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Cablegate: Sudan - Southern Kordofan Situation Report

VZCZCXRO8443
PP RUEHMA RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #2739/01 3301410
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 261410Z NOV 06
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5363
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHRN/USMISSION UN ROME

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 KHARTOUM 002739

SIPDIS

AIDAC
SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/SPG, PRM, AND ALSO PASS USAID/W
USAID FOR DCHA SUDAN TEAM, AFR/SP
NAIROBI FOR USAID/DCHA/OFDA, USAID/REDSO, AND FAS
GENEVA FOR NKYLOH
NAIROBI FOR SFO
NSC FOR PMARCHAM, MMAGAN, AND TSHORTLEY
ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU
USUN FOR TMALY
BRUSSELS FOR PLERNER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID PREF PGOV PHUM KDEM SOCI SU KHDP
SUBJECT: SUDAN - SOUTHERN KORDOFAN SITUATION REPORT


KHARTOUM 00002739 001.2 OF 003


-------------------
Summary and Comment
-------------------

1. On September 2, USAID staff visited Kadugli and Abyei towns in
Southern Kordofan State to track progress on the implementation of
the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and determine appropriate
areas for USAID support. In the state capital, Kadugli, some
administrative restructuring has occurred and opportunities to move
forward with CPA implementation exist. However, the lack of a state
constitution impedes progress, as does the centralized control over
development resource allocation, which is a sign that resources are
not yet being redistributed according to the CPA. A noticeable lack
of devolution of the development planning process continues to
undermine the state government's objectiveness and risks further
increasing existing inequities in the state, counter to the
principles of the CPA. In Abyei, implementation of the CPA is not
advancing as planned, largely due to a lack of an official regional
government. USAID staff report that current challenges for Abyei
include conflict over land rights between the Dinka and Misseriya
ethnic groups, conflict over nomad migration routes, resettlement of
groups in contested areas, the slow disarmament process, and weak
human rights monitoring. End summary and comment.

----------------
Local Governance
----------------

2. Equitable distribution of development assistance is a key
principle of the CPA and should be a central criterion for the
distribution of central funds. Two major issues are currently
impeding equitable distribution: 1) in Southern Kordofan, current
structures that allow for money allocated for development to be used
instead for government operations; and 2) in Abyei, relations
between the Dinka and Misseriya.

3. The CPA stipulates that, in addition to standard central
government transfers, 2 percent of oil revenues in Southern Kordofan
should be given to the state. According to the State Minister of
Economy and Investment, Southern Kordofan State received a monthly
contribution of 1 percent share in oil revenues, approximately USD
1.2 to 1.4 million, in August. This contribution indicates that
indeed money has begun to be distributed according to CPA
stipulations. In conversations, it was reported to USAID that this
money was spent on government operations, specifically on the
procurement of vehicles, rather than on development-related projects
because the central government had not transferred expected
operational funds to the state. The separation of development and
operational funds would help prevent development funds from being
spent on operational budget items. (Comment: The diversion of
development funds to government operations is particularly harmful
during the pre-interim period because the general population sees
government officials well-outfitted with vehicles and other assets,
while people's home areas remain without any development. This
could cause significant tension and difficulty for the fledging
government. End comment.)

4. The Ministry of Economics and Planning has been formed out of the
old Department of Economics and Planning, which was formerly under
the Ministry of Finance. In the future, development funding is
supposed to be funneled through this new ministry, while operations
funds will be channeled through the Ministry of Finance. (Comment:
This division of responsibilities could improve transparency in
development planning and expenditures, but close coordination
between the two ministries will be needed to assure that sufficient
operational budgets will be allocated to implement and sustain
development projects. End comment.)

