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Cablegate: Cook Islands Country Clearance for Howard Diamond, June 27

VZCZCXRO1121
RR RUEHNZ
DE RUEHWL #0465 1712213
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 202213Z JUN 07
FM AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON
TO RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC 0152
INFO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4398
RUEHNZ/AMCONSUL AUCKLAND 1373

UNCLAS WELLINGTON 000465

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

STATE FOR EAP/ANP - KELLY MCKELLOGG

E.O. 12985: N/A
TAGS: OTRA TSPA KSCA CW NZ
SUBJECT: COOK ISLANDS COUNTRY CLEARANCE FOR HOWARD DIAMOND, JUNE 27
- JULY 7, 2007

REF: USDOC 5737

1. (SBU) Embassy welcomes and grants country clearance to
Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration Physical Scientist Howard J. Diamond to travel to
Rarotonga, Cook Islands, from June 27 - July 7, 2007. The purpose
of this visit is participate in the Regional Meteorological Service
Directors meeting in Rarotonga.

2. (SBU) Embassy understands that country clearance is the only
assistance requested. The point of contact for your visit is
Economic Officer Tom Walsh. Contact details are as follows:

Office: 644-462-6182
Fax: 644-472-3537
Cell: 027-446-4467
E-mail: WalshTJ@state.gov

Security Assessment
-------------------

3. (SBU) The Cook Islands is a Parliamentary democracy in free
association with New Zealand, on which they rely for defense and
assistance in meeting low-level security threats. The Embassy is
not aware of any specific threats to U.S. facilities or personnel at
this time in the Cook Islands. However, in light of the worldwide
security alert all visitors should heighten their security awareness
and report any unusual incidents to the Regional Security Office at
the Embassy in Wellington, New Zealand (telephone (64)(4)462-6000,
24 hours/day).

4. (SBU) Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the
U.S. and the 2002 and 2005 terrorist bombings in Bali, there has
been concern that terrorists might seek to take advantage of the low
level of security maintained in small island states such as the Cook
Islands in order to target tourists in previously safe destinations.
New Zealand has worked with the Cook Islands to improve airport
security in response to this possibility.

5. (U) As a result of recent military action in Iraq, there is a
potential for retaliatory actions to be taken against U.S. citizens
and interests throughout the world. Public demonstrations carry the
potential for precipitating violence directed at American citizens.

6. (SBU) U.S. Government facilities worldwide remain at a
heightened state of alert and some have drawn down their dependents
and/or personnel. These facilities may temporarily close or suspend
public services from time to time for security reasons. In those
instances, U.S. embassies and consulates will make every effort to
provide emergency services to American citizens. Monitor the local
news and maintain contact with the nearest American Embassy or U.S.
Consulate.

7. (U) Crime: Appropriate common sense precautions should be
taken, especially at night, to avoid becoming a target of
opportunity.

8. (U) Weather: Severe cyclones present a threat during the
hurricane season; however, this is generally only from November to
March.

McCormick

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