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04DJIBOUTI1168 2004-09-02 08:55:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Djibouti
Cable title:  

Djibouti Speaks Out on Darfur

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					UNCLAS DJIBOUTI 001168 


E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT: Djibouti Speaks Out on Darfur

1. (U) The state run newspaper, La Nation, yesterday
published a story saying that the Republic of Djibouti will
support the Government of Sudan until the Darfur crisis is
resolved. The story indicated that the Sudan situation is
improving and that progress is being made at the Abuja
conference. It opposed Western military intervention inside
the Sudanese frontiers.

2. (U) On August 21 the Minister of Information announced
Djiboutian support for the Sudanese effort to resolve the
Darfur crisis. Since then, the state news agency has been
reporting stories favoring the Sudanese government and
calling for large scale return of refugees to Darfur.

4. (U) Comment: This may be partly in response to the visit
of Rep. Donald Payne paid Djibouti and other countries that
share a border with Sudan, as well as the nomination of a
new Sudanese Ambassador to Djibouti. Both urged the
Djiboutian Government to take an official stand on Darfur.
More likely it is a reflection of the Arab League stance on
this issue. Djibouti is a member of the Arab League.

5. (U) Comment Continued: There is an ethically Sudanese
community in Djibouti with a long history in the capital.
The feeling about Darfur in this community, and in the
Djiboutian society as a whole, is that the American
government's preoccupation with Sudan parallels its stance
toward Saddam before the current Iraqi war.