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Cablegate: Goma Situation Report for December 13, 2007

VZCZCXRO2076
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHKI #1364 3481238
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 141238Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7236
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUFOADA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

UNCLAS KINSHASA 001364

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KDEM PHUM MOPS PREL PREF KPKO CG
SUBJECT: Goma Situation Report for December 13, 2007

SENSTIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED - PROTECT ACCORDINGLY

Note: The following report was provided by Embassy Kinshasa's
political officer in Goma. End note.

1. (SBU) Summary: MONUC General Narayan told embassy's Goma
officer December 13 that FARDC losses in men and materiel from the
December 3-12 campaign were light. Attacked by an Nkunda force of
perhaps 200 at Mushaki, three FARDC brigades panicked and fled. The
issues are leadership, training, and to a lesser extent logistics
(to include pay). End Summary.

2. (SBU) Poloff met MONUC North Kivu Brigade Commander General
Indrajeet Narayan December 13 and posed two questions: what was the
total damage to FARDC in the Mushaki fighting, and what was needed
now to get the FARDC back on track? Narayan said that FARDC did not
lose many men in the fighting. When attacked, they panicked. A
mere Nkunda force of perhaps 200 men had "sailed through" three
FARDC brigades. Narayan said there might have been 100 wounded and
30 dead among the FARDC. (Intelligence officer separately informed
poloff that MONUC had evacuated around 150 casualties but there were
undoubtedly others that had not come to MONUC's attention.) As for
stocks of ammunition and arms, in Narayan's view these also were not
a major problem, except ammunition for the two attack helicopters,
where FARDC logistics had broken down and the helicopters had no
ammunition for some days.

3. (SBU) Narayan said the number-one problem for FARDC was bad
leadership. He had just told Chief of Staff General Dieudonne
Kayembe, visiting Goma, that most of the 8th Military Region
leadership had performed very badly. (Several were under house
arrest, he understood.) He could point to only one officer, 82nd
Brigade commander Colonel Jonas Padiri (a Tutsi), who had held his
ground. The second requirement was training. Assuming effective
leadership, FARDC would need six months of rigorous, structured
training to contemplate another campaign. It was not enough to
throw disparate elements together in brassage, without much
training. Third, there were problems in logistics, for example the
helicopters running out of ammunition and lack of pay for the
soldiers. Narayan said that he believed the army could be
reconstituted over time - the men were trainable and there were some
good officers - but, however great the overhaul of the army, the
problems of North Kivu would, in fact, not be resolved militarily.

4. (SBU) On developments of the past two hours, MONUC military and
political briefers told poloff that the situation around Sake and
Mushaki was quiet. However, at Katale, on the road to and near
Masisi, the battalion of the 81st Brigade holding Katale had pulled
back to Masisi after elements of the fleeing 14th Integrated Brigade
arrived and began firing. Many civilians were fleeing toward
Masisi. North Kivu Vice-Governor asked that MONUC move its base
located at Masisi to Katale to protect it (refused). MONUC believes
that Nkunda's forces are not involved at Katale. North of
Kitchanga, there has been fighting between Nkunda and FARDC, with
Nkunda's forces continuing to hold Mweso and the FARDC now holding
JTN tea plantation (near Mweso to the east). On the Rutshuru axis,
an exchange of fire has continued at Rugari, causing further
movement of civilians toward Kabumba.

5. (SBU) North Kivu Governor Julien Paluku, in conversation with
poloff December 13, offered no ideas for resolving the Nkunda
conflict. All DRC's diplomatic and military efforts had failed, he
said. As in his conversation with the Ambassador December 3, he
looked to the United States and international community to resolve
the situation.

Garvelink

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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