Cablegate: Chemical Weapons Convention (Cwc): Scene-Setter

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





E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: A. STATE 69419
B. THE HAGUE 01451

(U) This is CWC-64-03.



1. (SBU) The First Chemical Weapons Convention Review
Conference, April 28 - May 9, consumed a great deal of
Technical Secretariat and national delegation energy, and the
last month has been frankly rather quiet. While the
annotated EC-33 agenda (faxed to Washington) is long at this
point, many of the reports to be considered either have not
yet been issued (Report of the Organization for 2002, Report
of the Office of Internal Oversight), or have just come out
(Audited Financial Statements of the Organization,
EC-33/DG.5, C-8/DG.3 dated 10 June). The pace of
consultations so far not been intensive, except for those
regarding the 2004 Program of Work and Budget, a document on
which EC-33 in fact will not have to make a call. Review
Conference follow-up is not explicitly on the agenda. This
may in part reflect a widespread view that the RevCon was
first and foremost an obstacle to be overcome without
excessive conflict, rather than a major reorientation or
rethinking of OPCW priorities. The new EC Chairman, Czech
Ambassador Kubernat, has scheduled consultations for Monday,
16 June on preparations for EC-33. Del will seek to slim
down the agenda, removing those items where documents have
not been circulated in time and/or necessary consultations
have not taken place. End Summary.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Three:
Statement by the Director General

2. (U) Del expects the DG's statement to be along the lines
of his opening statement at the RevCon focusing on
priorities. It is likely he will discuss the RevCon results
and follow-up, even though these matters are not explicitly
on the EC agenda.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Four:
Status of Implementation of the
Convention and Related Issues

----- National Implementation Measures -----

3. (U) The Council is requested to consider inter alia a
second addendum to the Director General's report on this
issue of 13 March. The second addendum/update was
distributed on 12 June (EC-32/DG.17/Add.2, dated 5 June,
faxed to AC/CB). Del believes that noting the new document
is appropriate, while reserving the right for further U.S.
comment after study. The TS effort to develop information on
national implementation measures is positive, and it is
appropriate to complement the Legal Office for what it has
done so far, while questioning whether the TS -- given the
priority placed on the effort at the RevCon -- is currently
backing the effort with sufficient resources.

----- Optimization of the verification activities -----

4. (U) The Council is requested to "further consider" the DG
report on the optimization and efficiency of verification
activities (EC-32/DG.12, dated 6 March 2003), which in fact
received no consideration at EC-32. It is also asked to
consider two more papers which are yet to be published.
Guidance along the lines in paras 7-9 reftel (EC-32 guidance
cable) should be sufficient.

---- Status of implementation of Articles X and XI ----

5. (U) Under this item, the EC is to consider a report
published for EC-32 on the status of implementation of
Articles X and XI,and a yet-to-be published corrigendum. Del
does not expect the report to elicit serious discussion.
----- Article VI related obligations -----

6. (U) If it gets printed in time, the Council will have an
opportunity to comment on an update of the TS project to
assist member states to meet their declaration-related
obligations under Article VI. If it is published, Del
recommends that we strongly endorse the project, noting that
this type of effort was strongly endorsed by the Review
Conference. If the document is not published -- Del
understands it awaits the DG's approval for publication --
Del recommends that we stress the importance of having such
an update and regret that for two Council sessions -- it was
supposed to be published in time for EC-32 -- the TS has
delayed in providing this important data to the Council.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Five:
Report by the Director-General on
the Universality of the Convention

7. (U) The report on universality has yet to be published.
Del will forward to Washington when available.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Six:
Draft Report of the Organization for 2002

8. (U) This report is not yet available. Del will forward
to Washington when received.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Seven:
Deadlines for Destruction of Category 1
Chemical Weapons Stockpiles

9. (U) The Council is requested to note a DG report on the
completion of destruction of one percent of the Russian
stockpile. Likewise, Russia will present an update on the
overall status of destruction of their CW stockpiles. The
documents are not yet available to delegations.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Eight:
Detailed Plans for the Destruction
of Chemical Weapons

10. (U) Delegation has passed on the U.S. responses to a
series of Russian Federation questions regarding the Umatilla
and Aberdeen Combined Plans, but has received no reaction
from Russian representatives. No other substantive issues
have been raised regarding these documents.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Nine:
Combined Plans for the Destruction or
Conversion and Verification of Chemical
Weapons Production Facilities

