Angola: Peace Monitor, II, 8

Angola: Peace Monitor, II, 8

Angola: Peace Monitor, II, 8
Date Distributed (ymd): 960501

Angola Peace Monitor
Published by ACTSA on behalf of the Angola Emergency Campaign,
Issue no.8, Volume II, 29 April 1996
Envoys extract promises from Savimbi as deadline approaches

UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi has met with a series of high level delegations in which he gave assurances that the implementation of the peace process would be speeded up in the run up to the United Nations Security Council meeting on 8 May to decide whether to continue with its peacekeeping operation in Angola.

The US Presidential Special Representative, Paul Hare and US Ambassador Donald Steinberg; the British Ambassador, Roger Hart; and the UN Secretary General's Special Representative in Angola, Alioune Blondin Beye, all went to Andulo on 25 April, and met separately with Jonas Savimbi.

According to sources in Luanda, the dignatories extracted assurances that at least 30,000, and possibly even 35,000, UNITA troops would be quartered by 8 May, the date when the UN Security Council meet in New York to discuss the future of the UN mission in Angola. The UNITA leader also gave assurances that the quality of weapons handed in to United Nations officials at the camps would improve.

Ambassador Hart, who delivered a letter from Baroness Chalker to Mr Savimbi, told ACTSA that he was cautiously hopeful that 30,000 UNITA troops would be quartered by the deadline. In particular he noted that UNITA should not encounter logistical problems in getting their troops to the camps as they have many troops in the immediate vicinity.

However, he also said that even if 30,000 UNITA troops were quartered, this would only represent half of UNITA's troops and that much more still needed to be achieved if the schedule agreed between President Dos Santos and Jonas Savimbi in Gabon on 1 March was to be met.

It is expected that the mandate for the UN mission will only be renewed for three months or less to maintain the pressure on UNITA. It is unclear whether any discussion will take place at the Security Council meeting over the implementation of existing sanctions on UNITA.

Patience strained over UNITA's failure to quarter its troops

Both international and internal goodwill is fast disappearing as UNITA once again has failed to send substantial numbers of its armed forces to be quartered and disarmed prior to their demobilisation.

The second phase of the confinement of UNITA troops began on 25 March, with personnel moving into Ngove, Ntuco and Quibala quartering areas. The latest net figure, including deaths and desertions, was 20,900 on 26 April. As of 17 April 22,000 troops had been quartered in the following areas:

Vila Nova 5,007
Londuimbali 5,202
Negage 5,008
Quibaxe 2,148
Quibala 931
Ngove 3,177
Ntuco 519

UN rejects UNITA leader's criticisms of conditions

UNITA leader, Jonas Savimbi, has complained of a lack of medicines, tents and food, and that "the UN have not positively fulfilled their promises".

This viewpoint was vigorously rejected by the UN Secretary General's Special Representative in Angola, Alioune Blondin Beye. He said on Televisiao Popular de Angola on 21 March that "the international community has established adequate conditions in the confinement centres - at a very high financial cost and with great sacrifice. We visited the areas and found them suitable and acceptable. They have clean water, tents and food, according to universal norms. The soldiers have three meals a day, medicine, doctors and nurses. I therefore believe it is not fair to accuse the international community of bad faith. These accusations are baseless".

He went on to add that "people should therefore not use this as a pretext to justify other actions. It is not fair. I strongly oppose this tendency".

Head of UN warns of poor quantity and quality of those quartered

The UN Secretary General, Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali, in his report to the Security Council on 4 April (S/1996/248) stated that 1,163 of those quartered have subsequently deserted the camps. Some of those have since claimed that they were press- ganged by UNITA solely to make up the numbers in the camps. One unconfirmed estimate is that between 35 and 40% of those quartered were rounded up into UNITA forces for the purposes of making up numbers for quartering, leaving most of UNITA s fighting units intact. It is understood that of those quartered, most are made up of local UNITA militia rather than battle-hardened troops.

The Secretary General further pointed out that "the age of some UNITA troops and the quality of surrendered weapons continue to be a major concern, as described in paragraph 12 of my previous report to the Council. Moreover, UNITA armed elements are still present in some areas that were expected to be vacated upon quartering of UNITA troops".

On the subject of arms, a military expert has informed ACTSA that UNITA is not handing over heavy weaponry, and that few of the weapons handed over are the sophisticated US and South African hardware in UNITA's possession.

Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali stated that "Much remains to be done to fulfil the tasks that the two sides agreed to undertake in accordance with the recently adjusted timetable; implementation is once again behind schedule. Further delays and procrastination could still jeopardize the peace process. Complete and fully verifiable quartering by UNITA of its troops is the key element. The results so far are inadequate. I recognize the political, military and psychological difficulties associated with this aspect of the process. But if it is not executed in good faith, the implementation of other essential aspects will be undermined, including the withdrawal of FAA to the nearest barracks, the completion of the quartering of the rapid reaction police, the disarmament of the civilian population and the integration of UNITA elements into FAA".

Rumours have continued to circulate that UNITA is moving its best troops and weapons into Zaire. Stories are also beginning to circulate in some circles that UNITA has only 40,000 troops.

Angolan Government withdraws from Joint Commission

In a serious sign of frustration with UNITA prevarication, the Angolan Government has suspended its participation in the Joint Commission which oversees the peace process.

On 23 April the Government announced that it was suspending its participation in the Joint Commission until UNITA had clarified its position on the quartering of its troops, and on whether Jonas Savimbi would accept the offer of Vice-Presidency of the country. A senior Government source said that after delays and UNITA's "double-dealing", the Government had decided that "enough is enough", until UNITA had resumed "serious dealing". However, meetings seem likely to start again if UNITA meets its target of quartering 30,000 troops by 8 May.

Savimbi optimistic

Asked whether the June deadline for the quartering of all UNITA's estimated 62,000 troops, as agreed by President Eduardo dos Santos and UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi, would be met, Savimbi stated on Radio France Internationale on 26 March that "It must be. We must be able to finish the confinement and disarmament of our soldiers by June, because June is the deadline to be respected, so we think that in July there will be a chance to form a government of national unity".

President of UN Security Council speaks out on UNITA delays

Despite the usage of diplomatic language, the President of the Security Council, the Chilean Ambassador Juan Somavia, has pointed the finger of guilt at UNITA for holding up the peace process.

In a statement read out on behalf of the Security Council on 24 April, the President stated that "the Security Council notes that the Uniao Nacional para a Independencia Total de Angola (UNITA) has quartered more than 20,000 of its forces, but expresses concern over delays in the quartering of UNITA troops and urges UNITA to move expeditiously to achieve full quartering of its troops. The Council expresses concern about the quality of weapons surrendered by UNITA and urges UNITA to fulfil its commitment to turn over all of its arms, ammunition, and military equipment as the quartering process continues. It reiterates that the quartering process is a crucial component of the peace process and stresses the need for quartering to be credible and fully verifiable".

In contrast, the statement said that "the Security Council recognises with satisfaction the progress by the Government of Angola in the implementation of its commitments under the Lusaka Protocol and the current timetable, and encourages the Government to continue this progress".

The statement also raised the long-running concern of the UN over the failure of the Angolan Government to provide facilities for the establishment of an independent United Nations radio service in the country.

The Council reaffirmed the "obligation of all States to implement fully the provisions of paragraph 19 of resolution 864 (1993) of 15 September 1993". This refers to the mandatory sanctions against supplying oil and weapons to UNITA.

It also noted "with concern credible reports of continuing purchases and delivery of weapons to Angola".

Further developments reported

Meanwhile, the first phase of the return to barracks of the Angolan Armed Forces was completed on 31 March with 445 troops being confined.

On 2 April Radio Nacional de Angola reported that the Rapid Intervention Police had confined 3,367 men to barracks in Huila, Moxico, Uige, Luanda, Benguela and Huambo provinces, and that the second stage of confinement was expected to begin shortly.

In a separate development UNITA confirmed on 1 April that 20 prisoners of war were released in Bailundo.

Government ready to bring UNITA into FAA

General de Matos, Chief of Staff of the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA) stated on Radio Nacional de Angola on 10 April that "we are ready at any time to begin integrating UNITA troops into FAA forces". He confirmed that it was not necessary for UNITA to confine at least 20,000 to the quartering areas, as had previously been agreed.

One major sticking point is the UNITA demand for a presidential declaration of an amnesty, despite there already being an agreement on amnesties. It seems likely that the Government is willing to accommodate UNITA on this point. It has been stated that once this issue is overcome, the UNITA generals will go to Luanda.

The UN Secretary General reported to the Security Council on 4 April that under the agreement of 9 March, "UNITA will provide the joint army with 18 generals and will fill several important positions, including that of Vice-Minister of Defence, Deputy Chief of the General Staff, Commander of one of the military regions and Commander of the planned "fourth branch" of FAA.

