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Cablegate: Somalia: Talking Points and Negotiating

VZCZCXYZ0009
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHC #1740 2671956
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O P 231951Z SEP 08
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 0000
INFO UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS STATE 101740

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: UNSC PREL PHUM SO XA XW
SUBJECT: SOMALIA: TALKING POINTS AND NEGOTIATING
INSTRUCTIONS ON FRENCH PIRACY RESOLUTION

1. USUN is instructed to draw from the talking points in
paragraph 2 to affect the changes desired in the French draft
resolution on Somalia piracy, in paragraph 3, for the UNSC
experts meeting on September 23.

2. Being talking points:

-- We would like to thank the French for taking the
initiative and proposing this resolution. The French have
been clear leaders in the fight against piracy and armed
robbery at sea, especially off the Somali coast.

-- The United States remains concerned about piracy and armed
robbery at sea particularly in Somalia. We are especially
worried about ensuring the delivery of life-saving
humanitarian assistance to the Somali people. We are
grateful to France for establishing a WFP escort program in
November 2007. We are also grateful to the Governments of
Denmark, the Netherlands, and Canada for their subsequent and
steadfast support and participation in the WFP escort mission.

-- We note with concern that Canada's escort duty will end on
September 27 and, to date, no other nation has offered to
take over the program. Without an escort WFP deliveries to
Somalia will not continue, which could potentially
destabilize the entire region. The United States looks
forward to working with the international community to find a
long-term solution to providing adequate security to WFP
shipping to Somalia. We believe the United Nations could
play a role in securing this vital humanitarian aid. We
would even be open to the UN assuming the administration of
the WFP escort convoy missions as part of a greater UN
Peacekeeping Operation to Somalia.

-- We think the French resolution will set the stage for
greater international involvement in providing security to
WFP shipping, as well as combating piracy in Somali
territorial waters. We, however, would like to offer the
following edits to the text:

-- In PP2 we feel the term "multiplication" is awkward and
suggest an alternative perhaps, "proliferation". Also "at
sea" should be added after "armed robbery". References to
"armed robbery at sea" should be added throughout the
document in conjunction with references to piracy. (Note to
USUN: this is a low priority)

-- In PP3 add "and armed robbery at sea" after the words
"acts of piracy" . (low priority)

-- In PP4 add "at sea" after "armed robbery". (low priority)

--In PP5 "p" in "WFP" should be capitalized. Also we propose
adding the following text, "the establishment by the Combined
Maritime Forces in the Gulf of Aden to establish a Maritime
Security Patrol Area in international waters off the coast of
Somalia to counter destabilizing activities in the region,"
immediately after "...by some Member States of the European
Union off the coast of Somalia," The MSPA was a major
initiative of the Combined Maritime Forces to combat piracy
in the region and should be acknowledged as such. (high
priority)

-- We propose adding PP5bis that would read "Noting recent
humanitarian reports that as many as three-and-a-half million
Somalis will be dependent on humanitarian food aid by the end
of the year, and that maritime contractors for the WFP will
not deliver food aid to Somalia without naval warship
escorts, and examining the Security Council's intention to
consider a follow-on resolution in the coming days to ensure
the long-term security of WFP deliveries to Somalia,
including assuming the administration of the WFP escort
convoy mission as part of a UN Peacekeeping Mission to
Somalia," Interrupting piracy in the area is an important
priority, but outside of the humanitarian vessels that are
hijacked, an issue that does not affect the lives of most
Somali citizens. We are supporting the French resolution
today, as we did in leading efforts to pass 1816, to address
the problem of piracy. However, we believe the Council
should also act immediately to ensure the long-term security
of WFP deliveries to Somalia. As part of this process, we
look forward to working with you in the coming weeks to
examine the feasibility of having the UN assume the
administration of the WFP escort convoy missions as part of a
greater UN PKO to Somalia. (HIGH PRIORITY-RED LINE)

-- In PP9 We feel we should use the same threat
determination as in 1816. Therefore suggest deleting "the
acts" and replacing with "the incidents". Also we suggest
deleting "off the coast of Somalia" and inserting after
"against vessels" the following: "in the territorial waters
of Somalia and the high seas off the coast of Somalia."
(medium priority)

-- In OP1 would like to add "reiterates that it" before
"condemns". Also add "at sea" after "armed robbery" (low
priority)

-- In OP2 add "and armed robbery at sea" after "against
piracy" (low priority)

-- In OP3 add "and within the territorial waters of Somalia
to prevent and repress acts of piracy and armed robbery at
sea." We would also like to delete "to take all necessary
measures" and also delete after the word "Convention" the
following: "for the prevention and repression of acts of
piracy." Further, we would like to add after "convention",
"and as set forth in paragraph 7 of resolution 1816,
including by seizing the proceeds of piracy, and seizing and
disposing of boats, vessels, arms and other related
equipment."

We feel that the "all necessary means/measures" language
followed by "consistent with international law" is confusing.
This language is generally used to override any
international law constraints. Our edit avoids this
confusion. We wish to add the seizure language because we
feel it is important to clarify that these sorts of acts are
permitted under international law. We understand some of our
European colleagues may require this concrete language for
additional legal assurances. (high priority)

-- In OP5 we would like to delete "the Somali population" and
replace it with "affected populations in the region." It is
more precise. (low priority)

-- We would also like to add a 5bis that reads, "Urges that
States issue to ships entitled to fly their flag advice and
guidance on precautionary measures to protect themselves from
attack or actions to take if under attack or the threat of
attack when sailing in waters off the coast of Somalia;" The
Council should make it clear that while military efforts are
indeed important, the shipping industry should shoulder some
responsibility in prevention activities. (high priority)

-- We would also like to add a OP6bis that reads, "Urges all
States, and in particular flag, port and coastal States,
States of the nationality of victims and perpetrators of
piracy and armed robbery at sea, and other States with
relevant jurisdiction under international law and national
legislation, to cooperate in determining jurisdiction, and in
the investigation and prosecution of persons responsible for
acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea off the coast of
Somalia, consistent with applicable international law
including international human rights law, and to render
assistance by, among other actions providing disposition and
logistics assistance with respect to persons under their
jurisdiction and control, such as victims and witnesses and
persons detained as a result of operations conducted under
resolution 1816 and this resolution;" This languages is near
identical to OP11 in 1816. The disposition of Persons Under
Control is an extremely important issue. If the
international community can resolve this issue, a
assuredly more nations would be willing to patrol Somali
territorial waters with an intention to capturing pirates and
armed robbers at sea. At present many may resist joining our
efforts out of fear that any captured pirates would languish
on their vessels for days, weeks, or months until someone
agreed to detain and prosecute them. (high priority)

-- In OP7 add "at sea" after "armed robbery". (low priority)

SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE FRENCH

-- USUN should approach the French before hand and outline
our position. You should tell them that we will agree to
support their resolution, with at least our redline edits,
only in return for their support in the coming weeks for
blue-hulling the WFP convoy mission and linking it to a UN
PKO for Somalia.


3. Begin French resolution text with desired USG edits:

(1) Recalling its resolutions 1814 (2008) and 1816 (2008),

(2) Gravely concerned by the recent proliferation of acts of
piracy and armed robbery at sea against vessels off the coast
of Somalia, and by the serious threat it poses to the prompt,
safe and effective delivery of humanitarian aid to Somalia,
to international navigation and the safety of commercial
maritime routes, as well as to fishing activities conducted
in conformity with international law,

(3) Noting with concern also that increasingly violent acts
of piracy and armed robbery at sea are carried out with
heavier weaponry, in a larger area off the coast of Somalia,
using long range assets such as mother ships, and
demonstrating more sophisticated organization and methods of
attack,

(4) Reaffirming that international law, as reflected in the
United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10
December 1982 ("the Convention"), sets out the legal
framework applicable to combating piracy and armed robbery at
sea, as well as other ocean activities,

(5) Commending the contribution made by some States since
November 2007 to protect the World Food Program (WFP)
maritime convoys, and, in view of implementing resolutions
1814 and 1816, the establishment by the European Union of a
coordination unit with the task of supporting the
surveillance and protection activities carried out by some
Member States of the European Union off the coast of Somali,
the establishment by the Combined Maritime Forces in the Gulf
of Aden to establish a Maritime Security Patrol Area in
international waters off the coast of Somalia to counter
destabilizing activities in the region, as well as the
ongoing planning process towards a possible European Union
naval operation,

