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Cablegate: Fsc November 19: Georgia Isolated On Ministerial

VZCZCXRO5736
PP RUEHAST RUEHFL RUEHLA RUEHMRE RUEHPOD RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHVEN #0280/01 3251320
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 201320Z NOV 08
FM USMISSION USOSCE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6053
INFO RUCNOSC/ORG FOR SECURITY CO OP IN EUR COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0640
RUEHUNV/USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA 1195
RHMFISS/CDR USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RHMFISS/CDRUSAREUR HEIDELBERG GE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHDLCNE/CINCUSNAVEUR LONDON UK
RUEKJCS/DIA WASHDC
RUEASWA/DTRA ALEX WASHINGTON DC
RUESDT/DTRA-OSES DARMSTADT GE
RHMFIUU/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL
RUEKJCS/JCS WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1135

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 USOSCE 000280

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR VCI/CCA, VCI/NRRC, EUR/RPM, EUR/PRA, EUR/CARC,
SCA/CEN, SCA/RA, PM/WRA
JCS FOR J-5
OSD FOR ISA (PERENYI)
NSC FOR HAYES
USUN FOR LEGAL, POL
EUCOM FOR J-5
CENTCOM FOR J-5
UNVIE FOR AC
GENEVA FOR CD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PARM PREL KCFE OSCE RS XG
SUBJECT: FSC NOVEMBER 19: GEORGIA ISOLATED ON MINISTERIAL
DECISION

1. (SBU) Summary: Georgia could not agree to language in the
draft Ministerial decision describing the Security Dialogue
discussion of the August conflict. Georgia is willing to
continue negotiations. The EU and the U.S. restated their
opposition to a Russia proposal for an embargo of heavy
weapons to Georgia. Delegations, including Russia,
apparently are waiting for instructions on the latest version
of a revised Code of Conduct Questionnaire. End summary.

FSC Issues MC.DD
----------------

2. (SBU) Georgia (Giorgadze) reported it was unable to join
the apparent consensus at 55, including Russia, on the latest
revision of the draft Ministerial decision on FSC issues
(other than SALW and stockpiles of conventional ammunition)
(MC.DD/6/08/Rev.4). Giorgadze said the language in OP1 tic 2
describing the Security Dialogue discussions of the August
Russia-Georgia war, "the armed conflict in August 2008," did
not capture the fact that these discussions had concerned
"armed conflict between, among, or including participating
States of the OSCE."

3. (SBU) Giorgadze noted that, although much time in the
Security Dialogue had been spent in discussing the April
downing of a Georgian UAV over Abkhazia by a Russian fighter,
Georgia was not insisting on any reference to this in the
decision. However, the reference to the August conflict
should be accurate, independent of questions of blame or
responsibility for starting the war. Georgia is willing to
continue negotiations over the language. The chair indicated
it may call an additional meeting before delegations leave
for the Helsinki Ministerial.

EU Supports Rev.4
-----------------

4. (SBU) France (Simonet), on behalf of the EU, reported that
it fully supported Rev.4 of the draft decision
(FSC.DEL/180/08). Separately, Georgia informed it was almost
ready to support a further revision of OP1 tic 2 proposed by
the chair that would have deleted all reference to the August
conflict, but was dissuaded from doing so by the UK and
Germany who believed this would have been conceding too much
to Russia.

Russia Charged Georgia with "Over-Politicizing"
--------------------------------------------- --

5. (SBU) Russia (Ulyanov) reported that Rev.4 was acceptable,
including the German-proposed OP3 language on 2009 progress
reports and the OP1 tic 2 reference to the "armed conflict in
August 2008." Ulyanov charged Georgia was trying to
"over-politicize" the draft decision by imposing its version
of the August events on others. Georgia wanted language that
implies the August conflict was exclusively between it and
Russia, yet this was "patently untrue." Rather, from its
outset and for the last fifteen years, the conflict has been
between Georgia and South Ossetia. It was Georgia that chose
to escalate this conflict in August by its massive use of
force against Tskhinvali. Russia was forced to intervene to
reimpose peace and stability in the region.


USOSCE 00000280 002 OF 004


6. (SBU) Ulyanov conceded that, ideally, "everyone's views"
would be reflected in the decision, but this was not
realistic. The decision deals with many issues, not just the
August conflict, which is why Russia supports the compromise
language put forward by the chair. The Rev.4 language does
not threaten any of Georgia's security interests and Georgia
should not jeopardize and the decision should not be
sacrificed because of the Georgia issue.

7. (SBU) Switzerland (von Arx) aligned with the EU position.
Von Arx noted that the 2009 FSC chairs, France, Georgia, and
the UK, will need ministerial guidance. He urged delegations
to work for consensus and warned that the FSC discussions
could have an impact on the Geneva talks on the Georgia
situation. Luxembourg (Pilot) agreed, and observed a good
compromise requires both sides to be "equally frustrated."

Cyber Security Workshop Agenda and Modalities
---------------------------------------------

8. (SBU) Russia supported the draft agenda and modalities for
the March 2009 cyber security workshop. Ulyanov said the
document was well-drafted and Russia intended to provide a
keynote speaker with further details to follow. Germany
(Schweizer) supports the draft in principle although it will
provide some drafting suggestions. Germany also will provide
a speaker. The U.S. (Silberberg) reported it had provided
drafting suggestions to the sponsors and also intended to
provide speakers. Austria (Eischer), a sponsor with Estonia
and Lithuania, promised to consider all comments and urged
participating Sates to consider extra-budgetary contributions
to pay for the workshop.

