Viewing cable 01VATICAN6604
Title: SPECIAL ENVOY DANFORTH DISCUSSES BACK-

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
01VATICAN66042001-12-27 16:05:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Vatican
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 VATICAN 006604 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (MENNUTI), AF/E (RAAD) 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/27/06 
TAGS: PREL PHUM SU PHUM SU VT VTPREL
SUBJECT: SPECIAL ENVOY DANFORTH DISCUSSES BACK- 
CHANNEL TALKS WITH SANT'EGIDIO, VATICAN FM 
 
REF: VATICAN 5845 
 
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CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR JIM NICHOLSON, REASON E.O. 
12958 1.5(B,D). 
 
¶1.  (C)  SUMMARY: S/E DANFORTH AND DELEGATION 
DISCUSSED STRATEGIES FOR MOVING FORWARD SUDAN PEACE 
PROCESS 12/20 WITH SANT'EGIDIO COMMUNITY AFRICA 
SPECIALISTS FABIO RICCARDI AND DON MATTEO ZUPPI. 
RICCARDI PROPOSED CONFIDENTIAL TALKS BETWEEN 
TRUSTED SENIOR GOS AND SPLM REPRESENTATIVES AT A 
LOCATION OUT OF THE LIMELIGHT, PERHAPS AT 
SANT'EGIDIO'S HEADQUARTERS.  DANFORTH AND GROUP 
TOOK SUGGESTION ON BOARD WITHOUT MAKING ANY 
COMMITMENTS. LATER MEETING WITH VATICAN FM TAURAN, 
S/E BRIEFED ON HIS SUDAN MISSION, AND TAURAN 
EXPLAINED VATICAN VIEW OF SUDAN AS THREAT TO 
CHRISTIANITY IN AFRICA.  END SUMMARY. 
¶2.  (C)  S/E DANFORTH, ACCOMPANIED BY AMBASSADOR 
ROBERT OAKLEY, AF/E JEFF MILLINGTON AND SUDAN DESK 
OFFICER RAAD VISITED SANT'EGIDIO HEADQUARTERS IN 
ROME 12/20 ACCOMPANIED BY AMBASSADOR NICHOLSON AND 
EMBASSY VATICAN OFFICERS.  S/E DANFORTH BRIEFED THE 
SANT'EGIDIO REPS ON HIS RECENT VISIT TO THE REGION, 
UNDERSCORING THE FOUR POINTS HE HAD PROPOSED AS 
CONFIDENCE BUILDING MEASURES.  HE SAID HE WAS 
STRUCK THAT PEOPLE IN THE GOS ARE ALMOST 
PATHOLOGICALLY DISHONEST.  AS IN REFTEL, 
SANT'EGIDIO'S SUDAN SPECIALIST, FABIO RICCARDI, 
PRESENTED HIS IDEA OF A CONFIDENTIAL OFF-SITE 
MEDIATION TO MOVE THE SUDAN PEACE PROCESS FORWARD. 
 
¶3.  (C)  RICCARDI AGREED WITH S/E DANFORTH THAT THE 
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GOS TOO OFTEN WILL MAKE ASSURANCES THAT IT HAS NO 
INTENTION OF KEEPING.  HE SAID THAT THE U.S. NOW 
HAS STRONG CARDS, HOWEVER, BECAUSE THE GOS WISHES 
AFTER SEPTEMBER 11 TO PROVE IT'S ANTI-TERRORIST 
BONAFIDES AND, MOREOVER, USE ITS PROSPECTIVE OIL 
WEALTH TO BRING THE COUNTRY MORE FULLY INTO THE 
COMMUNITY OF NATIONS.  THEY WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO DO 
THAT SO LONG AS THEY HAVE AN ACTIVE INSURGENCY TO 
WHICH THEY REACT BY BOMBING CIVILIANS.  RICCARDI 
SAID GARANG IS PERPETUATING THE CONFLICT BY 
SUSTAINING MILITARY PRESSURE ON THE GOS.  HE 
WONDERED WHETHER GARANG HAS IT IN HIMSELF TO STOP 
THE FIGHTING.  HE SHARED MILLINGTON'S FEAR THAT 
GARANG, LIVING COMFORTABLY OUTSIDE OF SUDAN, MAY BE 
HAPPY TO SEE THE FIGHTING CONTINUE INDEFINITELY. 
 
