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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
01ABUJA2420
2001-09-21 16:21:00
CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN
Embassy Abuja
Cable title:  

NIGERIAN ARMY TROOP ROTATION COMPLETELY CANCELLED

Tags:  PREL MASS MARR KPKO SL NI 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						C O N F I D E N T I A L ABUJA 002420 

SIPDIS


NOFORN


E.O. 12958: DECL: 1.6X1
TAGS: PREL MASS MARR KPKO SL NI
SUBJECT: NIGERIAN ARMY TROOP ROTATION COMPLETELY CANCELLED

REF: IIR 6 871 0371 01


Classification derived from IIR 6 871 0371 01; Reason 1.6X1.




1. (U) This is IIR 6 871 0371 01, repeated through State
Channels to ensure wider distribution outside of DOD.


begin text:




2. (C/NF) Summary: Nigerian army staff stated that latest
troop rotation cancelled. Elements of one battalion that had
begun to move to Sierra Leone will be recalled.




3. (C/NF) According to Colonel Operations, Colonel D. Kaka,
of the Nigerian Army Staff, the troop rotation plan involving
73 and 65 battalions, switching with 5 and 130 battalions has
been summarily cancelled. Kaka stated that elements of the
65 battalion had already begun to rotate but that these
personnel would return to Nigeria shortly.




4. (C/NF) Kaka clearly was confused regarding the
cancellation, literally throwing his hands in the air over
the decision to cancel while part of a unit was already
deployed (field comment - ironically, Kaka requested that RO
find out from the Nigerian Government what was going on).




5. (C/NF) Field Comments: For several weeks, RO has updated
Kaka on the UN/US rotation plan in the wake of the Nigerian
Presidents decision to support the change. The original
rotation plan was changed twice in the last few weeks by
UN/US planners. While the first change (both battalions to
rotate in January) was accepted by the President, the
Nigerian Army had not gotten any word one way or the other.
The waters became muddier when we suggested a further change
(one battalion to rotate out in September and be replaced by
the Senegalese, and the second battalion to rotate in
January). Emboffs made calls on Minister of state for Army
Lawal Batagarawa explaining the changes and the fact that the
Army did not know about them and was proceeding with original
rotation plans. The Nigerian army now apparently has chosen
to cancel the rotation completely and leave the 5 and 130
battalions in Sierra Leone until the situation clarifies or
the Operation Focus Relief phase three units are ready to
deploy in December/January timeframe. The fact that source
has requested RO to provide him information on what his own
government is doing is indicative of sources frustration with
the Nigerian bureaucracy and slowness to respond.


end text




6. (C) CDA is seeking an appointment with Minister of Defense
Danjuma for Tuesday, September 25, to try to put the rotation
issue back on track.




7. (U) Freetown minimize considered.
Andrews