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Cablegate: Nato-Ukraine Council Marks Tenth Anniversary July

VZCZCXRO9375
PP RUEHDBU RUEHIK RUEHLN RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHNO #0410 1921602
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 111602Z JUL 07
FM USMISSION USNATO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1040
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/USNMR SHAPE BE PRIORITY
RUEHNO/USDELMC BRUSSELS BE PRIORITY

UNCLAS USNATO 000410

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL NATO UP
SUBJECT: NATO-UKRAINE COUNCIL MARKS TENTH ANNIVERSARY JULY
9

REF: A. SYG'S OPENING REMARKS (E-MAILED TO EUR/RPM)
B. NUC AMBASSADORS' JOINT STATEMENT (E-MAILED TO
EUR/RPM)

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: On July 9, the 27 members of the
NATO-Ukraine Commission (NUC) met in Ambassadorial session at
NATO headquarters to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the
signing of the Charter on a Distinctive Partnership which
established the NUC. Allies commended Ukraine's
contributions to all NATO's operations and said it is
Ukraine's choice whether and when to take its relationship
with NATO to the next level. End Summary.

2. (SBU) Opening the NUC Ambassadors meeting, NATO SYG de
Hoop Scheffer noted that Ukraine is the only Partner nation
that contributes to every one of the Alliance's ongoing
operations, re-affirmed NATO's open door, and stressed that
the future of NATO-Ukraine relations is "in the hands of
Ukraine's people and their elected leaders" (REF A).
Ukrainian Ambassador Kostiantyn Morozov frankly addressed the
struggle to reach an intenral consensus on Ukraine's future
direction. Still, while political processes wrestled with
that fundamental question, he stated that ten years of
cooperation with NATO had been "of geopolitical significance"
and had introduced "qualitatively new mechanisms" to
Ukraine's security and defense structures. Morozov
acknowledged the U.S.-led Trust Fund for the elimination of
excess small arms and light weapons, munitions, and MANPADS
in Ukraine. He looked forward to deepening integration with
NATO, "up to the level of membership," stressing that "no
political forces have rejected membership as a strategic
goal."

3. (SBU) Reflecting the importance of a decade of
cooperation, all 26 Allies, as well as the SYG, Morozov, and
the Chairman of the Military Committee, briefly took the
floor. Their most common themes were: appreciation for
Ukraine's troop contributions; respect for its handling tough
questions through democratic political processes;
commitments to continue helping with its defense and security
sector reforms; and assurances that NATO would "go as far as
Ukraine is willing to go" toward membership (in the words of
Contact Point Embassy Slovakia's Ambassador). The NUC
Ambassadors issued a Joint Statement (REF B).

4. (SBU) Ambassador Nuland noted that in ten years NATO had
gotten a lot from its cooperation with Ukraine, and
vice-versa. Ukraine's contributions to peacekeeping were not
limited to NATO-led operations, but included UN missions in
Liberia and Lebanon, and the coalition in Iraq. She noted
that the one millionth surplus weapon to be destroyed with
U.S. funding would be part of the NATO Trust Fund for
eliminating small arms and light weapons in Ukraine. She
urged free and fair elections this fall, stronger democratic
institutions, and an active public information campaign to
provide the people "an accurate picture of NATO" to shape
their decision. "Only you can decide Ukraine's future with
NATO; our door is open," she concluded.
NULAND

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