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Cablegate: Getting the Most Out of Paris Pact

VZCZCXYZ0000
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHUNV #0634/01 3371543
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 021543Z DEC 08
FM USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8759
INFO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1411
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEHBUL/AMEMBASSY KABUL 0242
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 0583
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 0211
RUEHVEN/USMISSION USOSCE 0262
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 0069
RHMFIUU/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL
RUEHNA/DEA WASHDC

UNCLAS UNVIE VIENNA 000634

SECSTATE PASS TO AFGHANISTAN COLLECTIVE

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR KCRM PREL AF IR CA PK UN

SUBJECT: GETTING THE MOST OUT OF PARIS PACT

REF: A. STATE 118430, B. TSAI-CLINE EMAIL 10/31/08
C. STATE 102413

-------
SUMMARY
-------

1. (SBU) The upcoming December 15-16 annual meeting of the Paris
Pact Consultative Group is a venue for USDEL to advance USG
counternarcotics objectives in Afghanistan by expressing support the
UNODC's "Rainbow Strategy." Specifically, the U.S. can use this
forum to encourage donor contribution to the thus far solely
U.S.-funded Good Performers' Initiative, as a way to increase the
number of poppy-free provinces in Afghanistan. Secondly, we can
encourage the expansion of the border control programs in the
Rainbow Strategy, to countries which span the trafficking route from
Afghanistan to Europe. The USG should also consider increasing its
financial contributions to reward the UNODC's successful Operation
TARCET to interdict precursor chemicals and to permit TARCET's
continuation beyond its one-year timeframe. Lastly, the U.S. should
consider using the forum to start engaging Iran, which is both a
transshipment and consumption country of Afghan opium. While the 56
Paris Pact members are united in their commitment to fight the
Afghan narcotics problem, they look to the U.S. for leadership and
we should use this venue to promote our plans for getting to that
overarching objective. END SUMMARY.

----------
BACKGROUND
----------

2. (U) Launched in May 2003, the Paris Pact, comprising 56
"government partners" and several international organizations, is
intended to tackle the drug problem in Afghanistan through regional
cooperation. On the operational level, this has translated into
cooperation in border control measures, in interdiction of precursor
chemicals, and in the push to make Afghan provinces opium-free.
Three annual expert-level roundtables produce recommendations which,
when implemented, advance these broad goals. In its early days, the
Paris Pact defined its priorities as improving regional cooperation
in West and Central Asia, strengthening border control in the same
region and establishing legal and institutional frameworks in key
countries. Over the years, UNODC, working with the Pact members,
has refined these priorities and articulated them in greater detail
in what came to be known in 2007 as the "Rainbow Strategy,"
consisting of seven action "outlines" described in seven papers of
rainbow colors.

3. (U) Among other objectives, the Rainbow Strategy aims to improve
management of Afghanistan's border with its immediate neighbors
Iran, Pakistan, and Turkmenistan, strengthen border control in
transit countries in Central Asia and around the Caspian Sea, and in
East Africa (the Green, Yellow and Violet papers). In addition, the
Strategy defines measures to stem the flow of precursor chemicals
for the manufacture of heroin in Afghanistan (the Red Paper), to
disrupt the laundering of drug money (the Orange Paper), and to
prevent/reduce drug addiction and the spread of HIV/AIDS in
Afghanistan and the region (the Indigo Paper). Arguably, the road
map to make Afghanistan opium poppy-free (the Blue Paper) provides
the chapeau for a chain of actions that, if completely successful,
could render the other six unnecessary.

---------------------------
PROMOTING OPIUM POPPY-FREE
ROADMAP THROUGH THE GOOD
PERFORMERS' INITIATIVE
---------------------------

4. (SBU) Financial incentives have been a key factor in increasing
the number of poppy-free provinces in Afghanistan. Of Afghanistan's
34 provinces, two were poppy free in 2004, six in 2005 and 2006, 13
in 2007, and 18 in 2008. The Afghan government has dispensed funds
from its Good Performers' Initiative (GPI) to reward provinces for
reducing or stopping poppy cultivation, such as in the case of
Nangahar, which became poppy-free in 2008. Currently the United
States is the only donor to this Initiative, contributing $28
million in 2008. Canada, a Paris Pact partner, and the largest donor
to UNODC's Afghanistan activities, may be persuaded to contribute to
the GPI.

5. (SBU) Canada gave Cdn$27 million to UNODC for its Afghanistan
programs over the two years 2007-2009. The Canadian government has
approved another Cdn$25 million for the same purpose for the two
years starting April 1, 2009. Canada's particular interest in
Afghanistan is border security. For 2009-2011, it will add Kandahar
as a focus. On the margins of the December 15-16 Paris Pact
meeting, USDEL should meet with the Canadian delegation to explore
the possibility of Canadian contribution to the GPI. On December
16, Canada will co-chair agenda item IV "The Paris Pact Initiative:
Implementation of Paris Pact Recommendations for Afghanistan and
Neighboring Countries." UNODC's Rainbow Strategy will be discussed
under this item, and the "Opium Poppy-free Roadmap" is one of the
sub-topics. USDEL interventions under this topic could usefully
include a call for contributions to the GPI.

