Mnangagwa denies new clashes in DRC


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Speaker of Parliament Emmerson Mnangagwa denied that Zimbabwean troops were involved in any new clashes in the Democratic Republic of Congo, but United States ambassador to Zimbabwe, Tom McDonald, did not believe him.

McDonald had gone to see Mnangagwa to convey the Unites States government’s concern over reports that Zimbabwean troops were involved in new fighting in the DRC.

According to the ambassador, though now Speaker of Parliament, Mnangagwa was still actively involved in managing Zimbabwe’s economic and political affairs in the DRC.

Mnangagwa professed ignorance of an offensive by DRC forces in Katanga province.

He said it was not possible for Zimbabwean forces to be assisting in any offensive near Lake Tanganyika because Zimbabwe no longer had an airlift capability in the DRC and Zimbabwean forces pulled out of Kalemie on Lake Tanganyika long ago.

McDonald was not convinced. In his comment, he said Mnangagwa almost certainly pretended to be ignorant of the fighting in Katanga.

“He personally has too many financial interests at stake to be unaware of what’s going on, especially with his easy access to General Zvinavashe,” the ambassador said.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 00HARARE6175, ZIMBABWE LOOKING INTO KATANGA CLASHES

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

00HARARE6175

2000-11-01 15:32

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

011532Z Nov 00

 

 

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTO1000

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 06175 011533Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   ACQ-00   CIAE-00 INL-00   DODE-00 DOTE-00

SRPP-00 DS-00   EB-00   EUR-00   FAAE-00 VC-00   H-01

TEDE-00 INR-00   IO-00   L-00     VCE-00   AC-01   DCP-01

NSAE-00 OIC-02   OMB-01   OPIC-01 PA-00   PM-00   PRS-00

ACE-00   P-00     SP-00   TRSE-00 USIE-00 PMB-00   DSCC-00

PRM-01   DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00 SAS-00   SWCI-00   /010W

——————99738D 011533Z /38

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC 7494

INFO NSC WASHDC

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

RWANDA COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 006175

 

SIPDIS

 

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

 

LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY

 

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

USUN FOR HOLBROOKE

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/01/10

TAGS: PGOV PREL MOPS ZI CG

SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE LOOKING INTO KATANGA CLASHES

CONFIDENTIAL

 

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 06175 011533Z

 

REFS: A) SECSTATE 208489, B) MAPUTO 4092

 

CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR TOM MCDONALD FOR REASONS: 1.5

(B) AND (D).

 

1. (C) AMBASSADOR, ACCOMPANIED BY POLOFF (NOTETAKER),

MET SPEAKER OF PARLIAMENT EMMERSON MNANGAGWA NOVEMBER 1

TO CONVEY USG CONCERN OVER RECENT REPORTS OF ZIMBABWEAN

INVOLVEMENT IN NEW FIGHTING IN THE DRC. MNANGAGWA, WHO

IS STILL ACTIVELY INVOLVED IN MANAGING ZIMBABWE’S

ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL AFFAIRS IN THE DRC, PROFESSED

IGNORANCE OF AN OFFENSIVE BY FAC FORCES IN KATANGA

PROVINCE. HE ALSO SAID IT WAS NOT POSSIBLE FOR

ZIMBABWEAN FORCES TO BE ASSISTING IN ANY OFFENSIVE NEAR

LAKE TANGANYIKA BECAUSE 1) ZIMBABWE NO LONGER HAS AN

AIRLIFT CAPABILITY IN THE DRC, AND 2) ZIMBABWEAN FORCES

PULLED OUT OF KALEMIE ON LAKE TANGANYIKA LONG AGO.

MNANGAGWA REITERATED A POINT HE HAS MADE TO US BEFORE

THAT KABILA OFTEN GOES BEHIND HIS ALLIES’ BACKS ON NEW

MILITARY OPERATIONS AND THAT THIS WAS ONE OF THEIR

BIGGEST QUARRELS WITH HIM.

 

2. (C) THE AMBASSADOR EMPHASIZED THAT MONUC’S MANDATE

EXPIRES DECEMBER 15 AND TIME IS RUNNING OUT TO STOP

FIGHTING SO THAT MONUC OBSERVERS CAN FULLY DEPLOY. THE

USG IS TELLING RWANDA AND UGANDA THE SAME THING AND

URGING THEM NOT TO TRY TO RETAKE LOST TERRITORY SO THAT

THE PEACE PROCESS STAYS ON TRACK. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE

MEETING, MNANGAGWA TELEPHONED GENERAL VITALIS

ZVINAVASHE, COMMANDER OF THE ZIMBABWE DEFENSE FORCES

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 06175 011533Z

(ZDF), TO FIND OUT ABOUT THE KATANGA CLASHES.

ZVINAVASHE CONFIRMED THAT AN “INCIDENT” HAD TAKEN PLACE

IN KATANGA, BUT THAT IT INVOLVED FAC AND INTERAHAMWE

FORCES, AND NOT ZIMBABWEAN FORCES. NONETHELESS, THE ZDF

COMMANDER WAS GOING TO TALK TO HIS COMMANDERS IN THE DRC

AND PERSONALLY VISIT THE REGION ON NOVEMBER 3, ACCORDING

TO THE SPEAKER. THE AMBASSADOR SUGGESTED THAT PERHAPS

SOME LOCAL ZIMBABWEAN COMMANDERS WERE ACTING ON THEIR

OWN IN HELPING THE CONGOLESE, TO WHICH MNANGAGWA REPLIED

THAT HE DID NOT BELIEVE THAT WAS OCCURRING SINCE THE ZDF

IS A VERY DISCIPLINED FORCE.

 

3. (C) COMMENT: MNANGAGWA, EVER COY WITH US ON DRC

MATTERS, ALMOST CERTAINLY PRETENDED TO BE IGNORANT OF

THE FIGHTING IN KATANGA. HE PERSONALLY HAS TOO MANY

FINANCIAL INTERESTS AT STAKE TO BE UNAWARE OF WHAT’S

GOING ON, ESPECIALLY WITH HIS EASY ACCESS TO GENERAL

ZVINAVASHE. NONETHELESS, MNANGAGWA, WHO REMAINS ONE OF

OUR FEW AUTHORITATIVE CONTACTS ON THE DRC IN THE

ZIMBABWE GOVERNMENT, APPEARED TO TAKE OUR CONCERNS ON

BOARD. IF ZVINAVASHE INTENDS TO GO TO KATANGA THIS

WEEK, IT IS A SIGN THAT, AT A MINIMUM, ZIMBABWEAN FORCES

ARE THREATENED BY THE RECENT CLASHES. WE WILL BE

CONTACTING MINISTER OF STATE FOR NATIONAL SECURITY

NICHOLAS GOCHE, WHEN HE RETURNS LATER THIS WEEK, TO GET

AN ADDITIONAL READ ON THE DRC FIGHTING. END COMMENT.

 

MCDONALD

 

CONFID

(29 VIEWS)

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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