wikileaks ico  Home papers ico  Cables mirror and Afghan War Diary privacy policy Privacy
Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06PORTAUPRINCE1407
2006-08-02 19:01:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Port Au Prince
Cable title:  

HAITI: A/S SHANNON'S MEETING WITH MINUSTAH SRSG

Tags:   PGOV  PREL  PINS  EAID  HA 
pdf how-to read a cable
VZCZCXRO8600
OO RUEHQU
DE RUEHPU #1407/01 2141901
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 021901Z AUG 06
FM AMEMBASSY PORT AU PRINCE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3683
INFO RUEHZH/HAITI COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA PRIORITY 1163
RUEHSA/AMEMBASSY PRETORIA PRIORITY 1005
RUEHQU/AMCONSUL QUEBEC PRIORITY 0540
RUMIAAA/HQ USSOUTHCOM J2 MIAMI FL PRIORITY
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 0963
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 PORT AU PRINCE 001407 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CAR
S/CRS
SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD
STATE PASS TO USAID FOR LAC/CAR
INR/IAA (BEN-YEHUDA)
WHA/EX PLEASE PASS TO USOAS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/02/2016
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINS EAID HA
SUBJECT: HAITI: A/S SHANNON'S MEETING WITH MINUSTAH SRSG

REF: A. PAP 1393

B. PAP 1386

PORT AU PR 00001407 001.2 OF 003


Classified By: Ambassador Janet A. Sanderson for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d
).

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 PORT AU PRINCE 001407

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CAR
S/CRS
SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD
STATE PASS TO USAID FOR LAC/CAR
INR/IAA (BEN-YEHUDA)
WHA/EX PLEASE PASS TO USOAS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/02/2016
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINS EAID HA
SUBJECT: HAITI: A/S SHANNON'S MEETING WITH MINUSTAH SRSG

REF: A. PAP 1393

B. PAP 1386

PORT AU PR 00001407 001.2 OF 003


Classified By: Ambassador Janet A. Sanderson for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d
).


1. (C) Summary: UN Special Representative of the Secretary
General (SRSG) Edmond Mulet warned A/S Shannon on July 25
that provocations by former president Aristide and his
supporters could erode Haiti's post-electoral stability.
Mulet said that President Preval's public silence about
security problems and inability to decide on a strategy have
made it difficult for MINUSTAH to take concrete measures to
improve security. Over the long term, Mulet feared Latin
troop-contributors' military commitment to Haiti could wane,
and he encouraged the U.S. to weigh-in with them in favor of
a continued presence. Mulet previewed the UNSYG's report on
Haiti, saying it would call for a one-year extension of the
mandate and a more active MINUSTAH role on justice and
security issues. To improve the security situation, Mulet
asked the U.S. to expand its drug interdiction efforts in
Haiti and ease the U.S. embargo on weapons and ammunition for
the Haitian National Police and UN forces. A/S Shannon
assured Mulet of strong USG support for MINUSTAH and our
eagerness to see its stabilization mission succeed. End
Summary.


2. (U) Assistant Secretary Thomas Shannon and Ambassador
Sanderson, along with A/DCM and WHA/CAR Director Brian
Nichols, met for an hour-long conversation with MINUSTAH SRSG
Edmond Mulet, on the margins of the July 25 Haiti Donors'
Conference.

GOH does not Control Provinces
- - - - - - - - - -


3. (C) Mulet described the difficulties facing MINUSTAH and
the Haitian government. He rued the "complete lack of the
state" in Haiti, especially outside the capital, where the
GOH has been unable to enforce the rule of law. For example,

he explained that leaders in the northern town of Ouanaminthe
have created their own criminal fiefdom. As a result, drug
trafficking has become an increasingly alarming problem,
which is difficult to combat, in part because of the drug
ties within the Haitian Government. In this connection, he
mentioned Senate leader Joseph Lambert and Security
Commission Chair Youri Latortue -- describing the latter as a
"drug dealer." Mulet continued that the judicial system
could not impose the rule of law, because the Haitian
National Police (HNP) lacked investigation skills and the few
judges who have not been corrupted feared ruling against
drug-related criminals. Without the basic rule of law,
MINUSTAH's progress and development work in Haiti have been
severely limited.

Aristide Movement Must be Stopped
- - - - - - - - - -


4. (C) Mulet also worried that former president Jean Bertrand
Aristide's influence could continue to disrupt government and
UN progress in Haiti. Mulet claimed Aristide has sent agents
to Haiti to rally support for his return. These instigators
have stoked public fear and warned of a new round of violence
in Port-au-Prince. Mulet said that at his request, on the
margins of last month's African Union summit, UNSYG Annan had
urged South African President Mbeki to ensure that Aristide
remained in South Africa. Mbeki reportedly replied that
Aristide's presence cost the Mbeki government financially
through security and housing expenses and prompted
significant political criticism from the opposition. Judging
Aristide's continued tenure in South Africa uncertain, Mulet
urged U.S. legal action against Aristide to prevent the
former president from gaining more traction with the Haitian
population and returning to Haiti.

