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Cablegate: Nigerian Security Dialogues

VZCZCXRO7250
PP RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMA RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN RUEHTRO
DE RUEHUJA #2130/01 3281544
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 241544Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY ABUJA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7573
INFO RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZK/ECOWAS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHOS/AMCONSUL LAGOS PRIORITY 2363
RHMFISS/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE PRIORITY
RHEBAAA/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEKDIA/DIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ABUJA 002130

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/FO, AF/W, AF/RSA, DRL, INR/AA, PM/RSAT;
ADDIS ABABA FOR MISSION TO AU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PARM MARR MCAP NI
SUBJECT: NIGERIAN SECURITY DIALOGUES

REF: A. WAUTLET-PETRONE E-MAIL OF 11/12
B. STATE 112900
C. ABUJA 1757

1. (SBU) Security dialogues by the U.S. Government with the
Government of Nigeria (GON) and the Economic Community of
West African States (ECOWAS) are multifaceted and often
informal. Embassy compiled the following information, the
substance of which we forwarded earlier via electronic-mail
message (ref A).

-------------------
BILATERAL DIALOGUES
-------------------

2. (SBU) At the Ministerial level, the Ambassador has met
with three Nigerian Ministers of Defense during the last
twelve months. She provides the GON with quarterly updates
on U.S.-Nigerian defense cooperation activities. The Defense
Attache Office (DAO) regularly meets with senior military
officials in useful bilateral working groups to review and
assess needs and training. The U.S. Mission also sends
diplomatic notes to the Defense Minister whenever the U.S.
proposes major engagement and to request approval for visits
by senior U.S. Defense Department officials to Nigeria.

3. (SBU) An Office of Security Cooperation (OSC)
representative meets routinely, at least monthly, with the
Nigerian Defense Staff and each of the Service Staffs to
discuss bilateral engagement opportunities. The capstone
event for this coordination involves a U.S. Africa Command -
Nigeria Planning Conference to discuss upcoming events and
develop longer-term plans. The first of these conferences
occurred in Stuttgart in September 2009, with the next one
scheduled for Abuja in March 2010. Each of the Nigerian
Services attend the conference, with the Nigerian Defense
Staff heading the Nigerian Delegation (ref C). These
meetings will become more routine and formal as our bilateral
military-to-military engagement progresses.

4. (SBU) Also during the Africa Command - Nigeria Planning
Conference, OSC representatives meet with representatives
from each of the Nigerian services to coordinate
military-to-military engagement and State Partnership
activities. California serves as Nigeria's partnership
state. The California National Guard provides
civilian-to-military technical assistance and is developing a
plan to assist Nigeria in Coast Guard search and rescue.
This year, the program became more formal as the Africa
Command hosted a meeting in Stuttgart with the Training
Director of each Service Chief. OSC holds monthly meetings
with members of the MOD Joint Services Division to discuss
in-country OSC programs during the following quarter.

5. (SBU) The Department's Global Peace Operations Initiative
(GPOI) sponsors an annual Peacekeeping Planners Conference,
which provides an African Contingency Operations Training and
Assistance (ACOTA) Program Training Strategy Update (TSU).
Under ACOTA, the U.S. military provides training and
equipment to host nations participating in United Nations
(UN) or Africa Union (AU) peace-keeping missions. The
purpose of the next conference will be to discuss the
fiscal-year 2010 training schedule, number and types of
Nigerian units to receive ACOTA training, and construction
and infrastructure support needed at Nigeria's Peacekeeping
Qand infrastructure support needed at Nigeria's Peacekeeping
Operations Center in Jaji, Kaduna State. ACOTA provided
funding for training and equipment worth about 11 million
dollars during fiscal year 2009.

6. (SBU) Other ad-hoc dialogues include senior leader visits,
such as by the Nigerian Chief of Defense Intelligence (CDI)
to Africa Command and the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency
(DIA) in October 2009, by the Nigerian Navy Chief of Staff to
the International Seapower Symposium in October 2009, and by
the Nigerian Air Force Chief to the U.S. Air Staff in October
2009. OSC personnel are coordinating a visit by the Nigerian
Army Chief of Staff to U.S. Army Africa Command (USARAF) in
Italy and anticipate receiving invitations from the Nigerian
Air Force and Navy for counterpart visits to Nigeria.

ABUJA 00002130 002 OF 002

------------------
REGIONAL DIALOGUES
------------------

7. (SBU) Ad hoc dialogues occur among Mission Nigeria, the
State Department's Office of Regional Security Affairs
(AF/RSA), the Africa Command, with ECOWAS, and the AU. No
set dialogues -- such as fixed monthly or annual meetings,
conferences, or seminars -- occur with ECOWAS counterparts,
despite several U.S. invitations to do so. Ambassador
remains in regular dialogue with the ECOWAS President on all
regional issues, and ECOWAS invites U.S. Mission personnel to
attend all ECOWAS Ministerial and Summit meetings held in
Abuja. In addition, the U.S. Africa Center for Strategic
Studies (ACSS) regularly partners with ECOWAS on conferences
covering specific subjects. For example, the U.S. co-hosted
an AU-ECOWAS Rapid Deployment Capability (RDC) Conference in
Abuja in October 2009 to help the AU integrate the ECOWAS
Standby Force into a proposed AU-wide Standby Force. We
facilitate dialogue with and resources from Africa Command
for ECOWAS, such as including ECOWAS in the next Africa
Partnership Station in 2010. We have asked for assignment of
a temporary-duty (TDY) officer to ECOWAS to enhance
coordination.

8. (U) Embassy coordinated this telegram with ConGen Lagos.


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