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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
06KHARTOUM2348 2006-09-26 06:05:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Khartoum
Cable title:  

Inauguration of El Fasher DPA Implementation Office

Tags:   PGOV KPKO SOCI AU UN US SU 
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VZCZCXRO0093
PP RUEHMA RUEHROV
DE RUEHKH #2348/01 2690605
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 260605Z SEP 06
FM AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4704
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CJTF HOA
					  UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KHARTOUM 002348 

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE, SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/SPG AND S/CRS
DEPT PLS PASS USAID FOR AFR/SUDAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KPKO SOCI AU UN US SU
SUBJECT: Inauguration of El Fasher DPA Implementation Office

Ref: Khartoum 01933



1. (U) SUMMARY: The El Fasher DPA Implementation Office opened
officially on September 17. Fully staffing the Peace Secretariat,
guiding its operation, and maximizing its potential role in
facilitating implementation activities are challenges that must be
confronted in the weeks ahead. END SUMMARY.



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El Fasher DPA Implementation Office Opens


--------------------------





2. (U) Roughly one month following the official opening of the
Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) Implementation Office (also known as
Peace Secretariat) in Khartoum (reftel), the African Union (AU)
inaugurated a parallel office in El Fasher on September 17. Roughly
forty persons attended the event, including members from the
Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and National Intelligence and Security
Services, North Darfur government officials, SLA-Minawi and other
DPA/Declaration of Commitment (DOC) signatories, UN officials, NGO
representatives, AMIS and AU personnel, civil society leaders, local
press, and USG officials.



--------------------------


AU Notes Long Road Ahead in Implementing DPA


--------------------------





3. (U) Active Response Corps (ARC) Officer moderated the ceremony,
introducing the keynote speakers. AU Deputy Head of Mission
Ambassador Hassan Gibril delivered opening remarks, noting the long
process that culminated in the DPA and, perhaps, the longer road
ahead in implementing the accord. He thanked a number of
individuals and organizations that contributed to the establishment
of the DPA, expressing particular gratitude t the U.S. Government
for its financial, technical, and human resource support.



--------------------------



--------------------------


GNU, SLM/Minawi Cite Backing for DPA, Need for Peace


--------------------------



--------------------------





4. (U) Standing in for the Wali of North Darfur, State Minister of
Humanitarian and Social Affairs Ahmed Saleh Ahmed emphasized the
GNU's backing for the DPA and its hopes for peace in Darfur. (Note:
The Wali's absence was not unexpected, according to AU officials.
Also present at the ceremony was the Humanitarian Affairs
Commissioner (HAC), who frequently serves as the State government's
interface with the international community, and SAF representative
to the Ceasefire Commission General Abdullah Mubarak. End note.)
On behalf of the SLA-Minawi faction, Adam Ali War spoke
extemporaneously in English about the significance of the Peace
Secretariat and its potential value in aiding implementation of the

SIPDIS
DPA. Like previous speakers, he thanked the U.S. Government for its
extensive support of SLA-Minawi and the peace process and
underscored the importance of gaining the buy-in of non-signatories
to the peace agreement.



--------------------------



--------------------------


DCM Powers Underscores USG Role in Supporting DPA


--------------------------



--------------------------





5. (U) Finally, U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Roberto Powers
delivered remarks highlighting the U.S. Government's role in the
Darfur peace process and our continued commitment to improving the
humanitarian situation in the region. He congratulated the DPA
signatories for their willingness to work toward peace, and
articulated the U.S. position in support of UN Security Council
Resolution 1706.



--------------------------


Comment


--------------------------





6. (SBU) While the DPA Implementation Office is fully equipped,
funded through the end of the year, and ready to be occupied, it may
take some weeks for the Office to find its niche. The AU reports no
progress in its appeals to Addis Ababa to provide at least two
political affairs officers to staff the relevant "desks" in the El
Fasher Peace Secretariat. Ambassador Gibril's civilian political
staff currently consists of only two individuals, who are frequently
occupied with administrative or representational tasks rather than
focusing on political, humanitarian, or security developments.
These officers are unlikely to be capable of devoting the energy or
time necessary to effectively advance the mission and role of the
DPA Implementation Office. The UK media team (DPA outreach) arrived
several weeks ago in El Fasher, and will work out of the new office.
Production problems with a number of DPA products (e.g.,
illustrated explanations of the DPA) have delayed their strategic
communications timeline, though the Peace Secretariat stands to fill
an important function in hosting outreach events and coordinating

KHARTOUM 00002348 002 OF 002


the implementation efforts of various stakeholders.



7. (SBU) The AU continues to consider an "Implementation
Coordination" concept paper provided by ARC Officer last month; to
date, there have been no meetings in El Fasher of the AU-led DPA
Implementation Team (DPAIT), despite repeated exhortations by ARC
Officer. It also remains unclear who the SLA-Minawi faction will
nominate to be its representative for the Peace Secretariat,
indicating to ARC Officer that it is looking for guidance from its
leadership in Khartoum. Encouraging the AU to take ownership,
initiative, and charge of the DPA Implementation Office and pushing
the other signatories to fully participate will remain a challenge
in the weeks ahead. END COMMENT.

HUME