Indonesia continued to question the United States’ proposed resolution to ask the United Nations to impose sanctions on Zimbabwe despite intense lobbying by Washington.
Indonesian Foreign Affairs official Imron Cotan told a United States embassy official in Jakarta that his country wanted to see the situation in Zimbabwe resolved peacefully and was reluctant to take any action that might upset ongoing negotiations between the government and the opposition.
The US embassy official had told Cotan that there was no meaningful dialogue between the government of Zimbabwe and the Movement for Democratic Change.
A strong resolution by the United Nations would therefore press the Mugabe regime to negotiate seriously.
The US had upped the pressure after President Robert Mugabe had gone on with the elections despite the pulling out of MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai a week before the elections because of increased violence.
The embassy official said Tsvangirai had written to the United Nations secretary general Ban Ki-moon expressing support for the draft resolution.
Viewing cable 08JAKARTA1337, ZIMBABWE — ENGAGING INDONESIA ON UNSC RESOLUTION
OO RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM RUEHTRO
DE RUEHJA #1337 1930919
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 110919Z JUL 08
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9508
INFO RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHSB/AMEMBASSY HARARE IMMEDIATE 0020
RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS PRIORITY
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING PRIORITY 5196
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA PRIORITY 2749
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 2206
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON PRIORITY 2827
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 2793
RUEHBAD/AMCONSUL PERTH 0944
C O N F I D E N T I A L JAKARTA 001337
DEPT FOR EAP, EAP/MTS, EAP/MLS, AF, AF/S, IO, IO/UNP
(GOLDENBERG), IO/PSC (CLARK)
NSC FOR E.PHU
E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/08/2018
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE — ENGAGING INDONESIA ON UNSC RESOLUTION
REF: A. STATE 74375
¶B. JAKARTA 1322
Classified By: DCM John A. Heffern, reasons 1.4 (b+d)
¶1. (U) This message contains an action request. Please see
¶2. (C) SUMMARY: On July 11, the DCM delivered reftel
demarche to Secretary General Imron Cotan, the number-two
official at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DEPLU). Cotan
did not say how Indonesia would vote but repeated well-known
GOI views questioning the resolution. END SUMMARY.
¶3. (C) On July 11, the DCM delivered Ref A demarche urging
Indonesia to support the draft UNSCR on Zimbabwe to DEPLU
Secretary General Imron Cotan. The DCM underscored that
there had been no meaningful dialogue between the GOZ and the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). A strong resolution
could press the Mugabe regime to negotiate seriously. The
DCM noted that MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai had written to UN
SYG Ban Ki-moon on July 9 and expressed support for the draft
resolution. Cotan said that Indonesia wanted to see the
situation resolved peacefully and was reluctant to take any
action that might upset ongoing negotiations between the GOZ
and the opposition. He admitted, however, that he was
unaware of Tsvangiri’s letter to SYG Ban.
¶4. (C) Cotan also questioned whether the situation in
Zimbabwe was a threat to regional security and therefore an
appropriate target for a resolution under Chapter VII of the
UN Charter. The DCM responded that the situation in Zimbabwe
did constitute a threat to the security of the southern
Africa region. He noted that the violence directed at
opposition supporters had forced Zimbabweans to flee to
neighboring countries, several of which had expressed concern
about the destabilizing influence of the situation. He noted
that one of the UNSC’s two African members–Burkina Faso–had
expressed support for the resolution. Cotan said that the
GOI would consider USG views as it decided how to vote on the
¶5. (U) ACTION REQUEST: Cotan was unaware of the letter from
Tsvangirai to SYG Ban and was interested in the matter.
Mission recommends that the letter be raised directly with
the Indonesian Mission in New York. END ACTION REQUEST.