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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05NDJAMENA555
2005-04-06 15:32:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Ndjamena
Cable title:  

DARFUR REBEL DEMARCHE: HARIR AND SHOGAR ON SLM'S

Tags:   PGOV  PHUM  PREF  PREL  KAWC  CD  SU 
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                  ------------------D9329F  061618Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 1322
INFO AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE
DARFUR COLLECTIVE
AMEMBASSY LONDON 
AMEMBASSY PARIS 
AMEMBASSY YAOUNDE 
USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 
USLO TRIPOLI 
USMISSION GENEVA
						C O N F I D E N T I A L  NDJAMENA 000555 

SIPDIS


DEPARTMENT FOR AF, AF/C, AF/SPG, D, DRL, INR, INR/GGI, PRM,
USAID/OTI; LONDON AND PARIS FOR AFRICAWATCHERS; GENEVA FOR
CAMPBELL, ADDIS/NAIROBI/KAMPALA FOR REFCOORDS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/05/2015
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREF PREL KAWC CD SU
SUBJECT: DARFUR REBEL DEMARCHE: HARIR AND SHOGAR ON SLM'S
REORGANIZATION

REF: A. STATE 60774

B. NDJAMENA 543

Classified By: Political/Economic Officer Kathleen FitzGibbon for reaso
ns 1.4 (b) and (d).



1. (C) Summary: The Ambassador delivered points in ref A to
Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) members Dr. Sharif Harir and
Adam Shogar on April 4. Both SLM leaders praised USG efforts
on behalf of the three recently passed U.N. Security Council
resolutions. They also reaffirmed their commitment to abide
by the N'Djamena Ceasefire Agreement, the Abuja Humanitarian
and Security Protocols, and Security Council Resolutions.
Harir and Shogar provided an outline of SLM's current
leadership problems and plans for a conference inside Darfur
for which they requested international assistance. End
Summary.



2. (C) On April 4, Ambassador Wall and P/E officer met with
SLM's chief negotiator Dr. Sharif Harir, and Representative
to the Joint Commission Adam Shogar. Harir and Shogar
listened intently and took notes while the Ambassador
outlined U.S. expectations that the rebel movements abide by
the newly-passed U.N. Security Council resolutions and honor
commitments previously made. He noted USG concern with past
attacks on humanitarian convoys and stated that these
incidents must cease. The Embassy provided the movement
leaders with copies of the U.N. resolutions.

- - - - - - - - - - - -
REBEL MOVEMENT RESPONSE
- - - - - - - - - - - -



3. (C) In response, Harir said that the Ambassador's message
was clear and that he had taken note. He reiterated the
SLM's commitment to the agreements it has signed and
emphasized that it is the Government of Sudan that fails to
respect the accords. Harir said the SLM is investigating
alleged violations by its own members. He also thanked the
international community for passing three resolutions on
Sudan in a short period of time. He noted that the GOS
immediately rejected the Security Council resolutions and he
suspects that the Sudanese Cabinet will not cooperate. He
stated that the GOS's denunciation of the resolutions
demonstrates its lack of intention to fulfill any commitments
it makes.



4. (C) Shogar agreed with the points made by Harir and also
thanked the USG for its efforts on behalf of Darfur. He
emphasized that the SLM is in the process of reasserting
control on the ground and has recently brought its troops
under control. As evidence of this, Shogar cited the lack of
rebel violations of the ceasefire over the past reporting
periods. He added that the SLM will comply with the U.N.
resolutions and continue to protect humanitarian groups whose
work is to assist the people of Darfur. He thanked U.S.
policy-makers and stated that he was impressed with
Representative Jackson-Lee's interest in Darfur during her
recent visit. Shogar is concerned about the deteriorating

security situation's impact on the displaced persons and
refugee camps in Sudan and Chad. With the rainy season
coming, he is worried that more lives will be lost.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
SLM REORGANIZATION EFFORTS
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -



5. (C) Shogar also described instability in the SLM's
leadership structure. He requested international assistance
as quickly as possible for SLM to meet in Darfur and select
new leadership and a permanent delegation to represent the
movement at peace talks. The Ambassador asked the SLM
representatives to describe the outcome of the movement's
recent consultations in Chad. Shogar replied that the SLM's
key problem is that it is headed by two young "guys" with no
experience. He said the movement's chairman, Abdelwahid
Nour, and general-secretary, Mini Minawi, are in constant
conflict. It is impossible to make decisions and a
conference is needed to produce "rational" leadership for the
SLM, he maintained.



6. (C) Harir described the SLM's rapid expansion from a


small core of 42 members to its current size since July 2002
as the movement's actions against government targets
succeeded in attracting disaffected Darfurians. During this
period, there were no efforts to design an internal
decision-making structure. Harir said that the SLM has a
chairman, general secretary, and military members but no
other bodies setting direction or policy. Better
organization is badly needed to strengthen command and
control. When there are no military operations, SLM troops
are complaining and "doing other things" because no one is
articulating the movement's objectives to them. He
emphasized that this is the time in which SLM leaders should
be able to communicate to its field component the importance
of not committing human rights abuses. (Comment: Harir
emphasized the importance of honoring the ceasefire with
field commanders Juma Haggar and Djidu during their recent
visit to N'Djamena. Harir specifically mentioned that there
should be no SLM attacks on civilians or convoys. End
Comment.) Also, the potential for factionalization within
SLM's military component is growing as long as Mini and
Abdelwahid are fighting to stay on top. Sharif described
them as so busy trying to keep their positions that they have
lost focus.



