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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
08USUNNEWYORK227 2008-03-12 22:36:00 CONFIDENTIAL USUN New York
Cable title:  

UN DPKO A/SYG MULET: UNAMID NOT MAKING PROGRESS IN

Tags:   PGOV PHUM PREL SU MOPS UNSC 
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E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/23/2018
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREL SU MOPS UNSC
SUBJECT: UN DPKO A/SYG MULET: UNAMID NOT MAKING PROGRESS IN
DARFUR


Classified By: Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad for Reasons 1.4 B/D.



1. (U) SUMMARY: Assistant Secretary General Edmond Mulet told
the Security Council in a March 11 briefing that the UN has
not been able to make significant progress on any of the
three tracks of the Darfur peace process. Mulet reported
that the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) had launched a
large-scale assault on rebel controlled towns in western
Darfur in late February. Subsequent Security Council
discussion focused on the need to look for a way forward
given that the current "strategy" to end the Darfur conflict
is not working. END SUMMARY.



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


Mulet: No Progress on Peace Process,
Deployment, Humanitarian Tracks


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





2. (U) During an initial open briefing to the Security
Council and interested delegations on March 11, Assistant
Secretary General Edmond Mulet said that the UN has not been

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able to make significant progress on the political, security
or humanitarian tracks of the Darfur peace process. Mulet
reported a significant deterioration in security conditions
in west Darfur during the last several weeks. He said the
Sudanese Armed Forces have returned to coordinated attacks
using janjaweed militias, air power and ground forces during
recent attacks on the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM)
strongholds in Jebel Moon, Sirba and Suleia. Mulet commented
that these attacks showed that the Government of the Sudan is
still "committed to seeking a military solution" and that the
heightened violence has caused numerous civilians deaths and
tens of thousands of new displacements.



3. (U) Regarding the political process, Mulet noted that the
most powerful political/rebel leaders, the JEM-Khalil Ibrahim
and the SLA-Abdul Wahid, remained outside the political
process. He said that, despite the best effort of the UN and
AU Special Envoys, little progress had been made towards
establishing a unified rebel position or joint negotiating
team, leaving little possibility that substantive
negotiations would begin soon. Mulet said the intense
political divisions within the Government of National Unity
and the ongoing SAF attacks gave the rebels reason to
question Khartoum's readiness for substantive talks.



4. (U) In regard to UNAMID deployment, Mulet highlighted
several areas of ongoing difficulties in efforts to fully
deploy an effective peacekeeping force: insecurity,
inconsistent levels of cooperation from the GOS, logistical
constraints, and force shortfalls. As of March 10, Mulet
said UNAMID's total strength was 9,178 uniformed personnel,
nearly all of whom were originally part of AMIS (NOTE: The UN
has only deployed 294 additional peacekeepers since the
December 31 Transfer of Authority. END NOTE.) Mulet said it
would be "several months" before UNAMID has significantly
improved military capabilities on the ground. He said "it is
absolutely critical that incoming troops be self-sustaining."
Mulet noted the ongoing equipment delays, reporting that it
took the UN seven weeks to move equipment for the Chinese and
Bangladeshi units from Port Sudan to Darfur because of
bureaucratic hindrances by the Sudanese.



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


UNSC Discussion
Focused on Solutions


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





5. (U) Following A/SYG Mulet's downbeat briefing on the
current situation in Darfur, Security Council delegations
reconvened for closed consultations. UKUN AMB John Sawers
commented that Mulet's briefing demonstrated that "the
current international strategy is not delivering the results
we intended" and the Security Council needed to acknowledge
that fact and begin discussions on the way forward. Sawers
proposed that interested delegations take up "informal
discussions" focused on what can be done to move forward on
resolving the Darfur crisis. AMB Khalilzad said that
"several indicators demonstrate that the situation in Darfur
is headed in the wrong direction" and the Security Council
needed to begin a more serious dialogue on how to improve the
situation. France, South Africa, Belgium, Costa Rica,
Burkina Faso and Croatia concurred on the need for a
strategic dialogue on Darfur.



6. (U) Chinese PermRep Wang and Libyan PermRep Ettalhi

USUN NEW Y 00000227 002 OF 002


concurred that the latest SYG report on UNAMID deployment was
discouraging, but emphasized that progress had also been made
recently in finalizing the Status of Forces Agreement and
some associated issues with the deployment. Wang
acknowledged that the situation was "frustrating" and noted
that the PRC has expressed its concern to the GOS. Wang
argued that enhanced engagement with the Sudanese leadership
was the best way to improve the situation on the ground and
emphasized that progress on the humanitarian and security
tracks was dependent on first establishing a meaningful
political process and that the rebel leaders bore the primary
responsibility for the lack of progress in that area.
Russian PermRep Churkin said that any "comparative analysis"
of rebel and government responsibility indicated that both
sides shared blame, but that the rebels in particular had
taken "provocative actions." Churkin noted that "some
delegations" had spoken in favor of sanctions in the past,
but have largely been "silent on taking action" against rebel
leaders. Churkin argued that if the Security Council was
sincerely interested in making progress in Darfur than it
would seriously consider sanctioning rebel leaders who
remained outside the political process.



7. (C) Churkin complained that "certain members of the
Security Council" had established the Friends of UNAMID Group
without consulting adequately with other delegations or
establishing a reporting relationship with the Security
Council, "No one has told the Russian delegation anything
about this initiative." UKUN AMB Sawers added that the UK was
not consulted either. (COMMENT: The Friends Group is a
coordination body for major donors to UNAMID. Since Russia
is not a major donor, it has not been included for this
reason. The UK participated actively in the planning for the
first meeting and UK Special Envoy Michael O'Neill traveled
to New York to participate in the inaugural session. It was
not clear to USUN why AMB Sawers was not fully aware of this
initiative. END COMMENT.)

KHALILZAD