Archive for April, 2011

Söldner-Holding Aegis verklagt Basler Zeitung und SonntagsZeitung auf 267’000 Franken

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Die englische Söldnertruppe Aegis um Tim Spicer liess sich letztes Jahr in Basel nieder und wunderte sich dann, als ihr Geschäft in der Presse ein Thema wurde.

Jetzt veröffentlichte das Schweizer Medienmagazin Edito, dass die geschäftstüchtigen Privatkrieger juristisch gegen die Basler Zeitung (BaZ) vorgehen, die den Fall als erste publik machte. Und auch die SonntagsZeitung (SZ) nehmen die Aegis-Anwälte aufs Korn.

Die beliebten Vorwürfe gegen ungenehme Berichterstattung: Verletzung des Persönlichkeitsrechts sowie UWG (Gesetz gegen den unlauteren Wettbewerb). Die Verlage bestreiten die Anschuldigungen – alles andere wäre auch völlig absurd.

Und das berichtete die BaZ u.a.: Der König der Söldner sitzt jetzt in Basel. Auch bei der AZ lohnt sich mal die Suche nach Aegis. Unter anderem beschäftigten sich die Engländer bereits in der Schweiz im Spitalwesen

SWISS AMB ON FARC AND ELN PEACE PROCESS

Friday, April 29th, 2011
ID
06BOGOTA224
SUBJECT
SWISS AMB ON FARC AND ELN PEACE PROCESS
DATE
2006-01-11 21:09:00
CLASSIFICATION
CONFIDENTIAL
ORIGIN
Embassy Bogota
TEXT
id: 49555
date: 1/11/2006 21:20
refid: 06BOGOTA224
origin: Embassy Bogota
classification: CONFIDENTIAL
destination: 05BOGOTA12031|06BOGOTA65
header:
VZCZCXYZ0006
OO RUEHWEB 

DE RUEHBO #0224/01 0112120
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 112120Z JAN 06
FM AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1109
INFO RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN 0968
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 6468
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 7018
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JAN LIMA 3093
RUEHMD/AMEMBASSY MADRID 8768
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO 0286
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA 8668
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0768
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 3691
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1327
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUMIAAA/USCINCSO MIAMI FL

—————– header ends —————-

C O N F I D E N T I A L BOGOTA 000224

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/11/2016
TAGS: PHUM PREL PTER CO
SUBJECT: SWISS AMB ON FARC AND ELN PEACE PROCESS

REF: A) BOGOTA 65 B) 05 BOGOTA 12031

Classified By: Ambassador William B. Wood, Reasons: 1.4 (b) and (d)

¶1. (C) Summary. Swiss Ambassador Kupfer expressed disappointment on January 6 with the FARC’s rejection of the Swiss-led international commission proposal for a humanitarian exchange between the GOC and the FARC. He reported that, despite the setback, international commission members (one from France, Spain and SWITZERLAND) would meet again with the FARC in Colombia in early 2006 to continue discussions on the same proposal. Kupfer said coordinating the commission was going along fine for now but the French continued to do as they pleased. He cited the January 3 announcement that French Foreign Minister Douste-Blazy would travel to Colombia to discuss efforts to release Colombian-French Ingrid Betancourt. Kupfer said this was news to both the Swiss and Spanish. He also said GOC Peace Commissioner Restrepo was a challenge to deal with and that, unlike past humanitarian exchange initiatives, the Catholic Church had little involvement in this one. Kupfer represented SWITZERLAND, one of the three accompanying countries, at the GOC-ELN exploratory talks last month in Havana. He said round two later in January would focus on an agenda for future talks, and that the roles of the five civil society guarantors and the three countries would have to be re-defined. He predicted the GOC will want less involvement; the ELN more. He said Norway and the ELN pressed for moving the talks to Europe. According to Kupfer, the ELN is looking to challenge its placement on the EU terrorist list and wants to explore funding opportunities in Europe. In the end, both the ELN and GOC agreed to keep the talks in Havana for now. Kupfer underscored that, while the Swiss were happy to go along with that, they would support moving the talks to Europe if they advanced sufficiently, to enhance their legitimacy. The ELN’s placement on the EU terrorist list would prove no obstacle to SWITZERLAND if the circumstances were right. End Summary.

——————————
HUMANITARIAN EXCHANGE PROPOSAL
——————————

¶2. (C) On January 6, polcouns met with Swiss Ambassador Thomas Kupfer to discuss FARC rejection of an humanitarian prisoner exchange proposal (ref a), put forward by the recently assembled “international commission” with representatives from France, SWITZERLAND, and Spain. Kupfer expressed disappointment with the FARC reaction, which he characterized as a “clear and categorical no.” He said it was difficult to find anything positive in the FARC’s Dec. 29 communiqu, and complained that the FARC’s leaders were playing politics. First they complained they did not have the details of the proposal (which Kupfer said they received weeks earlier on December 15 along with the GOC), and then they complained they were not accorded sufficient respect when it was presented (i.e. by email). Kupfer insisted that the proposal was a good one. “They were stupid to reject it because they will only have to back down later,” he said.

¶3. (C) Despite the setback and low chance of success, Kupfer said the GOC and the FARC leadership had agreed to another meeting in Colombia “at the technical level” between
international commission members and the FARC early in 2006, perhaps in January. He noted that “difficulties with organizational details” still needed to be resolved, including the FARC’s insistence that the GOC not know where or when the meeting would take place. Kupfer stressed that the FARC’s attitude was unrealistic and that they had to show more transparency. He said upcoming discussions would be based on the proposal already rejected by the FARC.

———————–
IMPACT ON U.S. HOSTAGES
———————–
¶4. (C) Even if both parties finally agreed to discuss the possibility of a humanitarian exchange, Kupfer said the challenges would be overwhelming. FARC negotiators have added the return of Simon Trinidad and Sonia (both extradited to the U.S.) as critical to any deal. Kupfer speculated that the FARC would probably try holding back one or more Americans in any exchange, something the GOC had refused to consider. And finally, said Kupfer, the FARC still had not decided which FARC prisoners held by the GOC could be part of any humanitarian exchange.

——————————————— ———–
DEALING WITH THE FRENCH, THE GOC; THE ROLE OF THE CHURCH
——————————————— ———–

¶5. (C) According to Kupfer, SWITZERLAND has the coordinating lead among the three countries on commission initiatives but reining in the French continues to be a challenge. “The French generally do what they want,” he said. The latest surprise was the January 3 announcement out of Paris that Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy would visit Colombia soon to discuss efforts to release Ingrid Betancourt. Kupfer complained that Douste-Blazy would presumably not come without a new bilateral initiative, something neither the Swiss nor Spanish knew anything about. The only bright spot, said Kupfer, was that Spain planned to be much more engaged in the process.

¶6. (C) Kupfer acknowledged that dealing with the GOC, in particular with Peace Commissioner Restrepo, continued to be a challenge. Restrepo’s attitude and style were difficult. He was too forthright and stubborn, unwilling to take advice. While everyone was more or less in agreement on the role of the international commission, Kupfer was convinced Restrepo would seek to limit its involvement when “it could be the most useful.” Kupfer concluded that Restrepo had little experience in dealing with international community facilitators and this would complicate matters in any future negotiation.

¶7. (C) Kupfer noted with surprise that, unlike past initiatives, the Catholic Church was minimally involved with the initiative of the international commission. He surmised that relations between Church negotiator Monsignor Castro and the presidential palace, in particular Restrepo, were not good. At the same time, he acknowledged that the Church remained skeptical the FARC would agree to anything while Uribe is president, an argument strengthened by the FARC’s most recent communiqu (ref b).

—————————
GOC-ELN ENCOUNTER IN HAVANA
—————————

¶8. (C) Kupfer, who attended the December talks in Havana, was more optimistic about exploratory discussions between the GOC and the ELN, which will resume later this month. Restrepo will meet with the ELN’s Francisco Galan on January 11 to prepare for a second round of talks. Kupfer said all the goals were achieved during the first round: a dialogue was launched, confidence building began, and a follow-on meeting was set. Both parties “prudently” avoided trying to create problems for the other. Round two will still be “exploratory” and tackle the agenda for future talks. He noted that in Havana the ELN commander Antonio Garcia at first appeared distant and uninformed about the reality of present day Colombia, but is now thoroughly engaged in the process. Kupfer reported that Galan was more confident than in previous encounters and exhibited less need to take cues from Garcia. Kupfer said Evo Morales’ election victory in Bolivia gave the ELN negotiating team a psychological boost as well.

¶9. (C) Kupfer underscored that the five guarantors were crucial in getting both parties to Havana but their function at the negotiating table would now need to be re-defined into a supporting role. Kupfer predicted that this would be a problem as the five want to continue as major players. What was important now, said Kupfer, was a real facilitator in the process.

¶10. (C) Regarding the three “accompanying” countries (Norway, Spain and SWITZERLAND), Kupfer said their role, too, would have to be clarified, both on the political side as well as on the logistics/accompaniment/facilitation side. The GOC’s approach so far has been, “we’re glad you’re here and we’ll call you if we need you.” Kupfer said Norway in particular took considerable umbrage at this. The ELN, on the other hand, wanted the three countries more involved as the process develops.

¶11. (C) Kupfer also reported some discussion of Brazil joining as an accompanying country but no decision was taken. He stressed that the minimal role played by Cuba and Venezuela, the former as host and the latter as facilitator for Garcia’s travel, was also helpful. It is better to have them involved this way than sabotaging the process from the outside, he said.

¶12. (C) According to Kupfer, Norway pressed hard for a European venue for the second round; SWITZERLAND and Spain did not. The ELN supported Norway, preferring to travel to Europe for political and financial reasons. Kupfer said the ELN complained several times about their terrorist designation status and wanted a European venue to challenge it. The ELN also made clear that Europe contained opportunities for future funding needs. In the end, the ELN agreed to keep the talks in Cuba, as did the GOC. Kupfer underscored that, while Bern was happy to go along with the Cuban venue for now, they would support moving o Europe if the talks advanced sufficiently, to enhance legitimacy and chances for success. The EU designation of the ELN as a terrorist group would prove no obstacle to SWITZERLAND.

——-
COMMENT
——-

¶13. (C) For now, U.S. redlines are covered, in particular with the FARC initiative, as the GOC continues to insist that all American hostages be part of any exchange. However, we will continue to monitor both processes closely as France and SWITZERLAND in particular, may begin pressing the GOC to make further concessions to keep the initiative with the FARC alive. We agree with the pessimistic assessment of the Catholic Church that the odds for a humanitarian exchange between the GOC and the FARC remain low.

WOOD

=======================CABLE ENDS============================

HEADER
VZCZCXYZ0006
OO RUEHWEB 

DE RUEHBO #0224/01 0112120
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 112120Z JAN 06
FM AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1109
INFO RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN 0968
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 6468
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 7018
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JAN LIMA 3093
RUEHMD/AMEMBASSY MADRID 8768
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO 0286
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA 8668
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0768
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 3691
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1327
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUMIAAA/USCINCSO MIAMI FL

XTAGS: XTAGPHUM, XTAGPREL, XTAGPTER, XTAGCO 06BOGOTA224

TAGS
PHUM PREL PTER CO
ADDED
2011-04-29 00:12:00
STAMP
2011-04-30 11:01:11
VOTE_POINTS
0
VOTE_COUNT
0
VOTE_RATING
0
PRIORITY
OO
TWEETS
0
MANUAL
N
SITELINK
ISNEW
N
FINGERPRINT1
b1a0114b588819c1a31556a531914f0c

http://www.wikileaks.ch/cable/2006/01/06BOGOTA224.html

DIRTY ENERGY: CORRUPTION AND LACK OF TRANSPARENCY PLAGUE BULGARIAN ENERGY SECTOR

Friday, April 29th, 2011
ID 06SOFIA1691
SUBJECT DIRTY ENERGY: CORRUPTION AND LACK OF TRANSPARENCY
DATE 2006-12-20 13:01:00
CLASSIFICATION CONFIDENTIAL
ORIGIN Embassy Sofia
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 06 SOFIA 001691 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

EUR/NCE FOR NORDBERG

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/20/2016
TAGS: ENRG ETRD KCOR KCRM PGOV PREL BU
SUBJECT: DIRTY ENERGY: CORRUPTION AND LACK OF TRANSPARENCY
PLAGUE BULGARIAN ENERGY SECTOR

REF: A) SOFIA 1652 B) SOFIA 1481

Classified By: CDA Alex Karagiannis for reasons 1.4 (b) & (d)

¶1. (C) SUMMARY: Cleaning up pernicious corruption in Bulgaria’s powerful (and often murky) energy sector, where cronyism is alive and well, should rank high on Bulgaria’s to do list. A closer look at the sector reveals an ideal environment for graft and abuse. Accounting for a significant share of the country’s wealth, Bulgaria’s energy field is a closed-off, clubby branch of the economy, dominated by a handful of players who have a stranglehold over public procurement contracts and disproportionate influence over government decisionmakers and the country’s energy policy. Energy and Economy Minister Rumen Ovcharov claims he wants to rid the sector of shadowy influences. Yet the government’s newly-signed contract to build the Belene nuclear power plant (ref A) epitomizes all the ills plaguing the sector–a lack of transparency, little or no competition, weak public–and often parliamentary–scrutiny, and enormous waste and abuse of government resources. END SUMMARY

¶2. (SBU) XXXXXXXXXXXX

OPPORTUNITIES FOR ABUSE

¶3. (SBU) Unsurprisingly, the energy sector is an attractive target for corruption and exploitive interests. Energy holds the second highest share of Bulgaria’s GDP (after industry), accounting for 16-20% of GDP. Half of Bulgaria’s top ten firms in 2005 (based on revenues) are in energy, while several others are related to fuel producers or traders. The sector also tends to be small and “clubby”–owing to the technical complexity and uniqueness of its work and the enormous economic and national security implications. Technical and economic debates on important energy decisions are often closed. This, along with the sector’s strong dependency on external energy sources, creates conditions for the formation of political and economic rentseekers.
According to a study by XXXXXXXXXXXX, there are one or more well-organized circles that control the sector regardless of who is in power politically. These energy consultants and traders have penetrated the top political circles (independent of party affiliations) and have close connections with the external–mainly Russian–suppliers of energy, who themselves enjoy close ties to high-level politicians at home.

