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Kikwete said only Mbeki could talk to Mugabe

Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete told United States Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer that South African President Thabo Mbeki no longer had a role to play in Zimbabwe but at the same time admitted that none of the Southern African Development Community leaders except Mbeki could talk to Mugabe.

Kikwete said Mbeki’s role as facilitator was completed. He was just trying to use the mediation card to have a voice as he was facing his own domestic woes at home.

The Tanzanian President, however, also stated that it was extremely difficult for any SADC leader except Mbeki to talk to Mugabe.

He said Mugabe had even labelled him as a puppet of the United States and Britain.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 08DARESSALAAM471, A/S FRAZER DISCUSSES ZIMBABWE, SUDAN, AU ISSUES

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

08DARESSALAAM471

2008-07-29 16:27

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Dar Es Salaam

VZCZCXRO8743

PP RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN RUEHROV

DE RUEHDR #0471/01 2111627

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

P 291627Z JUL 08

FM AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7736

INFO RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA PRIORITY 3329

RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS PRIORITY 1425

RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM PRIORITY 0095

RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 0402

RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 0312

RUEHDS/USMISSION USAU ADDIS ABABA PRIORITY

RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 04 DAR ES SALAAM 000471

 

SIPDIS

 

DEPT AF/E FOR JLIDDLE, AF/RSA FOR MBITTRICK

ALSO FOR AF/S

ADDIS ABABA FOR AU MISSION

LONDON, PARIS, BRUSSELS FOR AFRICA WATCHERS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/29/2018

TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM ZI AU TZ

SUBJECT: A/S FRAZER DISCUSSES ZIMBABWE, SUDAN, AU ISSUES

WITH TANZANIAN PRESIDENT KIKWETE

 

Classified By: A/S for African Affairs J. E. Frazer for

reasons 1.4 (b,d).

 

SUMMARY

——–

1. (C) On the margins of the Leon H. Sullivan Foundation

conference in Arusha, Tanzania on June 3, Assistant Secretary

for African Affairs, Jendayi Frazer, discussed with

Tanzania’s President Jakaya Kikwete about preparations

for the June 27 runoff elections in Zimbabwe, the LRA in

Uganda, the situation in Abyei, Darfur, and Djibouti.

Kikwete expressed his concerns about violence against the

Zimbabwe opposition party members and that SADC member

state leaders are divided over the question of election

monitors. A/S Frazer emphasized that the African Union must

step up both with monitors for Zimbabwe and public statements

about the runoff. She asked Kikwete to pass a message to

President Bashir of Sudan that the situation in Abyei has to

be brought under control. End summary.

 

Zimbabwe

———

2. (C) President Kikwete told A/S Frazer he remained

extremely worried about the continuing violence in Zimbabwe

despite appeals to President Mugabe from leaders of nearly

all SADC member states. Tanzania had given Mugabe a strong

message at the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) forum

in Rome that the violence must stop. Kikwete scoffed at

Mugabe’s claim that the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)

supporters were the perpetrators of the recent

violence: “That is ridiculous; the MDC were arrested in their

offices and at a hotel, not in the act of beating people.”

A/S Frazer noted that Angola’s President dos Santos had also

promised also to tell Mugabe the violence

must stop.

 

3. (C) Kikwete said a SADC meeting chaired by Zambia’s

President Mwanawasa to discuss election monitors during the

Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD)

in late May had ended in near chaos. “It was a very rough

meeting; I arrived late and there was a shouting match

ongoing between Chairman Mwanawasa and President Mbeki,” he

said. Kikwete confided that at the gathering, the SADC

leaders were unable to agree on when and how election

monitors should be deployed to Zimbabwe. A/S Frazer

emphasized the need to quickly get a confirmed response on

monitors from the SADC secretariat: “Time is running out. If

SADC is not going to send monitors, then the African Union

(AU) has to send as many monitors as possible; there remains

only three weeks until the June 27 elections,” she stressed.

