Cablegate: Splm Delegation Discusses Sudan Issues with Egis


DE RUEHEG #2384/01 3631007
P 291007Z DEC 09

C O N F I D E N T I A L CAIRO 002384



E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/23/2019

REF: A. CAIRO 2158
B. 08 CAIRO 1963 Classified By: Minister Counselor for Economic and Political Affairs Donald A. Blome for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).
1.(C) Key Points: -- According to the Government of South Sudan's (GoSS) Principal Liaison Officer in Egypt, a visiting SPLM delegation and Egyptian General Intelligence Services (EGIS) Chief Omar Soliman agreed that full CPA implementation could strengthen the case for unity in Sudan and suggested the GoSS consider a 10-year interim confederation period where the North and South would share in oil revenues, water, debt, defense responsibilities and military assets. Egypt plans to host a NCP delegation in January and is preparing for a CPA conference. -- The SPLM delegation believes the Egyptian position on Sudanese unity has become more flexible because the GoE realizes Khartoum has done nothing to encourage unity, making it impossible for Southern politicians to lobby for a united Sudan. According to GoSS's Cairo head, Soliman told the delegation that no matter what happens in the January 2011 referendum, Egypt will support and work with the GoSS. -- The SPLM delegation told Soliman that unless the NCP agrees to compromise on the security and census laws, they will push to defer elections. -- The SPLM and GOE agree on the need for clear border demarcation to avoid future conflict, but disagree on the urgency to resolve the situation in Darfur. --------------------------------------------- - Egypt Assumes Mediator Role to Encourage Unity --------------------------------------------- -

2.(C) Pamena Makuet Mangar, Principal Liaison Officer at the GoSS's Cairo office, told us on December 22 that a SPLM delegation composed of SPLM General Secretary Pagan Amum, SPLM Parliamentary Head Yasir Arman, and Sudanese FM Deng Alor met on December 19-21 with EGIS chief Omar Soliman to discuss key Sudanese issues and share their vision on the future of Sudan. According to Mangar, Soliman is trying to preserve the unity of Sudan, even though he gives unity little chance in the January 2011 referendum. He said the SPLM delegation told Soliman that there may still be a chance for unity if Cairo could push Khartoum to fully implement the CPA and "stop trying to water it down." Mangar said Soliman suggested that the GoSS consider a 10-year interim confederation period where the North and South would share in oil revenues, water, debt, defense responsibilities and military assets. According to Mangar, Egypt will host a NCP delegation in January to discuss the same issues and is preparing for a CPA conference, which Mangar hoped would succeed because it would not be perceived as "anti-Islamic" or "anti-Arab." ---------------------------------------- Egypt's Position on Secession Less Rigid ----------------------------------------

3.(C) Mangar said that the delegation realized Egypt's position on unity and secession has become more flexible since the visit of GoSS President Salva Kiir to Cairo in late October (reftel A). He stated that the GoE now realizes Khartoum has done nothing to encourage unity making it impossible for Southern politicians to promote unity. The delegation told Soliman that Egypt should consider supporting a change in government because Sudanese President Bashir "wants the south to go." However, Mangar said Soliman was not receptive to the idea of regime change. --------------------------------------- Stability in the Post-Referendum Period ---------------------------------------

4.(C) Mangar stated that Egypt is beginning to focus on its strategy for the post-referendum period. He said the delegation shared with Soliman its vision of two states, living in peace and connected through the sharing of a "united area" to include Blue Nile, South Kordofan, and the Nuba Mountain region. According to Mangar, Soliman expressed his concern about the stability of an independent South Sudan and the two sides shared fears that Northern Sudan could become an "Islamic state." He said Soliman assured the delegation that no matter what happens in 2011, Egypt will support and work with the GoSS. Mangar stated that South Sudan wants to strengthen its "good relations" with Egypt because "if we gain Egypt's support, we gain the support of the Arab world."

5.(C) Mangar told us that the GoSS is appreciative of Egyptian development and training efforts, especially in the energy and medical sectors (reftel B). He said the GoE is also offering 600 college scholarships for South Sudanese youth to study in Egyptian universities and Soliman offered assistance and training for engineers and water technicians to work on the Jonglei Canal. Mangar said the SPLM delegation assured Soliman that Egypt does not need to worry about Nile waters because "South Sudan will take its share from that allocated to Sudan and not Egypt." (Note: The 1959 Nile Waters Agreement between Sudan and Egypt guarantees Egypt 55.5 billion cubic meters of water per year and Sudan receives 18.5 billion cubic meters. End Note). Mangar stated that both Soliman and the SPLM delegation expressed frustration that Egyptian equipment designed to clear aquatic plants from the Nile River was stuck in Port Sudan due to Sudanese tax and customs issues. -------------------------------------------- Elections Untenable Under Current Conditions --------------------------------------------

6.(C) Mangar said the SPLM delegation told Soliman that if security and census laws are not amended or cancelled the April 2010 election "will not be fair or free." He stated that security laws preventing free expression and allowing for arbitrary arrest were of particular concern to the delegation. Mangar said the delegation expressed hope that these laws could be changed because "voter registration in South Sudan had been double the expected number." According to Mangar, Soliman expressed his displeasure with the arrests of SPLM SYG Amum and SPLM Parliamentary Leader Arman after the December 7 demonstrations. He said the SPLM delegation stressed that if the NCP is not willing to compromise on the security and census laws, then the SPLM will push to defer the elections. Mangar said Soliman was astonished at this position and offered no recommendations, but Soliman said he would raise the issue when he meets with a NCP delegation in January. Mangar said the SPLM delegation told Soliman that public consultations scheduled for Abyei, Blue Nile and South Kordofan must address the aspirations of the people. ---------------------------------------- Agreement on Need for Border Demarcation ----------------------------------------

7.(C) Mangar said the delegation raised the issue of North-South border demarcation with the Egyptians. According to Mangar, Soliman agreed that clear border demarcation must happen because "there can be no return to war." Mangar said Soliman and the delegation mentioned using multiple sources for border demarcation including the British archives, the 1956 ruling on borders, and seeking the opinion of local tribal chiefs in the border areas. ------------------------------------ Sides Differ on Importance of Darfur ------------------------------------

8.(C) According to Mangar, Soliman suggested that the SPLM leave Darfur alone for now because "it is not a priority." Mangar said Soliman told them the problems of Darfur are complicated by regional and international factors that are beyond the control of the GoSS or the SPLM. He said that the delegation refused this suggestion because it believes there is no way to have peace in South Sudan unless there is peace in Darfur and Eastern Sudan. Mangar noted to poloff his belief that the inclusion of Abdel Wahid Al Nur is critical to peace in Darfur because "Abdel Wahid is the only leader that empowers the Fur tribe." Scobey

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