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Cablegate: Malawi: Supportive of Un Somalia Force But

VZCZCXRO4563
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHLG #0710 3470854
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 120854Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY LILONGWE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0184
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0998
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0289
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0597
RHMFISS/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE

UNCLAS LILONGWE 000710

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

STATE FOR AF/E - NOLE GARREY, IO/PSC - TANAZ KHAMBATTA,
AF/RSA - MIKE BITTRICK

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV KPKO AU SO MI
SUBJECT: MALAWI: SUPPORTIVE OF UN SOMALIA FORCE BUT
UNLIKELY TO CONTRIBUTE TROOPS

REF: A. SECSTATE 129524
B. SECSTATE 126421

1. (SBU) Summary: Emboffs met with principal secretaries at
the Ministry of Defense (MoD) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs
(MFA) to discuss reftel points regarding Somalia. PS Livuza
from the MFA indicated that Malawi would support a resolution
authorizing a UN peacekeeping operation in Somalia as long as
adequate efforts are made to resolve political problems as
well. PS Kachimera at the MoD was tempted by the offer of
equipment support, but noted there was no currently no peace
to keep in Somalia. He said the Malawi Defense Force (MDF)
would prefer to deploy to a United Nations mission (MONUC,
MINURCAT, or UNAMID) instead. Livuza echoed this sentiment,
but did say Malawi might send police to Somalia if the
security situation improved. Comment: The US equipment offer
is prompting a new discussion about a Somalia deployment
within the GOM, but Malawi is unlikely to volunteer troops in
the near term. End Summary.

2. (SBU) On December 11, Charge met with MFA Principal
Secretary Anthony Livuza regarding ref A demarche. Livuza
said Malawi would support a resolution authorizing a UN
peacekeeping operation in Somalia if adequate attention were
also given to solving political problems and strengthening
Somalia's governing institutions. Though he characterized
the operating environment in Somalia as particularly
challenging, Livuza said there was a possibility Malawi could
one day deploy there, but likely only under a UN mandate,
with adequate equipment, and (he implied) after other
peacekeepers had established basic security conditions.
Livuza also said Malawi would potentially be interested in
sending police to Somalia.

3. (SBU) Emboff discussed ref B points with MoD Principal
Secretary Patrick Kachimera. Kachimera said Malawi told the
AU team that it did not have enough equipment to deploy to
Somalia. When emboff reiterated that the U.S. could provide
equipment support if that was Malawi's only obstacle,
Kachimera quickly replied that Malawi would prefer to deploy
to one of the other UN missions in Africa (MONUC, MINURCAT,
or UNAMID) instead. Kachimera added that the GOM is
committed to participating in peacekeeping missions, but
believes there is no peace to keep in Somalia.

4. (SBU) Comment: Kachimera seemed momentarily tempted by the
prospect of equipment support and other deployment
assistance. The USG offer appears to be prompting a new
Somalia discussion within the GOM; a decision to volunteer
for Somalia would need President Mutharika's approval. The
President will likely listen to Malawi Defense Force
leadership who show no signs of supporting a Somalia
deployment, probably due to concerns that the MDF does not
yet have the requisite experience under fire to confront a
challenge of that magnitude. End Comment.
SULLIVAN

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