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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
00HARARE5464
2000-09-27 16:13:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Harare
Cable title:  

ZIMBABWE CLOSER TO PARTIAL WITHDRAWAL FROM DROC

Tags:  PGOV PREL MOPS ZI 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.



                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ3006

PAGE 01        HARARE  05464  01 OF 02  271611Z 
ACTION AF-00    

INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    ACQ-00   CIAE-00  SMEC-00  DODE-00  DOTE-00  
      SRPP-00  DS-00    EB-00    EUR-00   FAAE-00  VC-00    H-01     
      TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    L-00     VCE-00   AC-01    NSAE-00  
      OIC-02   OMB-01   OPIC-01  PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00   ACE-00   
      P-00     SP-00    IRM-00   SSO-00   TRSE-00  USIE-00  PMB-00   
      DSCC-00  PRM-01   DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00  SAS-00   SWCI-00  
        /009W
                  ------------------8A9897  271612Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7216
INFO USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 
NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RWANDA COLLECTIVE
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 005464 

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS
USUN FOR HOLBROOKE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/27/10
TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS ZI
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE CLOSER TO PARTIAL WITHDRAWAL FROM DROC

CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05464 01 OF 02 271611Z
REFTEL: HARARE 5137

CLASSIFIED BY DCM EARL M. IRVING. REASONS: 1.5 (B) AND
(D).



1. (C) SUMMARY: AT A SEPTEMBER 26 FAREWELL LUNCH WITH
THE DCM, THE MFA'S UNDERSECRETARY FOR AFRICA DAVID
HAMADZIRIPI REPORTED THAT ZIMBABWE IS CLOSE TO
WITHDRAWING UP TO HALF ITS TROOPS FROM THE DROC.
HAMADZIRIPI DESCRIBED KABILA'S BRIEF TRIP TO LUANDA ON
SEPTEMBER 24 AS A LAST-DITCH ATTEMPT TO GET ANGOLA TO
FILL ZIMBABWE'S SHOES. THE POLITICAL PRESSURE IN
ZIMBABWE TO WITHDRAW HAS BECOME TOO GREAT FOR MUGABE TO
IGNORE, ACCORDING TO THE UNDERSECRETARY. HE JUST
RETURNED FROM A WEEK-LONG TRIP TO KINSHASA, WHERE HE
WILL SOON MANAGE A NEW OFFICE STAFFED BY DROC ALLIES
DESIGNED TO COORDINATE PEACE EFFORTS IN THE REGION. END
SUMMARY.



2. (C) ON SEPTEMBER 26, DCM AND POLOFF HOSTED A
FAREWELL LUNCH FOR UNDERSECRETARY FOR AFRICA DAVID
HAMADZIRIPI, WHO HAS BEEN ONE OF THE EMBASSY'S MOST
FRANK AND STRAIGHTFORWARD CONTACTS IN ZIMBABWE'S MFA.
HAMADZIRIPI IS BEING TRANSFERRED TO KINSHASA (APPARENTLY
SOMEWHAT AGAINST HIS WILL) TO MANAGE AN OFFICE BEING SET
UP BY THE DROC'S ALLIES TO OVERSEE THE PEACE PROCESS
THERE. THE OFFICE WILL BE HEADED BY A ZIMBABWEAN
"SPECIAL ASSISTANT" WITH AMBASSADORIAL RANK (WHOM
HAMADZIRIPI DID NOT NAME), WITH HAMADZIRIPI IN CHARGE OF
DAY-TO-DAY MANAGEMENT. REPRESENTATIVES FROM ANGOLA,
NAMIBIA, AND DROC WILL BE POSTED TO THE OFFICE;
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05464 01 OF 02 271611Z
CONGOLESE WILL FILL THE ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF POSITIONS.



