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Cablegate: Exbs Afghanistan Advisor Monthly Border Management

VZCZCXRO2774
PP RUEHBC RUEHDBU RUEHDE RUEHDIR RUEHIK RUEHKUK RUEHPW RUEHYG
DE RUEHBUL #1226/01 1021401
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 121401Z APR 07
FM AMEMBASSY KABUL
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7451
INFO RUCNEXC/ECRBS COLLECTIVE
RUCNAFG/AFGHANISTAN COLLECTIVE
RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE
RUCNIRA/IRAN COLLECTIVE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 3949
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 6702
RUEHUNV/USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA 2041
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC 0429
RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC
RUEAORC/US CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC 0430

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 KABUL 001226

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR SCA/A, ISN/ECC PVANSON, ACHURCH, CBCRAFT; CBP/INA FOR
CDONOFRIO, MMULLINS, ISAUNDERS, JSULLIVAN, JAHERN; DOE/NNSA FOR
RSTUBBLEFIELD; DOC FOR ELOCKWOOD-SHABAT; DOT FOR APARAMESWARAN;
SECDEF FOR MHOFFMANN, FLIGHT, AND RVIERKANT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETTC PARM ETRD PREL KSTC KNNP AF

SUBJECT: EXBS Afghanistan Advisor Monthly Border Management
Initiative Reporting Cable - March 2007

KABUL 00001226 001.2 OF 004


Sensitive But Unclassified

I. SUMMARY

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: During this reporting period the Border
Management Task Force (BMTF) was briefed by the European Commission
and UNDP regarding the planned construction upgrades in Badakhshan
Province on the Tajikistan and Afghanistan border for three Border
Crossing Points (BCPs): Nusay; Segnan; and Eshkashem.
Representatives from the BMTF and the Afghanistan Engineering
District (AED) traveled to Dushanbe, Tajikistan, to meet with US
Embassy personnel to discuss infrastructure activity and
cross-border coordination between the Tajikistan and Afghanistan
border. The purpose of the visit was to discuss infrastructure
activity and cross-border coordination. The BMTF acquired the
Iranian infrastructure drawing from the Afghan Customs Department
(ACD) that will be used by the Iranians to build the new BCP at Mile
Marker 78 in Afghanistan. The Iranians previously proposed this new
crossing. The GoA agreed to this, provided the Iranians would build
the crossing facility. CSTC-A CJ-7 Army Corp of Engineers has
completed the $400,000.00 upgrade project at the Islam Qalah BCP.
This project has brought some organization to the chaos that was
present prior to these upgrades. Task Force Phoenix, a subordinate
element of CSTC-A, Regional Corps Advisory Group (RCAG) and the
Regional Police Advisory Team (RPAT) for the western region is
coordinating a Regional Security Council with ISAF RC-West and the
ANA, ANP and ABP to engage with the local elders in an attempt to
find agreeable solutions to economic issues surrounding the presence
of the central government's BCP operation. The BMTF briefed Richard
Douglas, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
Counter-Narcotics, Counter-Proliferation and Global Threats, who was
in Kabul to gather current information about programs and projects
being funded by DOD, specifically JIACG-CN. The BMTF also briefed
Diana Brown who is part of the US Mission to the Organization for
Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). Ms. Brown was in Kabul
gathering current information from many GoA partners on programs
that may benefit from services provided by the OSCE to bridge the
gaps that exist in many sectors of donor supported programs. END
SUMMARY.

II. ITEMS OF BROAD INTEREST.
2. (U) The BMTF was briefed by the European Commission UNDP
regarding planned construction upgrades in Badakhshan Province on
the Tajikistan and Afghanistan border for three BCPs: Nusay ($160K);
Segnan ($290K); and Eshkashem ($380K). UNDP is also planning
cross-border training for ABP and Customs officials at these
locations for cross-border familiarization of the Tajikistan and
Afghan BCP operations. In addition, UNDP is considering employing
subject matter experts as mentors for each of the BCPs on both sides
of the border.
3. (SBU) Representatives from the BMTF and the Afghanistan
Engineering District (AED) traveled to Dushanbe, Tajikistan, to meet
with US Embassy personnel including representatives from the Defense
Attache Office (DAO), Department of Justice Senior Law Enforcement
Advisor (SLEA) and the EXBS Advisor. The purpose of the visit was
to discuss infrastructure activity and cross-border coordination
between the Tajikistan and Afghan border. The following were
highlighted as priority issues raised by BMTF and AED:

-- Retention of the Nizhny Pyandzh, Tajikistan BCP construction
compound (US Army Corp of Engineers) upon completion of the bridge
project linking the 2 countries for deployment of BCP
mentors/trainers to work one or both sides of the bridge.
-- Provide focus/raise awareness on lack of a commercial compound
plans at the Shir Khan/Nizhny Pyandzh crossing by securing donor
funding options; plan/design/build commercial inspection facilities
at NP. (The EC is constructing a large modern commercial facility on

KABUL 00001226 002.2 OF 004


the Afghan side in Shir Kahn).
-- Plan/coordinate/conduct joint training efforts for Tajik/Afghan
border officials using agreed upon standardized and vetted
curriculums.
-- Promote communication between Tajik and Afghan Border agencies
and promote better relationships between the border guards and their
customs counterparts at their respective locations.

