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UK put Mugabe in a corner making him more difficult

International pressure especially that brought about by the United Kingdom had backed President Robert Mugabe in a corner making him more difficult to deal with than before Zimbabwe’s departure from the Commonwealth.

This was said by the Nigerian second United Nations Division Minister Counsellor Alhassan Hussain after the United States embassy in Abuja requested the Nigerian government’s support for country-specific resolutions at the United Nations High Commission for Refugees.

Hussain said Nigeria would probably join the rest of the Africa Group and vote in favour of “no action” on the Zimbabwe resolution.

He said Nigeria was eager to bring Zimbabwe back into the fold with as little conflict as possible and thought “carrots would be more effective than sticks”.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 04ABUJA634, UNCHR COUNTRY RESOLUTIONS – UNLIKELY NIGERIA WILL

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

04ABUJA634

2004-04-14 13:31

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Abuja

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 ABUJA 000634

 

SIPDIS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/13/2014

TAGS: PHUM PREL ZI NI

SUBJECT: UNCHR COUNTRY RESOLUTIONS – UNLIKELY NIGERIA WILL

SUPPORT ZIMBABWE RESOLUTION

 

REF: A. STATE 77769

B. ABUJA 593

C. ABUJA 571

 

Classified By: COUNSELOR JAMES MAXSTADT FOR REASONS 1.5 (B) AND (D).

 

1. (C) POLOFF delivered demarche (REF A) requesting support

for country-specific resolutions at the UNCHR to MFA Second

United Nations Division Minister Counselor Alhassan A.

Hussain. While Hussain was unable to confirm how the GON

delegation in Geneva intended to vote on other UNCHR

resolutions (septel), he gave his own opinion on the Zimbabwe

resolution.

 

2. (C) Hussain said the GON would probably join the rest of

the Africa Group and vote in favor of “no action” on the

Zimbabwe resolution. Noting President Obasanjo’s position as

Chairman of the Commonwealth, Hussain said the GON was eager

to bring Zimbabwe back into the fold with as little conflict

as possible and thought “carrots would be more effective than

sticks.” Hussain went on to say that international pressure,

especially that brought to bear by the UK, had backed Mugabe

into a corner and made him even more difficult to deal with

than before Zimbabwe’s departure from the Commonwealth in

December.

 

3. (C) COMMENT: While Hussain’s views are widely shared

within an MFA that is devoted to opposing criticism of

specific countries, especially specific African countries,

Nigeria’s Zimbabwe policy is made by President Obasanjo, not

the Ministry. Nigeria is unlikely to vote in favor of a

resolution criticizing Zimbabwe, as it has not voted in favor

of resolutions criticizing other African countries even when

Nigeria considered them enemies, but President Obasanjo is

unlikely to go as far out of his way to shield Zimbabwe as

Hussain suggests. Obasanjo is known to be irritated with

Mugabe precisely because of Mugabe’s actions on the

Commonwealth Summit flap, and it is doubtful that he would

instruct his delegation in Geneva to vote for a no-action

motion unless it would make Nigeria the odd man out with the

rest of the Africa Group on the other side.

ROBERTS

 

(4 VIEWS)

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