¶4.  (C)  RICCARDI CONTINUED THAT DURING HIS RECENT 
KHARTOUM VISIT HE HAD DISCUSSED HIS IDEA OF DIRECT 
AND CONFIDENTIAL TALKS AT SANT'EGIDIO'S ROME 
HEADQUARTERS WITH SENIOR MEMBERS OF THE GOS, WHO 
ENDORSED IT IN PRINCIPAL.   HE SOUGHT USG HELP TO 
PERSUADE SPLM LEADER GARANG TO ACCEPT THE PROPOSAL. 
IN RESPONSE TO MILLINGTON'S CONCERN THAT THE 
PARTIES MIGHT USE SUCH A PROCESS TO CUT A DEAL 
BETWEEN THEMSELVES THAT WOULDN'T RESPECT THE 
PRINCIPLES SUCH AS RELIGIOUS FREEDOM INHERENT IN 
IGAD, RICCARDI SAID THAT THAT IS WHY THERE WAS NEED 
FOR A MEDIATOR.  SANT'EGIDIO COULD BE COUNTED ON TO 
ENSURE AT THE RIGHT MOMENT THAT THOSE PRINCIPLES 
ARE MADE PART OF THE MEDIATION.  IN RESPONSE TO S/E 
DANFORTH'S QUERY, RICCARDI CLARIFIED THAT HE WAS 
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PROPOSING BACK-CHANNEL TALKS TOWARDS A POLITICAL 
ARRANGEMENT FOR GARANG AND THE SPLM/SPLA TO HAVE A 
ROLE IN A POST-CONFLICT GOS. 
 
¶5.  (C)  DON MATTEO INTERJECTED THAT WHAT WAS 
NEEDED WAS A FRAMEWORK BOTH TO ENGAGE GARANG AND TO 
PROTECT HIM FROM BECOMING CO-OPTED BY THE GOS 
WITHOUT OBTAINING ANY REAL FREEDOMS FOR HIS PEOPLE. 
IGAD COULD BE THE FRAMEWORK FOR A FINAL AGREEMENT, 
BUT A MEDIATED CONFIDENTIAL NEGOTIATION WOULD BE 
NECESSARY TO ELICIT CONCRETE ELEMENTS OF THE 
COMPROMISE BETWEEN THE WARRING SIDES.  THE TALKS 
SHOULD NOT BE BETWEEN AL-BASHIR AND GARANG, BUT 
BETWEEN TRUSTED SENIOR LIEUTENANTS -- ASSUMING WE 
CAN OVERCOME GARANG'S MISTRUST OF HIS LIEUTENANTS. 
WE SHOULDN'T EXPECT QUICK RESULTS EITHER; THE 
MOZAMBIQUE TALKS WENT ON FOR OVER TWO YEARS, THE 
FIRST YEAR OF WHICH WAS IMPORTANT FOR THE TWO SIDES 
TO BEGIN TO BUILD TRUST. 
 