5. In Abyei, an impediment to equitable distribution of development
is that tension over land makes it difficult for the Dinka and
Misseriya to jointly discuss development priorities. Traditionally,
the two groups negotiate the Misseriya's access to pass through
Dinka land along three separate routes in committees formed
annually. The two groups are in agreement that: 1) there are Dinka
areas that are uncontested; 2) there are Misseriya areas to the
north and west of Abyei that are uncontested; and 3) the Misseriya
have rights of passage to migrate into Dinka areas with their cattle
under negotiated terms. In conversations over development
priorities in Abyei, the Dinka perceive any involvement of the
Misseriya as an acknowledgment of Misseriya rights to resettle in
Dinka areas, as defined by the Abyei Boundaries Commission.

KHARTOUM 00002739 002.2 OF 003


(Comment: The annual fora, however, may provide a rare opportunity
to discuss development priorities as long as the Dinka are assured
that any discussion is clearly related only to seasonal migration of
the Misseriya, and not permanent settlement in Dinka areas. End
comment.)

6. Currently, the majority of development programs are concentrated
around Abyei, with few activities in uncontested Misseriya areas,
such as Al Muglad and Al Fula towns located to the north and west of
the capital, providing an implicit incentive for Misseriya groups to
settle closer to Abyei rather than in contested areas just north of
Abyei. (Comment: Development activities in uncontested Misseriya
areas would greatly mitigate the tension and, therefore potential
conflict, over resources in Abyei. End comment.)

-----------------
Areas of Conflict
-----------------

7. In the coming dry season, Ngok Dinka are expected to return to
Abyei and villages in the far north of the state. Most resettlement
in 2005, the first year of CPA implementation, was around Abyei town
and the southern parts of the state. Recently, Misseriya groups
have settled in the villages of Allal, Langar, and Mabaik, which the
Ngok Dinka fled in 1964 after the war destroyed these areas. These
are the same towns where the Ngok Dinka are expected to return in
the coming months, which could lead to violence. Currently, many
Ngok Dinka returnees are waiting near Makere town to assess the
security situation before moving back to Allal, Langar, or Mabaik
villages.

------------
Human Rights
------------

8. In Abyei, the National Congress Party (NCP) continues to restrict
the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) from monitoring north of Abyei town,
by requiring special permits. UNMIS has declined to request a
permit because it claims it should have unrestricted access to these
areas and fears a permit would set a precedent for future
requirements. Although other UN bodies such as the UN World Food
Program (WFP), UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), and UN Development
Program (UNDP) are permitted in the area without UNMIS, there is
currently no formal human rights monitoring taking place.

9. Since the end of the Joint Military Commission (JMC) operations
in January 2006, human rights monitoring in the Nuba Mountains has
decreased significantly. Currently, UNMIS Human Rights Unit
(UNMIS-HR) is the only organization monitoring human rights in the
area. However, UNMIS-HR only conducts periodic patrols and
occasional investigations of cases. To bolster human rights
monitoring, USAID's Office of Transition Initiatives (USAID/OTI) has
initiated a project to train local human rights monitors. The UN
has also expressed interest in setting up a local monitoring
institution in the future.

10. The UNDP Rule of Law program is currently documenting customary
law practices throughout the Nuba Mountains and Abyei. UNDP plans
to use this information to facilitate the adaptation and
standardization of customary law practices with international human
rights standards. Although UNDP has funding for the current study,
the organization lacks the resources to disseminate the findings and
to facilitate law reform based on the findings. USAID/OTI is
considering how best to support UNDP and law reform in the Nuba
Mountains.

-----------
Conclusions
-----------

11. USAID concludes that strengthening the role of local development
planning, including pressuring the central government to fully
comply with CPA stipulations on wealth sharing is important to
long-term peace and advancement of the implementation of the CPA in
Southern Kordofan State. USAID will support efforts by
non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the UN in these areas.
Additionally, USAID recognizes the importance of developing programs
in uncontested Misseriya areas to decrease incentives to settle in
Dinka areas around Abyei.

12. USAID will work in coordination with UNMIS-HR and UNDP Rule of

KHARTOUM 00002739 003.2 OF 003


Law programs to support increased local human rights monitoring
around Dilling, Lagawa, and north of Abyei. Pressure from the
international community on the Government of National Unity to
remove movement restrictions on UNMIS north of Abyei, however, is
needed.

HUME

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