Arms Embargo on Georgia
-----------------------

9. (SBU) Russia (Ulyanov) noted that talks in Geneva on the
situation in Georgia led to its proposal for an embargo of to
Georgia (FSC.DEL/ 155/08/Rev.1). Concerned states must
prevent a destabilizing accumulation of arms that can lead,
as they have already, to the outbreak of conflict. Russia
wanted to prevent Georgia from acquiring arms that could be
used for "offensive" purposes; these were described in OP1
and were drawn from the OSCE Principles Governing
Conventional Arms Transfers and the OSCE Document on SALW.
They include: battle tanks, armored combat vehicles,
large-caliber artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack
helicopters, warships, and missiles/missile-launchers
including MANPADS.

10. (SBU) Ulyanov stressed that all participating States
needed to fulfill the political commitments reflected in
these OSCE documents. Although these were "major" documents,
they have not worked well for the last several years as many
pS simply do not abide by their principles.

EU: Embargo Unnecessary
-----------------------

11. (SBU) France, on behalf of the EU, referred to its
earlier statement on the proposal, which declared that the EU
complied with OSCE and other international norms pertaining
to arms transfers; the embargo was therefore unnecessary

USOSCE 00000280 003 OF 004


(FSC.DEL/170/08) .

U.S. Will Continue to Support Georgia
-------------------------------------

12. (SBU) The U.S. (Silberberg), drawing on remarks made by
Under Secretary of Defense Edelman and Assistant Secretary of
State Fried (PC.DEL/763/08), noted that Georgia, as a
sovereign country, should have the ability to defend itself
and to deter renewed aggression. The U.S. has provided
training and equipment to Georgia to help its
counter-terrorist efforts, initially within Georgia and later
as part of the multinational coalition in Iraq. The U.S. and
NATO had, in the wake of the August conflict, offered Georgia
assistance in rebuilding its infrastructure and military.
The U.S. will continue to carefully and responsibly consider
Georgia's needs in these areas.

13. (SBU) Georgia (Giorgadze) agreed with Russia that the
region was still tense, but the better response would be for
Russia to allow international observers into the regions it
and its South Ossetian allies occupy. Russia was itself had
broken its political commitments by providing heavy weapons
to South Ossetian and Abkhazian separatists. Giorgadze
repeated his earlier call for an independent international
investigation of the August war and the events leading up to
it. He recalled that a UN investigation of the April UAV
shoot-down had concluded that a Russian military aircraft was
responsible but Russia, despite its avowed support of the UN,
still refused to acknowledge responsibility.

Russia Attacks U.S. Position
----------------------------

14. (SBU) Russia responded that there was no evidence that
Russia had supplied heavy arms to South Ossetia. If it had,
Ulyanov reasoned, South Ossetia would not have needed
Russia's help in August. No one quibbled with the U.S.
assertion that Georgia had a right to defend itself, but
Georgia had used its arms instead to commit aggression.
Noting that the U.S. had provided counterterrorism training
to Georgia, Ulyanov said this proved "the road to hell was
paved with good intentions" as Georgia used the training to
attack Russian peacekeepers and innocent South Ossetians.
Ulyanov repeatedly demanded to know if the U.S. was saying
there were some political commitments it need not uphold? As
for the UN investigation of the UAV incident, Russia was
still waiting for evidence withheld by Georgia.

AIAM Agenda and Modalities
--------------------------

15. (SBU) France, the incoming FSC chair, circulated a draft
decision for the agenda and modalities of the 2009 Annual
Implementation Assessment Meeting (FSC.DEL/179/08). Simonet
said that the meeting of Heads of Verification (HOV), held on
the eve of the AIAM in 2008, would likely be held at the end
of the year as part of the annual information exchange. This
change was in response to the request of some pS.

16. (SBU) The UK (Gare), concurred with Simonet's schedule
proposal and noted it would be the FSC chair in the autumn
2009 session. Switzerland also supported holding the HOV

USOSCE 00000280 004 OF 004


meeting late in the year.

Code of Conduct Questionnaire
-----------------------------

17. (SBU) Only Ukraine commented on the draft update of the
Code of Conduct Questionnaire by supporting in full the
latest version (FSC.DD/14/08). Separately, the Code
coordinator, Colonel Anton Eischer (Austria) told USDEL that
he and most delegations were waiting on Russia before
deciding how to proceed. U.S. proposals pertaining to
question III.1.3 on ensuring public access to information
about the integration of armed forces into civil society and
use of the word "measures" in the Questionnaire are still
under consideration.

MANPADS in Cyprus
-----------------

18. (SBU) The Czech Republic announced it was prepared to
assist the Republic of Cyprus in destroying surplus MANPADS.
The Secretariat is developing a unified response to Cyprus's
earlier request.

SCA Coordinator Report
----------------------

19. (SBU) Lieutenant Colonel Nils Peterson (Denmark), the FSC
stockpiles of conventional ammunition coordinator, announced
the OSCE and UNDP legal staffs had reached agreement on
mechanisms to resolve earlier difficulties in transferring
funds between the two organizations when engaged on joint
projects. Peterson said this agreement would allow MONDEM
(Montenegro demilitarization) joint projects to be completed.

Next Meeting
------------

20. (U) The next FSC meeting will be on November 26 and
feature Major General Paul Schafer, USAF, the U.S. European
Command director of strategy and plans, who will address in
the Security Dialogue the command's "Strategy for Active
Security."
FINLEY

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