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Cablegate: Swiss Welcome Unsc Resolution On Lebanon

VZCZCXRO0573
RR RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHKUK
DE RUEHSW #1505 2271037
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 151037Z AUG 06
FM AMEMBASSY BERN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2838
INFO RUCNIRA/IRAN COLLECTIVE
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0091
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2579

UNCLAS BERN 001505

SIPDIS

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: UN IS PREL PTER MOPS UNSC
SUBJECT: SWISS WELCOME UNSC RESOLUTION ON LEBANON

REF: SECSTATE 132517

1.(SBU) Swiss officials generally agree with reftel points
regarding UNSC Resolution 1701 and have publicly welcomed the
resolution. In response to reftel demarche, Swiss DFA Deputy
UN Coordinator Jean-Francois Paroz told Poloff that the
worthiness of the resolution would be seen in its
implementation. Poloff agreed, stressing that pressure
needed to be maintained on Hizballah to disarm and cease
terrorist attacks. Poloff regretted the results of the Human
Rights Council special session, which could not have been
more unbalanced. Paroz said that the Swiss were not
satisfied with how the session turned out. He insisted that
the decision to abstain should not be viewed as a concession
to the Arab League sponsors of the unbalanced resolution.
His government, he said, still maintains that the Israeli
response was disproportionate -- as Foreign Minister
Calmy-Rey controversially put it in the early weeks of the
war -- but that it hoped its repeated criticism of Hizballah
showed that Bern maintained a balanced position.

Unlikely to Send Peacekeepers
-----------------------------

2.(SBU) Regarding participation in the bolstered UNIFIL,
Paroz said it was very unlikely Switzerland would take part,
due both to a lack of manpower and Switzerland's
constitutional difficulty with peace-enforcement (as opposed
to peace-keeping) operations. Paroz offered that is was a
shame that Switzerland only had the ability to deploy a bit
over 200 soldiers at a time (almost all of which are with
KFOR in Kosovo), but that would remain the reality until
2008. DATT contacts have described as highly unlikely Swiss
UNIFIL participation. That said, the Swiss Joint Staff today
sent an officer to Lebanon on a fact-finding mission.

3.(SBU) In public statements, the government has been less
unequivocal against deployment, insisting that such a
decision would be made once the nature and mandate of the
force was decided. Media outlets note that the usual
timeline for deployments precluded an early participation,
since any mandate would first entail a Swiss interagency
assessment, Federal Council (cabinet) approval, Parliamentary
committee study, and full Parliamentary approval at one of
its four annual sessions.

Press Release
-------------

4.(U) A Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs press
release on UNSCR 1701 can be found at the following link:
www.eda.admin.ch/eda/e/home/singlem.html?id=6 566 .
URBAN

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