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Cablegate: Finland: Views On Un Human Rights Council Special

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PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHHE #0786 2211257
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 091257Z AUG 06
FM AMEMBASSY HELSINKI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2278
INFO RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 0369

C O N F I D E N T I A L HELSINKI 000786

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/09/2016
TAGS: MOPS PHUM PREL PTER IS LE FI
SUBJECT: FINLAND: VIEWS ON UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL SPECIAL
SESSION ON LEBANON

REF: SECSTATE 130145

Classified By: POLOFF DAVID ALLEN SCHLAEFER FOR REASON 1.4 (B) and (D)

1. (SBU) Poloff spoke with Johanna Suurpaa, Director of the
MFA's Human Rights Unit, about the proposed Special Session
of the Human Rights Council (HRC) on Lebanon. Poloff
emphasized that at this critical point in the Lebanon crisis
(reftel), any HRC Special Session would be an unhelpful
distraction that could threaten to undermine the Security
Council's efforts. Suurpaa replied that the GoF agreed that
the timing was poor, but that the HRC had no choice given the
strong pressure exerted by the Islamic Conference countries,
by Russia, and by China. She said that the meeting has
already been scheduled for Friday, August 11. Finnish and
other EU legal experts in New York and Geneva had determined
that there was no Article 12 conflict since the HRC and
Security Council were debating simultaneously.

2. (C) Suurpaa said that Finland would work with other HRC
members toward securing a balanced statement that did not
solely address Israeli actions; that took into account
attacks by Hizballah on Israeli civilians; and that called
for an end to all deliberate attacks on civilians in the
region. Finland's Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja was
enroute to Egypt to meet his counterpart and discuss,
interalia, the HRC situation. Suurpaa said that Tuomioja
will warn the Egyptians about any push for an unbalanced HRC
that might complicate the UNSCR process and the international
community's efforts to broker a cessation of hostilities.
Suurpaa opined that she herself was "not optimistic" that
such a session could be avoided; and that she thought it
unlikely any compromise language could be agreed to, despite
the efforts that Finland and other like-minded HRC countries
intended to make .
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