3. (C) ONE OF THE OFFICE'S FIRST MISSIONS WILL
APPARENTLY BE TO OVERSEE THE WITHDRAWAL OF UP TO HALF OF
ZIMBABWE'S 12,000 TROOPS IN THE DROC. HAMADZIRIPI
STATED THAT ZIMBABWE BEGAN CONTEMPLATING THE WITHDRAWAL
TWO MONTHS AGO, AND IT HAS BEGUN THE NECESSARY PLANNING.
HE REPORTED THAT COMMANDER OF THE ZIMBABWE DEFENSE
FORCES (ZDF) VITALIS ZVINAVASHE HAD JUST COMPLETED A
TRIP TO KINSHASA IN WHICH HE INFORMED KABILA THAT
ZIMBABWE IS REALLY WITHDRAWING. HE EMPHASIZED THAT THE
WITHDRAWAL WOULD PROCEED WHETHER OR NOT ANGOLA IS ABLE
TO STEP INTO THE ZIMBABWEAN ARMY'S POSITIONS.
HAMADZIRIPI STATED THAT KABILA WENT TO LUANDA SEPTEMBER
24 TO CONVINCE ANGOLA TO FILL ZIMBABWE'S SHOES, BUT DID
NOT RECEIVE MANY ENCOURAGING SIGNS. ALTHOUGH ZIMBABWE
WOULD PROBABLY COMPLETE ITS PARTIAL WITHDRAWAL BEFORE
THE TWO-MONTH EXTENSION ON THE MONUC OBSERVER FORCE IS
UP, HAMADZIRIPI ITERATED THAT THE PRESENCE OF ZIMBABWE'S
FORCES WAS NOT LINKED TO THE MONUC DEPLOYMENT. ZIMBABWE
HAS THE FREEDOM TO ROTATE ITS FORCES OR CHANGE THEIR
NUMBERS, JUST AS UGANDA HAS DONE, WITHOUT AFFECTING ITS
COMMITMENT TO KABILA'S GOVERNMENT, "EXCEPT WE'LL REALLY
DO IT," HE ADDED WRYLY.



4. (C) HAMADZIRIPI OPINED THAT THE DOMESTIC POLITICAL
PRESSURE FOR A WITHDRAWAL WAS BECOMING TOO GREAT FOR
MUGABE TO IGNORE. THE UNDERSECRETARY BELIEVED IT WAS
IMPORTANT FOR MUGABE TO SHOW SIGNIFICANT MOVEMENT IN
THIS AREA BEFORE THE 2002 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION AND THUS
REMOVE IT AS A POTENTIALLY DAMAGING CAMPAIGN ISSUE.
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 04 HARARE 05464 01 OF 02 271611Z
(NOTE: FINANCE MINISTER SIMBA MAKONI RECENTLY REVEALED
IN PARLIAMENT THAT ZIMBABWE HAD SPENT US$200 MILLION ON
ITS DROC DEPLOYMENT SINCE THE WAR BEGAN. A SEPTEMBER 26
FRONT PAGE ARTICLE IN THE INDEPENDENT "DAILY NEWS"
REPORTED THAT KINSHASA OWES ZIMBABWE ARMY TRAINERS
US$800,000 IN BACK PAY. END NOTE.) WITH A PARTIAL
WITHDRAWAL, THE GOZ IS ALSO DETERMINED TO SEND KABILA A
MESSAGE THAT IT WILL NO LONGER TOLERATE FOOT-DRAGGING ON
PEACE EFFORTS AND THAT IT IS SERIOUS ABOUT DISENGAGING
FROM THE DROC.



5. (C) COMMENT: HAMADZIRIPI HAS PROVED TO BE A VERY
RELIABLE POINT MAN FOR THE EMBASSY ON ZIMBABWE'S
INVOLVEMENT IN THE DROC, AND IT WOULD BE SURPRISING TO
FIND HIS REPLACEMENT AS OPEN AND STRAIGHTFORWARD. (HE
HINTED THAT HIS UNNAMED SUCCESSOR'S ACCESS TO FOREIGN
MINISTER MUDENGE IS NOT NEARLY AS GOOD AS HIS OWN.) WE
CAN BELIEVE HIM WHEN HE SAYS THE GOZ IS PREPARING TO
WITHDRAW FROM THE DROC. HIS REASONING TRACKS WELL WITH
DEVELOPMENTS AND WHAT OTHER SOURCES HAVE BEEN TELLING
US. ALTHOUGH HE DID NOT MENTION IT, EMMERSON MNANGAGWA,
SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE AND MUGABE'S RIGHT-HAND MAN IN THE
DROC, TOLD US HE WAS VISITING KINSHASA DURING THE SAME
WEEK AS HAMADZIRIPI, PRESUMABLY TO APPLY PRESSURE ON
KABILA TO ABIDE BY LUSAKA (SEE REFTEL). THE GOZ IS

