Cablegate: Eu Fms at Nov. 2 Gaerc Agree Support

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



1. (SBU) EU FMs on November 2 agreed a package of
measures to support Iraq ahead of a November 5 visit
by PM Allawi. They confirmed EU financial support
for the electoral process and decided to send an
expert team by the end of November "to start
planning" with the Iraqi authorities "for a possible
integrated police, rule of law and civilian
administration mission" that would only deploy in-
country after the January elections. FMs noted the
"deteriorating" security situation in Darfur and
reiterated that the EU "does not exclude the use of
sanctions." Solana also presented his strategy for
a relaunch of the Middle East road map and continued
reform of the PA. Iran was not on the GAERC agenda
(it will be discussed by EU FMs on November 4), but
Solana said discussions were "progressively more
constructive" and the EU "has not lost hope." END

2. (SBU) EU Foreign Ministers met in a General
Affairs and External Relations Council session
primarily devoted to preparing the November 4-5
European Council (EU Summit). A Council source who
attended almost all of the event said it was a "very
low-key" affair. Full Conclusions from the GAERC
are available on the website.
Despite REF B indications, China was not raised in
the formal GAERC session.


3. (SBU) The Conclusions are much as we anticipated
(REF A), with as forward leaning a text as the
Member States could agree. The EU is trying to do
all it can to demonstrate its engagement on Iraq,
particularly in advance of PM Allawi's visit the end
of this week to the European Council. The only real
point at issue was a suggestion by France, which was
not accepted, to tone down the warmth of the
language about Allawi, after his critical comments
over the weekend. A further declaration in addition
to today's Conclusions will be issued at the Summit,
but a Council source told us it will be "a very
similar package, as we won't have much more to say
then". Some Member States had argued the EU should
have held all the Iraq language for the Summit. Key
points from the Iraq Conclusions are:

- EU "could usefully contribute" an "integrated
police, rule of law and civilian administration
mission." "While judging that activities outside
Iraq with a presence of liaison elements in Iraq
would be feasible at this point in time, the
Council agreed that with regard to a mission
inside Iraq all security concerns need to be
appropriately addressed before any decision by the
Council could be taken." Much later in the text,
the GAERC says an "expert team" should go by the
end of November to start planning with the Iraqi
authorities for this mission, "which is expected
to start after the January 2005 elections".
(NOTE: Two sources involved in the GAERC could
not interpret this text for us, on whether
activities outside Iraq could begin earlier, while
any in-country mission would have to be after the
elections. One contact said the Conclusions on
Iraq had been "subject to much to'ing and fro'ing
last week". Another contact said the GAERC had to
be "intentionally vague" about the timing of any
mission in this text. This language does not/not
necessarily mean the EU would begin such an
integrated mission now, and then consider later
moving it in-country. It appears a further
decision is needed to green light any mission
beyond the expert team. END NOTE)

- GAERC agreed to give Iraq "the perspective of an promote political and trade
cooperation" and asked the Commission to start on
assistance programs "aimed at developing the
conditions for such an agreement". GAERC invited
Commission to "enhance as appropriate and with due
regard to security its presence in Baghdad."

- Affirmed ?30 million in Community assistance to
the elections cluster of IRFFI, as well as
intention to provide experts and training.
- Reaffirms that Member States "are ready to
contribute substantially to the financing of the
middle ring of the UN Protection Force" and notes
the Commission is "still discussing with the UN a
possible financial contribution of the Community
to the inner ring."

- Noted Iraq is an EU GSP beneficiary and said "as
soon as conditions allow", the Commission should
work with the Iraqi administration to get the
system operating. GAERC also "agreed to continue
efforts of the Member States to exchange views on


4. (SBU) GAERC issued very familiar language with
nothing that strikes us as particularly new. Key

- GAERC "notes with grave concern that the security
situation in parts of Darfur has been
deteriorating in the last weeks." Repeats that
the EU "does not exclude the use of sanctions."

- EU details its readiness to support the African
Union's monitoring mission (AMIS), with Council-
level agreement on ?80 million from the Africa
Peace Facility, as well as three references to the
EU's interest in providing the AU advice or
expertise, "if requested."


5. (SBU) High Rep Solana presented his ideas on an
"action plan" for implementation of the road map, as
well as some thoughts on European parameters for
eventual talks on final status. A paper outlining
these ideas was circulated to EU FMs last Friday.
Our contact said EU envoy Marc Otte and A/S Burns
had talked over the weekend, so the USG should
already have a very clear idea of Solana's approach.
The Solana paper would probably be circulated to
Quartet partners soon.


6. (SBU) Iran was dropped from the agenda for this
GAERC. It will be taken up at the EU FMs' dinner on
Nov. 4, with possible Summit Conclusions on Nov. 5.
In response to a question at the press conference,
Solana said EU-Iran contacts were on-going, with the
discussions "progressively more constructive", but
if they were to be raised to the highest level, then
a "breakthrough" was still needed. "We have not
lost hope," he added. In a separate press
conference, French FM Barnier said the EU was
looking for a "durable, lasting commitment" by Iran
in exchange for a "true, interesting contract" from
the EU.


7. (SBU) In general, EU FMs agreed the EU should
hold a firm line regarding what it would offer for
the Nov. 11 EU-Russia Summit, although France and
Italy in particular noted that the EU should also
take note of recent positive steps (from the EU
perspective) by Russia such as ratification of the
Kyoto Protocol and extension of the EU-Russsia
Partnership and Cooperation Agreement to the 10 new
EU members. With the media, Bot did mention these
steps, but also stressed the EU would insist the
four proposed EU-Russia "spaces" were a coherent
package that is indivisible, and that the EU was
prepared to accept that it might not reach agreement
with Russia on the whole package at next week's
Summit. (One source said this was a noticeably
"firmer line than Bot took 10 days ago" in the EU-
Russia ministerial meeting, after which Bot had
taken some criticism from other member states over
being too soft.)


8. (SBU) Polish FM raised concerns about recent
developments, and suggested the European Council
Conclusions on Nov. 5 should include a paragraph on
Belarus. The Dutch Presidency resisted adding any
topics to the Summit. But several other Member
States (Denmark, Finland, Balts) agreed the
situation is of concern, and that the EU needed to
take a strong line, though more through engagement
than isolation.


9. (U) Individual member states gave interventions
on issues of predictable national concern -- Somalia
(Italy), Congo (Belgium) and Guinea-Bissau
(Portugal) -- but failed to spark any real


10. (U) Dutch European Affairs Minister Atzo Nicolai
reported progress on outstanding issues in the EU's
next multi-annual JHA program. He forecast that the
European Council would agree to extend qualified
majority voting (QMV)to all asylum and migration
issues, other than rules on legal migration
(including such issues as procedures on issuance of
work permits). Austria, Greece, Slovakia and
Estonia voiced concerns about extending QMV to this
final area. (NOTE: Under the current treaties, EU
Member States, acting unanimously, can agree to move
these issues to QMV from the current consensus
requirement.) Nicolai also reported that 2010
should remain the EU's deadline for establishing a
Common Asylum System.

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