C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 DOHA 000854
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/13/2018
TAGS: PREL PHUM QA SU
SUBJECT: QATAR OUTLINES DARFUR STRATEGY TO SE WILLIAMSON
REF: A. PARIS 2251
B. DOHA 839
Classified By: Ambassador Joseph E. LeBaron, for reasons 1.4 (b, d).
(C) KEY POINTS:
-- Senior Qatar officials described for the Special Envoy the
sequential elements of Qatar's Darfur strategy:
First, meetings between MFA State Minister al-Mahmoud with
UN-AU Mediator Bassole to agree on a common diplomatic
strategy on Darfur (in Doha, late November/early December)
Second, a ministerial meeting of the 12-member African-Arab
steering committee co-chaired by Qatar's Prime Minister, the
Arab League Secretary-General, and the African Union's Jean
Ping. (Doha, mid-December)
Third, a Darfur peace conference that brings together
representatives of the Government of Sudan, rebel groups, and
others. However, no conference will be held if it will not
lead to concrete action on the ground in Darfur. (Doha,
-- At the Darfur conference, Qatar would follow the same
pattern as during the Lebanese mediation: bring the parties
to a hotel in Doha; lock down the hotel; have an opening
ceremony; establish committees and exercise shuttle diplomacy
to bridge the gaps; and ultimately bring the parties to the
same table when it would be productive to do so.
-- Meanwhile, Qatar's Amir, Prime Minister, and MFA State
Minister are deeply engaged in contacts with Sudanese
President Bashir, neighboring states such as Libya and Egypt,
and involved European states, such as France and the U.K.
-- The Prime Minister alluded to financial pressure Qatar was
putting on Bashir, but he stopped short of provided details.
He suggested, too, that Qatar was looking at the money flows
to Bashir, and how to influence them.
-- Ambassador Williamson said Qatar could be more successful
than the P-3 in moving President Bashir to action, but that
success would be contingent on the rebels eventually stepping
up as well. It will be delicate moving them from their
comfort zone, but this is an area where the P-3 can help.
-- Ambassador Williamson noted that the recent actions by the
ICC may make the Government of Sudan more willing to look
seriously now at necessary steps toward a peace process:
power-sharing, compensation, and some autonomy for the
rebels. He encouraged Al-Mahmoud to be firm, realistic, and
direct with the Sudanese Government. Qatar's financial
resources would be of help in securing a deal.
-- Presidential Special Envoy Williamson's visit was
extremely effective. Ambassador Williamson established key
working relationships with the Qataris, who were candid and
-- The Qataris made it clear that they were prepared to work
closely and cooperatively with the USG, realizing that USG
support and involvement was critical to the success of their
-- The Prime Minister's comments about financing provide a
brief glimpse into Qatari diplomacy. The Al Thani ruling
family is accountable to virtually no one on its financial
ties to regional states and leaders. That gives the Al Thani
leadership great latitude in using money as a key instrument
End Key Points and Comments.