Cablegate: Eur a/S Fried Meets with Swiss State Secretary

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

2005-11-14 10:58:00 05MANAMA1672 Embassy Manama CONFIDENTIAL This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.\
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MANAMA 001672 \
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/13/2015 \
Classified By: DCM Susan L. Ziadeh for reasons 1.4 b, d. \
1. (SBU) Meeting held on November 11, 2005, 11:00, at the \
Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Manama, Bahrain \
2. (SBU) Participants: \
U.S. \
A/S Fried \
Blake Thorkleson, NEA/MEPI \
Leslie Tsou (TDY Notetaker) \
Switzerland \
State Secretary Michael Ambuehl \
Guillaume Scheurer, MFA Minister Counselor \
3. (C) Summary. On the margins of the Forum for the Future \
Senior Officials Meeting November 11 in Bahrain, Swiss State \
Secretary Michael Ambuehl told Assistant Secretary for \
European Affairs Dan Fried that Switzerland wants to \
strengthen and deepen relations with the U.S., not only \
bilaterally but internationally and multilaterally as well. \
A/S Fried accepted Ambuehl,s suggestion that the U.S. and \
Switzerland conclude a Joint Statement laying out the ways in \
which the two countries can cooperate, especially in the \
international arena. Ambuehl affirmed that Switzerland is \
looking to redefine its traditional concept of neutrality to \
play a more active international role in the 21st century; \
Switzerland,s long federalist history, for example, would \
make it an ideal advisor to the Iraqi government as Iraq,s \
own federalist system develops. End summary. \
----------------------------- \
Strengthening U.S.-Swiss Ties \
----------------------------- \
4. (C) Switzerland wants to strengthen its relations with \
the U.S., Ambuehl told A/S Fried. Noting how much the two \
governments have in common in almost every sector, from \
political and economic affairs to security and the global war \
on terrorism, Ambuehl urged broader cooperation on the \
bilateral, international, and multilateral levels. \
5. (C) Ambuehl suggested that the U.S. and Switzerland sign \
a Joint Statement that would show a visible strengthening of \
cooperation across the board. A/S Fried agreed, urging that \
the statement focus on what the U.S. and Switzerland can do \
around the world to support freedom and common values. He \
noted EUR/AGS Director Dan Weygandt will be in Switzerland \
for meetings starting November 14, and will be empowered to \
discuss how such a statement would take shape. \
------------------------ \
New Role for Switzerland \
------------------------ \
6. (C) Ambuehl agreed that Switzerland is seeking to \
redefine its traditional neutrality to fit 21st century \
realities and find ways where it can play a positive \
international role. For example, Switzerland has a long \
history of federalism that might lend itself well to advising \
the Iraqis as their federalist system develops. A/S Fried \
welcomed this idea. He pointed out the relevance of \
Partnership for Peace member Switzerland,s tradition of \
humanitarian assistance given the increasing expansion of \
NATO,s humanitarian role, as demonstrated by its assistance \
to Pakistan after the earthquake. A/S Fried noted that the \
U.S. had supported Switzerland's participation in the \
U.S.-European Ministerial Lunch in New York last September at \
the UNGA and the Dinner planned for December in Brussels. \
------------------------------------------- \
Forum for the Future/Magen David Adom Issue \
------------------------------------------- \
8. (C) A/S Fried thanked Switzerland for its financial \
contribution to the Forum for the Future, and congratulated \
the Swiss government on the December 5-6 diplomatic \
conference that aims to resolve the Magen David Adom issue. \
Ambuehl asked that language be inserted into the Chairman,s \
Statement that he said would help Switzerland resolve the \
issue (in the end, the language was offered too late to be \
included in the Chairman's Statement). \
9. (U) This message has been cleared by A/S Fried. \

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