¶4. (SBU) Abuse takes many forms. Many projects “require” the role of consultants, who assume a state-like function as the executor or manager of a project, despite their private character and frequent business ties to the venture itself. The consultants, whose actual work is hard to define and quantify monetarily, typically receive a percentage of the overall value of the project. Many corrupt payments are believed to pass through such consultants. Similar to consultants is the use of “middlemen or intermediaries” in the import and export of energy sources. These middlemen will either add an additional “tax” on the price of an import or make a handsome profit by exporting a resource (usually electricity) that the state could have profited from itself.
As with consultants, intermediaries, who are closely associated with state institutions such as the National Electric Company (NEK), are allowed to dominate and control their respective sectors.

¶5. (SBU) The awarding of state tenders is another area of suspected abuse and corruption. A number of expensive energy-related projects have been issued without competitive tenders (some involving U.S. firms). Many of these projects, particularly in the nuclear field, have gone to the same firms. Other tenders have been awarded at clearly inflated prices–“cash cow” projects ideally created for corruption, according to critics. True competitive tenders have been cancelled on technicalities, only to be reissued later with a single candidate and at a higher price. For example, a U.S. firm, new to the sector, made the best offer (9 million Euro) in a 2004 tender to be a project engineer-consultant for the rehabilitation of the Maritsa East 2 thermal plant. Shortly after the bids were opened, the procedure was suddenly cancelled–reportedly for a lack of budget resources–only to be reopened a few months later for a slightly modified, but analogous, project. At that time, only one candidate, well known to the contracting authority, submitted a bid and won with a offer worth 18 million Euro.

¶6. (SBU) Other examples are more blatant and involve outright fraud and embezzlement, as was illustrated this summer when authorities discovered that the head of Sofia’s District Heating company (or Toplofikatsia-Sofia), Valentin Dimitrov, stole and tried to launder at least 1.64 million Euro from the state-owned company. Dimitrov’s abuse consisted of issuing contracts at inflated prices, making phony purchases and issuing billings in increments just below the minimum value required to report them. The scandal caused a public uproar and triggered a (still ongoing) parliamentary investigation into Toplofikatsia and other allegations of corruption in the sector, including the role of consultants, energy exports and the modernization of Kozloduy Units 5 and 6.

BULGARIA’S ENERGY MAFIA: BOGOMIL MANCHEV

¶7. (C) Three names always mentioned as key players in Bulgaria’s so-called “energy mafia” are Bogomil Manchev from Risk Engineering, Krassimir Georgiev from Frontier and Hristo Kovachki. Manchev and Georgiev have been omnipresent in the sector since the early 1990s, while Kovachki is considered a new player.

¶8. (C) Bogomil Manchev’s presence in the energy field, particularly the nuclear sector, is pervasive. His engineering and consulting company, Risk Engineering, founded in 1992, got its start working as a subcontractor for Westinghouse for a EU Phare project related to Kozloduy’s Units 1-4. From there, Manchev and Risk’s influence grew as he won successive Phare projects for improving safety and security measures at Kozloduy Units 3 and 4, preparing documents for the development of Bulgaria’s uranium mines in Simitli and Dospat, assessing a potential national storehouse for radioactive waste, etc.

¶9. (C) By the time of Prime Minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha’s government (2001-2005), Manchev’s power in the energy sector was rumored to be all-encompassing. XXXXXXXXXXXX, told us that Manchev controlled all public procurements in the sector, and others have echoed this. Manchev held himself out, and was regarded, as the “shadow Energy Minister,” with significant influence over then Energy Minister Milko Kovachev (Kovachev graduated from Sofia’s Technical University three years before Manchev and the two were colleagues at Kozloduy). Manchev controlled personnel decisions regarding state-related energy associations, according to XXXXXXXXXXXX, and advised Kovachev what actions to take related to government tenders. Manchev’s influence, driven in part by Kovachev’s lack of political support within the coalition, earned the Ministry the nickname–“Ministry of Risk Engineering.”

¶10. (C) According to XXXXXXXXXXXX, Manchev receives most of the work in the energy sector. Manchev has an ownership stake in 10 different firms and is the sub-agent for hundreds of other firms. XXXXXXXXXXXX, told us that Manchev controls “everything” at Kozloduy. Manchev possesses the first license for trading electricity in Bulgaria, holds the sales quota for Kozloduy’s (domestic) electricity, and is responsible for all of the plant’s service and repair contracts. The common joke among many journalists is that he has “privatized” even the exit and entrance of Kozloduy.

¶11. (C) Manchev is believed to have strong influence over the directors of Kozloduy and NEK, whose previous deputy chairman was a former Risk employee. Likewise, NEK uses the Commercial Corporate Bank for much of its business, which according to XXXXXXXXXXXX has a secret partnership with Risk (Ref B). Further corroboration came when a respected U.S. energy company recently complained to us that Kozloduy’s management is trying to force them to use Risk Engineering as a sub-contractor or partner in areas where Risk Engineering is not qualified. Company officials told us they fear that failure to do so will jeopardize this and other contracts, but they are concerned that working with Risk Engineering in this specific capacity could harm the product and the company’s reputation.

¶12. (C) Moreover, Manchev and Risk have a close working relationship with the Australian-U.S. firm WorleyParsons. In 1998, Manchev and Risk formed a business partnership with Parsons, specifically its regional director in Europe, Djurica Tankosic, an American citizen. The partnership, called GCR, was formed to modernize Kozloduy’s Units 5 and 6, which has been conducted by Westinghouse. The relationship between Manchev and Tankosic is reportedly very close; the address for Parsons E & C Bulgaria is the same as Risk Engineering. It is this relationship that Manchev is likely referring to when, according to XXXXXXXXXXXX, he tells people that he is working for the United States–which, of course, has no basis in fact.

MANCHEV’S REACH IN THE SECTOR

¶13. (C) In 2004 NEK issued two contracts related to the building of Belene–an environmental impact assessment report and a technical-economic study))with the goal of preparing a document for the parliamentary energy committee. The contracts were valued at around 8 million dollars and were given)) without a public tender–to Parsons, with Risk Engineering doing much of the work, particularly on the environmental report. A similar technical-economic study for Belene was conducted in 2000 by Energoproekt, the former state institution for developing energy projects, for 150,000 USD, as was an environmental impact study for Kozoloduy in1999. According to energy experts who worked on the former studies, Parsons and Manchev’s reports were not significantly different from the earlier reports and were largely just “cut and pasted” from the old studies. This should be no surprise since Manchev now owns the archives of Energoproekt,
according to XXXXXXXXXXXX.
Moreover, such reports in Europe and the U.S. cost no more than one million dollars, according to XXXXXXXXXXXX. As one critic of the deal said, “you don’t have to be an economist to realize that NEK could have gotten a better price for the study.” In 2004, Evdokia Maneva, former environment minister, tried to raise alarm bells about the deal and requested prosecutors investigate the matter. Minister Kovachev maintained that the contracts were legal and fell under Article 19 of the public procurement law, which states that research and development projects can be negotiated directly.

¶14. (C) Bulgaria is the leading exporter of electricity in the Balkans, supplying power to Kosovo, Albania, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, and others. In 2005 NEK (which still maintains a monopoly over electricity exports) exported a then record 7.5 billion Kilowatts of power, making Bulgaria the fourth largest electricity exporter in Europe (after France, the Czech Republic and Poland). However, 90 percent of these exports are not sold by NEK but by Bulgarian and foreign intermediaries, who receive the electricity from NEK at a low price and then resell it for a huge profit.

¶15. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXX, argues that the use of intermediaries is clearly disadvantageous for the Bulgarian state. According to XXXXXXXXXXXX, NEK)) through this arrangement–loses 47 million USD of potential profit a year. Moreover, the firms to which NEK chooses to sell its electricity are the same questionable ones. In 2005, the main exporter of Bulgarian electricity was the Serb company EFT, which through its sister company, EFT Bulgaria, accounted for 70 percent of exports. Interestingly, EFT Bulgaria is owned by Manchev’s firm, “Energy Finances Group.” Tankosic is likewise active in electricity exports; firms linked to him have exported power to Albania. Similarly, Manchev is the main intermediary responsible for the coal imports Bulgaria depends on to fire its thermal plants in Ruse and Varna.

KRASSIMIR GEORGIEV

¶16. (C) Another name that always emerges when people talk about problems in the energy sector is Krassimir Georgiev. According to the press, Georgiev is one of the richest men in Bulgaria and lives mostly in SWITZERLAND. He and current Energy Minister Ovcharov both attended Moscow’s Institute of Energy and were later reacquainted when Georgiev worked for a local Communist Party committee in Sofia and was directly responsible for Energoproekt, where Ovcharov was working. Georgiev’s main company, Frontier, is present wherever there is money–energy, real estate, oil pipelines, highways, military offsets etc.

¶17. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXX, told us that Georgiev usually develops the concept for a project and then outsources the actual work to various engineering or technical firms. As XXXXXXXXXXXX explains it, he is basically a rent-seeker who aims to make a large percentage off multi-million dollar deals. Georgiev was the primary legal consultant behind the notoriously corrupt Trakiya Highway deal. According to XXXXXXXXXXXX, at the height of the controversy surrounding Trakiya, Georgiev offered to pay XXXXXXXXXXXX 45,000 Euros to write a positive article on Frontier; when XXXXXXXXXXXX refused, Georgiev found XXXXXXXXXXXX to do it at a lower price.

¶18. (C) Georgiev has been the consultant or lobbyist behind three major projects–“Lower Arda Cascade,” “Marista East 1” and “Maritsa East 3”–where investments topped 800 million USD. With Maritsa East 3, Georgiev acted as the principal lobbyist for the US firm Entergy, which won the project in a non-competitive process after being nominated by the then Energy Minister Ivan Shilyashki as a “strategic investor.” Members of the Socialist party claim Shilyashki and most other top figures at the Energy Ministry during Ivan Kostov’s government were under the personal wardship of Georgiev. Georgiev also was involved in the Tsankov Kamak hydropower plant and Yadenitsa dam projects, as well as the nuclear fuel contract for Kozloduy. Moreover, Frontier currently owns a 45 percent stake in the Universal Burgas Terminal, a key piece of the infrastructure connected to the future Burgas-Alexandropolis pipeline, which is currently being negotiated by Bulgaria, Russia and Greece.

¶19. (C) Most Bulgarians are familiar with Georgiev from the Toplofikatcia scandal, when it was revealed that he and Valentin Dimitrov’s elderly mother — who also faces charges of money laundering — are partners in a real estate firm. Many people expect Georgiev’s influence in the sector to grow now while Ovcharov is Energy Minister. XXXXXXXXXXXX told us Georgiev, who holds no official position at the Ministry, participates in Ovcharov’s official meetings on a regular basis and has accompanied him on official visits abroad–often to the dismay of both local and foreign businessmen and officials. Russian energy officials are reported to have raised the issue of Georgiev’s presence at inter-government talks while Citigroup officials walked out of a presentation because of his presence.

¶20. (C) Georgiev was involved in the Energy Ministry’s recent decision to issue (without a tender) a 14-year contract to the Russian firm TVEL to supply nuclear fuel to Kozloduy. XXXXXXXXXXXX, told us the deal was clearly unfavorable)) with the fuel costing 40 percent more than in Russia and the markup allegedly being divided between the Bulgarian (25%) and Russian (15%) intermediaries.

HRISTO KOVACHKI

¶21. (C) Hristo Kovachki is the newest player in the sector and, according to XXXXXXXXXXXX, lacks the professional expertise and savvy of Manchev and Georgiev. Kovachki’s roots are more directly associated with organized crime. He was a close associate of Konstantin Dimitrov (a.k.a. Samokovetsa), who, before being murdered in Amsterdam in 2003, was one of Bulgaria’s biggest smugglers. Some, like XXXXXXXXXXXX, believe that Dimitrov’s illicit activities were the source of Kovachki’s start-up capital, which he then used to buy into the energy sector. Others who are more acquainted with Dimitrov and Bulgaria’s smuggling channels see Russia and Russian organized crime behind Kovachki’s wealth. Regardless of the source of his initial wealth, Kovacki’s current empire is vast. Along with being the owner of the only brick factory in the Balkans (Brikel), Kovachki and his primary company “Atomenergoremont” own at least 4 mines, 5 district heating facilities (in Burgas, Pleven, Veliko Turnovo, Gabrovo and Vratsa), several thermal power plants (TPP) including a 51% stake in Dimitrovgrad’s mini-Martisa East 3, as well as controlling five coal companies and being a minority shareholder in Sofia’s municipal bank. More recently, he was the only bidder for the Sliven heating utility in late November.

OVCHAROV: THE PROBLEM OR THE SOLUTION?

¶22. (C) Energy Minister Ovcharov has said both publicly and privately that he would like to cleanse the sector of these “friendly circles” and have decisions based more strictly on competency. In an August 8 meeting with the Ambassador, Ovcharov (whose ties to Georgiev and Dimitrov became front page news after the Toplofikatzia scandal) eagerly highlighted the GOB’s efforts to limit the activities of “big economic bosses” to control the sector.

¶23. (C) Despite Ovcharov’s claim to want to clean up the energy sector, the recently signed Belene contract (for 3.9 billion Euro) is yet another example of what critics are calling a “grand project for corruption.” A number of observers have raised serious doubts about the project, saying the government has never presented clear evidence that Belene is beneficial or even necessary. Many suspect it is largely a gift to the nuclear lobby, which has strongly pressed for the project, to make up for the loss of Kozloduy’s Units 3 and 4. The decision to build it was decided by the previous government–now part of the three-party coalition–with little or no public debate.

¶24. (C) Ovcharov and the present government have justified Belene by raising fears that Bulgaria will face domestic energy shortages once the units at Kozloduy are shut down. People like XXXXXXXXXXXX, however, have demonstrated that Bulgaria will have more than enough excess (at least 2500 megawatts) domestic energy capacity following the decommissioning and won’t need additional power until at least 2020–instead of 2010 as Ovcharov contends. Though Bulgaria’s role as the region’s leading electricity exporter may suffer, the lion’s share of these profits ends up in intermediaries’ pockets anyway. More important, building a new nuclear reactor is not necessarily the most economically efficient or effective way to make up for the loss of capacity, say critics. There are a number of other significantly cheaper alternatives including building another 600 MGW block at Marista East 3 for 800,000 USD, renovating the thermal plant at Varna, or even building another reactor at Kozloduy itself.