Under the agreements reached between the Government and UNITA, nine of the UNITA generals in FAA would be allocated to the "fourth branch". However, Jonas Savimbi has raised new criticism of the "fourth branch" which is planned to be set up to assist with the reconstruction of the country. On 27 March on UNITA's Radio Vorgan, Jonas Savimbi stated that "the fourth branch of the army was invented in Luanda. Already I have so many headaches. I will not have my men sent somewhere else to become foremen".

Think-tank points to UNITA strategic gains

The International Institute for Strategic Studies has questioned UNITA's good faith, and claims that its behaviour is paying them dividends.

In its annual summary of world events, the Strategic Survey 1995/96, published on 24 April 1996, the Institute states that "in Angola, the site of Africa's longest-running war, nothing has changed. The United Nations demobilisation stations are almost empty and the process is months behind schedule. It is clear that Jonas Savimbi, the Uniao Nacional para a Independencia Total de Angola (UNITA) leader, has no intention of trading his army for a seat in government. He will instead hold out for both, using, as ever, his dual-track policy of diplomacy and war".

Writing on the weakness of the United Nations the Report states that the situation in Angola "has highlighted that outsiders cannot impose solutions in Africa. In Mozambique, an agreement held because both sides stuck to it. In Angola, the weak and depleted UN could do little when UNITA broke, and continues to break, the peace accord, and the government compounds this breakdown. It now seems likely that UNITA will not only have a place in central government, but will also retain some territorial control, possibly being offered a diamond mine as a source of income and retaining some of its fighting capacity".

Oxfam official murdered

An official of Britain's aid organisation OXFAM was murdered along with two military observers whilst travelling in a vehicle between Cubal and Benguela on 3 April.

A UNAVEM-led team will go to the site of the attack to investigate the incident. UNITA issued a communique stating that it "would like to condemn in the strongest terms this act of pure vandalism". The head of Angola's army, General Joao de Matos said on 10 April that "these attacks are carried out by bandits and we must prevent them when they are carried out in government- or UNITA- controlled territory".

The London-based journal "Southscan" stated on 12 April that the attack was carried out by UNITA troops.

As the Angola Peace Monitor goes to press the enquiry continues.

1996 aid appeal launched as donors watch peace process

On 19 April in New York the UN launched its 1996 Humanitarian Appeal, while spelling out the remaining shortfalls in support for last year's appeal.

The appeal provides for assistance to the 200,000 refugees expected to return to Angola, and the 700,000 internally displaced Angolans. It continues with the Mine Action Programme, and the programme for the assistance for the demobilisation and reintegration of former combatants.

The total cost of this years programme is $187 million. By 23 April the total amount pledged or carried over from last year was $61,010,678.

Delays in peace lead to delays in aid

The failure of UNITA to quarter its rebel forces in line with the timetable set under the Lusaka protocol has led to urgently required aid being withheld by international donors.

The war-torn country had been expecting a significant amount of international assistance to help put the country back on its feet after decades of destructive war. However, figures produced by the United Nations Department of Humanitarian Affairs show that even the most basic aid - in the humanitarian field - has not reached the country.

The DHA has told ACTSA that donor interest in the country is very strong, but that donors have delayed for a period for observation before committing their funds. There are two interlinked issues: first, donors are waiting to see if the peace process will continue; second, many of the proposed projects can only be implemented once the process has reached a certain stage - for example demobilisation.

In 1995 the UN launched its Consolidated Inter-Agency Appeal for Angola to mobilise international help for urgently needed projects, totalling $303,338,748. However, figures obtained by ACTSA show that as of 29 February 1996 only 47.9% of these requirements were met.

The Appeal was split into three components: the Demobilisation and Reintegration Programme, the Humanitarian Assistance Programme, and the Mine Action Programme.

Demobilisation and Reintegration Programme

In the Quartering Phase of this programme 59% of required aid has been provided. The main task in the Quartering Phase is to provide the necessary humanitarian inputs, such as food and health provision for the UNITA troops. Of the planned requirements, the international community has met 84% of the needs.

However the projects covering humanitarian assistance for disabled and underage soldiers, and projects for technical coordination and institutional strengthening, only received 34% of required inputs.

UNITA has made several complaints about the conditions in the quartering areas, which it claims is responsible for the death of several of its troops. However, the UN Humanitarian Assistance Coordination Unit in Luanda (UCAH) reported on 11 April that "existing shortcomings in the implementation of the humanitarian assistance programme reported by UNITA were a direct result of the large and sudden influx of soldiers to the quartering areas". They also pointed out that from individual medical examinations of troops upon arrival at the quartering areas, 15 different health problems had been reported and were being treated.

