Cablegate: Canada: Follow-Up to Sea Island Action Plan

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

102029Z Aug 05




E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: STATE 139663


1. (SBU) Following confirmation from the Italian Embassy that
Italy's demarche on assistance to COESPU had been delivered,
on August 4 polmiloff provided reftel points and web site
information to Foreign Affairs (FAC) International Security
Bureau (IDD) Director General Paul Chapin. An information
copy was shared with Assistant Deputy Minister (A/DM) Jim
Wright's Executive Assistant.

2. (SBU) Polmiloff discussed Canada's response to our
demarche with Acting Desk Officer Tony Anderson in the
Regional Security and Peacekeeping Division (IDR) (part of
IDD Bureau) on August 9. (NOTE: A contract employee with
IDR, Anderson has been working the G-8 file for nearly a year
and is considered to be FAC's staff-level expert on G-8
security actions. END NOTE.) Affirming Canada's full
commitment to the Sea Island Action Plan to expand peace
support operations, Anderson said that FAC was working to
allocate the balance (CAD 30 million over four years) of its
CAD 50 million Sea Island pledge. The spending plan for the
balance requires approval of the Treasury Board --
anticipated for submission by FAC in September. The Canadian
approach, said Anderson, is to "seek targeted opportunities"
in niche areas where Canada has expertise and where it can
make a visible difference. While there are no plans, at this
time, to augment Canada's initial pledge, Anderson did not
rule out the possibility of future funds from the new,
multiple-year Global Peace and Security Fund established in
this year's federal government budget exercise.

3. (SBU) Anderson confirmed that CAD 20 million was disbursed
earlier this year to the African Union Mission in the Sudan
for tactical lift (helicopters). Reluctant to provide a
detailed breakdown of FAC proposals for the remaining CAD 30
million, Anderson instead gave examples of the "types of
assistance" under consideration. These include:
-- funding support for training of African soldiers through
the Department of National Defence (DND) military assistance
training program (MTAP), similar to USG's own IMET program.
This would include both the carefully-vetted 6-month courses
in which select African military officers join a regular
class of Canadian officers in training, as well as a shorter
(3 weeks) military observer course in which groups of African
officers (up to 30) participate. Anderson cited the success
of the capacity-building Peace and Security Initiative for
West Africa (PSI) through the Canada Fund for Africa pledged
at the 2002 G-8 Kananaskis Summit as another example of
assistance that might be continued. The PSI provided funds to
ECOWAS for ten (10) African military planners to receive
training in peace operations.


4. (SBU/NF) Anderson said that Canada supports Italy's Center
of Excellence for Stability Police Units (COESPU). Insofar
as stability policing is "not in Canada's tradition,"
however, the government believes it would be more
cost-effective to concentrate on areas of Canadian expertise,
such as "community-based policing." Anderson talked of
complementarity in achieving Global Peace Operations Program
(GPOP) objectives -- it makes sense, he said, for the U.S.
and Italy to proceed with "stability-based policing"
initiatives, while the U.K. and Canada might be better
positioned to undertake training in community-based policing.
Anderson insisted that "the door is not shut" to potential
RCMP assistance to COESPU, noting that while Canada doesn't
normally "do" gendarmerie-type policing, this was not to say
that a bilingual RCMP officer couldn't be of some value.
(COMMENT: Despite our best efforts to pin down Anderson's
response, he would not/not give a categorical "yes" or "no"
response to our request. Post will attempt to gain clarity
on Canada's position through other FAC contacts. END


5. (SBU/NF) Regarding potential deployment of
Spanish-speaking staff from the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre
to help train the Conference of Central American Armed Forces
(CFAC) battalion in Guatemala, Anderson stated that Canada is
still "looking to establish" relations with CFAC and thus
there exists no funding mechanism at this time. He explained
that while the Pearson Centre definitely "has the
capabilities" to assist CFAC, it is a non-government entity
only partly funded by the Canadian government. Thus CFAC
should be encouraged to contact the Pearson Centre directly
with a specific proposal for assistance. The Centre would
then seek funding from the GOC, likely from the GPOP fund.
The funding process, which includes Treasury Board approval,
could take two to three months according to Anderson.

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