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Cablegate: Brazil: Views On Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking:

VZCZCXRO4302
RR RUEHRG
DE RUEHBR #1722 2541620
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 111620Z SEP 07
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9918
INFO RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 0752
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 5073
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 7116

UNCLAS BRASILIA 001722

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR OES/ETC, OES/STC,

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV KSCA BR
SUBJECT: BRAZIL: VIEWS ON COALITION AGAINST WILDLIFE TRAFFICKING:
ILLEGAL LOGGING OUT, GENETIC RESOURCES IN


1. (U) THIS CABLE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED, IT IS NOT
INTENDED FOR INTERNET DISTRIBUTION.

2. (SBU) SUMMARY. Brazilian Ministry of External Relations
Environment Division Director Coimbra stressed in an August 27
meeting with ESTH Counselor that Brazil had concerns about the scope
of the Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking, in particular the
inclusion of flora, which would include timber. While adamant about
wanting to keep "illegal logging" out of CAWT's scope, Coimbra also
noted Brazil would like to include genetic resources within the
scope. END SUMMARY.

3. (SBU) On August 27, ESTH Counselor and ESTH Officer met with
Fernando Coimbra, the new Director of Brazil's Ministry of Exterior
Relations (MRE) Environment Division, to discuss the Government of
Brazil's (GOB) views on the Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking
(CAWT). Coimbra stressed that the GOB supported efforts to combat
illegal trafficking in animals. He noted that Brazil is often a
victim of such trafficking due to its rich biodiversity. Further,
the GOB had attended CAWT meetings in London and Orlando as an
observer.

4. (SBU) Nonetheless, Coimbra identified two areas of concern
regarding CAWT's "scope": "illegal logging" and genetic resources.
He added that who spoke for CAWT seemed an open question. The GOB
had heard differing views from the United States, the Europeans, and
Australia about CAWT's scope and purpose. He wanted to know how to
get a definitive answer on CAWT's scope. He also sought
clarification on how CAWT's decision-making process works.

5. (SBU) First, Coimbra expressed serious reservations about
including flora within the scope of CAWT's work, in particular
timber. He commented that "illegal logging" was a "non-starter" for
the GOB. He complained that at the CAWT meeting in Orlando there
had been a side-event on "illegal logging." (NOTE: Coimbra
explained that from the GOB perspective, "illegal logging" is a
domestic concept defined by national law, and not from outside. Of
course, when timber that has been illegally harvested is exported
from Brazilian territory in contravention to CITES then it could be
considered "illegal." While the international community should not
be characterizing Brazilian logging as legal or illegal, Coimbra
commented, it certainly could help Brazil through capacity-building
and strengthening institutions. END NOTE.)

6. (SBU) Second, after discussing concerns about flora and
"illegal logging," Coimbra raised the GOB's interest in including
genetic resources within the scope of CAWT's work. When asked
whether the GOB insisted on including genetic resources within
CAWT's scope, he demurred.

7. (SBU) Further, Coimbra noted that the GOB works with others in
Brazil to combat wildlife trafficking. He mentioned that the GOB
collaborates with the Brazilian NGO Renctas in this area. The
Executive Coordinator of Renctas, Raulff Ferraz Lima, met with ESTH
Counselor and confirmed that the GOB collaborates with Renctas in
anti-trafficking campaign, and further that the GOB had interest in
joining CAWT but it would have to work through its reservations
beforehand.

8. (SBU) Coimbra stated that the GOB did not want to diminish or
weaken CITES. He expressed some hesitation that CAWT could in some
way be undermining CITES.

9. (SBU) COMMENT. Absent convincing assurances about keeping
"illegal logging" outside of CAWT's scope, the GOB appears unlikely
to upgrade its participation from observer to member. This task may
have become more difficult if, as Coimbra indicates, other CAWT
members are declaring that CAWT has such an expansive scope of work.
END COMMENT.

SOBEL

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