7. (C) Harir believes that SLM's reorganization can bring
together many of the fighting elements on the ground. Many
SLM fighters are fed up with Mini and Abdelwahid, according
to Harir, and some are now living in refugee camps with their
families. Some move back and forth across the Chad-Sudan
border. Harir stated that the National Movement for Reform
and Democracy (NMRD) fighters are looking for an alliance
with SLM, as are commanders from the Justice and Equality
Movement (JEM) (Ref B). Harir said the JEM is more
organized, but its highly centralized structure complicates
negotiations because its spokesmen must call Khalil for
instructions between sessions. Harir called JEM's leadership
a "web-site" and "thuraya" operation. Harir described the
agenda of JEM's rank-and-file as more like that of the SLM.
He claims that ousted JEM field commander Mohammed Saleh has
already won over half of JEM's fighters. Harir believes that
Saleh will have no other option than to bring these fighters
to the SLM. It is important for these splinter forces to
join the SLM to avoid manipulation by Sudanese intelligence,
according to Harir.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
HELP US SIT TOGETHER UNDER TREES IN DARFUR
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -



8. (C) Mini and Abdelwahid's unwillingness to build an
organizational structure can be overcome with a SLM
conference within Darfur, according to Harir. He described a
scenario where the military commanders, political and
traditional leaders, and Darfurian exiles "sit together under
trees" in Darfur to set direction, elect leaders, create
committees, and select a permanent negotiating team. The
Ambassador asked whether or not a meeting in Rome facilitated
by San Egidio or another non-governmental organization could
be useful. Harir and Shogar both said that those meetings
are only attended by hand-picked people who can get
passports. The "sample is well-controlled" and may not be
representative, said Harir, and it is more important to have
the people of Darfur together in Sudan to organize the
movement so there is wider participation. Harir and Shogar
also indicated that leaders selected outside Darfur will not
be accepted by those inside.



9. (C) Harir and Shogar requested assistance to arrange the
logistics for an organizational meeting in Darfur. Harir and
Shogar are planning to head to Darfur in the coming days to
start the preparations for a meeting. Harir is awaiting
permission from the Chadian Government to ensure he would be
allowed back into Chad. The Ambassador pressed Harir to be
specific on the types of assistance that would be needed.
Harir said this effort would require basic funding to move
key leaders into Darfur, food for the SLM's fighters and the
participants in the conference, vehicles and petrol, and
means of communications. The international community could
also assist in obtaining assurances from Chad and Libya to
allow the safe passage of rebel movement members to the
talks. The Ambassador asked about the African Union's role.
Harir said the AU and other "friends" of the movement would


likely be invited. He also said that the involvement of an
outside foundation, to ensure a proper accounting of funds,
is acceptable.



10. (C) Harir observed that the outcome of the meeting would
be the creation of an organization with a division of
responsibilities, including political and military committees
to provide a system of accountability. He cited, as an
example of the lack of accountability now existing in the
movements, a recent case involving Abdelwahid's refusal to
answer his Thuraya when the United Nations and Harir were
trying to reach him. It is this type of behavior, Harir
maintained, that must end in order to make SLM members
accountable. The Ambassador said he was glad Harir and
Shogar had not claimed that the Darfur meeting was a
precondition for the resumption of the talks in Abuja. Harir
agreed that it was not, but that an organized and focused SLM
was critical to the success of the negotiations.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
WHEREABOUTS OF OTHER MOVEMENT MEMBERS
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -



11. (C) The Embassy could not deliver the points cited in
Ref A to several of the rebel movement members. We will
continue to look for opportunities to do so. SLM's Bahar
Arabi departed Chad for Maiduguri, Nigeria on April 1. JEM
field commander Mohammed Saleh left Chad on or about April 2
for Darfur. He is currently inside Sudan. Talgedin Niam,
JEM's representative on the Joint Commission, is based in
Chad but is currently outside the country. He is either in
Dubai or Asmara.

- - - -
COMMENT
- - - -



12. (C) Harir and Shogar clearly understood our message.
Harir had previously discussed the issue of ceasefire
violations with SLM's top field commanders when they were in
N'Djamena. Harir and Shogar's push for a meeting inside
Darfur has an element of self-interest. As previously
reported, indications are that Harir may be elected into the
SLM's hierarchy in a Darfur meeting. Shogar wants more
latitude at the Joint Commission, where he is the SLM's
representative. All indications in N'Djamena, including from
Chadian authorities, is that the meeting could be held in May
in Darfur. It is not clear from here whether Mini Minawi or
Abdelwahid would attend.



13. (C) Khartoum and Tripoli Minimize Considered.
WALL


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