¶25. (C) Kozloduy for a long time has been the “lifeblood” of the energy sector due to the countless activities related to its operation, servicing, safety enhancements, supply of fuel and decommissioning. The Belene project is similarly expected to be a serious windfall for the army of engineers and consultants that will help build it. NEK once again has picked its favorite consultants–Parsons and Risk–to oversee the project. Through their partnership GCR, Bogomil Manchev, along with Parsons, is slated to be the principle architect-engineer supervising the construction of Belene. For this, the company is expected to receive approximately 300 to 400 million Euro.

¶26. (C) The resources in Belene are so huge that all of the competing energy and political lobbies will be able to get a piece of the pie, which is something Manchev apparently has in mind, according to XXXXXXXXXXXX. Krassimir Georgiev and Frontier already have reserved a place for themselves in the structuring and possibly the financing of the project while Kovachki and Atomenergoremont are also likely to be involved, Manchev confirmed to XXXXXXXXXXXX. Firms close to the mainly ethnic-Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms and its leader Ahmed Dogan, which controls the Environmental Ministry responsible for issuing permits, also have the green light to participate. In a nutshell, Belene is the posterchild for all of the ills plaguing the sector–a lack of transparency, an apparent waste of public funds and the continuity of entrenched and monopolistic groups.

¶27. (C) COMMENT: Ovcharov is widely seen–even in his own party–as benefiting personally from his close ties to domestic and Russian energy interests. While there is no smoking gun, BSP MPs privately accuse him of putting personal business interests ahead of the party’s, if not the country’s. The EU’s concern with the energy sector has been less about corruption and more about nuclear safety and improving competitiveness in time for Bulgaria’s accession. Progress on the latter, which has been spotty, holds the greatest promise for eventually cleaning up the sector. Bulgaria is under pressure to break up NEK’s de facto monopoly over power imports and exports when it accedes to the EU. Regardless, Bulgaria will have to untangle this nest of private and public interests and move towards more Western practices if it truly wants to ground this key economic sector and allow all taxpayers and consumers to benefit. Until then, American investors need to understand that the sector may be ripe for profits, but also is filled with players with hidden agendas and unseen barriers against
success. END COMMENT

SOFIA 00001691 006 OF 006

KARAGIANNIS

VZCZCXRO0109
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHSF #1691/01 3541352
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 201352Z DEC 06
FM AMEMBASSY SOFIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2986
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RHEBAAA/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC 

XTAGS: XTAGENRG, XTAGETRD, XTAGKCOR, XTAGKCRM, XTAGPGOV, XTAGPREL, XTAGBU 06SOFIA1691

TAGS ENRG ETRD KCOR KCRM PGOV PREL BU
ADDED 2011-04-29 12:12:00
STAMP 2011-05-02 12:29:16
VOTE_POINTS 0
VOTE_COUNT 0
VOTE_RATING 0
PRIORITY PP
TWEETS 0
MANUAL N
SITELINK
ISNEW N
FINGERPRINT1 b1f58bd9ff2d0ca776737743e772e6c1

http://www.wikileaks.ch/cable/2006/12/06SOFIA1691.html

DAS SHAPIRO MEETS WITH FATHER DARIO ECHEVERRI

Friday, April 29th, 2011
ID 04BOGOTA13139
SUBJECT DAS SHAPIRO MEETS WITH FATHER DARIO ECHEVERRI
DATE 2004-11-02 18:06:00
CLASSIFICATION CONFIDENTIAL
ORIGIN Embassy Bogota
TEXT id: 22386
date: 11/2/2004 18:31
refid: 04BOGOTA13139
origin: Embassy Bogota
classification: CONFIDENTIAL
destination:
header:
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available. 

—————– header ends —————-

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BOGOTA 013139

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/28/2014
TAGS: PTER PHUM PINR PREL PGOV CO ELN
SUBJECT: DAS SHAPIRO MEETS WITH FATHER DARIO ECHEVERRI

Classified By: Ambassador William B. Wood for reasons
1.4 (b) and (d)

¶1. (U) December 15, 2004, 11:15-12:15 a.m., Espicopal
Conference, Bogota

¶2. (U) Participants:

U.S.
—-

DAS Charles Shapiro
Ambassador William B. Wood
Jeff DeLaurentis, POLCOUNS
David Henifin, Deputy Director for Andean Affairs
Sarah LaGier, POL (notetaker)

Colombia
——–

Father Dario Echeverri, Secretary General of the National
Conciliation Commission (CCN)

——-
Summary
——-

¶3. (C) Father Echeverri was optimistic that a meeting between the ELN and Mexican Government would create the right conditions for the launching of a formal peace process between the ELN and the GOC. However, he said two major obstacles remained: (1) the FARC’s control over the ELN; and (2) the ELN’s belief that the Uribe administration was not committed to social and political reform. Echeverri believed that the FARC was not serious about a peace process with the Uribe government, but said the Catholic Church would keep pressing for a humanitarian exchange and eventually a peace process. He asserted that the best way to weaken the illegal armed groups was to have an effective reinsertion program, but expressed concern that the GOC’s program was weak and poorly funded. Echeverri acknowledged that the FARC and the Chavez administration have long-standing ties. End Summary.

¶4. (C) As Secretary General of National Conciliation Commission (CNN), Father Echeverri is authorized by the GOC to reach out to the illegal armed groups, particularly the FARC, to try start formal peace talks.

——————————-
ELN: Possible Meeting in Mexico
——————————-

¶5. (C) Echeverri was hopeful that the proposed meeting between the ELN Central Command (COCE) and Mexican facilitator Ambassador Andres Valencia would help set conditions for a formal peace process. He praised Valencia’s efforts and said the ELN was likely to accept the conditions of the proposal, including suspending all violent activity while the meeting took place. He said the ELN was seeking to gain political recognition. However, two obstacles to formal negotiations remain:

– The ELN is dependent on the FARC financially and militarily. The FARC would control any ELN peace process with the Uribe administration. The COCE does not have sufficient power over the group’s combatant fronts to implement a peace process.

– The ELN does not view the Uribe Administration as serious about meeting its demands for social reform. Although Uribe has said he is not opposed to holding a national assembly, the ELN would not be satisfied with a one-time forum but rather wants concrete political concessions. Echeverri said that he believed the Uribe administration should allocate as many resources to social programs as it does to the armed forces.

¶6. (C) Echeverri agreed that the ELN is no longer a military threat but warned against discounting it altogether. The December 13 capture of an ELN field commander powerful in Valle del Cauca Department was a serious blow to the group. He asserted that the ELN, nonetheless, has a significant social base in parts of Arauca, Narino, Santander, and Valle del Cauca Departments. He noted that the group is not as deeply involved in drug trafficking as the FARC or the paramilitaries. He hoped the group would eventually be held accountable for numerous kidnappings, including the 2002 kidnapping of a 12 year-old boy whom they continue to hold for ransom. He also expressed concern that ELN units could be absorbed into either the FARC or paramilitary groups.
———————————
FARC: Not Yet Serious About Peace
———————————

¶7. (C) In October, Echeverri met with the SWISS government to coordinate efforts to facilitate a humanitarian exchange. The SWISS have been authorized by the Uribe  administration to reach out to the FARC to orchestrate an exchange. Echeverri hoped that an exchange would be a first step toward an eventual peace process. He pulled Shapiro aside at the end of the meeting to assure him that he is putting exactly the same priority on the three U.S. hostages as on the Colombian hostages. He stressed that the FARC was not serious about holding negotiations with the Uribe administration in part because the country’s widespread poverty provides the FARC with easy recruits, and Plan Patriota, in Echeverri’s view, was not hurting the FARC. For example, Echeverri claimed that FARC Secretariat member Mono Jojoy recently met with journalists in the middle of a Plan Patriota area of operations with minimal security.

¶8. (C) Echeverri noted that the FARC was undergoing a leadership change, which he does not fully understand yet. He believes Secretariat member Raul Reyes may be sick and
losing influence, while Secretariat member Alfonso Cano and subordinate Pablo Catatumbo are gaining power. Echeverri has received invitations from both Reyes and Catatumbo to meet to discuss conditions for the humanitarian exchange. He implied that there were some divergences among the FARC leaders that could possibly be exploited.

————————
Reinsertion Program Weak
————————

¶9. (C) Echeverri asserted that the best way to weaken the illegal armed groups was to offer the rank and file a better life as civilians. He expressed concern that the government’s reinsertion program for deserters and the demobilizing paramilitaries was not effective. Without adequate funding to train and employ the deserters, they would return to a life of crime and violence.

———————–
Venezuelan Ties to FARC
———————–

¶10. (C) Echeverri acknowledged that the FARC have long-standing ties to Venezuela and President Chavez. He is aware of at least one meeting between FARC Secretariat member Raul Reyes on December 26, 2003 in the Petare municipality in Caracas with GOV officials. Echeverri noted that when Venezuela hosted meetings between the GOC and the FARC in the 1990s, the FARC negotiators clearly were on friendly terms with the GOV officials. Colombian Ambassador to Venezuela Enrique Vargas Ramirez is a member of the CCN, and Echeverri hopes Vargas can take advantage of GOV-FARC ties to reach out to the FARC through Venezuelan channels.

¶11. (U) DAS Shapiro cleared on this cable.
WOOD

=======================CABLE ENDS============================

HEADER This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available. 

XTAGS: XTAGPTER, XTAGPHUM, XTAGPINR, XTAGPREL, XTAGPGOV, XTAGCO, XTAGELN 04BOGOTA13139

TAGS PTER PHUM PINR PREL PGOV CO ELN
ADDED 2011-04-29 00:12:00
STAMP 2011-04-30 15:26:07
VOTE_POINTS 0
VOTE_COUNT 0
VOTE_RATING 0
PRIORITY RR
TWEETS 0
MANUAL N
SITELINK
ISNEW N
FINGERPRINT1 1a1e6109ac3baebf6430538767ed3b45

http://www.wikileaks.ch/cable/2004/11/04BOGOTA13139.html

 

MFA AND PRESIDENCY VIEWS ON COLOMBIAN HOSTAGE NEGOTIATIONS FOLLOWING PRESIDENT URIBE’S JANUARY 21 VISIT TO PARIS

Friday, April 29th, 2011
ID 08PARIS149
SUBJECT MFA AND PRESIDENCY VIEWS ON COLOMBIAN HOSTAGE
DATE 2008-01-29 13:01:00
CLASSIFICATION CONFIDENTIAL
ORIGIN Embassy Paris
TEXT id: 139121
date: 1/29/2008 13:17
refid: 08PARIS149
origin: Embassy Paris
classification: CONFIDENTIAL
destination:
header:
VZCZCXRO3911
PP RUEHROV
DE RUEHFR #0149/01 0291317
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 291317Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1812
INFO RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN 2056
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 0470
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 2010
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 1499
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0540
RUEHMD/AMEMBASSY MADRID 2762
RUEHROV/AMEMBASSY VATICAN 0079
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA 0045 

—————– header ends —————-

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 PARIS 000149

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/24/2018
TAGS: PREL PTER PHUM FR CO VZ SP SZ VT
SUBJECT: MFA AND PRESIDENCY VIEWS ON COLOMBIAN HOSTAGE
NEGOTIATIONS FOLLOWING PRESIDENT URIBE’S JANUARY 21 VISIT
TO PARIS

REF: 08 BOGOTA 00267

Classified By: POL M/C Josiah Rosenblatt for Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

¶1. (C) SUMMARY: MFA A/S for the Americas Daniel Parfait described an uncertain way forward to secure the release of FARC hostages following the January 21 visit of Colombian President Uribe to France. While a determined President Sarkozy continues to press the MFA for proposals to obtain Ingrid Betancourt’s release, MFA specialists perceive a negotiated solution in large measure subject to the whims of an unpredictable FARC that is focused on self-preservation and continuing the drug trade. During his one-day visit, Uribe met with Sarkozy and Ingrid Betancourt’s family. Uribe asked Sarkozy to support the Catholic Church’s mediation and thanked the GOF for continuing to support keeping the FARC on the EU terrorist list. Uribe also asked France, Spain and Switzerland to restart a European dialogue with the FARC; however, Parfait expressed doubt these discussions would be productive given their failure two years ago. Parfait remains unsure of the best course of action to secure the release of the hostages, but does credit Hugo Chavez for securing the release of Clara Rojas and Consuelo Gonzalez as well as obtaining “proof of life” for Ingrid Betancourt and other hostages, the two achievements on the hostage front in recent years. END SUMMARY

HOSTAGES: URIBE’S PROPOSALS – SARKOZY PRESSES FOR A STRATEGY
——————————————— —————

¶2. (C) Daniel Parfait, A/S-equivalent for the Americas, met EUR/WE Office Director Kathy Allegrone and Political Minister Counselor Josiah Rosenblatt on January 24. Parfait credited Hugo Chavez with the November 30 “proof of life” and the January 10 release of Clara Rojas and Consuelo Gonzalez. When asked about next steps, Parfait said France supports Uribe’s proposal for the Catholic Church to act as a negotiator. He also noted that Uribe supports the resumption of the SWISS, Spanish, French mediation effort, but he is not optimistic that the unpredictable FARC will accept the proposal. Damien Loras, Americas’ Counselor to President Sarkozy told us on January 24 that the French are wary of
Uribe’s offer and believe he might support renewed SWISS, Spanish and French involvement to limit each country’s ability to maneuver independently. France also supports Brazil and Argentina playing an unspecified role to promote the release of the hostages. Parfait acknowledged Sarkozy is singularly focused on the Betancourt hostage aspect of this issue, and Loras privately admitted that France has a “Betancourt problem” – Betancourt’s value to the FARC rises as the media attention and international support for her increases. In light of this political pressure, Sarkozy regularly presses the MFA to propose solutions; however, Parfait acknowledged that France cannot make offers until the FARC provide an idea of what concessions they want. Parfait suggested the FARC’s primary objective is to stay alive and to continue drug trafficking.

¶3. (C) While he had limited detail on the Uribe visit, Parfait described Hugo Chavez’s proposal to remove the FARC from international terrorist lists as a “surprise.” After suffering international embarrassment when the EU flatly rejected the idea, Chavez privately walked back his suggestion and explained to Parfait during a January 13-14
trip to Guatemala that he hoped the EU would consider the FARC “belligerents” and not “terrorists” if they freed hostages and stopped kidnapping. France publicly rejected Chavez’s suggestion as long as the FARC does not release its hostages. Parfait clarified that France would consider Chavez’s suggestion only if the FARC liberated hostages,
stopped kidnapping, and began negotiations.

