December, the Rwandan delegation called poloff on the evening of
October 2 (before the scheduled meeting October 3) to say that it
could not come to Goma due to insecurity. (It also cited lack of
progress in combating FDLR.) In fact, Goma is quiet, and the
Rwandan delegation was willing to come in previous weeks when the
situation in Goma was much more precarious. The meeting has been
rescheduled for October 4 across the border in Gisenyi. More will
follow in a separate cable.

8. (SBU) As part of MONUC's efforts to sensitize belligerents on
the ground of the disengagement plan, francophone officers traveled
to the western sector October 1 all the way to Kashuga (which on

KINSHASA 00000838 002 OF 002


August 28 was the furthest northwest point of CNDP control). They
found that CNDP was not present and that the officer in charge of a
group calling itself "Mai Mai Mongol" was in fact FDLR. They came
to this conclusion, since the officer went on at some length, in
Kinyarwanda, about the political claims of FDLR. (Note: There had
been earlier varying reports that PARECO was in control, or that
CNDP had regained control, of Kashuga.)

BROCK

© 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: