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Cablegate: Foreign Ministry Welcomes Natsios, but Says

VZCZCXRO4003
OO RUEHMA RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #2480 2831042
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 101042Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4909
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS KHARTOUM 002480

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR SPECIAL ENVOY NATSIOS, AF A/S FRAZER,
AF/SPG, AND AF/PD
NSC FOR COURVILLE AND SHORTLEY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV OPRC KPAO SU US
SUBJECT: FOREIGN MINISTRY WELCOMES NATSIOS, BUT SAYS
DEMOCRATS MAY TRY TO "SABOTAGE" VISIT


1. Summary: Sudan welcomes the visit of Special Envoy
Natsios, but believes "Democrats within the US State
Department" are trying to sabotage his mission before it
takes off, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in an October
5 press release. Natsios will be granted a visa, provided
both his mission and its program are "constructive,"
according to the statement. He should support the Darfur
Peace Agreement, recognize the basic role of the African
Union, address development and rehabilitation issues in
Darfur, correct the negative impact of past UN resolutions,
and improve bilateral relations by lifting sanctions.
However, the Ministry also warned that Democrats continue to
influence US policy towards Sudan, and were already trying to
pre-empt Natsios's visit with stories that Sudan had denied
his visa. The statement cited an October 2 Washington Post
editorial by Susan Rice, Anthony Lake, and Donald Payne, and
accused the Democrats of trying to continue the "failed
hostile policy" against Sudan they launched during the
Clinton Administration. End Summary.

2. The full text of the release reads as follows:

With reference to the statement made by the spokesperson of
the U.S. State Department on 29 September 2006 that the
Sudanese Authorities did not grant a visa to the US Envoy to
Darfur Mr. Andrew Natsios, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of
the Republic of the Sudan wishes to clarify the following:

-- At the time the above captioned statement was made no
request for a visa to enter the Sudan had ever been submitted
by the said U.S. Envoy, who according to one of his
assistants, was not yet issued a passport as an Envoy.
Accordingly, no visa was denied. The Ministry views such a
statement as an attempt from within the U.S. State Department
to pre-empt and sabotage the mission of the U.S. Envoy to the
Sudan before taking off. The article published by the
Washington Post on Monday, October 2, 2006, by Susan Rice,
Anthony Lake, and Donald M. Payne is a very clear
manifestation of the influence of the Democrats over the U.S.
State Department policy under Condoleezza Rice towards the
Sudan and the situation in Darfur in particular.

-- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the
Sudan reminds all that the failed U.S. hostile policy against
the Sudan was not started by the current U.S. Republican
Administration, but by those very Democrats who were the
architects of this hostile policy against the Sudan when they
were in office a few years ago. The Ministry regrets that
such a statement would only complicate the issue and can only
contribute to more suffering of our citizens in Darfur. It
also reflects the influential interference of the Democrats
as well as the disharmony within the U.S. State Department in
handling the situation in Darfur. The Ministry calls for
rectification of this situation.

-- The Ministry welcomes the mission of the U.S. Envoy
provided it is a constructive mission based on a constructive
program. The mission should aim at supporting the Darfur
Peace Agreement, recognize the basic role of the African
Union, address the urgent issues of development and
rehabilitation in Darfur, revise and correct the negative
impact of past UN resolutions, and remedy the situation of
bilateral relations between the United States of American and
the Republic of the Sudan through the lifting of U.S.
sanctions. The Ministry looks forward to a constructive
dialogue that would yield positive results that would foster
the peace process in Darfur. The U.S. Envoy would be granted
a visa to the Sudan, and his mission would be facilitated in
accordance with the recognized diplomatic customs and
practices.

-- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the
Sudan also welcomes the recent support package made by the
United Nations to the African Union Mission in Sudan, and
calls upon the United Nations and the International Community
to continue extending their support to AMIS in full
recognition of the Darfur Peace Agreement and until all the
tasks, duties, and obligations therein are fulfilled.

-- Issued in Khartoum, the Sudan, on 5 October 2006.

End text

3. The statement was attached to a diplomatic note sent to
the Embassy on 7 October. Reaction to the statement in the
local press will be reported septel.
HUME

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