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Cablegate: New Eu Special Rep for Georgia Meets with Das

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DE RUEHBS #1430 2591750
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 151750Z SEP 08
FM USEU BRUSSELS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
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UNCLAS BRUSSELS 001430

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EUN GG KZ OSCE PGOV PREL TU UZ
SUBJECT: NEW EU SPECIAL REP FOR GEORGIA MEETS WITH DAS
MERKEL

1. (SBU) The EU's new Special Representative for the Georgia
Crisis, Pierre Morel, met with visiting Deputy Assistant
Secretary David Merkel September 15. During their lunch,
Morel got "the call" that his new position had been made
official at the EU Foreign Ministers GAERC. Morel told
Merkel that his role should be seen as an "ad hoc" mission,
to focus on the crisis in Georgia. He suggested he would
only remain in the position for six months, until February
2009. He said that he wanted to work in tandem with the EU
Special Representative for South Caucasus Peter Semneby, with
whom he planned to meet later September 15, partially to
allay any concern regarding overlap in their respective
roles. Morel also said that he planned to keep his current
role as EU Special Representative for Central Asia. However,
he said that the bulk of the French presidency's high profile
work on Central Asia would take place at the September 18
EU-Central Asia Security Forum. He implied that following
the forum, he would ease his own focus on Central Asia as
well.

2. (SBU) Morel said that he was just reading into his new
position and that he planned to use the week of UNGA in New
York as well as two days in Washington September 24-25 to
consider the "margins of maneuver" on the Georgia crisis and
to prepare for the international conference in Geneva October
15. Morel cautioned that in his view, October 15 was too
soon to expect a full-fledged diplomatic exercise and
stressed the need to lower expectations. Morel said he hoped
to have more clarity about his role and areas of focus by the
time he traveled to New York and Washington, but said that
the six point agreement, aid, and refugees would be
priorities.

3. (SBU) Merkel outlined the USG three-pronged strategy
toward the crisis: support Georgia; respond to Russian
actions; and bolster regional allies. On the third point,
Morel noted that the September 18 EU-Central Asia Security
Forum in Paris would be a good opportunity to demonstrate to
Central Asian partners their importance to the EU. The forum
would include Foreign Ministers from all 27 EU member states
and candidate countries (Turkey, Croatia, and Macedonia) as
well as the five Central Asian countries. There would also
be representatives present from international and regional
organizations and development banks. The forum would focus
on drug trafficking, counterterrorism, and energy and
environmental issues. Morel said there would be no formal
reference to Georgia in the outcome document, due to the
difficulty of getting agreement by all participants, but that
Georgia would be discussed in a restricted dinner with the EU
troika September 17 and referenced in various speeches. He
noted that the outcome document would contain a veiled
reference to Iran by referring to "proliferation crises."
Morel stressed that the important point was that the meeting
take place and that Central Asian countries be seen as on the
side of "concerned countries."

4. (U) This message has not been cleared by DAS Merkel.
MURRAY
.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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