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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
00STATE117658
2000-06-20 21:10:00
SECRET
Secretary of State
Cable title:  

SUDANESE INVOLVEMENT IN TERRORISM

Tags:   AR  BG  FR  NL  PREL  PTER  SU  UNSC 
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O 202110Z JUN 00
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO AMEMBASSY PARIS IMMEDIATE 
AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE 
AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 
AMEMBASSY DHAKA 
INFO AMEMBASSY NAIROBI IMMEDIATE 
USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE
						S E C R E T STATE 117658 

NAIROBI FOR EMBASSY KHARTOUM OFFICE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 6/20/10
TAGS: PTER, PREL, UNSC, SU, FR, NL, AR, BG
SUBJECT: SUDANESE INVOLVEMENT IN TERRORISM

CLASSIFIED BY: EDMUND HULL, DEPUTY COORDINATOR FOR
COUNTERTERRORISM, S/CT. REASON: 1.5 (B) (C) (D)

REF: STATE 113624

1. (S) THIS IS AN ACTION CABLE.

2. (S) DEPARTMENT UNDERSTANDS THAT THE HOST GOVERNMENTS AT
ADDRESSEE POSTS MAY BE RELUCTANT TO ENDORSE THE USG
POSITION AGAINST LIFTING SUDAN SANCTIONS BECAUSE THEY LACK
EVIDENCE THAT THE SUDANESE GOVERNMENT STILL SUPPORTS
TERRORISM. THE FOLLOWING NON-PAPER, WHICH IS CLASSIFIED
SECRET/RELEASABLE TO FRANCE, ARGENTINA, BANGLADESH, AND THE
NETHERLANDS, CONTAINS USG INFORMATION IMPLICATING KHARTOUM
IN CONTINUING SUPPORT FOR TERRORISM. EMBASSIES ARE
REQUESTED TO SHARE THIS NON-PAPER WITH HOST GOVERNMENT
INTERLOCUTORS AT AN APPROPRIATE SENIOR LEVEL IN AN ATTEMPT
TO PERSUADE THEM THAT UNSC SANCTIONS SHOULD NOT BE LIFTED
AT THIS TIME.

3. (S/RELEASABLE TO FRANCE, ARGENTINA, BANGLADESH, AND THE
NETHERLANDS ONLY - ENTIRE TEXT) BEGIN TEXT OF NON-PAPER:

CURRENT STATUS OF SUDAN'S SUPPORT FOR TERRORISM

WE HAVE OBSERVED NO SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN SUDAN'S SUPPORT
FOR TERRORISM SINCE THE DECEMBER 1999 POLITICAL SHAKEUP IN
WHICH PRESIDENT OMAR AL-BASHIR CONSOLIDATED POWER AND
SIDELINED NATIONAL ISLAMIC FRONT (NIF) LEADER HASSAN AL-
TURBAI. TERRORISTS FROM A VARIETY OF ISLAMIC EXTREMIST
GROUPS---SUCH AS USAMA BIN LADIN'S ORGANIZATION, EGYPTIAN
ISLAMIC JIHAD (EIJ), AND HAMAS---CONTINUE TO USE SUDAN FOR
SAFEHAVEN, TRAINING, AND, IN SOME CASES, AS A PLATFORM TO
PLAN OPERATIONS.

USAMA BIN LADIN

SUDAN'S CHANGE IN GOVERNMENT APPEARS TO HAVE HAD LITTLE
EFFECT ON BIN LADIN OPERATIVES, WHO CONTINUE TO OPERATE
FREELY FROM KHARTOUM. SEVERAL BIN LADIN BUSINESSES---
INCLUDING ATYAF INVESTMENTS AND THE KHARTOUM TANNERYE---ARE
RUN BY AL-QA'IDA LIEUTENANTS AND STILL OPERATE IN SUDAN,
ALTHOUGH THEY ARE TRYING TO KEEP A LOW PROFILE

-- SUDAN MAINTAINS A FINANCIAL STAKE IN SOME OF THESE
COMPANIES AND HAS TRIED TO OBSCURE BIN LADIN'S COMMERCIAL
TIES BY CHANGING THE NAME OF AT LEAST ONE OF HIS COMPANIES.

EGYPTIAN GROUPS

THE EIJ AND AL-GAMA'AT AL-ISLAMIYYA ALSO RECEIVE SAFEHAVEN
AND SUPPORT IN SUDAN. MORE THAN 20 EIJ AND GAMA'AT MEMBERS
AFFILIATED WITH BIN LADIN ARE OPERATING IN SUDAN AND MEET
ON A REGULAR BASIS TO DISCUSS COMMON ISSUES OF CONCERN.

-- SENIOR GAMA'AT LEADER RIFA'I TAHA MUSA---WHO IS ALLIED
WITH BIN LADIN AND LST OCTOBER CALLED FOR AN INCREASE IN
ANTI-US ATTACKS---TRAVELED TO SUDAN IN APRIL TO RALLY LOCAL
GAMA'AT SUPPORT FOR HIS PLAN TO RETURN THE GROUP TO VIOLENT
OPERATIONS.

