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Cablegate: Gabon and Sao Tome: Cuban Connections with Gabon

VZCZCXYZ0002
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLC #0540 3430502
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 090502Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY LIBREVILLE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1568
INFO RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA 0002
RHMFIUU/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE

UNCLAS LIBREVILLE 000540

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR A/C FOR LISA KORTE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD ETTC GB TP CU
SUBJECT: GABON AND SAO TOME: CUBAN CONNECTIONS WITH GABON
AND SAO TOME LIMITED

REF: 09 SECSTATE 115416

1. Per reftel, post provides the following information
regarding Gabonese-Cuban and Sao Tomean-Cuban relations.
Gabonese and Cuban Government contacts are extremely limited.
Sao Tomean relations with Cuba are more established, but
still quite limited. The most visible signs of the
relationship are a small handful of student exchanges in both
Gabon and Sao Tome and Principe. Cuba sponsors around 20
Gabonese students via scholarships to study technical
subjects in Cuba and is currently supporting six specialist
physicians in Sao Tome and Principe and funds approximately
160 exchange students studying in Cuba. This is the only
governmental-to-governmental interaction of any kind between
Cuban and Gabon/Sao Tome and Principe.

2. In regards to Gabon, neither the Gabonese or Cuban
governments has permanent representation in the other. There
has not been any high-level contact between the two countries
within the last number of years. There are no signs of
foreign assistance between Gabon and Cuba, nor is there
military-to-military cooperation. There is no significant
investment in either country by the other. There are no
bilateral trade agreements between Gabon and Cuba.
3. In regards to Sao Tome and Principe, neither country
maintains permanent representation to the other, though the
Cuban embassy to Luanda is also accredited to Sao Tome.
There are currently six Cuban physicians in Sao Tome and
Principe ) a general surgeon, two obstetricians, an
anesthesiologist, a psychiatrist and a pediatrician. In 2009
160 exchange students from Sao Tome attended Cuban
universities studying a variety of subjects. There are no
signs of foreign assistance between Sao Tome and Principe and
Cuba, nor is there military-to-military cooperation. There
is no significant investment in either country by the other.
There are no bilateral trade agreements active between Sao
Tome and Principe and Cuba.
4. Both the Gabonese and Sao Tomean Governments have offered
limited, but positive, support to the United States in
international forums. Due to limited contact between Cuba
and the two countries, there has been no significant effort
by Gabon or Sao Tome and Principe to improve human rights or
political rights in Cuba.
REDDICK

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