VENEZUELA
———
¶4. (C) Parfait welcomed Chavez’s December 3 referendum loss as “the best thing” that could have happened to the country. He noted that Chavez’s first response to the loss (acceptance of the vote) was constructive, but his secondary reaction (i.e. a call for a new referendum) has not been “as good.” Parfait said Chavez’s defeat offers the opposition an
opportunity to strive towards greater internal organization to create better prospects for democracy in Venezuela. Both Parfait and Loras commented on Chavez’s fascinating personality saying that he is able to adapt to audiences very easily and is politically savvy. Parfait called the diplomatic row between Colombia and Venezuela as the worst in decades. He expects Colombia’s economy will suffer dramatically as a result.

CUBA
—-
¶5. (C) On Cuba issues, Parfait expects the GOF to continue to defer to Spain once France takes over the EU Presidency. During an August visit to Miami, Parfait was impressed by the thoughtful, pragmatic representatives of the Cuban-American community he met with. He recommended that they meet with EU officials, probably on a visit to Brussels. Such contact could help broaden and inform the EU point of view on Cuba.

Please visit Paris’ Classified Website at: http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/paris/index.cfm

PEKALA

=======================CABLE ENDS============================

HEADER VZCZCXRO3911
PP RUEHROV
DE RUEHFR #0149/01 0291317
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 291317Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1812
INFO RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN 2056
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 0470
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 2010
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 1499
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0540
RUEHMD/AMEMBASSY MADRID 2762
RUEHROV/AMEMBASSY VATICAN 0079
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA 0045 

XTAGS: XTAGPREL, XTAGPTER, XTAGPHUM, XTAGFR, XTAGCO, XTAGVZ, XTAGSP, XTAGSZ, XTAGVT 08PARIS149

TAGS PREL PTER PHUM FR CO VZ SP SZ VT
ADDED 2011-04-29 00:12:00
STAMP 2011-04-30 15:37:40
VOTE_POINTS 0
VOTE_COUNT 0
VOTE_RATING 0
PRIORITY PP
TWEETS 0
MANUAL N
SITELINK
ISNEW N
FINGERPRINT1 9443831bea8191f6d875f4c114a328c6

http://www.wikipedia.ch/cable/2008/01/08PARIS149.html

 

Blue Lantern Level 3: Pre-License Check on Application 05-050048064

Thursday, April 28th, 2011
ID 07MONTREAL302
SUBJECT Blue Lantern Level 3: Pre-License Check on Application
DATE 2007-07-25 14:02:00
CLASSIFICATION UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
ORIGIN Consulate Montreal
TEXT UNCLAS MONTREAL 000302
SIPDIS
SIPDIS
STATE FOR PM/DTCC – Blue Lantern POC – Michael Romero
SENSITIVE
E.O. N/A 12958: N/A TAGS: ETTC KOMC NL CA TU GM NOSUBJECT: Blue Lantern Level 3: Pre-License Check on Application 05-050048064
REF: A. SECSTATE 87824 ¶B. THE HAGUE 1356

¶1. (SBU) Conoff contacted Rheinmetall Canada headquarters in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. All officials contacted were helpful and forthcoming, and though they had not been contacted by the Mission in the past, understood the purpose of our questions.

¶2. Natalie Nantel, Transport Coordinator, confirmed that the order had been placed, and that the product was destined for the Royal Dutch Army. However, she said that the license number in Ref A, 05-050048064, may have been changed because of an error in the initial license application. The project described in reftel requires “FGBAD Consoles” rather than “ASRAD Consoles” necessitating a change in the order to U.S. supplier Vicor Corporation.

¶2. Conoff also spoke to Pierre Lord, Security Coordinator and Raymond Houle, Senior Procurement Manager and ITAR Coordinator. Lord said that the company has applied for and been granted several DTCC Licenses over the last twenty years, and is fully aware of the restrictions on the export of U.S. defense articles. He said that the facility in St-Jean is “NATO-Secret” certified for secure handling of defense technology.

¶3. Houle said that Rheinmetall Canada’s role in the transaction is to assemble and integrate the U.S. components into the consoles. These consoles would then be transferred to EADS in Germany, who would install the consoles into the armored personnel vehicles. The vehicles would then be transferred to the Dutch. Under ideal circumstances, Houle said, the U.S. technology would not have to be handled by the other three intermediate consignees: Krauss-Maffei Wegman, Kongsberg, and Aselsan. Rheinmetall added them to their license application in case it was necessary for any of them to make a modification or perform testing after the U.S. technology was installed into the vehicle. Krauss-Maffei Wegman is the manufacturer of the basic vehicle. Normally, the vehicle would be shipped from Krauss-Maffei Wegman to Kongsberg defense, where a radar system would be installed, and then shipped to EADS. EADS would then install Rheinmetall’s console, with U.S. technology, completing the vehicle for the Dutch Royal Army. Aselsan, a company that EADS uses for testing of its products, was also included, so that testing could be performed at their facility, if necessary, without changes to the license.

¶4. Rheinmetall Canada, formerly OERLIKON Contraves Canada, supplies defense hardware and software mainly to the Canadian Forces, but also to other military customers, such as France, Belgium and the Netherlands, as well as the U.S. and Canadian Coast Guard. Rheinmetall Canada has also contracted with the Port of Dakar, Senegal to upgrade the security of the country’s main commercial port. The company has been in business since 1986.

¶4. Post was not able to arrange a site visit in time for this report. A site visit will be arranged at the earliest opportunity.

MARSHALL

HEADER VZCZCXRO2133
RR RUEHGA RUEHHA RUEHQU RUEHVC
DE RUEHMT #0302 2061428
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 251428Z JUL 07
FM AMCONSUL MONTREAL
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0649
INFO RUCNCAN/ALCAN COLLECTIVE
RHEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHDC

XTAGS: XTAGETTC, XTAGKOMC, XTAGNL, XTAGCA, XTAGTU, XTAGGM, XTAGNO 07MONTREAL302

TAGS ETTC KOMC NL CA TU GM NO
ADDED 2011-04-28 00:12:00
STAMP 2011-04-28 23:03:21
VOTE_POINTS 0
VOTE_COUNT 0
VOTE_RATING 0
PRIORITY RR
TWEETS 0
MANUAL N
SITELINK
ISNEW N
FINGERPRINT1 6e227124dca02b3928d2bd6ba9061500

http://www.wikileaks.ch/cable/2007/07/07MONTREAL302.html

 

MARCH 26 MEETING OF THE G-8 GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP WORKING GROUP IN TOKYO

Thursday, April 28th, 2011
ID
08STATE35962
SUBJECT
MARCH 26 MEETING OF THE G-8 GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP
DATE
2008-04-07 20:08:00
CLASSIFICATION
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
ORIGIN
Secretary of State
TEXT
UNCLAS STATE 035962

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CA CBC ETTC FR GM JA KNNP PARM PREL RS TRGY UK
SUBJECT: MARCH 26 MEETING OF THE G-8 GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP WORKING GROUP IN TOKYO

REF: STATE 13105

——- SUMMARY ——-
¶1. (SBU) AT THE MARCH 26 G-8 GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP WORKING GROUP MEETING (GPWG), RUSSIA POURED MORE COLD WATER ON THE PROPOSAL TO EXPAND GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP (GP) ACTIVITIES BEYOND RUSSIA AND THE REST OF THE FORMER SOVIET UNION (FSU) — THE PROPOSAL SUPPORTED BY ALL OTHER G-8 MEMBERS AND THE MAJOR GP OBJECTIVE FOR THE U.S. UNDER JAPAN’S G-8 PRESIDENCY. AT THE TABLE AND ON THE MARGINS, RUSSIA MADE CLEAR IT WOULD OPPOSE ANY SUMMIT LANGUAGE ON GEOGRAPHIC EXPANSION THIS YEAR, CITING THE NEED TO FINISH THE PROMISED PROJECTS IN RUSSIA FIRST. DURING DETAILED DISCUSSION OF THE STATE OF GP PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION IN RUSSIA, THE RUSSIAN REPRESENTATIVE COMPLAINED ABOUT THE FAILURE OF SOME PARTNERS (IDENTIFIED ON THE MARGINS AS ITALY AND FRANCE, IN PARTICULAR) TO FULFILL THEIR GP PLEDGES OR TO RESPOND MEANINGFULLY TO RUSSIA’S EARLIER REQUESTS FOR CLARIFICATION OF THEIR INTENTIONS IN THAT REGARD. U.S. REPRESENTATIVE HAYWARD REAFFIRMED THE U.S. COMMITMENT TO FULFILL ITS PLEDGE IN RUSSIA, A COMMITMENT ECHOED BY MOST OTHER DELEGATIONS. SHE ALSO JOINED THE JAPANESE GPWG CHAIR AND OTHER DELEGATIONS IN DECLARING THAT THE GP HAS IN FACT — IF NOT IN NAME — ALREADY EXPANDED GEOGRAPHICALLY, AS ILLUSTRATED BY THE RANGE OF NONPROLIFERATION PROJECTS ALREADY BEING CARRIED OUT BY GP PARTNERS WORLDWIDE. THREAT BRIEFINGS BY THE U.S. AND OTHERS MADE THE CASE THAT THERE EXIST BOTH A WORLDWIDE THREAT AND A RISK THAT CURRENT THREAT REDUCTION EFFORTS MIGHT LEAVE GAPS THAT COULD BE EXPLOITED BY TERRORIST GROUPS OR PROLIFERANT STATES. THE JAPANESE CHAIR WAS COOL TO THE U.S. PROPOSAL THAT PROSPECTIVE NEW GP DONORS BE APPROACHED IN ORDER TO GENERATE ADDITIONAL RESOURCES TO HELP FILL SUCH GAPS, BUT AGREED THAT THERE COULD BE INFORMAL CONTACTS TO CONVEY INFORMATION ABOUT THE GP, SUCH AS WITH KAZAKHSTAN. THIS EXPANDED GPWG SESSION INCLUDED THE G-8 PARTNERS, TWELVE OTHER DONOR NATIONS, THE EU COUNCIL SECRETARIAT, THE EU COMMISSION, THE IAEA, AND UKRAINE. END SUMMARY.

——————————————— ——— JAPAN’S AGENDA — A TWO-PART ARGUMENT IN SUPPORT OF GP EXPANSION ——————————————— ———

¶2. (SBU) AT THE JANUARY GPWG (REFTEL), RUSSIA HAD MINCED FEW WORDS IN COMPLAINING ABOUT THE UNSATISFACTORY PERFORMANCE OF SEVERAL PARTNERS (MENTIONING ITALY, FRANCE, AND JAPAN) IN FULFILLING THEIR PLEDGES TO UNDERTAKE AND COMPLETE PROJECTS IN RUSSIA, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PRIORITIES ESTABLISHED IN 2002. AS THEY HAD LAST YEAR, THE RUSSIANS CONTINUED IN JANUARY AND MARCH TO ARGUE THAT THE FOCUS SHOULD BE ON UNFINISHED WORK IN RUSSIA INSTEAD OF ON EXPANDING TO NEW COUNTRIES. IN AN ATTEMPT TO MOVE THE RUSSIANS FROM THEIR OPPOSITION BY ADDRESSING THEIR CONCERNS ABOUT FUNDING SHORTFALLS, THE JAPANESE PRESIDENCY MADE A REVIEW OF PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION IN RUSSIA THE AGENDA’S FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS. THE OTHER MAJOR AGENDA ITEM CONCERNED THREAT BRIEFINGS, INTENDED TO ESTABLISH THE URGENCY OF THE GLOBAL WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION (WMD) PROLIFERATION THREAT AND THEREFORE THE NEED TO EXPAND THE GP GEOGRAPHICALLY TO MEET IT.

——————- RUSSIA’S COMPLAINTS ——————-

¶3. (SBU) THE DISCUSSION OF IMPLEMENTATION STATE OF PLAY TOOK PLACE AGAINST THE BACKGROUND OF TWO SETS OF DOCUMENTS DISTRIBUTED BEFORE THE GPWG: A CATALOGUE OF CHALLENGES COVERING IMPLEMENTATION PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS, AND A LISTING OF PROJECT BENCHMARKS AND ANTICIPATED TIMELINES — BOTH DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED BY EACH OF THE GP DONORS. TO LEAD OFF, RUSSIAN HEAD OF DELEGATION ANTONOV CLAIMED RUSSIA HAD SO FAR RECEIVED ONLY 25 PERCENT OF THE TOTAL FUNDS PLEDGED TO IT, AS ILLUSTRATED ON A CHART. HE NOTED WITH REGRET THAT RUSSIA HAD RECEIVED NO RESPONSES TO ITS JANUARY REQUEST FOR CONFIRMATION FROM CERTAIN COUNTRIES — WHICH HE LATER IDENTIFIED ON THE MARGINS AS ITALY AND FRANCE — CONCERNING THEIR INTENTIONS WITH REGARD TO FULFILLING THEIR PLEDGES. IN THE ABSENCE OF SUCH CLARIFICATIONS, IT WAS DIFFICULT FOR RUSSIA TO IDENTIFY THE NECESSARY BENCHMARKS OR DO ITS OWN BUDGET PLANNING. THE MAIN PROBLEM WAS A LACK OF FUNDS FOR CHEMICAL WEAPONS DESTRUCTION (CWD). BASED ON A CHART COVERING GP ASSISTANCE RECEIVED FROM ALL COUNTRIES, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM ROSATOM THEN MADE A POWERPOINT PRESENTATION CONCERNING THE STATUS OF PROJECTS IN RUSSIA, SPECIFICALLY SUBMARINE DISMANTLEMENT IN THE RUSSIAN FAR EAST.

¶4. (SBU) SEVERAL DELEGATIONS NOTED THAT ADMINISTRATIVE OBSTACLES THEY HAD ENCOUNTERED IN RUSSIA HAD SLOWED THE TEMPO OF THEIR PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION. A NUMBER OF COUNTRIES ALSO TOOK ISSUE WITH THE RUSSIAN CHART’S FIGURES, POINTING OUT THAT THEY CONCERNED ONLY THE MONIES EXPENDED DIRECTLY INSIDE RUSSIA, BUT NOT THE EQUIPMENT, SHIPPING, SERVICES, AND ADMINISTRATIVE OVERHEAD COVERED BY EXPENDITURES OUTSIDE RUSSIA. GERMANY NOTED THAT IT HAD COMMITTED $1.2 BILLION IN 2002, NOT THE $1.8 BILLION CLAIMED ON THE RUSSIAN CHART. FRANCE SAID ITS FIGURE SHOULD BE SHOWN AS $750 MILLION, NOT THE $950 MILLION ON THE CHART. CANADA SAID ITS DISBURSEMENTS HAD BEEN SOMEWHAT DELAYED BY ITS OBLIGATION TO SPEND THE FUNDS EFFICIENTLY; OVER THE FIRST FIVE YEARS, IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES, INCLUDING TAXATION AND COORDINATION PROBLEMS, HAD SLOWED A PACE, BUT IT WAS HOPED THINGS WOULD NOW SPEED UP. KOREA ASKED WHY ITS ASSISTANCE DID NOT APPEAR IN THE RUSSIAN FIGURES.