CONFIDENTIAL

CONFIDENTIAL PTQ3007

PAGE 01 HARARE 05464 02 OF 02 271612Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00 SMEC-00 INL-00 DODE-00
DOTE-00 SRPP-00 DS-00 EB-00 EUR-00 FAAE-00 VC-00
H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 L-00 VCE-00 AC-01
NSAE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 OPIC-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00
ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 SSO-00 TRSE-00 USIE-00 PMB-00
DSCC-00 PRM-01 DRL-02 G-00 NFAT-00 SAS-00 SWCI-00
/009W


--------------------------

8A98A2 271612Z /38
O 271613Z SEP 00
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7217
INFO USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE
NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RWANDA COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 HARARE 005464

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS
USUN FOR HOLBROOKE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/27/10
TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS ZI
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE CLOSER TO PARTIAL WITHDRAWAL FROM DROC

CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05464 02 OF 02 271612Z
CERTAINLY MAKING CLEAR TO KINSHASA THAT ITS PATIENCE IS
WEARING THIN. EVEN A PARTIAL WITHDRAWAL FROM THE DROC
WOULD HELP PLUG THE DISASTROUS LEAK IN THE GOZ'S SINKING
FINANCIAL SHIP AND SEND A STRONG SIGNAL TO DOMESTIC AND
FOREIGN OBSERVERS ALIKE THAT THE DROC DRAIN ON ZIMBABWE
WILL COME TO AN END SOONER RATHER THAN LATER.



6. (C) DAO COMMENT: THE WITHDRAWAL OF HALF OF
ZIMBABWE'S TROOPS CURRENTLY IN THE DROC SOUNDS CORRECT,
BUT THIS WOULD LIKELY BE DONE OVER A SIX- TO 12-MONTH
TIMEFRAME. BEFORE ZIMBABWE RETURNS ITS TROOPS FROM THE
DROC, THERE WILL NEED TO BE AN APPARATUS IN PLACE TO
OVERSEE ZIMBABWE'S ECONOMIC INTERESTS (MINING AND
FORESTRY CONCESSIONS, FOR EXAMPLE). ONE OPTION BEING
CONSIDERED IS TO RETIRE THE ZDF'S TROOPS IN THE DROC
FROM THE MILITARY AND GIVE THEM SECURITY JOBS TO PROTECT
ZIMBABWE'S DROC CONCESSIONS. THIS WOULD ACCOMPLISH TWO
MAIN OBJECTIVES: FIRST, TO HAVE A FORCE STILL IN THE
DROC TO PROTECT ZIMBABWE'S INTERESTS, AND SECOND, TO
ALLOW THE OVERALL MILITARY STRUCTURE TO BE DOWNSIZED.
ZIMBABWE IS LOOKING AT DOWNSIZING THE ZDF'S CURRENT
FORCE OF 34,000 TO 25,000. ADDITIONALLY, BRINGING A
PORTION OF THE MILITARY BACK FROM THE DROC WOULD ENABLE
PRESIDENT MUGABE TO REINFORCE DISTRICTS THAT ZANU-PF
LOST IN THE JUNE ELECTIONS. OF PARTICULAR CONCERN TO
ZANU-PF ARE THE CITIES OF BULAWAYO, KWEKWE, AND MUTARE,
WHOSE GARRISONS ARE VIRTUALLY EMPTY FROM THE DROC
DEPLOYMENT. ALSO, WE WOULD SPECULATE THAT THE SPECIAL
ASSISTANT WITH AMBASSADORIAL RANK WHOM HAMADZIRIPI DID
NOT NAME COULD BE LTG CHIWENGA, CURRENTLY THE ZIMBABWE
NATIONAL ARMY COMMANDER; HE IS RUMORED TO BE RETIRING
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05464 02 OF 02 271612Z
SOON FOR AN AMBASSADORIAL APPOINTMENT. LTG CHIWENGA HAS
BEEN INVOLVED IN THE DROC FROM THE BEGINNING AND WOULD
MAKE A GOOD WATCHDOG FOR ALL THOSE WHO HAVE BUSINESS
INTERESTS THERE.

MCDONALD

CONFIDENTIAL

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