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Cablegate: Somalia: Tfg Clarifies South Ossetia, Abkhazia Stance

VZCZCXRO0317
RR RUEHDE RUEHROV RUEHTRO
DE RUEHNR #2312 2811411
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 071411Z OCT 08
FM AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7224
INFO RUCNSOM/SOMALIA COLLECTIVE
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 0309
RUEHSI/AMEMBASSY TBILISI 0016
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RHMFIUU/CJTF HOA
RHMFIUU/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL

UNCLAS NAIROBI 002312

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

DEPT FOR AF/E AND A/S FRAZER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM KPAO PREL PGOV SO
SUBJECT: Somalia: TFG Clarifies South Ossetia, Abkhazia Stance

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Summary
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1. (SBU) Transitional Federal Government (TFG) Foreign Minister Ali
Ahmed Jama said in an October 7 press conference that the TFG had no
plans to recognize South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Jama stated that the
Somali Ambassador to Moscow had been recalled to Somalia to explain
any statements that were made on the subject. Jama concluded that
Somalia is not in a position to recognize the two regions, and is in
fact "not seized" with this issue at all. End summary.

--------------------------------
TFG "Not Seized" with This Issue
--------------------------------

2. (U) On the heels of Somali Ambassador to Russia Mohammed
Khandule's recent statement to Russian media that Somalia will
recognize South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Transitional Federal
Government (TFG) Foreign Minister Ali Ahmed Jama hosted a press
conference at the Somalia embassy in Nairobi to clarify the TFG's
stance. Jama opened the press conference, with approximately 25
international, Kenyan and Somali journalists present, with a
statement that the TFG had "neither discussed nor made a decision"
on recognition of the two regions. Jama said reports that the TFG
would recognize the two regions were "totally false."

3. (U) Jama stated that Khandule had been recalled to Somalia to
clarify whether he had made any statements on this subject, and, if
so, what he had said. Jama appeared to have no firm grasp of what,
if anything, Khandule may have said or claimed to have said. Asked
if Khandule has been relieved of his duties, Jama said Khandule had
merely been called back for consultations, and that a decision on
his future as Ambassador would be reached following an
investigation.

4. (SBU) Mohamed Osman Aden, Political Counselor at the Somalia
embassy, confirmed to Emboff that Khandule was en route to Somalia,
via Dubai, but Aden did not know when Khandule he would arrive in
Somalia. Aden stated that Khandule is indeed the TFG's appointed
Ambassador to Russia and that he had been "reconfirmed" in the
recent past.

SLUTZ

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