¶5. (SBU) U.S. REPRESENTATIVE HAYWARD REITERATED THE U.S. COMMITMENT TO FULFILL ITS ENTIRE PLEDGE TO RUSSIA BY 2012. THE U.S. CATALOGUE OF CHALLENGES CONTAINED A RECORD OF PROBLEMS SOLVED AND SUCCESSFUL PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION. (WHEN ASKED ON THE MARGINS, THE RUSSIANS HAD NO COMPLAINT ABOUT U.S. IMPLEMENTATION. THEY ALSO ACKNOWLEDGED THAT THEIR PERCENTAGE FIGURE FOR PLEDGE FULFILLMENT, WHICH LISTED ONLY 31 PERCENT FOR THE U.S., MIGHT WELL FALL SHORT OF THE REALITY SINCE IT A ADMITTEDLY INCLUDED ONLY MONIES TRANSFERRED TO RUSSIA AND NOT THOSE LEGITIMATE EXPENSES INCURRED OUTSIDE RUSSIA. WHILE THIS UNDERSTANDING APPLIED TO SOME OTHER DONORS AS WELL, IT DID NOT APPLY TO ALL DISCREPANCIES BETWEEN RUSSIAN FIGURES AND DONORS’ CLAIMS.) THE UK REPRESENTATIVE NOTED THE CHART’S 61 PERCENT COMPLETION FIGURE FOR HIS COUNTRY’S PROJECTS LOOKED ACCURATE A ND AFFIRMED ITS COMMITMENT TO FINISH THE WORK IN RUSSIA AND UKRAINE. ITALY, WHICH THE RUSSIAN CHART SHOWED AS HAVING SPENT ONLY 2 PERCENT OF ITS PLEDGE, SAID ITS OWN FIGURES FOR ITS ASSISTANCE “MIGHT BE A LITTLE HIGHER” THAN THOSE ON THE RUSSIAN CHART, AND IT “MIGHT HAVE SOME ADDITIONAL CONTRACTS TO ANNOUNCE SOON.” FRANCE SAID IT “INTENDED TO WORK WITH RUSSIA TO IMPROVE” ITS IMPLEMENTATION RECORD. SWITZERLAND, THE EU, AND THE NETHERLANDS BRIEFLY REVIEWED THEIR SUCCESSFUL IMPLEMENTATION HISTORIES IN RUSSIA. THE UK NOTED THAT IT HAD ALLOCATED MORE GP FUNDS TO ROSATOM THAN ROSATOM HAD BEEN ABLE TO SPEND. MOST DELEGATIONS ECHOED HAYWARD’S COMMITMENT WITH REGARD TO FULFILLMENT OF PLEDGES. THE NETHERLANDS DELEGATION REPORTED THAT ITS PARLIAMENT HAD QUESTIONED WHY THE GOVERNMENT WAS SUPPORTING A NOW PROSPEROUS RUSSIA WITH GP ASSISTANCE. THE RESPONSE TO PARLIAMENT WAS THAT SUCH ASSISTANCE SERVED A “COMMON SECURITY INTEREST”. NONETHELESS, THE DUTCH REPRESENTATIVE NOTED, HIS GOVERNMENT NEEDED TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT HOW THE TAXPAYER VIEWED THE FUNDS PROVIDED UNDER THE GP.

¶6. (SBU) ANTONOV RESPONDED THAT THE ISSUE WAS NOT SO MUCH ONE OF “COMMITMENTS”, BUT RATHER OF ACTUALLY TRANSFORMING THEM INTO PROJECTS. RUSSIA HAD REAL PROBLEMS TO SOLVE: ECOLOGICAL ONES WITH REGARD TO SUBMARINE DISMANTLEMENT AND THE ISSUE OF TREATY OBLIGATION WITH CWD. RUSSIA WOULD MEET THESE CHALLENGES — WITH OR WITHOUT GP HELP. IT WAS SPENDING ITS OWN MONEY TO DO SO, BUT SIMPLY NEEDED TO KNOW THE ACTUAL PROSPECTS FOR ASSISTANCE.

¶7. (SBU) TO THOSE WHO HAD CITED DIFFICULTIES WITH SITE ACCESS (MENTIONING ITALY), ANTONOV NOTED THAT, LIKE OTHERS, RUSSIA HAD CLEAR RULES ABOUT NOTIFICATIONS WITH WHICH PARTNERS SIMPLY HAD TO COMPLY. REFERRING DIRECTLY TO FRANCE’S BENCHMARKS DOCUMENT, ANTONOV SAID, “THIS IS MONEY YOU SPENT SOMEPLACE ELSE.” TO KOREA, ANTONOV BRUSQUELY DISMISSED ITS QUESTION WITH THE COMMENT THAT IT HAD TRANSFERRED ITS FUNDS TO JAPAN (IN A “PIGGYBACK” PROCESS). (FROM THE GPWG CHAIR MORINO LATER POINTEDLY REGRETTED THAT RUSSIA HAD NOT SEEN FIT TO THANK KOREA FOR ITS ASSISTANCE.) ANTONOV WENT ON TO COMPLAIN THAT PIGGYBACKING WAS NOT AN APPROPRIATE WAY TO EXTEND ASSISTANCE FOR LARGE PROJECTS, THOUGH IT MIGHT BE APPROPRIATE FOR SMALL PROJECTS — AN ARGUMENT THAT WAS INTERPRETED PRIVATELY BY OTHER DELEGATIONS AS THE RUSSIANS’ DESIRE TO HAVE THE CHECKS WRITTEN DIRECTLY TO THEM.) ANTONOV CITED THE UK AS AN EXAMPLE OF WHERE PIGGYBACKING CAUSED A LACK OF TRANSPARENCY, SINCE IT WAS NOT POSSIBLE TO TELL WHERE A PIGGYBACKING COUNTRY’S MONEY HAD GONE. SEVERAL DELEGATIONS RESPONDED, MAKING A COMPELLING CASE FOR SMALLER DONORS’ USE OF LARGER DONORS’ ADMINISTRATIVE CAPABILITIES AND ESTABLISHED LEGAL ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE RUSSIAN AUTHORITIES. THE UK REP CALLED ANTONOV’S ATTENTION TO PAGE 47 OF THE (120 PAGE) UK BROCHURE, “GLOBAL THREAT REDUCTION PROGRAMME”, WHICH COVERED IN DETAIL THE SOURCES AND PROJECTS OF THE STERLING 61 MILLION CONTRIBUTED BY SOME DOZEN PIGGYBACKERS ON UK GP PROGRAMS.

¶8. (U) IN THE FACE OF EVIDENT DIFFERENCES OF OPINION ON A HOST OF IMPLEMENTATION QUESTIONS, JAPANESE CHAIR (MORINO) SAID HE MIGHT SUGGEST THAT THE APRIL 23 GPWG INCLUDE A DISCUSSION ON PROJECT COORDINATION INVOLVING AGENCY EXPERTS, CONTRACTORS, SUBCONTRACTORS, ETC. IT REMAINS TO BE SEEN WHETHER MORINO NOW INTENDS TO MAKE SUCH A DISCUSSION PART OF THE APRIL GPWG. (THE U.S. WILL MAKE CLEAR TO MORINO THAT SUCH ISSUES ARE BEST ADDRESSED IN A BILATERAL CONTEXT IN DIRECT CONTACTS BETWEEN DONORS AND RUSSIA AND THAT IT IS DIFFICULT TO SEE WHAT EXPERTS FROM A NUMBER OF COUNTRIES COULD ACCOMPLISH IN ONE OR TWO DAYS IN TOKYO.)

———————————- BRIEFINGS ON THE GLOBAL WMD THREAT ———————————-

¶9. (SBU) A REPRESENTATIVE FROM THE IAEA MADE A FULL PRESENTATION ON THE NUCLEAR THREAT FROM ITS PERSPECTIVE, THOUGH NOTING THAT HIS ORGANIZATION’S CHARTER DID NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH DEFINING TERRORISM OR COLLECTING INFORMATION ON TERRORIST GROUPS. IN ITS REASSESSMENT OF NUCLEAR SECURITY, THE IAEA HAD CONCLUDED THE NUCLEAR TERRORISM THREAT CONSISTED OF, IN ASCENDING ORDER: A) THEFT OF A NUCLEAR WEAPON; B) A DIRTY BOMB; OR, C) SABOTAGE OF A NUCLEAR INSTALLATION/POWER PLANT. THERE HAD BEEN 1340 RELEVANT INCIDENTS RECORDED. PAST BEHAVIOR WAS THE KEY GUIDE TO TERRORISTS’ INTENTIONS. BIN LADEN AND OTHERS WERE QUOTED ON THE ACQUISITION OF WMD. ATTEMPTS TO BREAK INTO RUSSIAN WEAPONS INSTALLATIONS WERE CITED, AS WERE A NUMBER OF NUCLEAR TRAFFICKING INCIDENTS.

¶10. (SBU) THE U.S. PRESENTATION COVERED NUMEROUS UNCLASSIFIED CASES WHERE WEAPONS OR MATERIALS OF MASS DESTRUCTION — RADIOLOGICAL AND BIOLOGICAL, AS WELL AS NUCLEAR — WERE EITHER THE OBJECTIVES OR AT RISK OF ACQUISITION BY TERRORIST GROUPS. THE BRIEFING NOTED THAT, WITH INCREASED GLOBALIZTION IN TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATIONS, PROLIFERATORS AND TERRORISTS FOUND IT MUCH EASIER TO OBTAIN THESE MATERIALS. THE INCIDENTS CITED COVERED ASIA, EUROPE AND LATIN AMERICA AND INVOLVED EQUIPMENT, WEAPONS, MATERIALS AND THE KNOWLEDGE TO MAKE USE OF THEM.

¶11. (SBU) FRANCE MADE A BRIEF INTERVENTION ON SECURITY ISSUES CONCERNING CATEGORY I RADIOLOGICAL SOURCES IN FRANCOPHONE AFRICA, WHICH IT SAID TESTIFIED TO THE LEGITIMACY OF GP EXPANSION.

¶12. (SBU) AUSTRALIA REVIEWED INCIDENTS INVOLVING TERRORIST GROUPS IN THE SOUTHEAST ASIA REGION AS WELL AS THE LESS-THAN-ADEQUATELY ADDRESSED VULNERABILITIES OF BIOLOGICAL AGENTS AND CHEMICAL TOXINS IN THE AREA.

—————– CONCLUSIONS DRAWN —————–

¶13. (SBU) WITH REGARD TO THE THREAT BRIEFINGS, THERE APPEARED TO BE A GENERAL CONSENSUS THAT THEY WERE SUGGESTIVE OF A WORLDWIDE THREAT AND THE RISK THAT CURRENT EFFORTS MIGHT LEAVE GAPS THAT COULD BE EXPLOITED BY TERRORIST GROUPS. U.S. REP HAYWARD AGAIN AFFIRMED THE U.S. COMMITMENT TO DEAL WITH THE PROLIFERATION POTENTIAL REPRESENTED BY UNSECURED MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGICAL EXPERTISE IN RUSSIA AND OTHER AREAS OF THE FORMER SOVIET UNION BY FINISHING THE JOB THERE. AT THE SAME TIME, SHE SAID, THE THREAT WAS NOT STATIC, BUT EVOLVING, AND THE GP NEEDED TO BE READY TO RESPOND TO IT ON A GLOBAL BASIS, AS DEMONSTRATED IN THE COURSE OF THE THREAT BRIEFINGS. THE TIME WAS RIPE TO LOOK TO NEW DONORS, NEW RESOURCES THAT WOULD BE APPLIED TO THE REGIONS DOCUMENTED IN THE BRIEFINGS. SHE FURTHER NOTED THAT THE GP HAS IN FACT ALREADY EXPANDED, AND IT IS IMPORTANT FOR THE PARTNERSHIP TO ACKNOWLEDGE THIS.

¶14. (SBU) GERMANY, JAPAN, SWITZERLAND, CANADA, AND THE UK TOOK THE FLOOR I N SUPPORT OF IMMEDIATE GEOGRAPHIC EXPANSION TO DEAL WITH GLOBAL THREATS THAT, AS JAPAN SAID, SHOULD NOT BE LEFT UNADDRESSED. GERMANY ADDED THAT IT COULD NOT ACCEPT A DECISION FOR EXTENSION BEYOND 2012 AND CAUTIONED THAT ANY NEW GP DONORS SHOULD BE CAREFULLY CONSIDERED FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF LIKEMINDEDNESS, A POINT LATER ECHOED BY JAPAN AND RUSSIA. ALSO, TOO MANY GP PARTNERS MIGHT MAKE COORDINATION DIFFICULT, ACCORDING TO THE GERMAN REPRESENTATIVE.

¶15. (SBU) ON THE U.S. SUGGESTION THAT POTENTIAL NEW DONORS BE APPROACHED IN CAPITALS AND/OR THAT AN OUTREACH SESSION BE HELD FOR THEM IN CONNECTION WITH THE APRIL GPWG, JAPAN POINTED TO THE CONCEPTUAL AWKWARDNESS OF FORMAL DISCUSSIONS WITH NEW DONORS IN THE ABSENCE OF A GP DECISION TO ADMIT THEM. INSTEAD, THE JAPANESE SUGGESTED THERE COULD BE INFORMAL DISCUSSIONS WITH COUNTRIES OUTSIDE THE GP, INCLUDING POTENTIAL NEW DONORS, IN ORDER TO ACQUAINT THEM WITH THE GP.

