African summit will test Qaddafi
Nairobi, Kenya — Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, will inherit two major problems when he takes over the uneasy chairmanship of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) at the organization's Tripoli summit in August, Monitor contributor John Worrall reports.
Problem No. 1 is the fighting along the Somali-Ethiopian border. Somalia is accusing Ethiopia of backing border attacks by shadowy groups of Somali antigovernment rebels based in Ethiopia. Ethiopia denies any involvement. The Soviet Union has added to the confusion by announcing support of the Somali rebels.
Efforts by diplomats and Kenyan government officials in Nairobi, where the Somalia issue is extremely sensitive, have been unable to discover any rebel objectives other than destabilizing the government of President Muhammed Siad Barre. Mr. Barre has sent a message to Kenyan President Daniel T. arap Moi, current OAU chairman, urging him to bring Ethiopian ''aggression'' to the attention of the African heads of state. President Moi will probably pass the folder along to Colonel Qaddafi at the coming summit.
But the meeting is likely to be paralyzed by problem No. 2: the quarrel over whether the Saharan Polisario front will take its seat as OAU's 51st member. Monday, President Moi abandoned his efforts to hold a special meeting to solve the Polisario membership crisis before the OAU summit, because the meeting was threatened with a boycott. About 50 percent of the OAU member states violently oppose membership of the guerrillas, who call themselves the Saharan Arab Democratic Republic.