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Cablegate: Eastern Drc Notes - November 24

VZCZCXRO7889
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHKI #1038 3291208
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 241208Z NOV 08
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8815
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

UNCLAS KINSHASA 001038

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS PHUM PREF KPKO CG
SUBJECT: EASTERN DRC NOTES - NOVEMBER 24

1. (U) The items contained in this report consist principally of
spot information from various sources. This report is not
exhaustive, nor can all the information contained therein be
confirmed at this time.

2. (SBU) Summary: CNDP rebel leader Laurent Nkunda presented new
local administrators at a November 22 rally in Rutshuru. In his
address, Nkunda stressed that "we are all Congolese," criticizing
the UNSC's decision to authorize additional forces for MONUC. A
CNDP intermediary contacted Embassy Kampala complaining that the
French International Red Cross was misusing humanitarian corridors.
The level of armed banditry and reprisals is on the rise in the
region. Some IDPs from Kibati 1 camp have apparently opted to
return to their villages, rather than to be transferred to the
Mugunga 3 camp. End summary.

Security Situation
------------------

3. (SBU) UNDSS reported that there has been an increase in
banditry, criminal violence, and reprisals against perpetrators. On
November 20, for the second consecutive night, a civilian mob in
Goma killed an armed bandit.

Political Developments
----------------------

4. (SBU) On November 22, CNDP rebel leader Nkunda gave a 45-minute
speech in Rutshuru to a crowd of approximately 2,000, some of whom
were apparently forced to attend. Nkunda presented 10 new local
administrators, noting that it was necessary to appoint them,
because the former administrators had fled. Nkunda emphasized that
the new administrators were all well known to the community, not
Rwandans, as many had expected. Nkunda, who switched between
French, Kiswahili, Kinyarwandan, and Kinande during the speech,
proclaimed that "we are all Congolese" and that MONUC was
unnecessary, if Congolese worked together. Nkunda criticized the
recent UNSC decision to authorize additional MONUC troops for the
DRC.

5. (SBU) In a well-scripted event, CNDP officials presented a Mai
Mai child soldier, then asked for someone from his home village to
take him home, because "the CNDP does not fight children." When the
official asked for someone from the boy's village to bring him home,
a man appeared to retrieve the boy from the stage. Two FARDC
soldiers were also presented, one of them declaring that they had
been well treated by the CNDP. Approximately 20 local police were
on hand, who, according to a local resident, were the same police as
before, but are now working for the CNDP. Nkunda's security detail,
according to TDY RSO, appeared professional and competent. Some two
dozen press, almost exclusively international, attended.

6. (SBU) A CNDP intermediary contacted Embassy Kampala to express
concerns about French misuse of humanitarian corridors. The
intermediary claimed that 60 trucks from the French International
Red Cross were using the corridors, but not transporting
humanitarian supplies. According to the intermediary, the French
are trying to encourage deployment of Angolan troops with the aim of
attacking the CNDP, not the FDLR. The intermediary also asked for a
U.S. verification team to monitor the corridors, as well as to carry
out general monitoring.

Humanitarian Situation
----------------------

7. (SBU) The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
(OCHA) reported that some IDPs have departed the Kibati camps to
return to Kibumba, Rugari, and Rumangabo, rather than go to Mugunga
3 camp, as planned. According to some humanitarian agencies, many
IDPs believe Mugunga 3 is too far away from their fields and home
villages. Radio Okapi confirmed that many residents have returned
to the villages of Kibumba, Rugari, and Rubare.

8. (SBU) The last of nine trucks transporting non-food items
arrived in Goma on November 22. USAID/DART's Program Officer
escorted the trucks to UNICEF's warehouse and consigned the cargo to
UNICEF for distribution to IDPs.

9. (SBU) A SADC delegation visited the Kibati IDP camp on November
24. The delegation, composed of Angolan, Zambian, Swazi, and
Tanzanian officials, is in North Kivu to assess the humanitarian
situation.

GARVELINK

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