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Cablegate: Germany Welcomes Ofac Paper On Burma Sanctions

VZCZCXRO4023
PP RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHIK RUEHLZ RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHRL #1656 3461705
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 111705Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY BERLIN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2831
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE
RUEHGO/AMEMBASSY RANGOON 0035

UNCLAS BERLIN 001656

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS
STATE FOR EUR/CE PETER SCHROEDER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON EFIN PREL PGOV BM EU GM
SUBJECT: GERMANY WELCOMES OFAC PAPER ON BURMA SANCTIONS

REF: STATE 125635

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: As the EU mulls its Common Position
against Burma/Myanmar, Germany welcomed reftel information as
a means of improving the effectiveness of EU sanctions
against Burma. During the week of December 1, EconOff
delivered the OFAC Burma sanctions paper to the German
Ministries of Finance, Economics and Foreign Affairs. In
response to the OFAC reftel paper, Economics Ministry
representatives said that Germany has found Annex 1 of the EU
Common Position particularly troublesome and has emphasized
the need for more identifier information to correctly target
sanctioned individuals. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs
(MFA) said that they are seeking to establish German public
outreach within Burma. END SUMMARY.

EU DESPERATE FOR MORE IDENTIFIER INFORMATION
--------------------------------------------
2. (SBU) Economics Ministry Office Director Martin Lutz
confirmed that the EU is considering an edit-down or complete
removal of Annex I of the EU Common Position due to perceived
ineffectiveness of the measures and potential for false-hits.
Lutz said that the EU is in agreement with the spirit of
Annex I, but in order for this to be truly effective, they
need more robust identifiers for the listed individuals.
Lutz noted that the attachments in the OFAC paper would be
particularly useful in clarifying the identifiers and called
Attachment II "extremely helpful."

GERMANY DOES NOT WANT TO APPEAR SOFT ON BURMA
---------------------------------------------
3. (SBU) Lutz stated that any shift of the EU Common
Position would likely involve reduction in the number of
listed individuals and emphasized that Germany is sensitive
to the fact that this could create the appearance that the EU
is softening its Burma position. Lutz pointed out that the
EU views streamlining of the current Common Position as
"addition-by-subtraction" and should not reflect the EU
taking a step back on Burma.

GERMANY CONSIDERING INCREASING BURMA PUBLIC OUTREACH
--------------------------------------------- -------
4. (SBU) MFA Desk Officer Alexander Fierley said that the
MFA is cautiously trying to establish a Goethe-Institut in
Burma in an effort to expand German public outreach to the
Burmese people. (COMMENT: The Goethe-Institut is a
non-profit German cultural institution, financed in part by
the MFA, which promotes the study of German abroad and
international cultural exchange. END COMMENT) Fierley said
the German MFA is actively trying to engage "open-minded"
Burmese military officials to set up cultural exchanges. His
ministry has already made "excellent contact" with a Burmese
Deputy Foreign Minister (NFI), who welcomes a cultural
exchange. Fierley emphasized that Germany is approaching
this very cautiously, knowing that high-ranking Burmese
military officials will be watching these efforts very
closely. Fierley also said that officials from his ministry
and the German Parliament are planning trips soon to Burma to
begin their outreach.
Koenig

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