INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Burundi: Guidance for December 10 Unsc

Published: Mon 7 Dec 2009 06:00 PM
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OO RUEHWEB
DE RUEHC #5021 3411801
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 071800Z DEC 09
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 0000
RUEHJB/AMEMBASSY BUJUMBURA PRIORITY 0000
UNCLAS STATE 125021
SIPDIS
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL UNSC XA BY
SUBJECT: BURUNDI: GUIDANCE FOR DECEMBER 10 UNSC
CONSULTATIONS ON THE UN INTEGRATED OFFICE IN BURUNDI
(BINUB)
1. (U) This is an action request. USUN may draw from the
talking points in para 3 during the December 10 UN Security
Council consultations on the UN Integrated Office in Burundi
(BINUB).
2. (U) Objectives: Express our support for the ongoing
disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration efforts,
emphasize the importance of holding free and fair elections
in 2010, and address potential election spoilers, including
political intimidation.
3. (U) Begin Talking Points
-- The United States thanks Executive Representative for
Burundi and Head of the United Nations Integrated Office in
Burundi (BINUB), Youssef Mahmoud, for your comprehensive
briefing. We appreciate the efforts of your staff, the UN
Country Team, and the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) to
enhance stability and security and to prepare for the 2010
presidential, legislative, and local elections.
DDR
-- The United States welcomes the ongoing reintegration
process and commends BINUB and the Peacebuilding
Commission,s commitment to the long-term reintegration of
ex-combatants, demobilized soldiers, and others affected by
the war. We are particularly encouraged by the progress made
in integrating Forces Nationales de Libration (FNL) leaders
into the government, but note that more work must be done to
fill remaining government positions allocated to the FNL. In
this regard, we look to BINUB and the PBC to closely
coordinate their support for reintegration with the
Partnership for Peace.
--We are also encouraged by BINUB,s and the UN Development
Program,s continued assistance to Burundi in finalizing its
national reintegration strategy to help provide sustainable
economic incentives for ex-combatants. Burundi has made
significant progress over the past six months in
consolidating peace and stability.
SUPPORT ELECTIONS
-- These recent positive trends augur well for the upcoming
elections, which we expect to be the capstone of the peace
process in Burundi. To ensure successful elections, BINUB
and the Peacebuilding Commission should continue to
coordinate international technical and financial support for
the electoral process. The U.S. government, in coordination
with international partners, BINUB, and the Peacebuilding
Commission, has provided $3.3 million towards voter
education, support for the independent electoral commission,
and media programs promoting peaceful elections.
ADDRESSING POTENTIAL SPOILERS
--We encourage BINUB and the PBC to closely monitor the
funding and progress of election preparations, and the degree
to which opposition parties enjoy the right of lawful
assembly and sufficient political space to campaign. Failure
to address problems now could threaten the electoral process
and heighten the risk of post-electoral violence.
--Additionally, we are concerned by reports of political
intimidation by individuals in the ruling Conseil National
Pour la Dfense de la Democratie-Forces de Dfense de la
Democratie (CNDD-FDD) party. Free and fair elections require
the elimination of all attempts to intimidate or exclude
legitimate parties from fully participating in the political
process.
-- Finally, I would like to reiterate our support for the
Peacebuilding Commission and the integrated approach of the
UN system. The success of the Commission and the integrated
UN-system approach serves as a model for future UN missions
dealing with post-conflict situations. With BINUB,s
achievements and the remaining challenges in Burundi in mind,
the United States supports the Secretary-General,s call to
renew BINUB,s mandate for one additional year.
POTENTIAL QUESTIONS
We believe it is prudent, however, to plan for the future.
We would like to request a report on the exit strategy for
BINUB, and your thoughts on what should be the post-election
UN presence in Burundi.
We would also be interested in your thoughts on how long the
PBC should continue its engagement with Burundi.
With completion of the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF)-funded small
arms destruction project, what are BINUB,s plans for
assisting the government with continuing to sweep up arms and
munitions from civilian hands before the elections?
CLINTON
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