¶16. (SBU) RUSSIA (ROZHKOV) AGREED THAT THE THREAT BRIEFINGS HAD SHOWN THE DANGERS THAT EXISTED IN VARIOUS PARTS OF THE WORLD. SUCH DANGERS MIGHT EVEN BE MORE EXTENSIVE THAN SUGGESTED IN THE BRIEFINGS. IT WAS ALSO TRUE THAT MOST OF THE TASKS INVOLVED IN COPING WITH SUCH THREATS RELATED TO THE KANANASKIS PRINCIPLES. AT THE SAME TIME, HOWEVER, THERE WERE OTHER, EXISTING, GLOBAL INSTRUMENTS (IAEA, ETC.) TO ADDRESS THESE ADMITTEDLY GLOBAL THREATS. MOREOVER, THREAT ASSESSMENT WAS NOT REALLY A TASK FOR WHICH THE GP HAD BEEN DESIGNED. WHAT NEEDED TO BE UNDERLINED WAS THAT THE GP WAS A UNIQUE INSTRUMENT INTENDED TO BRING POLITICAL WILL AND RESOURCES TO BEAR IN SPECIFIC COUNTRIES (RUSSIA AND THE REST OF THE FSU). THAT WAS TO BE THE FIRST STAGE. AND, WITH THE FIRST STAGE ONLY 26 PERCENT COMPLETED, IT WAS NOT TIME TO GO LOOKING FOR NEW TASKS — TASKS FOR WHICH NO SPECIFIC NEW DONORS WITH RESOURCES HAD BEEN IDENTIFIED, NO SPECIFIC PROJECTS PREPARED, AND NO SPECIFIC WILLING RECIPIENTS RECRUITED.

¶17. (SBU) ROZHKOV CONCLUDED BY READING THE RELEVANT EXCERPTS FROM THE REPORT OF THE HEILIGENDAMM SUMMIT, CLEARLY INDICATING THAT RUSSIA WOULD AGREE TO SIMILAR SUMMIT LANGUAGE FOR THIS YEAR, RESTATING THE GEOGRAPHICALLY GLOBAL VOCATION OF THE GP, BUT AGAIN ONLY IN PRINCIPLE AND ONLY AS AN ISSUE TO BE EXPLORED FURTHER.

————– ON THE MARGINS ————–

¶18. (SBU) ASKED PRIVATELY ABOUT HIS GOVERNMENT’S STAND ON EXTENSION OF THE GP BEYOND 2012, THE GERMAN REPRESENTATIVE SAID HIS INSTRUCTIONS HAD TWO REDLINES: NO AGREEMENT ON EXTENSION BEYOND 2012 AND NO NEW GERMAN FUNDS FOR THE GP BEFORE THEN. PERSONALLY, HE WAS CONFIDENT THAT THERE WOULD BE EVENTUAL AGREEMENT ON GP EXTENSION, BUT HE FELT GERMANY WOULD NOT BE READY TO ADDRESS THIS BEFORE 2010. WITH REGARD TO FUNDING FOR PROJECTS BEYOND THE FORMER SOVIET UNION IN A GEOGRAPHICALLY EXPANDED GP, GERMANY HAD BEEN THINKING THAT SOME OF THE FUNDS ALREADY PLEDGED BUT NOT YET COMMITTED TO RUSSIA MIGHT BE USED.

¶19. (SBU) DURING A PRE-GPWG BREAKFAST U.S.-JAPAN BILATERAL, MORINO NOTED THE AWKWARDNESS OF TRYING TO ATTRACT NEW DONOR GOVERNMENTS IN THE ABSENCE OF ANY AGREEMENT TO ACCEPT THEM INTO THE G-8’S GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP. NONETHELESS, HE ACCEPTED THE U.S. PLAN TO APPROACH POTENTIAL NEW DONORS ON AN INFORMAL BASIS AND SUGGESTED KAZAKHSTAN AS A GOOD START.

¶20. (SBU) SEVERAL ATTEMPTS TO ENGAGE THE RUSSIAN DELEGATION IN AN EXPLORATION OF POSSIBLE SUMMIT LANGUAGE COMPROMISES THAT MIGHT ACCOMPLISH EFFECTIVE GP GEOGRAPHIC EXPANSION ENDED WITH ROZHKOV’S FLAT DECLARATION THAT MOSCOW HAD DECIDED THERE WOULD BE NO SUCH LANGUAGE THIS YEAR.

————- LOOKING AHEAD ————-

¶21. (SBU) THE JAPANESE CHAIR HAS SIGNALED ITS RELUCTANCE WITH REGARD TO FORMAL APPROACHES TO NEW DONORS, AND TIME IS SHORT TO AFFECT RUSSIA’S STAND AGAINST GP EXPANSION IN TIME FOR THIS YEAR’S SUMMIT. NONETHELESS, THE U.S. IS PREPARING TO OPEN INFORMAL DISCUSSIONS WITH SOME POTENTIAL NEW DONORS IN ORDER TO BEGIN LAYING THE GROUNDWORK FOR ADDRESSING RUSSIA’S OBJECTIONS THAT NO DONORS, PROJECTS, OR RECIPIENTS HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED, AS WELL AS TO ALLAY THE RUSSIANS’ BASIC CONCERN THAT EXPANSION WOULD MEAN DIVERSION OF ALREADY PLEDGED FUNDS AWAY FROM THEM.

¶22. (U) THIS EXPANDED GPWG SESSION INCLUDED THE G-8 PLUS TWELVE OTHER DONOR NATIONS, THE EU COUNCIL SECRETARIAT, THE EU COMMISSION, THE IAEA, AND UKRAINE. THE NEXT GPWG, SCHEDULED FOR APRIL 23 IN TOKYO, WILL INCLUDE ONLY THE G-8, PLUS THE EU.

RICE

HEADER
VZCZCXYZ0007
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHC #5962 0982008
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 072000Z APR 08
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN PRIORITY 0000
RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN PRIORITY 0000
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS PRIORITY 0000
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA PRIORITY 0000
RUEHCP/AMEMBASSY COPENHAGEN PRIORITY 0000
RUEHDL/AMEMBASSY DUBLIN PRIORITY 0000
RUEHHE/AMEMBASSY HELSINKI PRIORITY 0000
RUEHKV/AMEMBASSY KYIV PRIORITY 0000
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 0000
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW PRIORITY 0000
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO PRIORITY 0000
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA PRIORITY 0000
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 0000
RUEHPG/AMEMBASSY PRAGUE PRIORITY 0000
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME PRIORITY 0000
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL PRIORITY 0000
RUEHSM/AMEMBASSY STOCKHOLM PRIORITY 0000
RUEHTC/AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE PRIORITY 0000
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 0000
RUEHWR/AMEMBASSY WARSAW PRIORITY 0000
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON PRIORITY 0000
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY

XTAGS: XTAGCA, XTAGCBC, XTAGETTC, XTAGFR, XTAGGM, XTAGJA, XTAGKNNP, XTAGPARM, XTAGPREL, XTAGRS, XTAGTRGY, XTAGUK 08STATE35962

TAGS
CA CBC ETTC FR GM JA KNNP PARM PREL RS TRGY UK
ADDED
2011-04-28 00:12:00
STAMP
2011-04-29 00:48:16
VOTE_POINTS
0
VOTE_COUNT
0
VOTE_RATING
0
PRIORITY
PP
TWEETS
0
MANUAL
N
SITELINK
ISNEW
N
FINGERPRINT1
59b7ac5281771c6a4f7e1411174ec19d

http://www.wikileaks.ch/cable/2008/04/08STATE35962.html

SERBIA: GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCES NEW AMBASSADORS SANS AGREMENT

Thursday, April 28th, 2011
ID
08BELGRADE1268
SUBJECT
SERBIA: GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCES NEW AMBASSADORS SANS AGREMENT
DATE
2008-12-10 14:02:00
CLASSIFICATION
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
ORIGIN
Embassy Belgrade
TEXT
UNCLAS BELGRADE 001268 

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PINR PREL CA FR GM MO PL RO SZ SR
SUBJECT: SERBIA: GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCES NEW AMBASSADORS SANS AGREMENT

Summary ——-

¶1. (SBU) At its weekly session on November 20, the Serbian government (GOS) endorsed the appointment of seven new ambassadors, even though we later learned from MFA contacts that the government had not yet requested agrement for the ambassadors-designate. This lapse of diplomatic protocol may come back to bite the GOS. The appointments generated significant press coverage due to the public profile of two of the appointees, former Politika daily editor-in-chief Ljiljana Smajlovic and former Serbian Ambassador to Washington Milan St. Protic, and it would be embarrassing for the government if agrement is not secured. End Summary.

Courtesy Bios ————-

¶2. (U) As a courtesy, we would like to provide our colleagues in Bern, Bucharest, Ottawa, Paris, and Warsaw with the following brief biographies for the ambassadors-designate. Biographic information for the additional two appointees, Ivo Viskovic to Berlin and Stanislav Stakic to Rabat, is not yet available and will be forwarded septel.

Canada ——

Ljiljana Smajlovic Ambassador of Serbia to Canada

Ljiljana Smajlovic was born in 1956 in Sarajevo. After graduating from the University of Sarajevo Faculty of Political Science, Smajlovic received scholarships to study in Cleveland, Ohio and then in Algeria. She visited the United States on the International Visitors Program in the late 1980’s.
In the early 1990s, Smajlovic worked for the Sarajevo daily Oslobodjenje as a reporter from the Vukovar front before moving to Belgrade in 1992.
From 1992-1994, Smajlovic worked for the weekly magazine Vreme. In 1994, she received a fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and spent a year in the U.S. as a journalist for the weekly newsmagazine Vreme.
From 1998-1999, Smajlovic worked for Evropljanin magazine. She left Evropljanin following the murder of its editor-in-chief Slavko Curuvija in April 1999 and started writing for the weekly newsmagazine NIN, first as a Hague Tribunal commentator and later as a weekly columnist.
During the early 2000s, Smajlovic worked as Media Advisor for the USAID-funded International Research & Exchanges Board (IREX) ProMedia Serbia media project.
From October 2005 until October 2008, Smajlovic served as the first female editor-in-chief of the daily newspaper Politika.
She was appointed Ambassador of Serbia to Canada on November 20, ¶2008.
Smajlovic is considered very close to former Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica of the Democratic Party of Serbia (DSS).
She speaks English and French and has one son.

France ——

Dusan Batakovic Ambassador of Serbia to France

Dusan Batakovic was born in Belgrade in 1957. He graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy at the University of Belgrade, gaining bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history. Batakovic received his PhD in history from the University of Paris – Sorbonne, Paris IV (magna cum laude).
From April 2001 to 2005, Batakovic served as Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (later Serbia and Montenegro) to the Hellenic Republic.
In July 2005, he was appointed an advisor to Serbian President Boris Tadic. In November 2005, Batakovic represented Tadic’s cabinet as a member of the Serbian negotiation team for the future status of Kosovo in Vienna.
From 2005-2007, he served as Director of the Institute for Balkan Studies of the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences.
In July 2007, Batakovic was appointed Serbian Ambassador to Canada.
In November 2008, he was appointed Serbian Ambassador to France.
Batakovic is the author of historical monographs on Serbia, Yugoslavia, and the Balkans and a number of studies and articles. He was one of the leaders of the protests organized against the regime of the former President Slobodan Milosevic in the late 1990s.
Batakovic has taught methodology of history and contemporary European and American history at Belgrade University since 1998.

Poland ——

Radojko Bogojevic Ambassador of Serbia to Poland Radojko Bogojevic was born in 1948 in Belgrade. He graduated from the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Political Science. In 1973, Bogojevic joined the Federal Secretariat for Foreign Affairs (FSFA). From 1976 – 1980, he served as Second Secretary at the Yugoslav Embassy in Guyana and from 1980-1983 he worked for the North American Department of the FSFA. In 1983, he was appointed First Secretary in the Yugoslav Embassy in Finland. He then served as First Counselor for the FSFA International Organizations Department from 1987-1989. From 1989-1992, Bogojevic headed the UK, Ireland and Nordic States Group, West European Department at the FSFA. From 1992-1998, Bogojevic served as Charge d’affairs in the Yugoslav Embassy in London before receiving an appointment as Director of the Department for the Americas from 1998-2000. In 2000, he was appointed Director of the Department for Europe and in January 2001, was appointed an assistant to the Foreign Minister. In 2002, he was named Ambassador to Egypt where he served until 2005 when he became Serbian Ambassador to Sudan. In 2006, Bogojevic became a State Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On November 20, 2008, he was appointed Ambassador to Poland. He speaks English and French. He is married and has two children.

Romania ——-

Zoran S. Popovic Ambassador of Serbia to Romania Zoran S. Popovic was born in 1949 in Vrsac, Serbia. He graduated from the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Philology. As a student, he spent some time in Moscow. From 1970-1974, Popovic worked as a journalist at the Tanjug news agency as an international affairs desk officer. He was promoted to international correspondent in 1974 and worked in Cyprus until 1978.
From 1978- 1985, Popovic served as Editor-in-Chief at the “Titograd” radio and TV station. (Titograd is the former name of Podgorica, the capital city of Montenegro.) From 1985-1987, Popovic worked as Director and Editor-in-Chief of the Montenegrin daily newspaper Pobjeda. From 1987-1991, he served as Ambassador to Jordan. In 1995, Popovic was appointed Serbia’s Ambassador to Syria, where he served until ¶1999. Popovic held ambassadorial-level positions with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Belgrade from 1991-1995 and from 1999-2000. In 2000, Popovic worked for the Belgrade Media Center as a coordinator for the transition of media. He was appointed Ambassador to Turkey in 2001 where he served until ¶2005. In November 2008, he was appointed Ambassador to Romania. Popovic speaks Arabic, English, and Russian. He is married and has two children.

SWITZERLAND ———–

Milan St. Protic Ambassador of Serbia to SWITZERLAND

Milan St. Protic (pronounced “suh-tuh pro-tich”) was born in 1957 in Belgrade. He graduated from the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Law in 1980. He continued his studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he gained his Masters (1982) and PhD (1987).
After returning to Yugoslavia, Protic worked as a Research Fellow at the Institute for Balkan Studies. He also served as a visiting professor at UC Santa Barbara.
In 1992, St. Protic became active in the movement against the regime of Slobodan Milosevic. He became one of the leading figures of the opposition and a member of its leadership.
In 2000, following the fall of the Milosevic regime, St. Protic was elected Mayor of Belgrade.
In 2001, St. Protic was appointed Ambassador to the United States, but he was recalled six months later after criticizing President Vojislav Kostunica and Foreign Minister Goran Svilanovic and allegedly failing to respect the rules of diplomatic conduct.
On November 20, 2008, St. Protic was appointed Serbian Ambassador to Bern.
St. Protic comes from a very prominent Serbian family. His grandfather was a Serbian statesman and the first Prime Minister of Yugoslavia (1918-1920), who also worked as a head of the Yugoslav Central Bank (1931-1939).
He is married and has three daughters.