4. (SBU) In a related matter, members of the Tajikistan government
had agreed earlier to train Tajik and Afghan border elements at the
Khorog Training Center near the Afghan BCP at Segnan in Badakhshan
Province. A memo was written by the First Deputy Chairman Mirzoev
from the Tajikistan State National Security Committee (NSC) to the
Border Management for Central Asia (BOMCA) and the Central Asia Drug
Action Program (CADAP) programs of the European Union declining to
train any Afghan personnel. Specifically, the document states "Due
to structural changes, lack of required conditions, including legal
barriers, we abstain from organization of training for Afghan border
guards and customs in the Khorog Training Center." It also goes on
to say "...the activity of liaison officers is inexpedient". This
prompted a diplomatic note from the US Embassy in Dushanbe asking
them to reconsider. No reply from the Tajik NSC has been received to
date.

5. (SBU) During this visit, BMTF and AED representatives learned
that the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) in Tajikistan is planning the
construction of 2 bridges over the Panj river at the Tajikistan BCPs
located in Vanj and Shuroobod connecting with the Afghanistan
Badakshan Province. The BMTF is scheduling meetings with the Afghan
Customs Department (ACD) and the AKF to address the issues of new
BCPs at these Afghan crossing locations that were not previously
taken into account.

6. (SBU) The BMTF acquired the Iranian infrastructure drawing from
the ACD that will be used by the Iranians to build the new BCP at
Mile Marker 78 in Afghanistan. The Iranians previously proposed
this new crossing which the GoA agreed to if the Iranians would
build the crossing facility. This location is approximately midway
between the Islam Qalah and the Zaranj BCPs. The Iranians also
agreed to refurbish the Zaranj BCP in the southern Afghan Province
of Nimroz. The German Police Project Office (GPPO) is scheduled to
meet with Iranian Embassy representatives in Kabul to discuss ABP
training previously offered by the Iranians. This will be followed
up by a visit to Tehran by representatives of the German Ministry of
Interior to discuss Iranian funding of Afghan police projects with a
priority on counter-narcotics and border security.

7. (SBU) CSTC-A CJ-7 Army Corp of Engineers has completed the
$400,000.00 upgrade project at the Islam Qalah BCP. This project
has brought some organization to the chaos that was present prior to
these upgrades. The traffic pattern and resurfacing of the BCP
roads has greatly increased the proper flow of commercial traffic
into and out of the customs facility. Also, the areas of operation
between the various border elements, i.e. pedestrian, immigration
and commercial traffic have been sectioned off, thereby improving
security within these respective areas.

8. (SBU) The $15 million 450-day project funded by the United
States at the Islam Qalah BCP is underway. BMTF has reached out to
humanitarian organizations in Herat to direct their attention to the
conditions of the local population surrounding the BCP in an attempt
to garner their support. The RCAG/RPAT for the western region is
coordinating a Regional Security Council with ISAF RC-West and the
ANA, ANP and ABP to engage with the local elders in an attempt to
find agreeable solutions to economic issues surrounding the presence
of central government's BCP operation. A Civil Affairs humanitarian
visit of the villages surrounding the Islam Qalah BCP is scheduled

KABUL 00001226 003.2 OF 004


for the first week in April.

9. (SBU) BMTF representatives assessed the current situation at the
Weesch/Spin Boldak BCP -- Spin Boldak BCP is 8 km inland from the
actual crossing point at Weesch -- which serves as Afghanistan's
main southern entry and exit point with Pakistan. Steel, raw
materials and contraband cigarettes from the former Soviet Union
travels from the Towraghundi BCP on the Turkmenistan border and
exits this port for foundries and markets in Pakistan and India.
Cars, produce, clothing and food products enter the port for use in
Afghanistan. This is only a limited list of the products transiting
this port on a daily basis. During a recent visit this month by
BMTF and AED the following observations were made during a one day
tour of the Weesch crossing:

-- The crossing point at Weesch is congested with commercial shops
and residences that straddle the border leaving little space to
construct a proper BCP.

-- Little or no inbound vehicle inspections by ACD or ABP
immigration inspections were conducted.

-- None of the hundreds of donkey carts entering and exiting the
border were stopped for inspection.

-- A sizable number of commercial trucks circumvented the customs
process in Spin Boldak by entering private warehouses after crossing
at Weesch, thus avoiding duties and adding to the leakage of
revenue.