GOH Unsure on Security
- - - - - - - - - -


5. (C) Mulet said he meets nearly daily with Preval and Prime
Minister Jacques Edouard Alexis on the situation in Haiti.
Preval frequently has a clear plan of action that he wants
MINUSTAH to pursue. However, when MINUSTAH develops
operational plans based on Preval's wishes, the President
then changes his mind and proposes an entirely different
approach. Preval's indecision has left MINUSTAH planners and
troops unable to develop a coordinated strategy with the GOH
in response to the security situation. Publicly, Preval has
accompanied his indecision by complete silence, which is
working to erode his government's credibility. Mulet said
that when he encouraged Preval to speak out, the President
replied that "silence is my best ally."

Renewed Mandate to Focus on Rule of Law
- - - - - - - - - -


6. (C) Mulet previewed the UNSYG's report on Haiti, stating
that the report would recommend that the
Security Council extend MINUSTAH's mandate for one-year and
focus its efforts towards security and the rule of law. He
continued that he had initially sought an "executive
mandate," with greater powers under Chapter VII, the UNSYG
had encouraged him to seek a more focused force configuration
within the current mandate. To achieve that, Mulet said
MINUSTAH planned to add anti-kidnapping experts, Honduran
SWAT units, and Peruvian special forces that will allow it to
take on gangs and crime directly. Mulet said increased
MINUSTAH effectiveness in support of democratic institutions
and economic development will hinge on the ability of the
donor countries to coordinate their assistance programs. He
cited the HNP as an example of the international community's
failure to work in concert. Each donor country has pushed
its own policing model and donor efforts contradicted one
another. Mulet suggested that police donors offer a seminar
for the GOH that explains the various policing models and
lets the GOH choose. He regretted that the HNP reform plan
has been "sitting on the Prime Minister's desk" for about one
month, awaiting final signature.

Elections Pose Challenge
- - - - - - - - - -


7. (C) In response to A/S Shannon's query, Mulet said that
he opposed holding municipal and legislative elections later
this fall. Under the constitution, Haiti must hold up to 11
elections during Preval's term, including runoffs. For
example, next year, one-third of the Senate will face
election. This will entail a nation-wide vote that will cost
an estimated USD 30 million. Mulet added that election of
municipal and local governments will lead to a major
financial burden on the government, which lacks the
resources to sustain such a heavy administrative structure.
Mulet has raised these concerns with Preval and suggested
that the government amend the constitution to streamline
these processes. But, Preval rejected delaying local
elections, stressing the importance of municipal and local
government to development of the judiciary and electoral
council under Haitian law. Preval reportedly did not want to
fast track changes in the constitution. Due to a complicated
amendment formula, it would take some nine years to effect
constitutional change, under the existing rules.

MINUSTAH Could Lose Steam Over Long Run
- - - - - - - - - -


8. (C) Over the long-term, Mulet worried that fatigue from
MINUSTAH's military and police contributors as well as
Venezuela's possible election to the Security Council could
jeopardize MINUSTAH's mandate. Mulet explained that though
Argentina is committed through February of 2007, it has
considered lowering its troop commitment to Haiti.
Meanwhile, Chile has already recuperated three helicopters
from MINUSTAH, which has significantly limited MINUSTAH's
mobility. Mulet reported that the seven South American troop
contributors are planning a meeting of Ministers of Foreign
Affairs and Defense in Buenos Aires on August 4 to discuss
troop levels and the MINUSTAH mandate. In addition, he
worried that Venezuela's possible election to the Security
Council could jeopardize Haiti's Chapter VII status. Mulet
said that the Venezuelan ambassador to Haiti had told him
that in Caracas' view Haiti does not require a Chapter VII
mission.

Possible U.S. Roles
- - - - - - - - - -


9. (C) Mulet asked for U.S. assistance in a number of areas
to help bolster the UN's effort in Haiti. He said that
increased U.S. anti-drug efforts south of Hispaniola could
disrupt the drug trade and help Haitian authorities regain
control in the provinces. He also asked that the USG carve
out exceptions for the UN and HNP in its arms embargo against
Haiti. While he said that some of the UN military contingents
brought their own ammunition with them, many of them need to
re-supply from the U.S. Finally, he applauded U.S. efforts
to train South American peacekeepers, which he said directly
contributed to continued interest by countries such as
Bolivia to contribute military contingents to Haiti. A/S
Shannon assured Mulet of strong USG support for MINUSTAH and
its stabilization role. Shannon offered -- and subsequently
followed through (reftels A and B) -- to press Preval and
Prime Minister Alexis to
take more forceful action on security issues, in close
coordination with MINUSTAH. Shannon and Mulet agreed that,
if MINUSTAH fails to stabilize Haiti during this period of
opportunity, then it is likely the international community
will have to return to Haiti with a larger and more costly
operation in the future.

Comment
- - - -


10. (C) Mulet is an articulate and focused SRSG who has a
good grasp of the challenges facing his mission despite being
in his job only seven weeks. His frustration with Preval's
inaction and indecision is evident. Mulet clearly wants
MINUSTAH to take a more assertive approach to security than
his predecessor and should enjoy greater political leeway in
Latin capitals to do so in support of a democratically
elected government.
SANDERSON