--------------------------
EXPANDING BORDER CONTROL:
GO WEST, AND SOUTHWEST
--------------------------

6. (SBU) Afghan heroin and morphine for western Europe go through
Central Asia, Turkey and the Balkans and Eastern Europe, and more
circuitously through East Africa via the Levant/Arabian peninsula.
According to UNODC's 2008 World Drug Report, Near and Middle
East/South-West Asia together accounted for 60% of the seizures of
heroin and morphine in the world in 2006, and southeast and east
Europe another 14%. These seizures indicate the magnitude of the
heroin trafficking through these regions. The scant amount (0.1%)
seized in East Africa in 2006 is less a measure of the problem than
a reflection of the inadequate capacity of the East African
countries to fight drug trafficking.

7. (U) The Paris Pact has broadened its early focus on controlling
the border between Afghanistan and its immediate neighbors (Iran,
Pakistan, and the Central Asian states) to include countries west of
Central Asia. Working within the Paris Pact framework, UNODC first
established operational measures, such as mobile interdiction teams,
border liaison offices, and the Central Asian Regional Information
and Coordination Center, or CARICC. In 2007 it added a border
initiative for Turkmenistan and the Caspian Sea region. In 2008 it
held an expert round table for the Black Sea region on both
counternarcotics enforcement and drug demand reduction. Also in
2008, with the advocacy and support of the United States, Paris Pact
held its first round table outside Eurasia, in Nairobi, Kenya. That
roundtable sought to analyze, among other issues, the trafficking of
Afghan opiates to and through East Africa, and to identify priority
actions to address this problem.

8. (SBU) The United States should encourage this push for border
management and other counternarcotics actions moving westwards and
southwards. Fighting Afghan heroin trafficking therefore should
involve many countries that lie between Afghanistan and the western
Europe on the trafficking route. Given the excellent law
enforcement and counternarcotics infrastructure and abundant
resources in Europe (e.g., EC, EUROPOL), we think U.S. resources may
be better utilized on such efforts in East Africa, where the
Europeans have displayed less enthusiasm. USDEL may wish to
intervene accordingly under Agenda item I.a. (presentation on the
Black Sea roundtable) and I.b. (presentation on the East Africa
roundtable) on December 15.

----------------------
REWARD SUCCESS IN
INTERDICTING PRECURSOR
CHEMICALS
-----------------------

9. (U) UNODC, with the cooperation of a number of Paris Pact
partners (United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy,
Russia, and the U.K.) helped Afghanistan and the surrounding
countries to launch Operation TARCET in late 2007-early 2008.
TARCET aims to disrupt the flow of precursor chemicals (acetic
anhydride and others) into Afghanistan, which is needed to convert
opium into heroin. TARCET (the Red Paper of the Rainbow Strategy)
trains law enforcement officers in detection techniques and
methodology and promotes information/intelligence sharing among the
countries. The results have been impressive -- with seizures in
2008 of 19 tonnes of acetic anhydride, and over 20 tonnes of other
chemicals in Iran, Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

10. (SBU) Signaling the importance of fighting the flow of precursor
chemicals into Afghanistan, the UN Security Council passed
Resolution 1817 in June 2008, a resolution also adopted by the
Ministerial meeting on Afghanistan convened in Paris in June. The
UNSC resolution, "welcomes" the TARCET initiative, and "invites" the
international community to provide financial and technical
assistance and support to the relevant countries and to UNODC to
help them fight the traffic in precursor chemicals. Recently the
USG contributed more than $370,000 to UNODC for such purpose (Ref
C). Further financial support will enable Operation TARCET to
continue beyond its one-year time-frame.

-------------
ENGAGING IRAN
-------------

11. (SBU) Within the Paris Pact framework, UNODC launched in Vienna
in June 2007 the Triangular/Trilateral Initiative to enhance border
cooperation among Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran. In a second
meeting in Tehran in May 2008, the parties agreed to follow-on steps
including border liaison offices, cross-border telecommunication
links, information and intelligence sharing, and a common policy
towards sea and land trade. Combating counternarcotics remains a
priority for the Iranian regime because of its domestic drug abuse
problem and the violence in southeast Iran related to the drug
trade. Our UNODC and diplomatic colleagues argue that Iran has made
laudatory efforts to combat the problem through comprehensive drug
treatment and border-control programs. The U.K. already works
closely with Iran on counternarcotics cooperation and Iran has
requested repeatedly additional aid from the U.K. and others,
including in nuclear-related discussions with the EU-3.

12. (SBU) Earlier, UNODC floated the idea of holding one of the
three 2009 roundtables in Iran, provided Iran would agree to invite
all Paris Pact members (Refs A and B). Recently UNODC's Paris Pact
Coordinator told Counselor that it had approached the Iranian
Mission in Vienna, which refused to provide such a guarantee.
(NOTE: Ref A also instructed Mission not to support such a
roundtable in Tehran. END NOTE.) If USG policy towards Iran should
change to permit contact with Iran, USDEL could find many
opportunities around the expert-level roundtables -- to be held
elsewhere -- to open an informal dialogue with Iran on technical
counternarcotics issues. UNODC maintains a small field office in
Tehran, and claims to be the only UN entity in Iran still
constructively engaged with the government.

-------
COMMENT
-------

13. (SBU) The Paris Pact is a large and diverse group of countries
united in their commitment to fight the Afghan drug problem. While
the overarching goal is the same for all, the tactics for getting
vary among member states. The USG should use the December Paris
Pact meeting to promote our plans of getting to that goal (e.g., the
GPI), to advance our particular interests (e.g., East Africa) and to
engage a long-standing nemesis, if our policy should change to
permit such contact. End Comment.

SCHULTE

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