-- The following daily traffic estimates are considered valid:

a. 800 to 1,000 commercial trucks (Jingle trucks)
b. 300 to 500 small commercial trucks (pickup)
c. 500 to 600 donkey carts
d. 500 POVs
-- Pakistan estimates that 30,000 pedestrians transit this crossing
each day. The BMTF team observed several hundred crossing the
border in an hour mid-day.

10. (SBU) ISAF and CSTC-A report that the amount of uncontrollable
traffic crossing at Weesch lends itself to easy access by insurgents
and weapons smugglers. It is agreed that the construction of a
fully functional BCP at Weesch would end the chaos and bring control
and organization to the area, forestalling the free movement of
illegal aliens, insurgents and contraband. Efforts are underway by
the BMTF and the ACD to gather donor support to fund this estimated
$14 million BCP construction. In the interim, BMTF has submitted
suggested traffic patterns to CSTC-A CJ-7 engineers who have agreed
to provide placement of structural barriers, i.e. Jersey Barriers,
fencing or HESCOS to gain some control over the Weesch crossing.

11. (SBU) The BMTF team met with the Kandahar Director of Customs
who stated that his department could make land available for the
construction of a new BCP. He claimed that the local traders also
support such construction. ACD has been requested by the BMTF to
begin identifying parcels of land in the vicinity that could be used
to house the new BCP.

12. (SBU) INL/DynCorp mentors located in Kandahar possess a strong
grasp of the local situation at the Weesch/Spin Boldak BCP. They
are working hard to mentor the border police and are improving ABP
operations. However, Afghan Customs operations fall outside the
parameters of their mission and no equivalent with Customs
experience is in place to mentor either the Customs Officials or
Customs Police. Revenue collection is expected to remain stagnant
until proper Customs procedures and processes are taught and ACD

KABUL 00001226 004.2 OF 004


employees are properly mentored to carry out their duties.
13. (SBU) The BMTF briefed Richard Douglas, Deputy Assistant
Secretary of Defense for Counter-Narcotics, Counter-Proliferation

SIPDIS
and Global Threats, who was in Kabul to gather current information
about programs and projects being funded by DOD, specifically the
Joint Interagency Coordination Group-Counter Narcotics (JIACG-CN).
The BMTF currently receives approximately $11 million from JIACG-CN
to fund approximately 10 of the anticipated 21 positions within the
BMTF.
14. (SBU) The BMTF also briefed Diana Brown who is part of the US
Mission to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe
(OSCE). Ms. Brown was in Kabul gathering current information from
many GoA partners on programs that may benefit from the services
provided by the OSCE to bridge the gaps that exist in many sectors
of donor supported programs. Ms. Brown stated that the OSCE is also
redirecting part of its focus on the Central Asia countries in
anticipation of supporting border security and cross-border
integration with Afghanistan and its neighbors to the north. BMTF
stressed the need for more training required for better
effectiveness of the border elements and the introduction of a
subject matter expert border mentorship program that requires help
in developing.

15. (U) TRAINING CONDUCTED DURING REPORTING PERIOD.

Nothing to report.

16. (U) EQUIPMENT DELIVERED DURING REPORTING PERIOD.

Under Procurement.

17. (SBU) IMMINENT TRAINING OR EQUIPMENT STATUS UPDATE.

EXBS is awaiting the delivery of x-ray screening machines for
baggage and cargo, fiber optic scopes, density meters, radioisotope
identifiers, explosive detectors, handheld metal detectors, cranes,
forklifts, vehicle inspection kits, and tool kits destined for the
Islam Qalah and Towraghundi BCPs. Delivery is scheduled in April
2007 for the 3 x-ray baggage and cargo scanners; April 2007 for the
explosive detectors and 2 - 40 ton cranes; and July 2007 for the
fork lifts. However, no dates are available for the remaining items,
but the EXBS Advisor has secured temporary storage for the equipment
and will coordinate logistical arrangements as the equipment
arrives. An 'End-User Statement' for the Sabre tri-mode explosive
detection systems has been provided by the GoA and has been sent to
the manufacturer as required before delivery can be scheduled.

18. (U) SIGNIFICANT DEVELOPMENTS IN EXPORT CONTROLS,
NONPROLIFERATION, OR RELATED BORDER SECURITY.

Nothing to report.

19. (U) OTHER SIGNIFICANT ISSUES/EVENTS.

Nothing to report.

20. (U) RED FLAG ISSUES.

Nothing to report.

21. (U) Please direct any questions or comments to Barry F. Lory,
EXBS Advisor to Afghanistan; +93-700-073-652 or +93-700-108-272;
lorybf@state.gov or to Cassady Craft, South Asia Regional Program
Analyst, Office of Export Control Cooperation,
202-647-1063,craftcb@state.gov.

NORLAND

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