Cablegate: Spain: Approval for Training Ship Empire State

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: STATE 44487

1. Embassy delivered March 2 a nota verbal to Spain's
Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) regarding the State
University of New York (Suny) Maritime College crew of
approximately 600 cadets and 75 crew officers aboard the
Federal Training Ship Empire State that will stop in
Barcelona from May 28 through June 1 and bunker off Ceuta on
16 June with the purpose of training future merchant marine

2. Embassy received a response May 14 from the MFA. An
informal translation follows:

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Spain
presents its complements to the Embassy of the United States
of America in Madrid and in relation to the Nota Verbal
number 87 of 2 March 2004 communicates that there is no
problem in authorizing the federal training ship Empire State
to call in the port of Barcelona from 28 May through 1 June
and in the port of Ceuta for nine hours for bunkering on 16
June 2004.

Similarly, the logistical needs, port services, and exit
onto land of citizens are authorized." End translation.

3. Embassy understands that Barcelona will be a liberty
port, and that off Ceuta will be used for bunkering, with no
personnel disembarking nor shore side personnel joining the


In general, Spain is safe. However, Madrid, Barcelona and
other large cities in Spain -- including resort/convention
areas such as Benidorm -- attract a large number of criminals
and pickpockets and frequent incidents of crime of
opportunity against the unwary do occur. Carry only
essential items including a photocopy of your passport's
photo page. Visitors can protect themselves against crime by
being street-smart, alert and aware of their surroundings.
In the event you are victimized by crime, or experience any
security-related incident, please contact the Embassy's
Regional Security Office at 91-587-2550 or after hours at
91-587-2355. Official visitors to the Embassy in Madrid or
the Consulate General in Barcelona are encouraged to receive
a security briefing from the RSO office at their earliest
convenience. Additional information regarding safety and
security in Spain is available on the U.S. Department of
State's website ( and the U.S. Embassy's
website (

Travelers are encouraged to review the most recent Worldwide
Caution issued by the Department of State. As the Department
of State continues to develop information on any potential
security threats to Americans overseas, it shares credible
threat information through its Consular Information Program
documents, available on the Internet at
http://travel/ In addition to information on the
Internet, U.S. travelers can hear recorded information by
calling the Department of State in Washington, D.C. at
202-647-5225 from their touch-tone telephone, or receive
information by automated telefax by dialing 202-647-3000 from
their fax machine.

5. Minimized Considered

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