US embassy cable - 05NDJAMENA81

SENATOR FEINGOLD MEETS WITH DEFENSE MINISTER AND HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS

Identifier: 05NDJAMENA81
Wikileaks: View 05NDJAMENA81 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ndjamena
Created: 2005-01-24 14:13:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PGOV PHUM PREF CD SU Terrorism Political Stability VIP Visits
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.

241413Z Jan 05

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FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0798
INFO AMEMBASSY ABUJA 
AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 
AMEMBASSY ALGIERS 
AMEMBASSY BAMAKO 
AMEMBASSY DAKAR 
AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM 
AMEMBASSY LONDON 
AMEMBASSY NIAMEY 
AMEMBASSY YAOUNDE 
SECDEF WASHDC
USEU BRUSSELS
USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 
USLO TRIPOLI 
C O N F I D E N T I A L  NDJAMENA 000081 
 
SIPDIS 
 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR DRL, INR, AF, AF/C; LONDON AND PARIS FOR 
AFRICAWATCHERS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/17/2015 
TAGS: PGOV, PHUM, PREF, CD, SU, Terrorism, Political Stability, VIP Visits 
SUBJECT: SENATOR FEINGOLD MEETS WITH DEFENSE MINISTER AND 
HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS 
 
 
Classified By: Political/Economic Officer Kathleen FitzGibbon for reaso 
ns 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
1.  (C) Summary: Senator Russell Feingold expressed 
appreciation for Chad's cooperation in the war on terror and 
discussed human rights with Defense Minister Emmanuel 
Nadingar during his visit on January 13.  Nadingar welcomed 
U.S. support for the Chadian military, which he says is 
needed to help to transform the role of the armed forces in 
society.  He emphasized the resource needs of the Chadian 
military to continue to fight terrorism, secure Chad's 
eastern border, improve the human rights record of the 
security forces, and play a positive supporting role for 
Chad's democratic institutions.  In a separate meeting, human 
rights activists described Chad's human rights record as poor 
and argued that strengthening the country's judicial system 
is the key to punishing and deterring human rights abuses. 
We are engaging Chadian ministers and human rights groups to 
find ways to improve the human rights record of the security 
forces.   End Summary. 
 
- - - - - 
TERRORISM 
- - - - - 
 
2. (SBU) On January 13, Senator Russell Feingold, Ambassador 
Wall, Senate Staff Assistant Michelle Gavin, military 
assistant Ed Danielson, P/E officer and DATT met with 
Minister for National Defense Emmanuel Nadingar, Deputy 
Minister for Public Security Mahamat Gali Mallah, and Deputy 
Minister for Justice Domaye Daniel.  Defense Minister 
Nadingar thanked Senator Feingold for his visit and for U.S. 
collaboration on counter-terrorism.  Nadingar was very 
appreciative of the Defense Attache,s Office and the U.S. 
military,s efforts to increase Chad,s capacity to fight 
terrorism.  Chad,s military has benefited from logistics 
assistance and information sharing.  Nadingar said that 
working together, Chad and the United States have been 
effective in countering the terrorist threat. 
 
3. (C) Nadingar told Feingold that the cooperation of Chad,s 
neighbors is critical to counter-terrorism.  He said that 
Algeria, Niger, and Libya provide information on rebel and 
terrorist movements.  The coordination effort among the 
neighbors is generally good.  Algeria provided a wide range 
of assistance, including medical treatment for Chadians 
injured during clashes with the Salafists.  Nadingar wants an 
anti-terrorism system in place before the next threat 
develops.  He said that real-time information that will allow 
Chad to track the terrorists is an important need.  He fears 
that if terrorists make it into Chad, they can have an effect 
on all of Chad. 
 
4. (C) Nadingar said that the relationship between the 
Movement for Democracy and Justice in Chad (MDJT) and Al Para 
was dangerous and he is worried about the development of 
similar linkages between local rebel groups and international 
terrorists.  Such a group could become a terrorist group and 
undermine civil society institutions by providing them 
support and coopting them.  In the case of Al Para, he needed 
assistance getting around northern Chad and the MDJT had that 
expertise.  However, Al Para did not give the MDJT the 
assistance they expected in return and as a result turned him 
over. 
 
5.  (C) Feingold asked about other rebel activity in Chad. 
Nadingar said that Chad,s former Ambassador to the United 
States Soubiane is organizing a movement in another country. 
(Comment: Sudan.  End Comment.)  The MDJT is negotiating a 
peace agreement with the Government.  There are other small 
groups acting in their own interests that remain unfocused 
and without a political agenda.  Still, there are some 
Chadians that might want to transform these groups into a 
real threat to the regime. 
 
