Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Work smarter with a Pro licence Learn More

Search

 

Cablegate: Sustaining Turkish Cooperation in Maritime

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

151544Z Mar 05

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 001482

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EB/TRA/OTP - DHAYWOOD AND EUR/SE
ROME FOR ICE ROBERT STIRITI
PARIS FOR TSA
DEPT PASS TRANSPORTATION DEPT

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EWWT ECON ETRD PREL PTER PARM TU
SUBJECT: SUSTAINING TURKISH COOPERATION IN MARITIME
SECURITY

REF: State 38874

1. (U) Reftel requested Embassy input on building
international support for an improved global maritime
security framework, an objective of the December 2004
Presidential Directive on Maritime Security Policy.
The Embassy and USG agencies work closely with the GOT
on maritime security programs, including: inclusion
of the port of Izmir in the Container Security
Initiative (CSI); and a U.S. Coast Guard's
International Port Security Program (IPSP). Several
private companies also participate in the Customs
Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT), which
does not involve the GOT.

2. (SBU) We generally enjoy good cooperation with the
GOT on maritime security, based on a shared experience
of terrorism and the common objective of protecting
citizens, property and sensitive infrastructure. That
said, Embassy has several observations on the Turkish
approach to these issues:

-- Preference for Formal Agreements: The GOT often
demonstrates a cautious and meticulous approach to
security cooperation. For example, the GOT believes
it needs the approval of the Council of Ministers and
perhaps Parliament for a CSI agreement, rather than a
simpler Declaration of Principles. On export
controls, the bilateral umbrella agreement has been
the subject of over two years of meticulous
negotiation with numerous exchanges of text.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

-- Sovereignty Sensitivity: The Turks are very
sensitive about preserving their sovereign
prerogatives and suspicious of foreign governments
getting too involved in government processes. For
example, the presence of U.S. officials at port
facilities was one of the Turks' major concerns about
CSI, delaying GOT agreement to join the program.
Similarly, there was considerable bureaucratic
resistance to Turkey's endorsement of PSI due to
concerns about the sovereign rights of vessels on the
high seas.

-- Bias Against a Private Sector Role: The GOT
rejected "Operation Safe Commerce", in part because of
private contractor involvement. One of the first
questions the Turks raised in connection with CSI was
whether the U.S. intended to station private
contractors or U.S. customs officers in Turkish ports.

-- Patchy Interagency Coordination: The GOT's
interagency process is often subject to gaps in
communication and stovepiping that delay
decisionmaking. Although the key implementing
agencies are the Maritime Administration and the
Customs Undersecretariat, keeping MFA in the loop
helps the Turks to keep their process on track.

-- Cost and Competitiveness: Although GOT
interlocutors do not stress funding as a barrier to
implementing maritime security programs, we understand
that some Turkish companies are concerned that
programs like CSI will impose costs on their exports
that could hurt their competitiveness. The Embassy
has made the argument that CSI should enhance, rather
than harm competitiveness for Turkish companies, but
this is a concern that may continue to arise in the
context of CSI's development, as well as with new
programs and initiatives.

3. (SBU) At Embassy Ankara, the Economic Section has
the lead on maritime security issues and chairs
coordinating meetings on an ad hoc basis with other
interested sections and agencies at post. These
include the Pol-Mil and Consular sections, as well as
Defense Attache Office, the Trade and Development
Agency, Commerce, and the Office of Defense
Cooperation. ECON is the focal point for
communicating with DHS offices related to transport
with regional responsibilities for Turkey (ICE Attache
Rome, Coast Guard Liaison Rotterdam, TSA
Representative Paris). Post's Mission Program Plan
addresses maritime security goals in the paper on
Prevention and Response to Terrorism.

Edelman

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
 
 
 
World Headlines

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.