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Cablegate: Wfp and Unicef Shipments to Northern Iraq, Un

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 002119

SIPDIS


DEPT FOR PRM/ANE, EUR/SE, NEA/NGA, IO AND SA/PAB, NSC FOR
DWORKEN, MANN, KHALILZAD, QUANRUD, AND BRYZA
DEPT PASS USAID FOR NATSIOS, DCHA/OFDA FOR GARVELINK,
MCCONNELL, MARX, AND FARNSWORTH, ANE/AA FOR CHAMBERLAIN,
USAID/A, DCHA/AA, DCHA/RMT, DCHA/OFDA, DCHA/FFP, DCHA/OTI,
DCHA/DG, ANE/AA AND USAID/AA
ROME FOR FODOG, GENEVA FOR RMA AND NKYLOH
EUCOM FOR J3, J5 AND POLAD
CENTCOM FOR J3, J5 AND POLAD
PACOM FOR POLAD


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AA EAID EFIN IZ MOPS PHUM PREF PREL TU
SUBJECT: WFP AND UNICEF SHIPMENTS TO NORTHERN IRAQ, UN
PERSONNEL ISSUES IN TURKEY

1. (SBU) Summary: Three WFP successfully crossed the
Turkish-Iraqi border on 29 March and continued on to a UN
warehouse in northern Iraq. Two UNICEF trucks carrying
non-food items are currently on the border awaiting clearance
to cross. In another development, the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs (MFA) presented a Note Verbale to the UN Resident
Coordinator on 28 March requesting information on UN
employees involved in humanitarian activities in Turkey, and
asking that the UN in Turkey not employ individuals who had
recently worked in Iraq. End summary.


2. (U) On 29 March three WFP trucks with 60 metric tons of
wheat, soy and milk powder crossed the Turkish-Iraqi border.
WFP had not received all the proper clearances from the
government of Turkey, and there was a three day delay in
crossing. Clearances were received on 28 March and, after
spending three hours at Turkish customs, the trucks crossed
the border and traveled on to a WFP warehouse in Dohuk.


3. (U) WFP will begin loading a shipment of 1,000 metric tons
(approximately 50 trucks) of wheat flour for northern Iraq on
31 March. Paperwork for this shipment has already been
submitted to the MFA and the Coordination Center in
Diyarbakir. WFP feels that this should avoid delays. This
is a critical shipment to start important food flows into
northern Iraq. This particular shipment is targeted for
Dohuk, where WFP has determined there is a shortage of wheat
flour. Prior to the outbreak of war, the majority of Iraq
received multiple rations of flour, while the Kurdish area
received only multiple rations of vegetable oil. The
shipment currently being loaded will be part of 6,000 metric
tons that the MFA has approved for WFP to bring into Iraq.


4. (U) Two UNICEF trucks carrying non-food items arrived at
the Turkish-Iraqi border on 30 March. The trucks are
awaiting clearance to cross the border. UNICEF reported to
DART staff currently in southeast Turkey that they have
approximately 400 truckloads worth of medicines, emergency
supplies (blankets, tents, mattresses, hygiene kits, kitchen
sets, clothes, water treatment equipment and school
supplies). Two hundred of those trucks are in Mersin.
UNICEF states that all of these commodities are enough to
assist one-third of Iraq.


5. (SBU) The MFA presented a Note Verbale on 28 March to the
United Nations Resident Coordinator requesting that he
provide the MFA with information on UN personnel involved in
humanitarian operations in Turkey. The Resident Coordinator
is to provide identity particulars, dates of arrival in
Turkey, whether the personnel have residence and employment
permits, what countries the employees have served in, and the
particular function of the employees.


6. (SBU) The Note Verbale goes on to say quote it would also
be appreciated if the UN agencies could kindly avoid
employing personnel who have recently served in Iraq unquote.
While this may affect the whole UN structure in Turkey, it
has a great effect on WFP. WFP currently employs a large
number of individuals with previous experience in Iraq,
including the newly-arrived WFP Emergency Coordinator. The
UN is discussing how to respond to the Note.


7. (SBU) Comment: In a 28 March conversation with the MDRO,
MFA implied that the GOT would not go after all UN staff in
Turkey with recent experience in Iraq, but they did register
a definite objection to the assignment of a new Emergency
Coordinator, who most recently served in Erbil.


PEARSON

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