Comment ——-

¶3. (SBU) The failure to seek agrement before announcing these ambassadorial appointments unfortunately is symbolic of a broader lack of professionalism in the MFA. In a recent interview, former Serbian Ambassador to the Vatican and Turkey Darko Tanaskovic spoke about the increasing number of diplomatic gaffes caused by Serbian diplomats’ inexperience and ignorance and advocated for a personnel system that would value merit over party or political affiliation. Introducing such a system would begin to address the endemic deficiencies that afflict the Serbian diplomatic corps and perhaps prevent debacles such as the role played by Serbian Consulate staff in New York in helping fugitive Miladin Kovacevic flee to Serbia. End Comment.

MUNTER

HEADER
VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB 

DE RUEHBW #1268/01 3451435
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 101435Z DEC 08 ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY BELGRADE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0726
INFO RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0001
RUEHSW/AMEMBASSY BERN 0001
RUEHBM/AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST 0001
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 0001
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0001
RUEHRB/AMEMBASSY RABAT 0001
RUEHWR/AMEMBASSY WARSAW 0001

XTAGS: XTAGPINR, XTAGPREL, XTAGCA, XTAGFR, XTAGGM, XTAGMO, XTAGPL, XTAGRO, XTAGSZ, XTAGSR 08BELGRADE1268

TAGS
PINR PREL CA FR GM MO PL RO SZ SR
ADDED
2011-04-28 00:12:00
STAMP
2011-04-29 00:48:16
VOTE_POINTS
0
VOTE_COUNT
0
VOTE_RATING
0
PRIORITY
RR
TWEETS
0
MANUAL
N
SITELINK
ISNEW
N
FINGERPRINT1
7f64d0a13621dfa4eb41cbb96b7246f2

 

UNODC MAJOR DONORS MEETING TACKLES UNGASS REVIEW, PIRACY AND FUTURE FUNDING CHALLENGES

Thursday, April 28th, 2011
ID
08UNVIEVIENNA666
SUBJECT
UNODC MAJOR DONORS MEETING TACKLES UNGASS REVIEW, PIRACY
DATE
2008-12-22 13:01:00
CLASSIFICATION
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
ORIGIN
UNVIE
TEXT
UNCLAS UNVIE VIENNA 000666

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR KCRM UN PGOV AORC AF SW SZ GM FR CA IN IT
NO, PK, TU, UK, EWWT, MARSEC

SUBJECT: UNODC MAJOR DONORS MEETING TACKLES UNGASS REVIEW, PIRACY AND FUTURE FUNDING CHALLENGES

REF: A. UNVIE 00579 B.UNVIE 000659

——– SUMMARY: ——–

¶1. (SBU) INL A/S David T. Johnson led the USDEL to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Major Donors meeting, December 5. Discussion with the other 20 donor countries included (1) a proposal for UNODC action to combat piracy off the coast of Somalia, (2) the funding situation of UNODC, and (3) a review of progress achieved since the 1998 UN General Assembly Special Session on Narcotic Drugs (UNGASS). Also discussed were the status of the Independent Evaluation Unit (IEU) and the UNODC’s partnership with INTERPOL to establish an anti-corruption training academy. A/S Johnson met with UNODC Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa, who committed to ensuring the U.S. is recognized for contributions to UNODC projects in Central Asia. At a dinner hosted by UNVIE Ambassador Greg Schulte, A/S Johnson discussed the counternarcotics situation in Afghanistan and underscored U.S. opposition to use of the phrase “harm reduction” in UNGASS review documents. END SUMMARY.

————————————– Major Donors: The “Watch Dog” of UNODC ————————————–

¶2. (SBU) The Major Donor countries reinstituted the practice of holding a “closed” session, without UNODC staff, to coordinate messages and to discuss the future role of the Major Donors group. A/S Johnson used the opportunity to emphasize the importance of continuing Major Donor coordination. He emphasized the need to schedule meetings close to other UN events, in order to ensure participation from capitals. Other donors, notably Sweden and Norway, questioned the ability of UNODC to operate without sufficient and predictable (read, increased) General Purpose Funds (GPF, i.e., funds without earmarks), which finance administrative and backstopping support for implementation of UNODC technical assistance projects. Germany and USDEL expressed skepticism, highlighting the practical difficulties in raising contributions to the GPF. A/S Johnson noted that government organizations, including his own, are often funded by project earmarks and must use project support costs to finance their operations. UNODC charges 13 percent in overhead to each project contribution (with the exception of some donors, notably the European Commission, which has secured an UN-wide rate of seven percent.) These funds must be better utilized in order to supplement the GPF. The UK closed the session by emphasizing the potential leverage that Major Donors could have in guiding UNODC, calling the group a “watch dog” of sorts. The UK will refine its non-paper on the future of Major Donors and also draft a work program for the 2009 calendar year to be shared with other donors.

————————- Funding, Funding, Funding ————————-

¶3. (SBU) During the Major Donors session, UNODC staff at all levels, including Executive Director Costa, painted a dire picture of UNODC’s funding situation. There is a lack of GPF, while Special Purpose Funds (SPF, i.e., earmarked contributions) continued on an upward trajectory. In Costa’s view, UNODC would soon either need to start rejecting SPF or need to secure an increase in the UN Regular Budget, to provide adequate oversight of technical assistance activities. UNODC specifically pointed to the 1.4 million dollar shortfall of the GPF for its anti-crime programs and noted that unless the imbalance was corrected the organization would be forced to cover the shortfall with the GPF intended for drug control programs. UNODC also sought to provide transparency to the use of its GPF, by outlining the areas for which these funds were used, including internal evaluation, research and policy analysis, salaries of the Field Office Representatives and its online financial database (ProFI). UNODC submitted a request for an additional 16 posts and 2.2 million dollars from the UN Regular Budget for the biennium 2010-2011, in order to cover its staffing and financial needs.

¶4. (SBU) Donors emphasized that other avenues could be found to relieve the GPF problems. Sweden and France pointed to the “thematic programs” under development by UNODC, as a way to allow donors to “soft earmark” funding. UNODC Director for the Division of Operations, Francis Maertens, identified future regional and thematic programs to overcome “projectitis” and focus strategic interventions in the areas of corruption, money laundering, human trafficking, migrant smuggling, trafficking of firearms, criminal justice reform, as well as health and human development. Finland, supported by the United States, sounded an alarm over the title of the thematic program on “health and human development,” in which the themes of drug demand reduction and HIV/AIDS would be examined. The title obscured the role of UNODC and its mandate to tackle these issues. A/S Johnson further reiterated the U.S. view that earmarked contributions should not be crowded out in favor of non-earmarked or loosely earmarked funds. Rather, the current financial situation should drive UNODC, its managers and its donors to take a more entrepreneurial approach, with overhead costs tied to specific projects. Germany reiterated U.S. concerns, noting that its government would not be increasing its contribution to the GPF in the immediate term. Italy confirmed that it had decreased its annual GPF contribution by more than 1 million dollars. Only the Netherlands announced an impending new contribution to the GPF. Questions also remained regarding the interplay between regional and thematic programs. UNODC intends to follow up with donors.

———————————– UNGASS Review: Compromise Necessary ———————————–

¶5. (SBU) During a UK-hosted lunch, Sandeep Chawla, Director for the Division of Policy Analysis, relayed the concerns held by the chairman of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) – that states had impeded progress on the negotiation of the documents (the Annex and Political Declaration) to be adopted at the high-level CND in March 2009. Specifically, he pointed to delegates’ insistence on re-opening conclusions agreed to by the UNGASS experts groups (Reftel A) and the insistence by some delegations (notably the EU) on inserting the phrase “harm reduction” into the texts. Costa further warned of an “empty” document if progress could not be made.

¶6. (SBU) SWITZERLAND, Germany and France followed UNODC’s statements by giving an optimistic assessment and stressing that the UNGASS review presented an opportunity to highlight “harm reduction” and human rights in the outcome documents. A/S Johnson made clear the U.S. strongly opposed mentioning “harm reduction” in the text of the UNGASS documents. He further stressed that EU introduction of “harm reduction” policies – concepts not agreed to at the expert groups – after the November 4 deadline set by the CND Chairperson for the submission of new ideas into the draft Annex document, bordered on bad faith. All other Member States abided by this deadline. Furthermore, A/S Johnson warned EU Member States not to assume that the new U.S. administration would reverse course on “harm reduction” in the run up to the March 2009 CND. He said the EU should end their attempts to slow roll the negotiations. When asked, UNODC indicated that the Namibian Ambassador would collate comments on the Political Declaration by December 15 and circulate a draft by early January. EU Member States present expressed displeasure and insisted that the draft Political Declaration must be issued by late December.

¶7. (SBU) On the margins of the Major Donors meeting, the UK approached USDEL to note increasing tension on the issue of “harm reduction” and to offer to meet with UNVIE to discuss further. SWITZERLAND also approached USDEL, to question the purported U.S. lack of support for demand reduction. A/S Johnson reiterated that the U.S. very much supports demand reduction. He explained that we object to the use of the term “harm reduction,” because it encompasses objectionable policies such as heroin maintenance and drug injection rooms.

——————————- UNODC Proposal to Combat Piracy ——————————-

¶8. (SBU) The UNODC formally released to Major Donors its draft proposal to combat piracy off of the Somali Coast by facilitating arrests at sea by teams of “ship-riders” from nearby littoral states, the legal transfer of suspects, and their investigation and prosecution. UNODC also shared the proposal with the Permanent Missions of Egypt, Kenya and Yemen, who are included as possible recipients of assistance. The proposal could not be passed to Tanzania because Tanzania does not have permanent representation in Vienna. UNODC staff asserted they could have “boots on the ground” in two weeks and tangible progress in six weeks thereafter. Major Donors, including the United States, expressed general support for the UNODC initiative but there were no immediate funding commitments. The UNODC proposed program would provide countries in the region with the tools necessary to utilize the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime to prosecute the pirates, who constitute an organized crime group as defined by the treaty (Reftel B).

——————————- The Independent Evaluation Unit and the Anti-Corruption Academy ——————————-

¶9. (SBU) A representative of the Independent Evaluation Unit (IEU) provided Major Donors with an overview of the IEU’s accomplishments in 2008. This included a thematic evaluation of UNODC’s terrorism-related work and its program in Afghanistan. Voluntary contributions to the IEU fell in 2008 to half their 2007 levels. These financial constraints caused the IEU to delay staff recruiting and to re-evaluate their 2009 work plan. (Note: UNODC requested UN Regular Budget funding for IEU staff positions for the biennium 2010-2011. End Note.) This tentative work plan includes an evaluation of UNODC’s anti-corruption activities, its Colombia
illicit crop monitoring survey and an annual evaluation report. Donors agreed that evaluations play a vital role in a well functioning organization. Japan urged that the IEU report directly to the Executive Director, to avoid exertion of undue influence by branches of the organization.

¶10. (SBU) UNODC provided a brief overview of its recent agreement with INTERPOL and the Austrian Government to establish the International Anti-Corruption Academy. This body would be the first institution of higher learning dedicated to the fight against corruption within the framework of the UN Convention against Corruption. UNODC said the curriculum will be administered by full time staff, targeting law enforcement, judicial employees, the private sector and non-governmental organizations. UNODC is currently approaching donors for the half million dollars in required start-up costs.

————————————- Meeting with Executive Director Costa ————————————-

¶11. (SBU) A/S Johnson and UNVIE Ambassador Schulte met with UNODC Executive Director Antonio Costa to compare notes in advance of the Major Donors meeting. A/S Johnson showcased the 2008 U.S. contribution to UNODC, which grew to 26 million dollars. In the U.S. view, this voluntary contribution, which includes a little over USD 1 million to the GPF, represented a serious commitment to the organization. A/S Johnson stressed the importance of acknowledging donors for their contributions, citing a trend by UNODC’s operations in Central Asia to fail to recognize U.S. funding support. UNVIE Ambassador Schulte added that UNODC must also provide good visibility to its projects with U.S. embassies in the region due to the increasingly decentralized nature of bilateral assistance efforts. Costa apologized if the U.S. did not receive the recognition it deserved, noting that the EU was particularly sensitive to the same issue; he said that he would address this.

¶12. (SBU)Costa and his staff asked A/S Johnson and Ambassador Schulte for their impressions on whether the new administration would reverse previous U.S. opposition to “harm reduction.” A/S Johnson reiterated the U.S. concern with regard to the EU push for the term’s insertion in the UNGASS documents. He further surmised that in the short-term no one should expect the U.S. to support the so-called harm reduction approach, given the many practices the phrase subsumes. Costa opined that it would be good news if the U.S. does not make a fundamental policy shift on drug control.

———————————– Diverse Group Discusses Afghanistan and UNGASS at UNVIE-hosted Dinner ———————————–

¶13. (SBU) UNVIE Ambassador Schulte hosted a dinner on December 4 in honor of A/S Johnson, inviting a diverse array of participants: UNODC, Canada, Germany, India, Italy, Norway, Pakistan, Sweden, Turkey and the United Kingdom. The attendees undertook a roundtable discussion on their views with regard to the narcotics situation in Afghanistan. A/S Johnson stressed the importance of coupling incentives and disincentives as an effective means to sustain the reductions in opium poppy cultivation. To this end, Ambassador Schulte cited UNODC reporting, which noted that fear of eradication influenced farmers’ decision-making. With regard to NATO involvement in counternarcotics efforts in Afghanistan, the German representative emphatically stated that the direct involvement of German troops was “not possible.” A/S Johnson indicated that NATO engagement did not have to entail use of force but could involve supporting public information efforts or the disbursement of benefits under the Good Performers Initiative (GPI). To this end, he encouraged those governments at the table to provide funding to the GPI. Sweden made a commitment to take this message back to its capital.

¶14. (SBU) With regard to the UNGASS review process, A/S Johnson raised the disagreement between some “close allies” and partners over the phrase “harm reduction.” He expressed concern that relationships with the negotiating climate could be negatively affected at the political level if Member States did not find a mutually agreeable way forward. Canada’s Charge, Terry Wood, agreed that “harm reduction” posed a problem for his country and pointed to the compromise language agreed to in the 2008 UN General Assembly Resolution on drugs as a possible way forward. The UK Ambassador Simon Smith noted that, although a solution is possible, the UK “did not want to move backwards.” Germany and Norway concurred with the UK statement. Sweden’s Ambassador Lundburg pointed to the fact that Sweden also does not support “harm reduction” but has managed to “deal” with it in the EU context. Ambassador Lundburg further mentioned that there are some EU and Latin American countries that would like to modify the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and emphasized that Sweden certainly does not want to “open up that Pandora’s box.”