- - - - 
DARFUR 
- - - - 
 
 
6.  (SBU) Nadingar told Feingold that the crisis in Darfur 
has a deep impact in Chad.  He added that Chad needs to 
ensure security on its 1,000-kilometer eastern border and 
must work with Sudan to ensure that security.  Nadingar 
opined that the east could be an important economic zone if 
the area was stable.  He noted that Chad has welcomed a large 
number of refugees and that the Sudanese refugees are equal 
to or outnumber local populations.  Unfortunately, Nadingar 
pointed out, some of the Sudanese refugees still maintain a 
&war mentality8 from their experience in Sudan and have 
become a source of security problems in Chad. 
 
- - - 
LIBYA 
- - - 
 
7.  (C) Feingold asked about the state of Chad,s 
relationship with Libya.  Nadingar said it is important for 
Chad to maintain its relationship with Libya for the 
well-being of Chadians living near the border. 
 
- - - - - - - 
HUMAN RIGHTS 
- - - - - - - 
 
8.  (SBU) Feingold asked Nadingar what happens to members of 
the security forces that commit human rights violations. 
Nadingar began by telling Feingold that the armed forces will 
not be benefiting from the influx of oil revenues and that 
without funding, the army can be a destabilizing force.  He 
explained that for a long period of time, the military 
included a large number of security personnel.  He admitted 
that many of them behaved badly and were responsible for 
abuses.  Currently, the military sanctions perpetrators, 
jails them, and kicks them out of the army.  Feingold thanked 
Nadingar for his response and emphasized the importance of 
accountability in cases of human rights abuses. 
 
9.  (SBU) The Minister told Feingold that there is a full 
review of the military coming up in April.  He noted that the 
military,s ability to defend the country is essential for 
Chad,s development.  The Army can assist in ensuring peace 
and security throughout Chad.  Nadingar said that he wants to 
increase salaries for soldiers and build better camps to 
improve living conditions for them.  There is a need for 
training, particularly skills training for soldiers that are 
retiring.  A new generation of soldiers need to be 
indoctrinated to civilian rule.  The military needs more 
logistics support.  Nadingar said that he wants to deliver a 
strong message that will help the military change and adapt 
to democracy.  He said that Chadians must understand why it 
is important to strengthen, not weaken, its military forces, 
to facilitate its transformation.  He welcomed U.S. 
assistance for these objectives. 
 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST ROUNDTABLE 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
 
10.  (SBU) Feingold asked prominent human rights activists 
for their views on the human rights situation in Chad, the 
perpetrators of abuses, the treatment of opposition party 
leaders and activists by the government, and their views on 
the fight against terrorism.  The activists pointed out that 
members of the security forces and armed bandits are 
responsible for most of the human rights abuses.  The 
activists also expressed concern that the government does not 
consult the public on key urban planning issues, particularly 
planned housing developments.  The proposed Toumai housing 
project, for example, will displace thousands of N'Djamena 
residents yet there have been no public consultations over 
the issue. 
 
11.  (SBU)  Members of the group told Feingold that within 
N'Djamena, they are free to conduct their human 
rights-related activities.  Outside N'Djamena, however, they 
have experienced problems with local government officials and 
 
security personnel.  They told Feingold that the weakness of 
the judiciary remains a key challenge to improving Chad's 
human rights record because a functioning judiciary could 
help deter abuses and improve the human rights situation. 
They argued that a strong judicial system, for example, could 
have prevented the detention of political party leaders in 
2001. 
 
12.  (SBU)  Regarding U.S. efforts to fight terrorism, the 
group expressed concerns about the amount of resources 
mobilized.  They are worried about their ability to get 
support from the United States if they criticize their 
government.  They appealed for more U.S. assistance to help 
improve the human rights situation in Chad. 
 
- - - - 
COMMENT 
- - - - 
 
13.  (C)  Nadingar is interested in reforming the military, 
including improving its poor human rights record.  We are 
engaging him directly on human rights issues but agree that 
payment of salaries and training are key factors in improving 
the human rights situation in Chad.  Perhaps the upcoming 
"Status of the Army" review is an opportunity to help support 
these reform efforts.  We agree with the human rights 
activists that strengthening Chad's judiciary is critical if 
human rights abuses are to be deterred and punished. 
 
14.  Khartoum and Tripoli Minimize Considered. 
WALL 
 
 
NNNN 

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