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Cablegate: Former Janjaweed in Saf Clash with Sla-Minawi and Other

VZCZCXRO4070
PP RUEHMA RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #2518 2921052
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 191052Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4966
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS KHARTOUM 002518

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/SPG, S/CRS
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN
NSC FOR BOBBY PITTMAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KPKO SOCI AU SU

SUBJECT: FORMER JANJAWEED IN SAF CLASH WITH SLA-MINAWI AND OTHER
SAF IN EL FASHER

REF: KHARTOUM 2469

1. (SBU) SUMMARY. A series of conflicts has erupted in El Fasher
between former Janjaweed integrated into the Sudanese Armed Forces
(SAF) and both SLA-Minawi members and other SAF forces. These
Janjaweed, who have been absorbed into the SAF Border Guard and
Intelligence Forces, have looted markets, threatened shopkeepers,
and exchanged fire with SLA-Minawi troops within the city. Regular
SAF units were deployed to control the situation on October 12,
which led to some skirmishes between these troops and the former
Janjaweed.

--------------------------------------------- ----
FORMER JANJAWEED CREATING PROBLEMS WITH ALL SIDES
--------------------------------------------- ----

2. (SBU) On October 10, a fight broke out between these former
Janjaweed and two SLA-Minawi members in the El Fasher market. Some
SLA-M soldiers responded by apprehending a former Janjaweed SAF
soldier and holding him at their compound, which is near the AMIS
Forward headquarters. A series of low-level verbal and physical
confrontations ensued until October 12, at which time Senior
SLA-Minawi commander Ali Mukhtar told Active Response Corps (ARC)
officer that the two sides resolved the issue and the soldier was
released. Mukhtar observed that these former Janjaweed are
seemingly refusing to take orders from Sudanese regular army
officers.

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3. (SBU) During the same period, the former Janjaweed SAF Border
Guards and Intelligence forces allegedly harassed shopkeepers and
looted stores, leadng to many stores refusing to open due to the
threat. On October 12, the Wali of North Darfur, Othman Mohammed
Yousif Kibbir, delivered a personal plea to shopkeepers at El
Fasher's main market to return to work.

4. (SBU) While the Wali was speaking, the former Janjaweed soldiers
began brandishing weapons at merchants who complained. Regular SAF
troops intervened and the former Janjaweed soldiers fled after an
exchange of small-arms fire. The Wali pledged to increase security
at the market and a platoon-sized element of SAF paratroopers were
positioned near the market's entrance and at other access points in
a show of force.

5. This is not the first report of fighting between regular SAF
forces and former Janjaweed integrated into the SAF Border Guards
and Intelligence. Tensions boiled over in September when fighting
erupted on a local military base in El Fasher between the two
groups. Senior AMIS officers believe these former Janjaweed are
taking orders directly from Khartoum and refuse to accept the
authority of the local SAF chain of command.

HUME

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