Search

 

Cablegate: Civilian Protection Against Lra Attacks in The

VZCZCXRO8623
PP RUEHGI
DE RUEHC #7508/01 2332051
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 212033Z AUG 09
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM PRIORITY 8084
RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA PRIORITY 0185
RUEHGI/AMEMBASSY BANGUI PRIORITY 1415
INFO RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA PRIORITY 8141
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA PRIORITY 6224
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 5965
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 6293
RUEHNJ/AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA PRIORITY 4802
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 7426
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 STATE 087508

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS
ADDIS ABABA AND KAMPALA FOR REFCOORDS
LONDON AND PARIS FOR AFRICA WATCHERS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREF PGOV PHUM PREL MOPS CG UG SU
SUBJECT: CIVILIAN PROTECTION AGAINST LRA ATTACKS IN THE
CAR, DRC, AND SOUTHERN SUDAN

1. (U) This is an Action Request for Khartoum/Juba,
Kinshasa, and Bangui. Please see para 4.

2. (SBU) The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) -- though
dispersed by Operation Lightning Thunder/Rudia II --
continues to attack civilian populations in border areas
of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), southern
Sudan, and the Central African Republic (CAR), leading to
widespread civilian displacement and frustrating
humanitarian relief efforts. Refugee arrivals in southern
Sudan since September 2008 have now reached over 20,000 --
mostly Congolese but including some 600 recent arrivals
from the CAR. LRA attacks are reported in the DRC and
southern Sudan weekly. Recent attacks near Obo, CAR are
troublesome new developments. Some humanitarian
organizations are concerned that the LRA may be seeking to
regroup inside CAR. The UN estimates that over 1,000
people have been killed, 1,500 abducted, and over 250,000
displaced in an area spanning the DRC, Sudan, and CAR
since September 2008.

3. (SBU) There is a limited presence of humanitarian
organizations in the tri-border area but insecurity and
poor infrastructure impede access to the populations most
in need. State/PRM and USAID are supporting international
organizations and NGOs for emergency interventions for
affected populations in the DRC and Sudan and will need to
address the CAR also. (Note: Senator Feingold has
reintroduced a bill to support humanitarian and
development assistance in LRA-affected areas. The bill,
in committee, calls for a regional strategy for civilian
protection and elimination of the LRA threat. AF has
concerns with the bill as drafted including that it would
require duplicative efforts to those underway. End Note).

4. (SBU) Protection of civilians remains a critical
concern. In light of new developments, State and USAID are
refining (for an Interagency Policy Committee)
recommendations on civilian protection in the tri-country
area currently affected by the LRA, and PRM is seeking
posts' input on practical recommendations guided by the
following questions. Note that we do have some inputs
from international and non-governmental organizations, but
are looking for posts' best and candid judgments.

For Khartoum/Juba:

-- What is the current UNMIS, SPLA, UPDF response capacity
in LRA-affected areas? (We note that in last week's LRA
attack on Ezo town, neither the UPDF nor the SPLA soldiers
acted effectively to stop the LRA from entering the center
of town, attacking IDPs, and looting the Commissioner's
premises. Reasons are unclear.)

-- Given recent attacks in areas of refugee/IDP
settlement, what is the GOSS and UN strategy to provide
civilian protection and ensure that humanitarian
assistance is not targeted for looting?

-- How would any additional humanitarian resources best be
used to provide assistance and protection to
refugee/IDP/other civilian populations?

-- What are the shortfalls in NGO/IO humanitarian
operations (including beyond the usual financial
resources) in LRA-Affected areas and what obstacles are
creating these?

-- What has been the local response to the security
threats? Have militias been formed to ward off LRA
attacks?

For Kinshasa:


STATE 00087508 002 OF 002


-- What are the current MONUC and FARDC response
capacities in LRA-affected areas?

-- What is the impact of real or perceived MONUC mandate
limitations with regard to civilian protection in the
areas affected by the LRA?

-- Post has provided considerable information to date on
shortfalls in NGO/IO humanitarian operations in
LRA-affected areas. We would appreciate any further
information on shortfalls, and particularly what obstacles
are creating these?

-- How would any additional humanitarian resources best be
used to provide assistance and protection to civilian
populations?

For Bangui:

-- What is the current FACA and UPDF response capacity in
LRA-affected areas?

-- What is the current capacity for humanitarian response
in LRA-affected areas? (Comment. We know of course that
it is quite limited but would appreciate some specific
level of effort that post judges might be achieved with
additional international support.) What additional
resources might be required/effectively used?

-- Is there any scope for MINURCAT or other international
(e.g., MICOPAX) military role in civilian protection?

-- If the LRA were to re-group in the CAR, does the UN
country team, government, military, humanitarian actors,
etc have contingency plans in place? (We note the affected
areas are far from Bangui but Embassy's assessment of
this would be helpful.)

-- What are other international players' response to
LRA-affected areas and what are they reporting on the
situation? (SBU response if available).

5. (U) At least a preliminary answer would be appreciated
by Tuesday, August 25 if possible.
CLINTON

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


UN News: Rare Coral Reef Discovered Near Tahiti Is ‘Like A Work Of Art’, Says Diver
One of the largest coral reefs in the world has been discovered by a UN-supported scientific mission off the coast of Tahiti. Announcing the stunning find on Thursday, UNESCO said that divers had explored large rose-shaped corals spanning some three kilometres, at depths of between 30 and 65 metres... More>>


Tonga Eruption: At Least 3 Dead, Amid Severe Destruction
At least three people have died in Tonga following the massive volcanic eruption and subsequent tsunami wave that hit over the weekend. Homes and other buildings across the archipelago have suffered major damage... More>>

Save The Children: Tonga Volcano Ash And Smoke Cause Concern For Air And Water Safety
Families in Tonga are at risk of exposure to unsafe air and water due to ash and smoke from the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano that erupted on Saturday, reports Save the Children...
More>>



Ethiopia: UN Chief Lauds ‘Demonstrable Effort To Make Peace’

The UN Secretary-General on Wednesday said he was “delighted” to learn that “a demonstrable effort to make peace” in Ethiopia is finally underway, according to information relayed to him by the African Union High Representative for the Horn of Africa... More>>


Tigray: Agencies Suspend Aid As ‘Scores’ Are Killed Due To Airstrikes
Recent airstrikes on camps for internally displaced persons and refugees in Tigray, northern Ethiopia, have reportedly killed scores of civilians, including children, and left many more injured... More>>


UN News: For 25th Year In A Row, Greenland Ice Sheet Shrinks

2021 marked the 25th year in a row in which the key Greenland ice sheet lost more mass during the melting season, than it gained during the winter, according to a new UN-endorsed report issued on Friday... More>>