(5bis) Noting recent humanitarian reports that as many as
three-and-a-half million Somalis will be dependent on
humanitarian food aid by the end of the year, and that
maritime contractors for the WFP will not deliver food aid to
Somalia without naval warship escorts, and that the
interruption of humanitarian assistance to Somalia is a
threat to stability and the peace process; and expressing the
Security Council's intention to consider a follow-on
resolution in the coming days to ensure the long-term
security of WFP deliveries to Somalia, including by assuming
the administration of the WFP escort convoy mission as part
of a UN Peacekeeping Operation to Somalia,

(6) Reaffirming its respect for the sovereignty, territorial
integrity, political independence and unity of Somalia,

(7) Recalling the statement of its President dated 4
September 2008 (S/PRST/2008/33) in which it welcomed the
signing of a peace and reconciliation agreement in Djibouti
and commended the Special Representative of the
Secretary-General for Somalia, Mr Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah for
his ongoing efforts,

(8) Emphasizing that peace and stability, the strengthening
of State institutions, economic and social development and
respect for human rights and the rule of law will ultimately
create the conditions for a full eradication of piracy and
armed robbery at sea off the coast of Somalia,

(9) Determining that the incidents of piracy and armed
robbery against vessels in the territorial waters of Somalia
and the high seas off the coast of Somalia exacerbate the
situation in Somalia, which continues to constitute a threat
against international peace and security in the region,

(10) Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United
Nations,

1. Reiterates that it condemns and deplores all acts of
piracy and armed robbery at sea against vessels off the coast
of Somalia;

2. Calls upon all States interested in the safety of
maritime activities to actively take part in the fight
against piracy and armed robbery at seas against vessels off
the coast of Somalia, in particular by deploying naval
vessels and military aircraft;

3. Calls upon States whose naval vessels and military
aircraft operate on the high seas and airspace off the coast
of Somalia and within the territorial waters of Somalia to
prevent and repress acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea,
in conformity with international law as reflected in the
Convention, and as set forth in paragraph 7 of resolution
1816, including by seizing the proceeds of piracy, and
seizing and disposing of boats, vessels, arms and other
related equipment ;

4. Urges all States that have the capacity to do so to
cooperate with the Transitional Federal Government ("TFG") in
the fight against piracy and armed robbery at sea in
conformity with the provisions of resolution 1816;

5. Urges also States and regional organizations, in
conformity with the provisions of Security Council resolution
1814, to continue to take action to protect the World Food
Program maritime convoys, which is vital to bring
humanitarian assistance to affected populations in the region

5bis. Urges that States issue to ships entitled to fly their
flag advice and guidance on precautionary measures to protect
themselves from attack or actions to take if under attack or
the threat of attack when sailing in waters off the coast of
Somalia;

6. Calls upon all States to coordinate their actions with
other States acting pursuant to paragraphs 3, 4 and 5 above;

6bis. Urges all States, and in particular flag, port and
coastal States, States of the nationality of victims and
perpetrators of piracy and armed robbery at sea, and other
States with relevant jurisdiction under international law and
national legislation, to cooperate in determining
jurisdiction, and in the investigation and prosecution of
persons responsible for acts of piracy and armed robbery at
sea off the coast of Somalia, consistent with applicable
international law including international human rights law,
and to render assistance by, among other actions providing
disposition and logistics assistance with respect to persons
under their jurisdiction and control, such as victims and
witnesses and persons detained as a result of operations
conducted under resolution 1816 and this resolution;


7. Looks forward to the report of the Secretary-General
requested in paragraph 13 of resolution 1816 and expresses
its intention to review the situation with respect to piracy
and armed robbery at sea against vessels off the coast of
Somalia with a view, in particular, to renewing the authority
provided in paragraph 7 of resolution 1816 for an additional
period upon the request of the TFG;

8. Decides to remain seized of the matter.

End text.
RICE

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