Cablegate: Tripartite Plus Sub-Commission Strengthens Fusion


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O 191628Z JUN 06






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1. Summary: The U.S.-facilitated Tripartite Plus Sub-
Commission on Security and Defense met in Kigali May 26-27
to discuss ways to enhance the operational effectiveness of
the Tripartite Fusion Cell (TFC) and to develop a
consolidated "most wanted" list to submit to the Tripartite
Plus Council of Ministers for sanctioning by member states
and possibly also by the African Union (AU) and the UN. Sub-
Commission members agreed to improve the quality and
quantity of intelligence to the fusion cell, outlined
standard operating procedures for operationalizing
"actionable" intelligence, and developed initial lists of
rebel leaders to be sanctioned. The ministers will next
meet informally on the margins of the AU Summit in Banjul in
July and possibly in a formal ministerial in New York in
September on the margins of UNGA. End summary.

2. The Government of Rwanda hosted a U.S.-facilitated
meeting of the Tripartite Plus Sub-Commission on Security
and Defense in Kigali May 26-27 to follow up on agreements
made during the April 20-21 Bujumbura ministerial (reftel).
This was the 14th meeting of the Tripartite Plus Joint
Commission and second meeting of the Sub-Commission.
Representing the four Tripartite Plus member states were:
Amb. Richard Sezibera, Special Presidential Envoy for the
Great Lakes Region (Rwanda); Col. Godefroid Niyombare,
Deputy Army Chief of Staff (Burundi); Mbadu Khonde,
Diplomatic Office of the Presidency (DRC); and LTC Octavius
Butuuro, Deputy Chief of Military Intelligence (Uganda).
Amb. Don Yamamoto, Deputy Assistant Secretary for African
Affairs (U.S.), facilitated the meeting in conjunction with
host representative Amb. Sezibera. MONUC representatives
LTC Patrick Van Hees and LTC Mike Burke, and ONUB
representatives Col. Waldemar Vrey, LTC Wiese, and Col.
Mzinjana participated as observers.

3. As mandated by the Bujumbura ministerial in April, the
Sub-Commission focused on improving intelligence processing
by the fusion cell, developing standard operating procedures
for acting on intelligence, developing a timeline for
operational effectiveness, and drawing up a list of rebel
leaders for the Tripartite Plus Council of Ministers to
approve and submit to the AU and UN for possible

Opening Remarks
4. In opening remarks, Amb. Sezibera, head of the Rwandan
delegation hosting the meeting, noted that the Tripartite
Plus Commission has come a long way since its formation but
that there is more work to be done to strengthen regional
cooperation and to reduce the threat of armed rebel groups.
He welcomed the continued support of the U.S., and
reiterated the Commission's decision to hold accountable
armed groups that failed to voluntarily disarm by the
September 30, 2005 deadline by recommending imposition of
sanctions to restrict their activities.

5. Amb. Yamamoto thanked the delegations for their
commitment to work together to address the fundamental
problems that affect all their countries: countering the
threat of rebel forces, enhancing diplomatic relations, and
promoting and developing economic integration. He commended
the delegations for their exemplary commitment, which has
served as a model for other bodies. He pointed out that
everything that has been accomplished has been the
collective effort of each of the member countries and that
the U.S., as facilitator, is their "service provider." He
reaffirmed U.S. commitment to continue its support.

Improved Regional Relations
6. Rwandan Foreign Affairs Minister Charles Murigande
commended the delegates for their participation and
commitment to addressing issues that are critical to the
region. He observed that problems in the region, which are
primarily security-related, affect diplomatic relations
among the states and that improved regional security would
lead automatically to improved diplomatic relations.

7. He expressed Rwanda's appreciation to the U.S. for
creating the Tripartite Plus forum and commented that Amb.
Yamamoto's frequent visits to the region demonstrate the
commitment of the U.S. to the process, which has already
yielded tangible results. For example, relations between
Rwanda and the DRC, which were "extremely bad," are now
"very cordial." The two countries have agreed to exchange
envoys and they no longer exchange sharp words at
international meetings. (Note: DRC officials have
repeatedly said that a formal exchange of ambassadors would
not be possible until after the July 30 presidential
elections. End note.) He reiterated the GOR's commitment
to the process and assured that it will attempt to implement
whatever decisions are made.

