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Cablegate: March 2 Zagreb Ministerial to Endorse New Cooperative

null
UNCLAS ZAGREB 00202

SIPDIS
R 270603Z FEB 07

FM AMEMBASSY ZAGREB
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7346
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS ZAGREB 000202

SIPDIS

E.O. 12598: N/A
TAGS: PREL ECON HR
SUBJECT: MARCH 2 ZAGREB MINISTERIAL TO ENDORSE NEW COOPERATIVE
"ARCHITECTURE" IN SOUTHEAST EUROPE

REF: ZAGREB 184

1. Croatian MFA State Secretary Hidajet Biscevic previewed for the
diplomatic corps February 26 the upcoming March 2 South East Europe
Cooperative Process (SEECP) Foreign Ministerial. His presentation
was brief but emphasized that regional relations have matured
sufficiently to permit regional ownership of the new cooperative
structures. He described Croatia's goal for its SEECP chairmanship
as preparation for the future, through constructing a new
architecture in Southeast Europe, which will permit the countries of
the region to work together more productively.

2. Biscevic noted that the ministers will deal with a number of
"procedural" issues related to establishing a Regional Cooperation
Council (reftel). Ministers are also expected to task political
directors to prepare an amended SEECP charter for adoption by the
May 11 Summit. The amended charter will include a "Euro-Atlantic"
element and make reference to the new institution. In addition to
Foreign Ministers, the OSCE Secretary General will attend.
Stability Pact Coordinator Busek was expected but a skiing injury
may keep him away, according to the Austrian Ambassador.

3. Biscevic laid out a busy meeting schedule for the remaining
three months of the Croatian SEECP chairmanship. After the March 2
Foreign Ministerial (preceded by a February 28-March 1 Political
Directors meeting), Zagreb will host the following:

-- April 2-3 Regional Energy Conference, including governments and
commercial representatives from outside the immediate SEECP region.
The EU Energy Commission is expected to attend.

-- April 12-13 SEECP Home and Justice Ministerial; agenda to focus
on Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption issues.

-- April (second half): SEECP Parliament Speakers

-- May 10: SEECP Foreign Ministerial

-- May 11: SEECP Summit. In addition to SEECP Heads of Government,
Chancellor Merkel, EC President Barroso, and Enlargement
Commissioner Rehn are expected.

Bradtke

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