------- Bosnia and Herzegovina Combined Plan ------

11. (U) The TS has received, and delegation is working with
the local BH representative to obtain a copy, of the most
recent BH draft of its Combined Plan. In a previous draft of
the document the TS discovered some (undisclosed) problem
with page three, which the BH delegation has now apparently
resolved. Del will forward the document to Washington
immediately upon receipt.
------- Russian Combined Plans -------
12. (U) The second of two TS teams inspecting Russian
conversion sites is due back from the Russian Federation 12
or 13 June. The first team has returned and is compiling its
report. Upon the second team's return, the TS will generate
its report to the EC on the status of Russia's conversion
efforts. Informal TS reports indicate that the VX production
facility at Novocheboksarsk is contaminated, has not been
completely converted and, in all likelihood, neither its
conversion nor that of the QL, chloroether, or munitions
filling facilities, all at Novocheboksarsk, will be completed
anytime soon.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Ten:
Facility Agreements

-------- Belgian Facility Agreement --------

13. (SBU) In a meeting with the lead Belgian MOD
representative and Belgian Ambassador Nieuwenhuys, the MOD
representative had a copy of our questions. Along the margins
next to virtually every question he had written in French
"non." It was apparent he had taken offense at the extent of
our questions and viewed them as meddling in Belgian MOD

14. (SBU) Ambassador Nieuwenhuys, however, appears to be
taking a more considered approach. For instance, with regard
to our question about the application of Belgium's safety
standards and regulations, vice use of TS/OPCW regulations,
he asked the MOD rep if he really intended to assert that
Belgian safety statutes should be subordinated to OPCW
regulations. The MOD person thought about the question and
responded that this was clearly not the intent. The
Ambassador then suggested that they had probably better do
some more thinking about the U.S. questions and the issues we

15. (SBU) Subsequently, Ambassador Nieuwenhuys asked
Delegation if the U.S. would/could turn our questionss into
recommendations for textual changes (i.e. edit the FA for
them). Delegation demurred, but agreed to sit down and go
over the document again with the MOD on 18 June, just before
the EC session.

16. (SBU) Ambassador Nieuwenhuys has made it clear that
Belgium is not in a major hurry to complete this document.
He has actually said "this is not a matter of priority for
us." Delegation believes we should expect a more considered
and substantive response to our questions at the 18 June
meeting and proceed from there.

------- Aberdeen and Umatilla Facility Agreements -------

17. (SBU) The Umatilla and the ABCDF Facility Agreements were
submitted to the EC prior to the last session. Delegation is
unaware of any objections to these FAs, though the Russian
Federation indicated during the last session that it wanted
an opportunity to study them. It is not certain that Russia
will make joining consensus on these documents contingent on
adoption of some or all of its Combined Plans for conversion,
but past experience suggests that will be the case.

------- ROK Facility Agreement -------

18. (U) The Council is requested to consider an ROK
Schedule 1 Facility Agreement. Delegation recently delivered
text of U.S. non-paper to ROK delegation, but has not yet
received a response.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Eleven:
Chemical Industry Issues

19. (U) Industry intersessionals are scheduled for 17-19
June. Del does not expect any decisions to emerge from these

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Twelve:
List of Validated Data for Inclusion
in the OPCW Central Analytical Database

20. (U) Del requests guidance on the new list of validated

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Thirteen:
Report on the Office of Internal
Oversight for 2002

21. (U) This report is not yet available.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Fourteen:
Report of the External Auditor on the
Financial Statements of the Organization
for 2002

22. (U) This report is not yet available.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Fifteen:
Implementation of the Recommendations
of the External Auditor and of the
Office of Internal Oversight

23. (U) The document relating to recommendations of the
External Auditor has not yet been published. Del expects
consultations to be held on both of these documents as well
as the previous two agenda items after the EC.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Sixteen:
Financial Issues

24. (U) The Director General has not had to use any of the
cash surplus from 2001, although only days back, before the
Japanese assessment of approximately 20 million euros was
deposited in the OPCW account, the organization had only
eight million euros cash in the bank including/including that
surplus (but excluding the Working Capital Fund). Germany on
10 June signed its authorization for payment of the second
trance of its assessment (approximately 5 million euros).
This receipt of 20 million euros additional in contributions
means that the organization now has sufficient cash on hand
for about five months.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Seventeen:
Draft OPCW Programme and Budget for 2004

25. (U) Consultations on the 2004 budget are scheduled in
July. Please advise if points arise from the Advisory Body
on Administrative and Financial Matters (ABAF) meeting that
should be raised at EC-33.

Draft Annotated Agenda Item Eighteen:
Provisional Agenda for the Eighth Session
of the Conference of the States Parties

26. (U) The provisional CSP agenda is not yet available.
Del will forward to Washington when received.
Draft Annotated Agenda Item Nineteen:
Any Other Business

27. (U) Del is not aware of anything under this agenda item.

28. (U) Terzuolo sends.

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