Tripartite Fusion Cell
8. Parties reaffirmed their commitment to making the U.S.-
facilitated fusion cell fully operational and integrated
with national intelligence operations, and adopted a
timeline with measurable milestones for attaining
operational effectiveness by August 30, 2006. They agreed
to provide intelligence to the TFC, enhance the quality and
quantity of data for "fused" actionable intelligence to more
effectively respond to the regional threat of armed groups,
and form a military planning component within the cell to
coordinate immediate and long-term responses to actionable

9. They requested that the U.S. play a more active role in
providing requisite logistical and material support for the
processing and analysis of intelligence, assist the TFC in
evaluating intelligence, and serve as a neutral advisor in
resolving disagreements among member states and
deconflicting competing intelligence. In addition, parties
requested that MONUC, within its mandate, play a more active
role in sharing intelligence and providing logistical
support to the TFC, and formally respond to the TFC's
earlier request for assistance.

10. MONUC observer LTC Mike Burke reaffirmed MONUC's
commitment to the fusion cell, stressing that sharing of
intelligence and other joint efforts to remove the threat of
negative forces are "of paramount importance to regional
security." He noted, however, that no guidelines have yet
been developed to instruct MONUC on its responsibilities.
He pledged to work with UNDPKO to hasten development of
guidelines, but noted that if the UN Security Council
changes MONUC's Chapter VII mandate to a Chapter VI mandate
after the July DRC elections, MONUC's ability to undertake
joint operations would be hampered.

11. Col. Timothy Rainey, U.S. Senior Military Advisor for
African Affairs, emphasized that the role of the fusion cell
is to receive, process, analyze, and disseminate
intelligence, not to collect information.

Most Wanted Lists
12. Parties reaffirmed their commitment to impose
sanctions, as outlined in "The Way Forward" signed by the
Council of Ministers in Uganda in October 2005, on armed
groups and their leaders and supporters who have not met the
September 30, 2005 deadline for voluntary disarmament.
These measures include an assets freeze and restrictions on
travel, fundraising, political discussions and negotiations,
and restricted access to the media and visas.

13. As a follow-up to their October 2005 commitment, each
member state developed and submitted to the facilitator an
initial list of "most wanted" political and military leaders
of negative forces. These lists will form the basis of a
consolidated, focused list of individuals to be subject to
sanctions within the four member states, and possibly also
by the AU and UN.

14. Parties agreed to submit to the facilitator requests
for clarification on the provisional lists that they failed
to resolve among themselves. The USG agreed to harmonize
the provisional lists and to submit a consolidated list to
the Tripartite Plus Council of Ministers prior to the AU
Summit in Banjul in July for approval and submission to the

AU for sanctioning. (Note: if approved, this would be the
first time the AU has imposed sanctions. End note.) Amb.
Yamamoto noted that imposing sanctions would be the first
step, and that the second step -- determining the
consequences when member countries fail to enforce the
sanctions -- would be discussed at the next ministerial
meeting. The USG agreed to provide proposed procedures for
arrest and prosecution, sample legislation and extradition
treaties, ideas on steps for improved diplomatic relations,
and to explore the possibility of using the fusion cell as a
mechanism for tracking sanctioned individuals.

Final Outcome Documents
15. The two-day Kigali meeting concluded with the signing
by delegation heads of a Summary of Conclusions, with three
attachments (attachment 1, modifications to the Security
Experts' recommendations of January 30, 2006, on the TFC
communications architecture and operational coordination;
attachment 2, procedures for operationalizing actionable
intelligence; and attachment 3, Tripartite fusion cell
actions and milestones). The ministers will next meet
informally on the margins of the AU Summit in Banjul in July
and possibly in a formal ministerial in New York in
September on the margins of UNGA.

16. The commitment of all four Tripartite Plus member
states, and facilitation by the U.S., to improve cooperation
toward eliminating the common threat of negative forces
ensured the success of this meeting. While negotiations
were at times prolonged and difficult, especially during
discussions of specific individuals for sanctioning, the Sub-
Commission succeeded in meeting its overall objectives. The
evident willingness of the parties to cooperate on regional
security, despite past differences, sends a strong, positive
message for the future of conflict prevention and resolution
in the Great Lakes region. With greater operational
effectiveness, the Tripartite fusion cell will serve as a
critical mechanism in ensuring regional peace and stability.

© Scoop Media

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