US embassy cable - 00HARARE3264

ZIMBABWEAN PRESIDENT MAKES NO DECISION ON RELEASE OF CUBAN DOCTORS

Identifier: 00HARARE3264
Wikileaks: View 00HARARE3264 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Harare
Created: 2000-06-16 08:54:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PREF PGOV PHUM PREL ZI CU
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

160854Z Jun 00


                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ8284

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ACTION PRM-01   

INFO  LOG-00   AF-00    AID-00   CIAE-00  DODE-00  WHA-00   SRPP-00  
      EAP-00   EB-00    EUR-00   VC-00    H-01     TEDE-00  INR-00   
      INSE-00  IO-00    L-00     AC-01    NEA-00   NSAE-00  NSCE-00  
      OIC-02   OMB-01   PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     
      SP-00    SSO-00   SS-00    STR-00   TRSE-00  T-00     USIE-00  
      SA-00    PMB-00   DRL-02   G-00     SAS-00     /008W
                  ------------------6397CC  161115Z /22    
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6336
INFO USINT HAVANA IMMEDIATE 
COMMISSIONER USINS WASHDC IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE IMMEDIATE 
AMEMBASSY LUSAKA 
AMEMBASSY PRETORIA 
AMEMBASSY ROME 
USMISSION GENEVA 
AMEMBASSY CAIRO 
AMEMBASSY ABIDJAN 
AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 
AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 
AMEMBASSY LONDON 
C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 003264 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR PRM A/S TAFT, PRM/A, PRM/AAA, AF/S, AF/PD, 
WHA/CCA 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 02        HARARE  03264  161115Z 
 
NAIROBI FOR REFCOORD AND INS 
 
ROME FOR INS 
 
LONDON FOR PFLAUMER 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/16/10 
TAGS: PREF, PGOV, PHUM, PREL, ZI, CU 
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWEAN PRESIDENT MAKES NO DECISION ON 
RELEASE OF CUBAN DOCTORS 
 
REF: A) HARARE 3263 
 
CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR TOM MCDONALD FOR REASONS 1.5 
B/D. 
 
1. (C) ON JUNE 16 UNHCR ATTORNEY MICHIEL SALOMONS 
REPORTED THAT HE HAD RECEIVED NO INFORMATION FROM THE 
GOVERNMENT OF ZIMBABWE ON A POSSIBLE PRESIDENTIAL 
DECISION TO RELEASE CUBANS DOCTORS LEONEL CORDOVA 
RODRIGUEZ AND NORIS DEL CARMEN PENA MARTINEZ TO THE 
CUSTODY OF THE UNHCR.  UNHCR REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE 
OLUSEYI BAJULAIYE SEPARATELY INFORMED AMBASSADOR 
MCDONALD THAT HE WOULD ASK UNHCR HEAD OGATA TO WRITE 
PRESIDENT MUGABE ASKING HIM TO ARRANGE FOR THEIR EARLY 
RELEASE.  SALOMONS SAID HE WAS GOING TO MEET WITH THE 
DUTCH AMBASSADOR ON THE MORNING OF JUNE 16 TO PURSUE THE 
IDEA OF TEMPORARILY RESETTLING THE CUBANS IN THE 
NETHERLANDS (REFTEL).  HE ALSO INFORMED US THAT LOCAL 
UNHCR REPRESENTATIVE JOHN ADU IS TO VISIT THE CUBANS ON 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 03        HARARE  03264  161115Z 
THE SAME DAY. 
 
2.  (C) COMMENT: WE ARE CONVINCED THAT BAJULAIYE 
SINCERELY WISHES TO REACH AN EARLY SOLUTION TO THE CASE 
OF THE CUBANS DOCTORS THAT IS SATISFACTORY TO ALL.  WE 
ALSO DETECTED EXCESSIVE OPTIMISM ON HIS ORGANIZATION'S 
PART.  BAJULAIYE IS A COMPETENT AND HARD-WORKING 
DIPLOMAT, BUT HAS LITTLE TO SHOW FOR HIS EFFORTS TO 
DATE.  WE HAVE MADE OUR POSITION QUITE CLEAR, FORCEFULLY 
AND OFTEN, ON A BILATERAL BASIS TO THE GOVERNMENT OF 
ZIMBABWE AND HAVE EXHAUSTED THE POSSIBILITIES FOR 
INTERVENTION.  THE ZIMBABWEAN PRESIDENT IS NOT FOCUSED 
ON THIS PROBLEM ON THE EVE OF AN ELECTION THAT MAY 
DETERMINE HIS PARTY'S FUTURE.  INDEED, WE DOUBT THAT 
MUGABE EVEN HEARD ABOUT THE CASE ON JUNE 15, PER REFTEL, 
AS WE SAW HIS MOTORCADE ON THE STREETS HEADING TOWARD 
HIS RESIDENCE AT THE TIME THE FOREIGN MINISTRY HAD 
INFORMED THE UNHCR OFFICIALS THAT THE PRESIDENT WAS 
SUPPOSED TO BE BRIEFED.  END COMMENT. 
 
3.  (C) ACTION REQUESTED: WE THINK THAT MAXIMUM PRESSURE 
NEEDS TO BE BROUGHT TO BEAR ON UNHCR IN GENEVA.  WHILE 
BAJULAIYE SAID THAT UNHCR HEAD OGATA WOULD WRITE 
PRESIDENT MUGABE, WE THINK THAT A TELEPHONE CALL IS A 
MORE POTENT INSTRUMENT.  DEPARTMENT MAY WISH TO CONTACT 
THE UNITED NATIONS HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES AGAIN 
TO STRESS OUR DESIRE FOR HER PERSONAL INTERVENTION WITH 
THE ZIMBABWEAN HEAD OF STATE IN THIS MATTER. 
 
4. (C) ACTION REQUESTED CONTINUED: WE ALSO BELIEVE THAT 
THE POWER OF THE MEDIA COULD BE BROUGHT TO BEAR ON THIS 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 04        HARARE  03264  161115Z 
CASE THROUGH A BACKGROUND BRIEFING FOR REPORTERS CHRIS 
GAITHER AND/OR SANDRA MARQUEZ AT "THE MIAMI HERALD." 
THE AIM OF SUCH A BRIEFING SHOULD BE TO GET "THE MIAMI 
HERALD" TO FOCUS ITS ATTENTION ON THE GOVERNMENT OF 
ZIMBABWE'S UNILATERAL ABILITY TO RESOLVE THE CASE.  THAT 
ATTENTION, IN TURN, MAY HELP THE GOZ UNDERSTAND THAT 
THIS IS AN IMPORTANT CASE, ONE THAT NEEDS TO BE RESOLVED 
NOW. 
 
MCDONALD 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
> 

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