US embassy cable - 91NDJAMENA848

QADHAFI THREATENS DEBY

Identifier: 91NDJAMENA848
Wikileaks: View 91NDJAMENA848 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ndjamena
Created: 1991-02-26 14:49:00
Classification: SECRET
Tags: PREL PGOV CD LY FR
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
P 261449Z FEB 91
FM AMEMBASSY NDJAMENA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9619
INFO RUEHAB/AMEMBASSY ABIDJAN
AMEMBASSY ALGIERS
AMEMBASSY BANGUI
AMEMBASSY BRAZZAVILLE
AMEMBASSY CAIRO
AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
AMEMBASSY LAGOS
AMEMBASSY LIBREVILLE
AMEMBASSY LOME
AMEMBASSY OUAGADOUGOU
AMEMBASSY NIAMEY
AMEMBASSY PARIS
AMEMBASSY TUNIS
AMEMBASSY YAOUNDE
USCINCEUR VAIHINGEN GE//POLAD//
S E C R E T NDJAMENA 00848 
 
 
E.O. 12356: DECL:OADR 
TAGS: PREL, PGOV, CD, LY, FR 
SUBJECT: QADHAFI THREATENS DEBY 
 
REF: (A) NDJAMENA 795, (B) NDJAMENA 800 
 
1.  SECRET - ENTIRE TEXT. 
- 
2. SUMMARY:  QADHAFI WARNED DEBY DURING LATTER'S RECENT 
VISIT TO LIBYA THAT THERE COULD BE NO STABILITY IN CHAD 
IF BILATERAL RELATIONS DID NOT REMAIN POSITIVE. 
BILATERAL RELATIONS WITH FRANCE ARE GOOD AND DEBY IS 
INCREASINGLY AWARE OF THE NEED TO BE FLEXIBLE ON 
DOMESTIC POLITICAL ISSUES, ACCORDING TO DEPARTING 
FRENCH AMBASSADOR.  END SUMMARY. 
- 
3.  ALONG WITH MANY OTHER WELL-WISHERS, I WAS AT 
N'DJAMENA AIRPORT AT NOON TODAY, FEBRUARY 26, TO SAY 
FAREWELL TO DEPARTING FRENCH AMBASSADOR GENDREAU.  HE 
PULLED ME ASIDE TO NOTE POINTS MADE BY PRESIDENT DEBY 
IN THEIR FINAL MEETING EARLIER THE SAME MORNING. 
ACCORDING TO GENDREAU, AT THEIR MEETING IN BENGHAZI 
LAST WEEK, QADHAFI ESSENTIALLY THREATENED DEBY WITH 
DESTABILIZATION IF CHAD DID NOT MAINTAIN FRIENDLY 
RELATIONS WITH LIBYA.  QADHAFI REFERRED TO THE 
INGRATITUDE OF EARLIER CHADIAN LEADERS AND NOT SO 
SUBTLY INDICATED TO DEBY THAT HE COULD MAKE TROUBLE IF 
DEBY FOLLOWED SUIT.  GENDREAU SAID THAT DEBY RESENTED 
THIS LANGUAGE AND REMAINS ON GUARD TOWARDS QADHAFI AND 
LIBYA. 
- 
4.  GENDREAU ALSO COMMENTED ON CHAD-FRANCE RELATIONS 
WHICH HE CHARACTERIZED AS GOOD, AND HE ADDED THAT LOCAL 
FRENCH BUSINESSMEN, ESPECIALLY THE SMALLER MERCHANTS, 
SAY THEY NOTE AN IMPROVED ATTITUDE OF CHADIAN 
AUTHORITIES TOWARD THEM.  IN RESPONSE TO MY COMMENT 
REGARDING DEBY'S NEED TO DEAL WITH EMERGING DOMESTIC 
POLITICAL PROBLEMS, GENDREAU SAID THAT THE CHADIAN 
PRESIDENT IS INCREASINGLY AWARE OF THE NEED FOR 
FLEXIBILITY IN THIS AREA. 
- 
5.  COMMENT:  THIS WAS A HURRIED CONVERSATION THAT DID 
NOT ALLOW TIME TO EXPLORE THE POINTS MADE BY GENDREAU. 
AS INDICATED REF (A), THE CHADIANS WHO ACCOMPANIED DEBY 
TO BENGHAZI WITH WHOM WE HAVE SPOKEN HAVE INDICATED 
THAT DEBY'S SUBSTANTIVE DISCUSSIONS WERE ONLY PARTLY 
SUCCESSFUL.  IT IS NOT CLEAR, HOWEVER, WHETHER GENDREAU 
WAS REFERRING TO QADHAFI'S MENACING SPEECH OR REMARKS 
MADE PRIVATELY TO DEBY.  IN ANY CASE, GENDREAU'S REPORT 
SUGGESTS THAT DEBY AND QADHAFI DID NOT ESTABLISH A GOOD 
PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP.  WE ARE SOMEWHAT SURPRISED BY 
GENDREAU'S COMMENTS ON THE MOOD OF FRENCH BUSINESSMEN 
HERE SINCE BUSINESS ACTIVITY IS AT A STANDSTILL. 
HOWEVER, THE FRENCH GENERALLY PROBABLY FEEL LESS 
HOSTILITY FROM THE GOC THAN WHEN HABRE WAS IN POWER. 
ON DOMESTIC ISSUES, IT MAY BE THAT BY NOW DEBY IS 
RESPONDING TO INTENSIFYING PRESSURE FROM SOUTHERNERS 
AND OTHERS TO KEEP HIS PROMISES REGARDING 
DEMOCRATIZATION, BUT SO FAR THERE IS LITTLE TANGIBLE 
PROOF OF SUCH AN ATTITUDE REPORTED BACK TO US BY OTHER 
SOURCES, OTHER THAN DEBY'S OWN INNER CIRCLE.  (REF B). 
- 
6.  MINIMIZE CONSIDERED. 
 
BOGOSIAN 

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