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Cablegate: Joint Defense Board has Not yet Ordered Jius to Integrate

VZCZCXRO7007
OO RUEHROV RUEHTRO
DE RUEHKH #1190/01 2951117
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 221117Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4610
INFO RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KHARTOUM 001190

NSC FOR MGAVIN, LETIM
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN
ADDIS ABABA ALSO FOR USAU

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL MCAP AU UNSC SU
SUBJECT: JOINT DEFENSE BOARD HAS NOT YET ORDERED JIUS TO INTEGRATE

REF: A) KHARTOUM 250 B) KHARTOUM 1005 C) KHARTOUM 1174

1. (SBU) Summary: On October 14, members of the Three Areas Working
Group of the Assessment and Evaluation Commission (AEC) met the
commanders of the Joint Integrated Unit (JIU) in Kurmuk, Blue Nile
State. In separate meetings, the commanders of the Sudan People's
Liberation Army (SPLA) and Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) components of
the JIU expressed a willingness to work together, and noted that
they sometimes conduct joint operations, but admitted that they have
not integrated, having received no order from the Joint Defense
Board (JDB) to do so. While the status of the Kurmuk JIU is better
than that of the JIU in Malakal, where the SAF and SPLA components
fought each other in February (Ref A), integration of the JIUs is
called for in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and should be
pursued in the U.S.-led Trilateral process, and by the AEC. End
Summary.

-------------------------
KURMUK JIU NOT INTEGRATED
-------------------------

2. (SBU) On October 14, members of the Three Areas Working Group of
the AEC met the commanders of the JIU in Kurmuk, Blue Nile State.
The SPLA and SAF components of the Kurmuk JIU maintain separate
camps and the commanders met the members of the AEC separately in
their respective camps. Unlike Malakal, where the JIU components
fought each other in February (Ref A), and continue to maintain
camps on opposite sides of the town, the Kurmuk JIU camps are only a
few hundred meters apart and within sight of each other. Despite
their proximity, the JIU commanders admitted that they conduct no
joint training and are not integrated in any manner. Even
logistical support provided by the UN Mission in Sudan to the JIU is
currently divided by the commanders between the two components.
(Note: Pursuant to the CPA the JIUs were to be fully integrated by
May, 2009. End Note.)

----------------------------------------
KURMUK JIU DOES CONDUCT JOINT OPERATIONS
----------------------------------------

3. (SBU) The commanders did, however, state that they conduct joint
operations when called upon to do so. The SAF commander noted, for
instance, that the JIU would provide security for the meetings on
Popular Consultations occurring in Kurmuk during October 15-18
(Septel). The SPLA commander stated that if there is a security
threat in Kurmuk, the JIU components will join together to face it.


-----------------------------------------
IF ORDERED, KURMUK JIU READY TO INTEGRATE
-----------------------------------------

4. (SBU) When asked directly whether the JIU in Kurmuk wanted to be
truly integrated, the SAF commander said yes, they were ready for
integration. He noted that the soldiers interact
with each other, without conflict, outside their camps. He noted
however, that the JIU needs to receive the order to integrate from
its commanders in the JDB.

5. (SBU) Comment: The JIUs, mandated by the CPA as a symbol of a
unified Sudan, are roundly considered a failure (Ref B and C), in
part because their title makes a mockery of their actual status.
The primary reason cited for the JIU's lack of integration is the
lack of a joint defense doctrine. However, this reasoning does not
justify JIU components sleeping and eating in separate camps. Given
their proximity, the Kurmuk JIU could, at a minimum, eat in a common
location, and conduct simple drills together. In fact, the
components could easily be joined into a unified camp, as their
current camps consist of little more than huts made of grass and
tree branches. It is encouraging that the Kurmuk JIU is able to
conduct some joint operations and appears free of significant
animosity. It is unlikely, however, that the JIU can effectively
conduct operations without having trained as a unit. Moreover, it
seems indisputable that the more contact the JIU soldiers have with
each other, the closer they will be to actually becoming integrated.
Closer contact could increase communication, reduce the chance that
misunderstandings go unaddressed, and increase cohesion.

6. (SBU) Comment Cot'd: In light of the U.S. commitment to work
with the parties to review the current status of the JIUs and
mobilize support for them, and in conjunction with the Office of the
Special Envoy, Post proposes working through the AEC to review the
composition, training, screening and scope of operations of the
JIUs. We will also encourage integration, at least in units such as
the Kurmuk JIU, where JIU components appear willing to work
together. End Comment.

KHARTOUM 00001190 002 OF 002

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