Cablegate: Eu Supportive On Afghan Stability, Karzai Decision

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 162903

1. (SBU) We reviewed ref A points during a July 28 meeting
with Baltasar Benz, the Afghanistan desk officer in the
Commission's External Relations directorate. Benz said that
the Commission -- which had been concerned about
Afghanistan's warlords -- welcomed President Karzai's
decision to drop Fahim Kahn as his running mate. The
Commission (and the EU more generally) will maintain its
long-standing support for Afghan stability, a public focus
since the Bonn Conference and highlighted most recently in
the Dutch EU Presidency's July 27 statement (ref B). Benz
remarked on the close cooperation between the U.S. and the
Commission, EU special representative, core EU member states,
and G-8 countries on Afghan issues.

2. (U) Also on July 28, CFSP High Representative Solana's
office issued a press release detailing his discussion with
Karzai earlier in the day. Solana said that the EU supported
Karzai's choice of running mates, described in the press
release as "persons of high standing and integrity as well as
committed to the process of reform." Solana hailed the
Afghan people's interest in participating in the elections --
as shown by the high percentage of registered voters and the
diversity of presidential candidates -- and called for a
secure and open campaign process.

3. (U) The Commission on July 29 approved an additional 9
million euros for the UN-managed Elections Project, which
will provide support for election-related activities in
Afghanistan including voter information campaigns and
ensuring that all candidates have media access.



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