——- Comment ——-

¶15. (SBU) The Major Donors meeting proved to be an important venue for raising the political stakes with regard to the negotiation of the documents to be adopted at the high-level session of the CND in ¶2009. A/S Johnson used the occasion to follow up on his discussions with the UK in Washington and the European Commission in Brussels at the recent U.S.-EU Drugs Troika. Some EU delegates, notably the UK, seem to be prepared to begin discussions, if at a suitably high level, on compromise language to replace the phrase “harm reduction.” Germany appears more reluctant to do so. Other countries, notably Canada, Pakistan and Namibia, provided strong support for the United States on this issue. USDEL heard that in a private meeting with Costa, the Ambassador from Namibia went so far as to call it an “EU problem”, rather than a “US problem,” since many countries disagreed with the EU position.

¶16. (SBU) Finally, from the interventions of other donor countries, it does not appear that UNODC’s funding structure will undergo any fundamental shifts in the near term. The meeting highlighted UNODC’s increasing frustration with relying heavily on voluntary contributions and with what they perceive as donor-driven priorities for the organization. Nonetheless, many countries, including the United States, remained skeptical about the feasibility of providing a sizeable increase in non-earmarked contributions. The thematic and regional programs afford perhaps the best approach to meet UNODC’s desire for predictable funding. UNVIE will work closely with the Department to provide feedback to UNODC on these programs as they are developed.

¶17. (SBU) Assistant Secretary Johnson has cleared on this cable.

PYATT

HEADER
VZCZCXYZ0017
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHUNV #0666/01 3571331
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 221331Z DEC 08
FM USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8864
INFO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1427

XTAGS: XTAGSNAR, XTAGKCRM, XTAGUN, XTAGPGOV, XTAGAORC, XTAGAF, XTAGSW, XTAGSZ, XTAGGM, XTAGFR, XTAGCA, XTAGIN, XTAGIT 08UNVIEVIENNA666

TAGS
SNAR KCRM UN PGOV AORC AF SW SZ GM FR CA IN IT
ADDED
2011-04-28 00:12:00
STAMP
2011-04-29 00:48:14
VOTE_POINTS
0
VOTE_COUNT
0
VOTE_RATING
0
PRIORITY
RR
TWEETS
0
MANUAL
N
SITELINK
ISNEW
N
FINGERPRINT1
ade1a0a40d18d43b7f2ccebaff4e9abf

 

CLONING CLAIM PUTS SPOTLIGHT ON QUEBEC-BASED RAELIAN GROUP

Thursday, April 28th, 2011
D
03MONTREAL1
SUBJECT
CLONING CLAIM PUTS SPOTLIGHT ON QUEBEC-BASED
DATE
2003-01-03 16:04:00
CLASSIFICATION
UNCLASSIFIED
ORIGIN
Consulate Montreal
TEXT
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MONTREAL 000001

SIPDIS

E.0. 12958: N/A
TAGS: TBIO ECON KIRF CA
SUBJECT: CLONING CLAIM PUTS SPOTLIGHT ON QUEBEC-BASED RAELIAN GROUP

¶1. SUMMARY: THE FOLLOWING IS SOME BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON THE MONTREAL-BASED RAELIAN GROUP, WHOSE MEMBER DR. BRIGITTE BOISSELIER ANNOUNCED AT A DECEMBER 27 PRESS CONFERENCE IN HOLLYWOOD, FLORIDA THE BIRTH OF THE FIRST CLONED HUMAN BEING, A 7 POUND BABY GIRL NICKNAMED EVE. AND ITS TWO MAIN FIGURES LEADER CLAUDE VORILHON, BETTER KNOWN AS RAEL, AND DR. BOISSELIER. ONE LIKELY RESULT OF THE BOISSELIER ANNOUNCEMENT IS THAT CANADA’S PENDING LEGISLATION TO BAN HUMAN CLONING COULD CONTAIN STRICTER RESTRICTIONS. END SUMMARY.

¶2. THE RAELIAN MOVEMENT WAS FOUNDED BY FRENCHMAN CLAUDE VORILHON, A FORMER SPORTS JOURNALIST, FAILED SINGER, RADIO COMMENTATOR AND AVID STOCK CAR RACER. VORILHON CLAIMS TO HAVE BEEN CONCEIVED ON DECEMBER 25, 1945, BY A FRENCH MOTHER AND AN ALIEN FATHER. SPECIALISTS SAY HE WAS BORN IN VICHY, FRANCE IN 1946. VORILHON WHO USES THE NAME RAEL (GOD’S LIGHT) (PRONOUNCED RA-EL IN FRENCH (RHYMES WITH KAL-EL AND JOR-EL)) SAYS HE CREATED THE MOVEMENT AFTER ALIENS VISITED HIM IN CENTRAL FRANCE IN 1973. AT THAT TIME, LITTLE GREEN ALIENS (APPROXIMATELY 4 FT TALL) TOLD HIM –IN FLUENT FRENCH- – EARTHLINGS HAD BEEN CREATED IN A LABORATORY 25,000 YEARS AGO. SINCE THESE ALIENS WHICH HE CALLS THE ELOHIM (THE HEBREW WORD FOR GOD) ARE 25,000 YEARS AHEAD OF US, RAEL SAYS CLONING IS VERY SIMPLE TASK FOR THEM.

¶3. ALTHOUGH THE SECT IS BASED IN MONTREAL–AND NOT SWITZERLAND AS THE BRITISH TABLOID PRESS HAS REPORTED –RAEL MOVED HIS PERSONAL HEADQUARTERS TO FLORIDA IN THE EARLY NINETIES. WHEN IT WAS ANNOUNCED RAEL WAS MOVING TO FLORIDA, RADIO COMMENTATORS JOKED HE WAS SIMPLY IMITATING QUEBEC SNOWBIRDS OR THAT HE WANTED TO GET CLOSER TO NASCAR CIRCUITS. HOWEVER, SOME SAW U.S. EXPANSION AS A LOGICAL BUSINESS MOVE. ON THE ONE HAND, SINCE THE 1960S, QUEBEC HAS PROVEN TO BE TOUGH RECRUITING GROUNDS FOR ALL RELIGIOUS GROUPS, MAINSTREAM OR OTHERWISE. ON THE OTHER, THE U.S. OFFERS MUCH BIGGER POOLS OF MONEY AND TARGET AUDIENCES FOR RAELIAN COMMERCIAL ENTERPRISES. BECAUSE THE GROUP IS RECOGNIZED AS AN ATHEIST RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION BY THE QUEBEC GOVERNMENT IT ENJOYS THE SAME FISCAL ADVANTAGES AS OTHER RELIGIOUS GROUPS.

¶4. THE GROUP OPERATES A THEME PARK CALLED UFO LAND IN QUEBEC’S EASTERN TOWNSHIPS AREA. THE FACILITY, WHICH CONSISTS MAINLY OF A LARGE FLYING SAUCER, A LARGE-SCALE DNA MOLECULE AND SOME ROOMS FOR SUMMER SEMINARS AND MEDIA INTERVIEWS, WAS RECENTLY VANDALIZED BUT IS SCHEDULED TO REOPEN THIS SUMMER.

¶5. IN PHOTOS AND TELEVISION APPEARANCES, RAEL SURROUNDS HIMSELF WITH BEAUTIFUL WOMEN. RAELIAN MEDIA KITS INCLUDE MANY PICTURES OF SCANTILY DRESSED “MEMBERS.” RAEL PREACHES “SENSUAL MEDITATION” WHICH ENABLES THE FAITHFUL TO REACH THE “COSMIC ORGASM.”

¶6. DESPITE THE SECT’S TWO POWERFUL MARKETING TOOLS, SEX AND UFOS, THE RAELIANS HAVE VERY FEW MEMBERS. THEIR WEB SITE WWW.RAEL.ORG CLAIMS -IN TWENTY LANGUAGES– TO HAVE 55,000 MEMBERS IN 84 COUNTRIES. HOWEVER MIKE KROPVELD, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE MONTREAL-BASED INFO-SECTE (NO RELATION WITH THE PARIS ORGANIZATION OF THE SAME NAME) TOLD POST THAT THE RAELIANS INFLATE THEIR FIGURES WITH PAST AND OCCASIONAL MEMBERS. BECAUSE OF ALL THE MEDIA ATTENTION, THE GROUP CREATES A LOT OF CURIOSITY -A RAEL SPOKESMAN STATED IN THE LOCAL PRESS ON DECEMBER 30 THAT THE WEBSITE WAS GETTING ONE MILLION HITS PER HOUR ON DECEMBER 26 — BUT MOST VISITORS ONLY ATTEND A FEW MEETINGS. THE ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP IS BETWEEN 2,000 AND 3,000 WORLDWIDE AND ABOUT 700 IN MONTREAL, SAYS KROPVELD.

¶7. ACCORDING TO LOCAL NEWS ANALYSTS, THE ULTIMATE GOAL OF RAELIANS IS TO CREATE LIFE IN A LABORATORY WHICH WOULD MAKE HUMAN BEINGS IMMORTAL AND ENABLE THEM TO CREATE ANOTHER CIVILIZATION ON ANOTHER PLANET. IN THE MEANTIME, RAEL WANTS TO BUILD AN EMBASSY IN ISRAEL TO WELCOME THE ELOHIM WHEN THEY COME BACK IN 2035. THE GROUP HAS ALSO BEEN CRITICIZED FOR ADVOCATING THE USE OF GENETICS FOR EUGENIC ATTEMPTS AT IMPROVING THE HUMAN RACE. THE GROUP’S STRUCTURE WITH PRIESTS AND BISHOPS IS BASED ALONG THE LINES OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH.

¶8. UNTIL RECENTLY THE GROUP AVOIDED SERIOUS CONTROVERSY. THERE HAVE NOT BEEN ANY STORIES OF FORMER MEMBERS COMPLAINING ABOUT BEING CONNED OUT OF THEIR MONEY OR PHYSICALLY ABUSED OR SEDUCED, AND NO INVOLVEMENT WITH MINORS — EXCEPT ONE CASE IN FRANCE.

¶9. NONETHELESS, THE RAELIANS KNOW HOW TO PIGGYBACK ON STORIES TO GET PUBLICITY. WHEN IN 1993, AUTHORITIES IN QUEBEC DECIDED AGAINST INSTALLING CONDOM DISTRIBUTORS IN SCHOOLS, RAELIANS VISITED THE KIDS WITH FREE SAMPLES. IN THE WAKE OF THE RECENT PEDOPHILE CHARGES AGAINST VARIOUS RELIGIOUS ORDERS, THE GROUP WENT BACK TO THE SCHOOLS IN QUEBEC. THEIR PLAN THIS TIME WAS TO HAND OUT SMALL WOODEN CROSSES FOR THE STUDENTS TO BURN. BUT PUBLIC AND GOVERNMENTAL OPPOSITION STOPPED THE LATER PROJECT. IN BOTH CASES, ALMOST ALL THE PUBLICITY THEY GARNERED WAS BAD.

¶10. SENSING A SIMILAR WAVE OF CONDEMNATION, RAEL HAS PUBLICLY DISTANCED HIMSELF FROM DR. BOISSELIER, A RAELIAN BISHOP, AND HER CLONING WORK, SAYING HE HAD GOTTEN RID OF CLONAID TWO YEARS AGO. HOWEVER, KROPVELD BELIEVES THAT CLONING IS BY FAR THE GROUP’S MOST DANGEROUS WORK. KROPFELD EVEN DOUBTS RAEL REALLY BELIEVES IN CLONING HUMAN BEINGS BEYOND ITS MARKETING POSSIBILITIES FOR HIMSELF AS SECT LEADER.

¶11. AS FOR DR BRIGITTE BOISSELIER, SHE WAS BORN IN 1956 IN FRANCE. SHE HOLDS TWO PHDS IN CHEMISTRY, ONE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF DIJON IN FRANCE AND ONE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON. AFTER HOUSTON SHE WAS HIRED BY AIR LIQUIDE THE FRENCH INDUSTRIAL AND MEDICAL GAS MULTINATIONAL TO WORK ON REVERSIBLE OXYGEN BINDING. IN 1989, AIR LIQUIDE PROMOTED HER TO VP RESEARCH.

¶12. PRIOR TO JOINING CLONAID (SEE WWW.CLONAID.COM) IN 1997, DR. BOISSELIER HAD NOT WORKED IN BIOLOGY OR REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES. THE LAS VEGAS-BASED CLONAID RECEIVED $500,000 FROM MARK HUNT TO BUILD A LABORATORY IN WEST VIRGINIA BEFORE MR. HUNT DECIDED TO STOP FINANCING THAT PROJECT. CLONAID ALSO CLAIMS TO HAVE RECEIVED $200,000 FROM 250 DIFFERENT DONORS IN THE HOPE OF CLONING A FAMILY MEMBER. ON MARCH 28, 2001 DR. BOISSELIER AND RAEL DEFENDED THEIR CLONING PROJECTS BEFORE A SENATE COMMITTEE.

¶13. COMMENT. THE PUBLICITY GARNERED BY THE CLONING ANNOUNCEMENT MAY BE USED BY THE RAEL ORGANIZATION TO GAIN NEW ADHERENTS IN THE UNITED STATES.

¶14. CANADA LIKE MANY OTHER COUNTRIES IS IN THE PROCESS OF ADOPTING LEGISLATION BILL C-113 WHICH WOULD BAN HUMAN CLONING. ONE LIKELY RESULT OF THE BOISSELIER ANNOUNCEMENT IS THAT SUCH LEGISLATION COULD CONTAIN STRICTER RESTRICTIONS. END COMMENT.

KANTER

HEADER
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

XTAGS: XTAGTBIO, XTAGECON, XTAGKIRF, XTAGCA 03MONTREAL1

TAGS
TBIO ECON KIRF CA
ADDED
2011-04-28 00:12:00
STAMP
2011-04-28 23:14:30
VOTE_POINTS
0
VOTE_COUNT
0
VOTE_RATING
0
PRIORITY
RR
TWEETS
0
MANUAL
N
SITELINK
ISNEW
N
FINGERPRINT1
4bb46ec0f53bbf966e22b9651edaec4f