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Cablegate: Bep-Us Mou Negotiations

VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHJA #2397/01 2430252
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 310252Z AUG 07
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6010
RUEKJCS/OSD WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
INFO RUEAUSA/DEPT OF HHS WASHDC
RUEHRC/DEPT OF AGRICULTURE USD FAS WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS JAKARTA 002397

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP/MTS
DEPT FOR ISN/CTR, FM, WMDT
DEPT FOR L/NPV
DEPT PASS TO T BUREAU SKOCH
OSD PASS TO JREID
OSD/GC FOR CALLEN
DOE/NNSA FOR MMALLIN
NSC FOR CLEDDY
HHS/OGHA FOR BSTEIGER
USDA/ARS FOR PWHUNG
USDA/APHIS FOR JANNELLI

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: TRGY KNNP ENRG KTIA ID

SUBJECT: BEP-US MOU NEGOTIATIONS

REF: A) State 112668
B) Marcellin-Rao August 20 Email

1. (SBU) Summary. On August 21, Desra Percaya, Ministry of Foreign
Affairs (DEPLU) Director for International Security and Disarmament
told us that Indonesia is ready to conclude a bilateral Biosecurity
Engagement Program (BEP) Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Percaya
provided us with written comments (Ref B) to USG questions (Ref A).
The Government of Indonesia (GOI) sees the BEP MOU as a high-level
umbrella agreement, with side issues, such as a negotiated liability
clause left to agency-specific implementing agreements. Percaya
asked about next steps and made clear that the Indonesian team would
like to wrap up the agreement soon. END SUMMARY.

2. (SBU) On August 21, the Indonesian DEPLU team of Desra Percaya,
Andy Rachmianto (Deputy Director for Disarmament) and Adhyanti
Sardanarini Wirajuda (DEPLU staffer and daughter of Minister of
Foreign Affairs Nur Hassan Wirajuda) met with Dr. Jason Rao, BEP
Coordinator (ISN CTR) and embassy officials to discuss the
Biosecurity Engagement Program MOU. The Indonesian team prepared a
written response to the questions raised in ref A. Although the
responses are not detailed, the Indonesians made clear that they see
the MOU as a "high-level" agreement. GOI prefers that side issues
such as negotiated liability clauses belong in agency-specific
implementing agreements.

3. (U) A GOI interagency group generated the counter-draft after two
long days of BEP MOU discussions. All agencies agreed that separate
implementing agreements specific to their work should supplement the
umbrella MOU -- thus the Indonesian counter draft has eliminated
much of the specific language on liability, and some other
provisions.

4. (SBU) The U.S. team made clear that the MOU must address certain
provisions (such as liability) either directly or by specifying that
future implementing arrangements would contain these clauses. The
Indonesians understood but explained that the Indonesian precedent
was to move such clauses into implementing agreements. Trying to
address specific issues in the interagency umbrella MOU, they said,
would overburden the system here and stall the negotiations.

5. (SBU) The Indonesian team understands the nature of the work and
wants this important collaboration. Percaya and Rachmanto cited the
recent outbreak of the foot and mouth disease in the United Kingdom
and noted that BEP MOU would help prevent similar lab accidents at
Indonesian laboratories such as Balitvet. They share our concerns
about security issues at Balitvet and are eager to address them
through the MOU.

6. (SBU) The Indonesian team asked about next steps and made clear
that they would like to wrap up the agreement very soon.
Specifically, Adhyanti Wirajuda needs to finalize the agreement
before her November transfer to the United Nations. We responded
that the USG would provide a new draft soon after an interagency
discussion of GOI answers. Percaya noted that if our counter draft
agreed to move the items in question into implementing agreements,
the GOI would likely be ready to conclude and sign.

7. (SBU) Comment. The written GOI response does not capture the
genuine interest and positive attitude the group had toward
concluding the agreement. The ease which this agreement has
progressed so far should be seen in stark contrast to other more
contentious issues, such as the slower-moving NAMRU-2 agreement and
stalled WHO negotiations on avian flu strain exchange. We believe
that DEPLU would particularly like the agreement to conclude soon as
this would represent a professional achievement for the Foreign
Minister's daughter Adhyanti Wirajuda. We should capitalize on the
Indonesian's willingness to conclude this quickly. This MOU also
will lay the foundation for an implementing agreement with the
Ministry of Health that is needed for delivering training and
support at the National Institute of Health Research and Development
-- one of our current Embassy priorities. Ambassador Hume is eager
to sign this agreement in Jakarta as soon as possible. End
Comment.

2

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