C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 USUN NEW YORK 000092
IO AND AF FOR FRONT OFFICE; PLEASE PASS TO SE WILLIAMSON
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/31/2018
TAGS: AF PGOV PREL SU NSC UNSC KPKO MOPS
SUBJECT: UPDATE ON DARFUR PEACEKEEPING DEPLOYMENT FOR 31
REF: KHARTOUM 138
Classified By: Ambassador Alejandro Wolff for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)
Â¶1. (U) This is an action request. Please see paragraph 3, 6,
Â¶2. (C) SUMMARY: UN Integrated Operational Team (IOT) updated
USUN MSC on UNAMID deployments, SOFA negotiations, UK Chief
of Staff (COS) Persona Non Grata situation, Canadian APCs,
and Government of Sudan (GOS) attempt to deny US contractors
access to Darfur. The second UKUN-hosted donors meeting on
helicopters was disappointing and suggests that the
interagency process could usefully consider direct USG
support. END SUMMARY.
Â¶3. (C) UNAMID Deployment.
- According to the IOT, UNAMID is ready to absorb the advance
parties of the Egyptian engineers. The signal unit and heavy
transport company now scheduled to begin arriving in
February. Main bodies are scheduled to deploy mid-March.
The Egyptian infantry battalion is still on track to deploy
advance elements in March and complete deployment in April.
(NOTE: This information at least partially conflicts with Ref
A's report that UN officials in Sudan do not believe UNAMID
is fully prepared to accept the battalions. END NOTE)
- The IOT noted that the Ethiopian Pre-Deployment Visit (PDV)
is scheduled for 10-15 February. At a meeting last week in
Washington with DPKO Force Generation Services (FGS) and
Department of Field Support (DFS) reps, and U.S. State and
DOD personnel, the UN reps stressed that it would be useful
if the U.S. had representatives present for the PDVs to
ensure the U.S. was procuring the correct equipment.
(ACTION REQUEST: USUN recommends the Department request
proper procurement personnel accompany the UN on the PDV. END
Â¶4. (C) Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA).
- The IOT informed USUN that the SOFA was close to being
agreed upon. The UN Secretary General was to speak to
President Bashir at the AU Summit in Addid Ababa concerning
outstanding SOFA issues. The IOT reports that main issues
still pending in the SOFA are land grants and accoutrements
for UNAMID forces. IOT believes these issues will be cleared
up in Addis Ababa. (NOTE: Ref A includes a less optimistic
assessment of prospects for concluding SOFA negotiations.
Â¶5. (C) UK Chief of Staff (COS) Persona Non Grata.
-- The IOT informed USUN that the GOS sent a Note Verbal to
UNAMID Headquarters asking for UNAMID COS Brigadier General
Houston, a UK national, be removed from the country
immediately. The IOT said the Secretary General will discuss
this with President Bashir on the margins of the AU summit.
UKUN MilAd stressed that the UK prefers to keep this low key
and an issue between the UN and GOS for the time being. The
UN was pushing back on the GOS, claiming Gen Houston is part
of the UNAMID staff and was posted properly.
Â¶6. (C) Canadian APCS.
-- The IOT informed USUN the Canadian APC contract will run
out at the end of June 2008. IOT reported to us this week
that Senegal and South Africa will be able to provide their
own APCs after June 2008, a reversal of last week's IOT
report that Senegal and South Africa would continue to need
beyond June the Canadian APC's they are now using. IOT adds
this week that the three Rwandan battalions now utilizing
Canadian APCs would like to take over in June the Canadian
APC's now being used by Senegal and South Africa. UN
suggested Rwanda contact Canada bi-laterally to work on a way
to acquire the additional APCs.
(ACTION REQUEST: USUN recommends the Department request
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Embassy Ottawa approach the GOC to thank Canada for their
support and encourage Canada work with Rwanda to continue APC
support. END ACTION REQUEST.)
Â¶7. (C) Government of Sudan Wants US Contractors Out of Darfur.
--The IOT informed USUN that while Jane Holl-Lute was in
Darfur, Sudanese officials told her that they want all US
contractors out of Darfur. The UN did not receive this in
writing. UN IOT told USUN Military Staff Committee (MSC)
that the contracts and contractors from the U.S. companies
must stay in place until at least September 2008. In
September 2008 the UN hopes to put in place a
multi-functional logistics contract that will replace current
contracts and contractors. Max Kerley , Director of the
Logistics Support Division for UN/DFS told USUN MSC he fears
the GoS will continue to hinder the UNAMID effort through the
denial of visas and import licenses.
Â¶8. Follow Up UK Helicopter Meeting.
--On 30 January 2008 USUN MSC and USUN Washington
representatives attended the follow up meeting to the 16
January 2008 meeting. The intent of the follow up was to
bring all offers of helicopters back from country capitals
regardless of capabilities. The only offer that materialized
was an Ethiopian offer of 4 attack helicopters and two
utility helicopters. The Ethiopians conditioned this offer
by noting these helicopters are to be used only in the sector
where Ethiopian ground forces are deployed. Ethiopia also
indicated that their pilots would require some additional
training and the aircraft require some additional equipment.
The Thai representative attending the meeting indicated that
Thailand might be able to provide pilots for the mission, but
did not offer helicopters.
9.(C ) DPKO next steps on helicopters.
-- On 31 January, General Per Arne Five, acting UN Military
Adviser, told USUN MSC that his office is reviewing all
helicopter offers with a view to possibly redefining the type
of air frames acceptable for this mission. In particular, he
mentioned UH-1 Huey aircraft. His concern is that a TCC
might offer such aircraft and the UN might turn down the
offer because they do not meet the current UN requirements
for this mission. Should the internal review change current
requirements for helicopters, DPKO would then send out a new
request to potential TCCs for aircraft based on the revised
standards. General Five stated that no request would be sent
to the U.S. unless it was certain the U.S. could provide
(ACTION REQUEST: Due to the failure of the UK sponsored
helicopter meeting to generate necessary airframes and the
possibility that DPKO could send out a new request for
helicopters to potential TCCs, USUN requests that Department
coordinate interagency discussion of whether the U.S. would
entertain a helicopter request from DPKO. This discussion
should include how any U.S. offer could impact on the
likelihood of other TCCs making offers, the public relations
aspect of U.S. non-response to the expected UN solicitation,
or even the UN saying no to a U.S. offer of obsolete
airframes. END ACTION REQUEST.)