wikileaks ico  Home papers ico  Cables mirror and Afghan War Diary privacy policy Privacy
Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06ADDISABABA2256
2006-08-16 12:30:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Addis Ababa
Cable title:  

ETHIOPIA: FOREIGN MINISTER DISCUSSES EEBC MEETING

Tags:   MARR  MOPS  PINR  PINS  PREF  PREL  PTER  ET 
pdf how-to read a cable
VZCZCXRO1804
OO RUEHROV
DE RUEHDS #2256/01 2281230
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 161230Z AUG 06
FM AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA
TO RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2076
INFO RHMFISS/CJTF HOA IMMEDIATE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RUEKDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 ADDIS ABABA 002256 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR AF DAS YAMAMOTO
LONDON, PARIS, ROME FOR AFRICA WATCHER

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/15/2016
TAGS: MARR MOPS PINR PINS PREF PREL PTER ET
SUBJECT: ETHIOPIA: FOREIGN MINISTER DISCUSSES EEBC MEETING
PARTICIPATION

REF: ADDIS ABABA 2223

Classified By: CHARGE D'AFFAIRES VICKI HUDDLESTON FOR REASONS 1.4 (B,D)

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 ADDIS ABABA 002256

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR AF DAS YAMAMOTO
LONDON, PARIS, ROME FOR AFRICA WATCHER

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/15/2016
TAGS: MARR MOPS PINR PINS PREF PREL PTER ET
SUBJECT: ETHIOPIA: FOREIGN MINISTER DISCUSSES EEBC MEETING
PARTICIPATION

REF: ADDIS ABABA 2223

Classified By: CHARGE D'AFFAIRES VICKI HUDDLESTON FOR REASONS 1.4 (B,D)


1. (C) Summary. Deputy Foreign Minister Tekeda Alemu told
the Charge August 15 that Ethiopia was undecided about
attending the August 24 Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission
(EEBC) meeting claiming that Eritrea had done little to show
its interest in the process. The Charge told Tekeda that
Ethiopia, for tactical reasons and because it has been a good
partner in the process, needs to attend the EEBC. As the
Prime Minister stated (reftel), the decision process is just
beginning and is tied to Ethiopia's conclusions about how to
deal with the new destabilizing threat from Eritrea. The
Secretary's proposed call will certainly reinforce our

SIPDIS
position and likely illicit a 'yes' to both attending the
August 24 talks and parallel talks.


2. (C) The Charge also told Tekeda that the Prime Minister
had approved a joint USAID/CJTF-HOA humanitarian operation in
response to the flooding in and around the Dire Dawa area.
The Foreign Minister promised to begin internal consultations
on allowing IFES to enter the country under the auspices of
African Union election monitoring initiative. Tekeda
concluded the meeting by telling the Charge that Libyan
President Qadhafi had been pressing Ethiopia to join the
Community of Sahal-Sahara States (CEN-SAD). End Summary.


3. (C) In response to the Charge's query about whether
Ethiopia intended to send a representative to the planned
August 24 EEBC meeting, Tekeda said that he had not discussed
the matter with the Prime Minister or within the Foreign
Ministry itself and was uncommittal about sending an envoy.

He said he was unclear about what Ethiopia might achieve from
such a meeting. Tekeda indicated that he questioned the
usefulness of the process in light of a June 15 letter where
Eritrea announced it would not continue with the process
unless the EEBC decision was fully implemented. He added
that Eritrea was not prepared to comply with and outright
rejected the three points outlined at the February 22 Witness
meeting: the need for technical discussion, a neutral
facilitator, and complete removal of United Nations Mission
in Eritrea and Ethiopia (UNMEE) restrictions. Given this, he
questioned, what should Ethiopia do?


4. (C) The Charge explained that while success was not
assured, the United States was calling on its partner
Ethiopia to attend to the meeting and move towards
demarcation of the border. The Charge pushed Tekeda to
explain why Ethiopia might not attend the meeting even though
it had attended all previous ones, saying that it would be
inconsistent with the country's previous actions. Tekeda
said Eritrea's recent actions to destabilize the region, such
as funding the Union of Islamic Courts and other
terrorist-related organizations like the Ogaden National
Liberation Front (ONLF), were a "declaration of war" and have
"changed everything." The Charge told Tekeda that she too
was concerned about Eritrea's destabilizing effect on the
region, but added that this was all the more reason to attend
the EEBC meeting. The Charge recommended that Ethiopia begin
demarcation on the 85 percent of the border it does not
contest to start a process of dialogue. In the very least,
the Charge argued, Ethiopia should attend the meeting as a
tactical move to demonstrate its willingness to resolve the
border conflict to the international community. Tekeda
concluded by saying Ethiopia's strategic objectives were
unchanged and that putting the crisis with Eritrea behind it
and overall peace in the region were still its goals, but the
decision on whether to attend the meeting will "not be easy."


5. (C) PolEcon Chief explained to the Foreign Minister that
the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) planned
to fund an election monitoring program at the African Union
(AU) that would require IFES personnel to visit Ethiopia and
asked for Tekeda's assistance with the visa process. Tekeda
said that in light of what transpired with IRI, NDI and IFES
during the election period, consultations would be necessary
amongst several federal agencies. (Note: IRI, NDI and IFES
were asked to leave Ethiopia for reasons related to their
work during the 2005 elections. End Note.) Tekeda indicated
Ethiopia was in a unique situation in that a multilateral
organization like the AU is located with its borders and
recognized that the GOE may need to overcome its objections
to facilitate non-Ethiopian focused AU programming.


ADDIS ABAB 00002256 002 OF 002



6. (C) Charge informed the Foreign Minister about the USG's
offer to supply tents, 50,000 gallons of water, and 20,000
meals to those affected by the flooding in and around Dire
Dawa. (Note: The Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa
(CJTF-HOA) will convoy the materials from its facilities in
Djibouti to the Dire Dawa area. End Note.) Tekeda welcomed
the assistance and asked that post keep in touch with the
Prime Minister's office to ensure no confusion when the
convoy travels from Djibouti to Dire Dawa.


7. (C) At the meeting's conclusion, Tekeda mentioned to the
Charge that Libya has been lobbying Ethiopia to join CEN-SAD.
Tekeda added that Qadhafi was "fixated" on Ethiopia joining
the organization and went as far to invite the Ethiopian
First Lady to Libya and pass a CEN-SAD resolution calling for
Ethiopia to join. Tekeda said that Ethiopia was reluctant to
join the organization because it is dominated by Muammar
Muhammed al-Qadhafi and Ethiopia would have to accept "all of
his decisions." Though, Tekeda point out, Ethiopia may join
as a mechanism to stop Libya from "meddling in its affairs"
and address Qadhafi's willingness to fund the Eritrea
government.
HUDDLESTON