¶6.  (C) RICCARDI THOUGHT THAT GARANG HIMSELF COULD 
PARTICIPATE IF, IN THE END, NOBODY ELSE COULD BE 
IDENTIFIED TO NEGOTIATE FOR THE SPLM.  RICCARDI 
SAID THAT FOR THIS FORMULA TO WORK, GARANG MUST BE 
PERSUADED THAT MOVING FORWARD DOESN'T THREATEN HIM. 
RICCARDI BELIEVED THAT THE U.S. HAS STRONG 
INFLUENCE OVER GARANG; IF THE USG URGED HIM TO 
 
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                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ2448 
 
PAGE 01        VATICA  06604  02 OF 02  271651Z 
ACTION EUR-00 
 
INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    AF-00    AMAD-00  ACQ-00   CIAE-00  DODE-00 
      DS-00    FBIE-00  VC-00    TEDE-00  INR-00   VCE-00   DCP-01 
      NSAE-00  CAEX-01  EPAE-00  SNIS-00  NISC-00  DSCC-00  DRL-02 
      SAS-00     /004W 
                  ------------------50C4FA  271802Z /38 
R 271605Z DEC 01 
FM AMEMBASSY VATICAN 
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0000 
INFO IGAD COLLECTIVE 
 
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 VATICAN 006604 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (MENNUTI), AF/E (RAAD) 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/27/06 
TAGS: PREL PHUM SU PHUM SU VT VTPREL
SUBJECT: SPECIAL ENVOY DANFORTH DISCUSSES BACK- 
CHANNEL TALKS WITH SANT'EGIDIO, VATICAN FM 
 
ATTEND OR SEND A REPRESENTATIVE TO AN OFF-SITE 
MEDIATION, GARANG WOULDQ SANT'EGIDIO HAD ALREADY 
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PAGE 02        VATICA  06604  02 OF 02  271651Z 
ASKED HIM BUT HE HADN'T RESPONDED. 
 
¶7. (C)  S/E DANFORTH THANKED RICCARDI FOR HIS VIEWS 
AND PROMISED TO KEEP THEM IN MIND AS HE DISCUSSED 
THE PEACE PROCESS WITH OTHER PLAYERS.  HE 
UNDERSCORED THAT THE USG WAS NOT IN A POSITION TO 
SUPPORT ANOTHER PEACE INITIATIVE BECAUSE A 
PROLIFERATION OF INITIATIVES WOULD PROVIDE AN 
IRRESISTIBLE TEMPTATION FOR THE PARTIES TO GO 
"INITIATIVE SHOPPING" WITHOUT MOVING TOWARDS PEACE. 
NEVERTHELESS, RICCARDI HAD SOME INTERESTING IDEAS 
THAT COULD WELL BE INCORPORATED IF CONDITIONS 
ALLOWED. 
 
¶8. (C)  SUBSEQUENTLY S/E DANFORTH BRIEFED VATICAN 
FM ON HIS RECENT VISIT TO THE REGION AND EFFORTS TO 
PROMOTE PEACE.  TAURAN, WHO IS NORMALLY THE 
DEFINITION OF TACITURNITY, WAS MOST ANIMATED IN 
AGREEING WITH DANFORTH ON THE PROBLEM OF PINNING 
GOS INTERLOCUTORS TO A TRUTHFUL STATEMENT.  TAURAN 
SAID THE GOS WAS NOT TO BE TRUSTED -- IT THREATENED 
FREEDOM OF RELIGION AND HUMAN RIGHTS.  MOREOVER, HE 
IMPLIED, THE CONFLICT IN SUDAN WAS EMBLEMATIC OF A 
BROADER STRUGGLE BETWEEN ISLAM AND CHRISTIANITY 
ACROSS THE AFRICAN CONTINENT.  (NOTE: A SIMILAR 
VIEW WAS EXPRESSED TO AMBASSADOR EARLIER IN THE 
WEEK, DURING A VISIT WITH CARDINAL SEPE, PRESIDENT 
OF THE PONTIFICAL COUNCIL FOR THE PROPAGATION OF 
THE FAITH -- THE VATICAN'S MISSIONARY 
ORGANIZATION). 
 
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¶9.  (U) S/E DANFORTH DID NOT CLEAR THIS MESSAGE. 
NICHOLSON 
 
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> 
 

 2001VATICA06604 - Classification: CONFIDENTIAL