In the other two phases in this programme, the demobilisation and reintegration phase in year one and two, no aid has been provided. This is a reflection of how far behind schedule the process has become.

Humanitarian Assistance Programme

The Humanitarian Assistance Programme was an ambitious set of projects to stabilise the situation in Angola, covering emergency food aid, sanitation, health, environmental protection, and many other emergency projects. The total amount required to cover the Humanitarian Assistance Programme was $179,192,206 of which 58% of needs were met. Broken down into ten sub-totals, the programme was met as follows:

sub-heading requirements % met

Food Production
and Rural Capacity $22,835,097 52%
Food Aid $67,130,262 100%
Nutrition $3,896,000 20%
Water and Sanitation $8,025,000 26%
Health $19,040,040 26%
Shelter, Relief and
Survival $33,156,000 12%
Education and
Assistance to
Children in Difficult
Circumstances $2,284,870 31%
Logistics $13,012,230 57%
Agency Operational
Support $3,380,000 83%
Coordination and
Capacity Building $6,432,707 33%

Mine Action Programme
The Mine Action Programme was set up to deal with the estimated ten million land mines buried in the ground. Already 70,000 Angolans have been maimed by landmines, and the remaining mines not only endanger the population, but stifle the recovery of Angolan agriculture. The total amount required for the programme was $13,182,331, of which 24% has been met.

As of 29 February 1996, no monies had been pledged to the Central Mine Action Training School which opened on 19 December 1995, and has so far trained 61 Angolans who will be demining in Malange and Kuito.

First Brussels Round Table monies arrive

In another positive sign, $110 million has been donated to Angola to assist with its reconstruction and development. This is the first money to come out of the Brussels Round Table meeting last September, when a billion dollars was pledged to help rebuild the country.

Prime Minister Marcolino Moco said in Luanda on 25 March that despite the reticence and hesitation of some countries, the first $110 million had been received.

IMF link aid to reform, and reform to peace

Many donors have been reticent in providing money for reconstruction and development, citing the decision of the International Monetary Fund to suspend its IMF staff-monitored programme in December 1995. This programme was to oversee the implementation of certain macro-economic policy changes, and did not involve any lending to Angola.

The suspension was based on a detailed inspection late last year. According to Frederick Ribe, Deputy Division Chief for the Africa Department at the IMF, in an interview with ACTSA, there was a "widespread failure to implement even the most simple reforms, including flagrant abuses".

Examples given included the "subversion" of the National Bank, the breaking of a formal agreement for control procedures by 1 October on the "petroleum account" at the Presidents office, and the failure to unify the two foreign exchange rates for the Kwanza currently operating in the country. According to the IMF official, this last condition was not met as it had been personally vetoed by the Angolan President.

Another senior official at the IMF pointed out that the fortunes of the peace process and economic reform were inseparable. Economic reforms were not expected without improvements in the security situation, and the peace process was more complicated than expected. Frederick Ribe was in Angola at the end of April discussing the economy.

The Secretary General of the UN, Dr Boutros Boutros-Ghali, stated in his report to the UN Security Council on 4 April that "while the IMF remains in contact with the Government, negotiations on a new programme are not expected to begin before at least the middle of 1996. In the meantime, the IMF continues to provide significant technical assistance to the National Bank of Angola and the Ministry of Finance".

The Angola Peace Monitor is produced every month by ACTSA - Action for Southern Africa, the successor organisation to the British Anti-Apartheid Movement, asa contribution towards the work of the Angola Emergency Campaign, which seeks to highlight the need for international action in support of peace and democracy in Angola.

A years subscription to the Angola Peace Monitor is available at a cost of 10 pounds sterling in Britain and 15 pounds sterling elsewhere. Please indicate whether you wish to receive the Angola Peace Monitor by post, fax, or e-mail. A full set of back issues is available at an additional cost of 2 pounds sterling. Payment should be made in pounds sterling. If you wish to pay in any other currency, you must add the equivalent of 6 pounds sterling to cover our bank charges.

ACTSA, 28 Penton Street, London N1 9SA, e-mail,
fax +44 171 837 3001, telephone +44 171 833 3133


Message-Id: <> From: "APIC" <> Date: Wed, 1 May 1996 22:39:54 -0500 Subject: Angola: Peace Monitor, II, 8