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Cablegate: Djibouti Planning for Amisom Contingent

VZCZCXYZ0023
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHDJ #0054/01 0192244
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 191402Z JAN 10
FM AMEMBASSY DJIBOUTI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1257
INFO IGAD COLLECTIVE
SOMALIA COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA
RHMFISS/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RUEPADJ/CJTF-HOA J2X CAMP LEMONIER DJ

UNCLAS DJIBOUTI 000054

SIPDIS
STATE FOR AF/RSA/ACOTA AND AF/E
SECDEF FOR OSD ISA AFRICA
AFRICOM AND CJTF-HOA FOR POLAD
LONDON
PARIS
ROME FOR AFRICA-WATCHER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL MOPS MASS KPKO DJ SO
SUBJECT: DJIBOUTI PLANNING FOR AMISOM CONTINGENT

1. SUMMARY. From January 11-15, Djibouti National Armed Forces
(FAD) senior staff planners joined U.S. Africa Contingency Operations
Training and Assistance (ACOTA) planners to conduct a Peace Support
Operations (PSO) Training Strategy Conference. The purpose of the
conference was to develop Djibouti's strategy to participate in
multinational peacekeeping operations in Africa and commence planning
for Djibouti's deployment of a peacekeeping contingent to the African
Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Djiboutian senior planners stated
Djibouti's intent to deploy a contingent of approximately 465
peacekeepers to AMISOM on or about January 2011. The deployment will
be preceded by 10 weeks of ACOTA PSO training. The planners also
stated Djibouti's objective to achieve full self-sufficiency in PSO
training by 2014. END SUMMARY.

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2. Djibouti ACOTA Training Strategy Conference. The FAD and ACOTA
conducted a PSO Training Strategy Conference, from January 11-15.
Foreign Minister Mahmoud Ali Youssouf and Ambassador opened the
conference. FM Youssouf expressed Djibouti's commitment to
contribute to regional peace and security, specifically including the
deployment of peacekeepers. He emphasized the importance of Africans
leading peacekeeping in Africa and recognized and thanked the U.S.
for its capacity-building efforts. He charged the Djiboutian
planning team to develop a realistic, detailed plan for deploying a
Djiboutian contingent to AMISOM. The Djiboutian planning team
consisted of both military and civilian senior leaders, including the
FAD Operations Director, FAD Deputy Logistics Director, FAD
Administration and Finance Director, senior Navy, National Police,
and Gendarmerie officers, and senior representatives of the Ministry
of Foreign Affairs, National Security Office, and Interior Ministry.
The U.S. team included the DATT, representatives from AFRICOM and
CJTF-HOA, and the ACOTA facilitation team.

3. Djibouti's peacekeeping strategy. The Djiboutian planning team
stated Djibouti's intent to deploy a contingent of approximately 465
peacekeepers to AMISOM on or about January 2011. The deployment will
be preceded by 10 weeks of ACOTA PSO training at a location still to
be determined by the Djiboutians. Subsequently, rotational
Djiboutian AMISOM contingents will receive ACOTA training, with
Djiboutian PSO training cadre increasing capacity and training
leadership over time. Djibouti's objective is to achieve full
self-sufficiency in PSO training by 2014. Djibouti's stated intent
is to deploy battalion-size AMISOM contingents in 6-month rotations.
(COMMENT: Djibouti may be open to increasing the length of the
standard deployment. END COMMENT.)

4. Djibouti's prospective AMISOM contingent. During the Training
Strategy Conference, the Djiboutian planning team developed a table
of organization for the AMISOM contingent, to include a battalion
headquarters with standard battalion staff sections, two infantry
companies, a support company including a Gendarme section, a
6-vehicle APC platoon, a small motor transport section, a medical
section, a full complement of combat service support sections to
support the contingent, and a headquarters company. The battalion
will include liaison officers to the Ugandan and Burundian AMISOM
contingents. The battalion will also include a Somali-speaking
interpreter section to support the Ugandan AMISOM contingent. The
Djiboutian planning team seemed open to consider a similar
interpreter section to support the Burundian AMISOM contingent. The
planning team requested U.S. assistance to allow the interpreter
teams to train alongside Uganda AMISOM Battalion Group 5 during
February-April 2010 at Singo, Uganda, and may be open to a similar
concept to train alongside Burundi's AMISOM Battalion 8 during
February-April 2010 near Bujumbura, Burundi. Djibouti's planning
team is now building a detailed itemized list of necessary equipment
for the AMISOM contingent, to be complete no later than January 22.

5. Djibouti's PSO Training Concept. The Djiboutian planning team
developed a 10-week pre-deployment training concept, to include 5
weeks of PSO command and staff training and 5 weeks of PSO soldier
skills training, all focused specifically on AMISOM preparation.
ACOTA and FAD commenced collaboration on the details of the Program
of Instruction to ensure that the training is tailored to meet the
contingent's training requirements. The training will occur as near
to the deployment date as possible; ACOTA is prepared to commence
training as early as February 2010. The FAD suggested several
potential training sites to include Hol Hol and Ali Ouni (both sites
were surveyed by the ACOTA team), but is committed to training the
initial contingent at a site that is readily available and will not


delay training and deployment.

6. PSO Training Self Sustainment. A major emphasis for the ACOTA
program in Djibouti, and a major objective of the FAD, is Djibouti's
achievement of long-term self-sufficiency in PSO training. The FAD
proposed that this will be achieved by 2014 through progressively
increasing the capacities of Djibouti's PSO instructor cadre--to
include specially trained Gendarmerie trainer(s). One of Djibouti's
key strengths is that it has a standing cadre of permanent military
instructors now located in southern Djibouti at Hol Hol, and is adept
at providing already self-sufficient mobile training teams and camps
for the training of the FAD.

7. Training Strategy Conference Report. The FAD (with ACOTA support)
is now preparing a PSO Strategic Training Action Plan, scheduled to
be complete on January 22. This will allow for more detailed
follow-up on the next steps for an AMISOM deployment. The FAD and
ACOTA will conduct a PSO Training Strategy Update Conference during
early 2011.

8. This message was drafted by the ACOTA planning team prior to
departure from Djibouti and approved by the Ambassador.

SWAN
SWAN

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