PALESTINIAN GROUPS

SEVERAL PALESTINIAN EXTREMIST GROUPS---SUCH AS HAMAS, THE
PALESTINE ISLAMIC JIHAD (PIJ) AND THE ABU NIDAL
ORGANIZATION (ANO)--MAINTAIN A PRESENCE IN SUDAN AND
CONTINUE TO CONDUCT A WIDE RANGE OF ACTIVITIES, INCLUDING

FUNDRAISING, RECRUITMENT, IDEOLOGICAL AND PARAMILITARY
TRAINING, AND OTHER LOGISTICAL SUPPORT ACTIVITIES.

-- HAMAS--WHICH HAS A FEW HUNDRED SUPPORTERS AMONG THE
LOCAL PALESTINIAN POPULATION--HAS AN OFFICIAL
REPRESENTATIVE IN KHARTOUM, OPERATES AT LEAST ONE SMALL
FRONT COMPANY, AND IS ASSOCIATED WITH SEVERAL NGOS THERE.

-- THE PIJ MAINTAINS A SMALLER PRESENCE THAN HAMAS IN
SUDAN BUT HAS AN OFFICE AND PERMANENT REPRESENTATION IN
KHARTOUM. ITS MEMBERSHIP IS PRIMARILY COMPOSED OF
UNIVERSITY STUDENTS, AND IT ALSO OPERATES SMALL COMMERCIAL
VENTURES.

SOME INFORMATION INDICATES THAT THESE GROUPS HAVE BEEN WARY
OF POSSIBLE CHANGES IN SUDANESE POLICY FOR SEVERAL MONTHS,
SUGGESTING THEY HAVE MADE PREPARATIONS TO LEAVE SUDAN.
OTHER SOURCES INDICATE, HOWEVER, THAT PIJ OPERATIVES
MAINTAIN CLOSE TIES TO THE SUDANESE REGIME DESPITE THE
CHANGE IN GOVERNMENT.

IRAN AND NGO'S

SUDAN ALSO PROVIDES A PLATFORM FOR IRAN TO MEET WITH
EXTREMIST GROUPS AND SUPPORTS VARIOUS NON-GOVERNMENTAL
ORGANIZATIONS THAT PROMOTE TERRORIST ACTIVITY.

-- IRAN COUNTS ON SUDAN'S GEOGRAPHIC PROXIMITY AND BENIGN
OPERATING ENVIRONMENT TO ALLOW IRANIAN AGENTS TO MEET WITH
AND CHANNEL FUNDS, WEAPONS, AND TRAINING TO ISLAMIC
EXTREMISTS.

-- KHARTOUM'S WILLINGNESS TO CONTINUE PROVIDING SAFEHAVEN
FOR VARIOUS RADICAL PALESTINIAN GROUPS FACILITATES IRAN'S
EFFORTS TO SUPPORT THEIR TERRORIST OPERATIONS AGAINST
ISRAEL AND TO IMPROVE THEIR OPERATIONAL CAPABILITIES.

AFRICAN OPPOSITIONISTS

BASHIR HAS TAKEN SOME INITIAL STEPS TO IMPROVE RELATIONS
WITH ERITREA AND ETHIOPIA SINCE TAKING OFFICE, BUT A
VARIETY OF REPORTS SUGGEST THAT SUDAN STILL AIDS OPPOSITION
GROUPS FROM THESE COUNTRIES AND OTHERS---INCLUDING SOMALIA
AND UGANDA. KHARTOUM PROVIDES THESE GROUPS WITH FUNDING,
ARMS, MILITARY ASSISTANCE, AND SAFEHAVEN.

LIMITED PROSPECTS FOR CHANGE

BASHIR WILL MOVE AGAINST SOME EXTREMIST GROUPS ONLY IF IT
SERVES SUDAN'S BROADER ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL INTERESTS AND
ASSISTS HIM IN HIS ONGOING BATTLE WITH TURABI'S NIF
FACTION. PROGRESS WILL ONLY COME SLOWLY. WE CANNOT
CONFIRM THAT KHARTOUM HAS DEPORTED ANY TERRORIST GROUPS OR
INDIVIDUALS ASSOCIATED WITH THEM.

-- BASHIR'S OUSTER OF THE POPULAR ARAB AND ISLAMIC
CONFERENCE (PAIC) IS AN EARLY INDICATOR THAT HE COULD PLACE
TRAVEL AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS ON SOME EXTREMISTS TO ISOLATE
TURABI FURTHER AND TO PLACATE THE UNITED STATES AND OTHER
GOVERNMENTS, SUCH AS SAUDI ARABIA AND KUWAIT, WHICH HAVE
CRITICIZED SUDAN'S SUPPORT FOR TERRORISM.

-- BASHIR HAS TAKEN SOME STEPS--SUCH AS SIGNING
INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS TO COMBAT TERRORISM--IF ONLY TO
ATTRACT MORE WESTERN EUROPEAN AND MODERATE ARAB BUSINESSMEN
AND TO GAUGE THE RESIDUAL STRENGTH OF TURABI'S SUPPORTERS.
BUT HE NONETHELESS HAS NOT TAKEN ACTION CONSISTENT WITH
THOSE CONVENTIONS.

(END TEXT OF NON-PAPER)


ALBRIGHT