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Cablegate: Pga Kerim Requests U.S. Views On Intermediary

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OO RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR RUEHTRO
DE RUCNDT #0310/01 0981440
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 071440Z APR 08
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4059
INFO RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO IMMEDIATE 8460
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA IMMEDIATE 0936
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI IMMEDIATE 2144
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD IMMEDIATE 1865
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL IMMEDIATE 0896
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO IMMEDIATE 0660

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 USUN NEW YORK 000310

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SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/04/2018
TAGS: PREL KUNR UNSC GM JA IT BR IN PK
SUBJECT: PGA KERIM REQUESTS U.S. VIEWS ON INTERMEDIARY
SECURITY COUNCIL EXPANSION

REF: A. USUN 258
B. 2007 USUN 1225

Classified By: Ambassador Zalmay M. Khalilzad, per 1.4 (b) and (d).

1. (U) This is an action request for Department guidance
before the April 10 OEWG session. Please see para 6.

2. (U) Summary. President of the General Assembly (PGA)
Serdjam Kerim requested a meeting with Amb Khalilzad on April
4 to discuss UNSC reform. Noting that he had received
several proposals on UNSC expansion since he asked member
states to submit ideas in December 2007, Kerim said he would
convene the Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on April 10 to
seek reactions to the different proposals, and determine how
to reconcile them to create one basis for the upcoming
inter-governmental negotiations. Amb Khalilzad emphasized
that we remain concerned about the slow pace of the broader
UN reform that must accompany UNSC expansion, and, with
respect to the Cyprus proposal (ref A), that expanding the
Security Council to 22 members overall is excessive and would
compromise the Council's effectiveness. Kerim asked Amb
Khalilzad to consult with Washington and take a position on
intermediary UNSC expansion and the other UN reforms the U.S.
seeks. He urged the U.S. to develop its position soon in
order to influence the upcoming inter-governmental
negotiations. End Summary.

Kerim to Convene OEWG on April 10
---------------------------------

3. (C) PGA Kerim said he would convene the Open-Ended Working
Group (OEWG) on April 10 to discuss the way forward on UNSC
reform. Since the last OEWG meeting in December, when he
asked member states to submit proposals to serve as a basis
for inter-governmental negotiations, Kerim reported that he
had received three inputs: a draft text from Cyprus, a letter
from Italy on behalf of UFC countries, and a letter from Cape
Verde on behalf of the African Group (ref A). During the
April 10 OEWG meeting, he planned to seek reactions from
member states to the three proposals, and then direct his
Task Force to work with the membership to reconcile the three
papers into one text on which to begin negotiations. In this
respect, Kerim asked Amb Khalilzad for the U.S. position on
the three proposals (reported ref A). Separately, the PGA's
staff told USUN officers that Kerim would announce on April
10 the appointment of the Djibouti PermRep as an additional
member of his Task Force, joining the PermReps of Bangladesh,
Chile, and Portugal. Kerim reportedly made this appointment
to assuage African concerns that they were not represented on
the Task Force.

U.S. Concerns About Reform Process
----------------------------------

4. (C) Noting that we had not received instructions on the
various proposals, Amb Khalilzad made four preliminary
observations. First, he emphasized that we are open to UNSC
expansion and have participated in discussions in New York in
that spirit. Second, he underscored that UNSC expansion must
be part of a broader UN reform effort, but expressed regret
that other reform had not been linked to possible UNSC
reform. Third, with respect to the Cypriot proposal, he
noted that expanding the Council to 22 members overall would
be excessive. The U.S. has always said that any expansion of
the UNSC must be "modest" and preserve its effectiveness.
Adding seven seats is an increase of fifty percent, an
increase seemingly chosen to manage the politics of UNSC
expansion, not to maintain the Council's effectiveness.
Fourth, the OEWG (which operates by consensus) should remain
the forum for discussions on UNSC expansion, to ensure the
broadest possible support for any expansion plan.

Kerim Wants U.S. Views
on Intermediary SC Expansion
----------------------------

5. (C) Kerim asked Amb Khalilzad to consult with Washington
and take a position on intermediary UNSC expansion soon
(intermediary expansion would create new, longer-duration,
non-permanent seats). Expressing his conviction that the
intermediary approach to UNSC expansion is the only viable
option, he suggested that all member states must take a
position sooner or later, to ensure their views are reflected

USUN NEW Y 00000310 002 OF 002


in the process and the substance of the negotiations that may
begin soon. In response to Amb Khalilzad's point on the need
for broader UN reform, Kerim recalled the upcoming April 8-9
UNGA debates on management reform and mandate review, and
predicted that member states would soon make significant
progress on these issues. He asked what other reforms the
U.S. would seek in connection with UNSC expansion. Kerim
supported the U.S. view that discussions should continue in
the OEWG until member states reach agreement on a basis for
negotiations. Once that agreement is reached, the
negotiations would shift to the UNGA plenary, where most UNGA
resolutions are negotiated and agreed.

Action Request: Answer for Kerim
--------------------------------

6. (C) It is not yet clear whether member states will be able
to agree on a basis to conduct inter-governmental
negotiations on UNSC reform. But it now seems likely that
they will try, and that they will focus on the intermediary
approach of creating new longer-duration, non-permanent seats
to the Council. The lowest common denominator across the
positions of the three groups -- the G-4, UFC, and the
Africans -- would be to expand the Council to at least 25-26
seats in order to address concerns about under-representation
of Africa on the current UNSC and give UFC countries a chance
at securing some of the newly-created seats. In order to
influence the shape of this debate and ensure it does not
proceed contrary to our core interests, we should quietly lay
down markers with Kerim and others (members of the Task
Force, potential allies) on the shape/size of intermediary
expansion and the other reforms we seek in exchange.
Specifically, in light of the strategic considerations
outlined in ref B, USUN seeks tactical guidance from the
Department on the following issues before the April 10 OEWG
session:

U.S. position on intermediary UNSC expansion:

-- Overall size of the Council
-- Geographic allocation of new seats
-- Review mechanism / possibility of conversion to permanent
seats

Other UN reforms to accompany intermediary expansion
(possibilities below):

-- Cap / ceiling on financial assessments for UNSC members
-- Modification in UNGA voting rules (weighted voting, etc.)
-- Oversight / transparency initiatives
Khalilzad

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