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Cablegate: Sant' Egidio's President, Former President

VZCZCXRO8135
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMA RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN RUEHTRO
DE RUEHTO #0652 1980956
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 160956Z JUL 08
FM AMEMBASSY MAPUTO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9111
INFO RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0199
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 0570
RUEHROV/AMEMBASSY VATICAN 0001

UNCLAS MAPUTO 000652

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM ZI MZ
SUBJECT: SANT' EGIDIO'S PRESIDENT, FORMER PRESIDENT
CHISSANO ON ZIMBABWE

1. (SBU) The Charge spoke with former president Joaquim
Chissano about Zimbabwe on July 10 at a reception hosted by
Sant' Egidio founder Andrea Riccardi. Chissano said
initially he did not want to speak about Zimbabwe but
preferred to discuss Uganda. Nevertheless, he believed that
Mbeki was doing a good job since communication was ongoing
with Mugabe. Chissano had spoken with Mbeki twice during the
last few months but otherwise claimed not to have engaged on
Zimbabwe in the region. As Charge raised the ongoing
political violence and growing international concern,
Chissano said that Mbeki needed some more time. Chissano
acknowledged that his name had been mentioned as someone to
help in Zimbabwe, but he quickly dismissed the suggestion
since he was too busy with Uganda. He continued that if the
only measurement of success was Mugabe's removal, then Mbeki
had not succeeded. If the result of the proposed negotiation
was pre-determined, then no true negotiation could transpire.


2. (SBU) The Sant' Egidio President Marco Impagliazzo told
the Charge of the Community's deep concern about Zimbabwe.
When asked if Sant' Egidio was involved in finding solutions
in Zimbabwe, as they did so effectively in sponsoring the
Peace Accord which ended Mozambique's Civil War in 1992,
Impagliazzo responded "No, but we would be willing to help if
asked." He even suggested that Dom Mateo Zuppi, a mediator
who helped with the Mozambique negotiations, would be an
ideal interlocutor since he "was friends with Mugabe and
visited him every year." The Charge encouraged Impagliazzo
to speak with the U.S. Embassies in Rome and Vatican City
should he wish to pursue the idea.

3. (SBU) Comment: While a reception is not an ideal venue
for a detailed discussion, Chissano seemed clearly to rule
out any role for himself in Zimbabwe. For historical
reasons, Sant' Egidio maintains an excellent reputation in
Mozambique as the facilitators of peace. If this view is
shared throughout the region, and the claim's about Zuppi's
relationship with Mugabe prove true, speaking with Sant'
Egidio about a possible role in Zimbabwe could be a
conversation worth having. End Comment.
Chapman

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