|09NDJAMENA149||2009-05-05 13:38:00||UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY||Embassy Ndjamena|
VZCZCXRO8648 OO RUEHGI RUEHMA RUEHROV DE RUEHNJ #0149 1251338 ZNR UUUUU ZZH O 051338Z MAY 09 ZDK FOR PRETORIA ALL OTHER DISREGARD FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6886 INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE PRIORITY RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA PRIORITY 0214 RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI PRIORITY 0604 RUEHBZ/AMEMBASSY BRAZZAVILLE PRIORITY 0042 RUEHDO/AMEMBASSY DOHA PRIORITY 0017 RHMFISS/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE PRIORITY
UNCLAS NDJAMENA 000149
1. (SBU) CHAD REBELS CROSS THE BORDER: We believe that
three or perhaps four columns of Chad rebels have entered
southeastern Chad since yesterday, and are likely strung out
along the border from points SE of Abeche to the
CAR/Sudan/Chad tri-border area, north and south of Goz Beida
town. Total rebel forces may number up to 2,000 fighters in
up to 200 vehicles. Only one of the columns appears to be
moving westward, the others remaining in static positions
just inside the border.
2. (SBU) CHAD MILITARY REACTION: Chadian National Army
(ANT) units have deployed to defensive positions around Goz
Beida, from which most civilian government officials and
police have apparently disappeared. (This is a traditional
Chadian bureaucratic practice when trouble arises.) The ANT
has not taken ground offensive action against the rebels.
The ANT has moved air assets -- two SU-25 Frogfoot close air
support aircraft and one MI-24 HIND attack helicopter to
Abeche from N'Djamena.
3. (SBU) MINURCAT VIEW: MINURCAT SRSG Victor Angelo told
the Ambassador May 5 that he believes the rebels are trying
to make two "political" points: That despite the recent
Chad-Sudan peace accord in Doha, "we rebels still exist," and
that "we rebels can act independent of Khartoum's wishes."
Angelo departed mid-morning May 5 to Abeche, with the
intention of visiting Goz Beida. He promised to brief the
diplomatic corps on his return.
4. (SBU) CAPITAL CALM: The capital was calm May 5. Many
senior GOC military leaders participated in a May 5 morning
ceremony to install the new Chairman of Defense Staff and did
not betray concern or anxiety regarding the developing
situation in the East. The GOC issued May 4 a communique
accusing Sudan of duplicity, stating that "the ink was not
yet dry" on a bilateral peace accord in Doha when the
Sudanese government launched Chad rebels -- its clients --
5. (SBU) ETERNAL VIGILANCE: We and all our partners, both
civilian and military, are watching this situation carefully.
The trick here is to separate fact from the fiction
generated by a powerful rumor mill of often surprising
creativity. We will report appropriately on the progress of
the situation in eastern Chad. We are reviewing emergency
action procedures as a prudent precaution.
6. (U) Minimize considered.