 

ZEC is Divided

————–

4. (C) In Kikwete’s view, MDC’s Morgan Tsvangirai should

concentrate on how to maintain the resolve of the opposition

and encourage sustainable voter turnout. Kikwete saw some

hope in the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). He said

although accused of being corrupt, the ZEC did complete the

recount in 33 constituencies, and overall, Tsvangirai gained

20,000 votes. However, Kikwete recognizes without full

support from election monitors, the Electoral Commission

would be too weak. A/S Frazer replied she viewed the

Zimbabwe Electoral Commission as divided and not reliable:

the Chair is pro-Mugabe, although other members are more

independent.

 

5. (C) Kikwete believed that public intimidation is not

having the effect ZANU anticipated, despite statements from

Mugabe such as soldiers who are not prepared to fight for a

Mugabe victory should leave the army now. In his view,

Mugabe’s heavy-handed maneuvers could backfire. Kikwete

thought SADC’s Chair, President Mwanawasa, is becoming more

effective, speaking out frankly and even being criticized in

the Zimbabwe press. His concern was that no one in SADC

other than President Mbeki can talk to Mugabe. Kikwete noted

Tanzania is being criticized by Mugabe as the “puppet” of the

U.S. and the British. “We can smooth that one over, though,”

he said. “Most importantly we must assure there is protection

 

DAR ES SAL 00000471 002 OF 004

 

 

for Tsvangirai.”

 

Time Before Runoff is Short

—————————

6. (C) A/S Frazer expressed outrage that on June 1, Mugabe’s

forces had arrested Arthur Mutambara, a Deputy in the MDC.

“This move crossed a line. Mugabe is testing our resolve and

we must have a strong response,” she stressed. A/S Frazer

said the U.S. supports the deployment of as many

monitors as possible since Mugabe is obviously determined to

use every means possible to stay in power. She added that

the wife of Mugabe’s recent public statement confirmed his

intention. Thus, the AU needs to take a public stand

and speak out that the runoff elections must be fully

monitored to be considered free and fair.

 

7. (C) A/S Frazer was adamant that unless monitors are in

place throughout Zimbabwe, including rural areas, there is a

high risk someone could be hurt or worse, if not Tsvangirai

then Arthur Mutambara. She told Kikwete that we

share his concern for Tsvangirai’s safety to be assured with

VIP protection, as was done in Burundi or Kinshasa when

opposition politicians returned home to form new governments.

“Mugabe may not agree to such guaranteed protection, but we

need to try,” she stated.

 

8. (C) She shared with President Kikwete that Mbeki had sent

President Bush and the British a ten-page letter riddled with

the warning: “You white people should stay out of Zimbabwe’s

affairs.” President Bush did not and will

not respond. Instead, the White House released a statement

June 2 condemning Zimbabwe’s arrest of Arthur Mutambara. A/S

Frazer stressed that the U.S. does not see any conditions in

Zimbabwe to carry out free and fair elections on June 27:

“Time is running out; President dos Santos has told us that

Mugabe would not accept a loss.” She told Kikwete that we

all have to step up our statements and our actions; otherwise

the runoff will be fixed and Mugabe will be reelected as

President through intimidation and violence.

 

Unity Government not an Option

——————————

9. (C) A/S Frazer said a national unity government is

extremely difficult, posing too many obstacles: Who could

create the conditions for a unity government? Who would take

the lead to negotiate for and monitor such a

government: SADC, AU? Thus, the U.S does not prefer a unity

government option. A/S Frazer stressed that the regional

voice must be louder and the AU needs to assert itself.

President Mbeki claims he speaks for SADC, continuing to

legalistically support Mugabe’s position that this election

is about liberation. The U.S is convinced that Mbeki is not

capable and only trying to legitimize what is going on in

Zimbabwe with Mugabe using Mbeki as his

shield.

 

10. (C) Kikwete noted the domestic woes facing Mbeki. His

own ANC party leadership supports Morgan Tsvangirai’s

candidacy. In Kikwete’s view, Mbeki’s facilitation role is

completed: Zimbabwe’s security laws, electoral laws, and

the information law have been amended. Mbeki is only using

the “mediation card” to try to have a voice. For example, in

Japan, Mbeki told the SADC Chair, President Mwanawasa that

the discussion on preparations to monitor the Zimbabwe

elections “is not your business,” but should be dealt with by

SADC’s Organ for Politics and Security, currently chaired by

Angola, with Tanzania and Swaziland as members. Kikwete

lamented that Angola’s President dos Santos, who is suffering

from cancer, never travels, often is not

available, and has thus become a “missing link” since his

ministers do not have a real voice. Kikwete noted in August

2008, the Chair of the Organ for Politics and Security will

move to the King of Swaziland.

