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Cablegate: Prt Civil Society Outreach in Diyala's Farm Sector

VZCZCXRO3081
RR RUEHBC RUEHDA RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK
DE RUEHGB #0010 0021101
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 021101Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5080
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS BAGHDAD 000010

SIPDIS

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAGR ECON ETRD EAID EFIN IZ
SUBJECT: PRT Civil Society Outreach in Diyala's Farm Sector

1. (U) This is a PRT Diyala reporting cable.

2. (SBU) SUMMARY: PRT Diyala has conducted outreach and support
activities with the Agricultural Chamber of Commerce and the Diyala
Beekeepers Association. Allegations of violence within the Diyala
Farmers' Union has required the PRT to step back from supporting
what at first appeared to be a promising civil society organization.
END SUMMARY.

3. (SBU) The inaugural meeting of the Diyala Farmer's Union was held
at their new building in Baqubah in September. In addition to more
than 300 Diyala farmers, the National Farmers Union Representative
for Diyala Province, the Assistant Governor for Administrative
Affairs, a representative of the Iraqi Police, and a representative
of the Provincial Council Agriculture Committee Chairman, were all
present at the inaugural meeting.

4. (SBU) A vote was held for the membership of the Governing Board
after a meal and speeches. In addition to the President, Vice
President, and General Secretary, seven delegates were elected to
represent the provincial farmers. The chosen delegates were
representative of all religious groups and thus represented a
potential vehicle for reconciliation using agricultural interests in
Diyala.

5. (SBU) Although this fine beginning seemed to augur well for the
Union, the PRT has had to step back from its support for the
organization due to conflict within the leadership in October.

6. (SBU) The PRT is also supporting the Agricultural Chamber of
Commerce which will enable better services to be provided to
provincial agriculturalists, and increase the opportunity that they
have to influence government operation. Funding has been provided to
renovate an administrative and meeting building, and to support
their first year of operation.

7. (SBU) PRT continues to collaborate with the Diyala Beekeepers
Association as well, particularly on importing honey processing
equipment which will greatly benefit members of the association and
enable commercial sales to commence.

CROCKER

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