|Wikileaks:||View 01ABUJA2686 at Wikileaks.org|
|Tags:||PREL OFDP ASEC EU NI|
|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.
C O N F I D E N T I A L ABUJA 002686 SIPDIS DEPT FOR DS/OP/AF AND DS/DSS/ITA E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/19/2011 TAGS: PREL, OFDP, ASEC, EU, NI SUBJECT: TFUS01: NIGERIA: EU TROIKA'S CALL ON THE AMBASSADOR RE: SECURITY Classified by Ambassador Howard F. Jeter; Reasons 1.5 (b), (d), (g). 1. (C) On October 16, the EU Troika (the Belgian and Spanish Ambassadors, and Head of the European Commission Delegation), called on Ambassador Jeter to discuss ongoing events in Nigeria in light of September 11 and the coalition response in Afghanistan. 2. (C) Belgian Ambassador Jozef Smets, currently representing the EU Presidency, informed the Ambassador that the Troika had reached out to Muslim leaders, most recently the Chairman of the Assembly of Muslims of Nigeria. They found the Assembly Chairman to be moderate and reasonable, but very interested in evidence against Bin Laden and Al Qaeda. Unfortunately, a "smoking gun" was unavailable. Ambassador Jeter recalled his similar experience with the Chief Imam of the National Mosque in Abuja (septel). In addition to seeking evidence, many interlocutors had the Middle East peace process in the back of their minds, the Ambassador continued. The Emir of Ilorin, on the other hand, had been nothing but supportive (septel). The Troika and Ambassador agreed on the need to get the message out to more moderate Muslim leaders in Nigeria. (COMMENT: Embassy is developing a list of 20 or so key Muslim leaders for this effort, and will share information with EU colleagues, as appropriate. END COMMENT.) 3. (C) Smets raised the possibility of periodic inter-Mission meeting between senior personnel to manage issues related to ongoing events, particularly to discuss evacuation scenarios and security. Ambassador Jeter responded that his DCM had met with counterparts from the British, Canadian, Dutch and German Missions, and a group of RSOs also had started meeting. This could be expanded to include other EU Missions following consultations within this core group. 4. (C) GON support for the safety of diplomats and diplomatic facilities appeared strong, Jeter stated. The will was there, although one had to be realistic about GON capabilities. If a domestic conflict spread to multiple areas in the country, the GON's ability to respond could be quickly eroded. However, after the riots in Kaduna and the resulting attacks on Hausas in the East, the GON appeared better prepared. 5. (C) Ambassador Jeter noted that President Obasanjo had recently said he was most concerned about Kano, Zamfara, Sokoto and Kaduna. He had asked the President to add Lagos to his list. The Troika agreed strongly. The Spanish Ambassador noted that Obasanjo dislikes Lagos, so he ignores it. The Ambassador and the Troika briefly discussed the conflict in Kano, agreeing that the causes were multiple, including economic, ethnic and religious factors. The Ambassadors agreed that they should meet periodically to exchange views on security issues, perhaps at least once every two weeks. 6. (C) COMMENT: This was the second meeting between the Embassy and the EU Troika, the first being a condolence call on the Charge shortly after September 11. We are pleased that our European colleagues are equally focused on outreach to moderate Muslim leaders, and interested in working together toward this mutual objective. END COMMENT. Jeter
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