 

11. (C) President Kikwete stated that for all SADC leaders,

but Mbeki, “it is extremely difficult to talk to Mugabe.” He

expressed his concern that the ongoing intimidation will

prevent people from going to the polls especially in

 

DAR ES SAL 00000471 003 OF 004

 

 

Matabeland, where abusers are targeting areas Mugabe did not

perform well in March 2008. He noted that the intimidation

could have a backlash, angering the voters and increasing the

turnout on election day, despite ZANU’s

strong-arm tactics. In such a scenario, Morgan Tsvangirai

could win in the June 27 round, “but only if non-Zimbabweans

observe the counting at the polling stations, along with the

party agents, and each person receives a receipt of the

results; then all the numbers should add up.”

 

12. (C) A/S Frazer reiterated that having as many monitors as

possible inside Zimbabwe is the only way to re-assure

Zimbabwe citizens that it is safe to go out and vote. In

addition, monitors and observers must make strong

pronouncements to assure that the GOZ will accept the

results. Kikwete emphasized that the role of the U.S. is to

continue “to shout” and send strong messages. “The people of

Zimbabwe need to express their free will,” he

said. “Let Mugabe’s forces call us ‘Agents of Imperialism’

or whatever they want; the key is that the opposition have

the opportunity to beat them fairly.”

 

Sudan: Abyei and Darfur

———————–

13. (C) A/S Frazer asked Kikwete to give a message to

President Bashir of Sudan that the problem in Abyei must be

resolved. She stressed that Bashir has to allow the flow of

humanitarian assistance. “We are in discussions,

but have only one month to resolve it or the issue

automatically goes to mediation,” she explained. “Our

request is that the Government of Sudan (GOS) also accept a

temporary administration for Abyei.” She told Kikwete that

Southern Sudan is losing confidence, with more talk of

secession; it is imperative the situation in Abyei be quickly

resolved.

 

14. (C) Kikwete said that he met Bashir in Japan and was

expecting him to arrive for the Sullivan Summit the next day,

June 4. Kikwete smiled: “Bashir is in a better mood now to

speak with us, based on the success in the

Comoros.” Kikwete added he knows Bashir suspects Libya of

supplying the JEM and of Kaddafi wanting to “keep his hand”

in the situation.

 

15. (C) Kikwete also stressed the Tanzanian Peoples Defense

Force (TPDF) troops are ready to proceed to Darfur: “We are

only waiting for the UNAMID peacekeeping operations’

deployment.” He relayed complaints he had heard from other

African states ready to deploy to Darfur that it appears the

UN is focused on PKO in Nepal and Thailand and consequently

“do not have the resources to supply African PKO units.”

 

Uganda: Lord’s Resistance Army

——————————

16. (C) A/S Frazer told President Kikwete the LRA is

regrouping with an upswing in kidnappings, fighting, children

and women taken to service the LRA. Also, LRA is making

incursions into the Congo, the CAR and Southern Sudan.

Kikwete observed that Museveni has infiltrated the LRA. He

also believed Kabila is determined to track down the LRA.

Kikwete said he had hosted Kabila and Museveni in Dar es

Salaam in early May to discuss LRA issues and had understood

that the Congolese army and the Ugandan army are still

willing to work together.

 

Participants

————

17. (U) The participants in the June 3, 2008 meeting were:

 

Government of the United States:

Jendayi Frazer   Assistant Secretary of State

for African Affairs

Fatuma Sanneh     Assistant to A/S Frazer

Mary Johnson     U.S. Embassy Dar es Salaam,

Notetaker

 

Government of Tanzania:

Jakaya Kikwete     President of the United

 

DAR ES SAL 00000471 004 OF 004

 

 

Republic of Tanzania

Bernard Membe     Minister of Foreign Affairs

and International Cooperation

Amb. Ombeni Sefue Tanzanian Ambassador to the

United States

Notetakers

GREEN

 

(26 VIEWS)

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