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Cablegate: Country Clearance Granted for Kogan, Felix

VZCZCXYZ0010
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHRB #1117/01 1871602
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 061602Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC PRIORITY
INFO RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME PRIORITY 1532
RUEHCL/AMCONSUL CASABLANCA 3194

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 RABAT 001117

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OTRA MO
SUBJECT: COUNTRY CLEARANCE GRANTED FOR KOGAN, FELIX

REF: USDOC 06213

1. Embassy Rabat is pleased to grant country clearance for to
the Department of Commerce, NOAA meteorologist Felix Kogan to
travel to Morocco, July 9-13, 2007 for the purpose of
conducting meetings with GOM and embassy officials.

2. Post understands travelers require no further assistance.

3 ICASS Policy:

A. Due to ICASS funding reductions, we regret that Post has
had to curtail services and pass the cost of select services
through direct charging of non-ICASS contributors visiting
Post through direct charging. Therefore we request that each
visitor, regardless of length of stay, bring/forward fiscal
data to pay for direct costs of the visit and share copies
with their control officer and FMO. Each agency,
organization, or visiting delegation will be charged for the
actual costs attributed to their visit. Direct charge costs
include, but are not limited to: American and LES staff
overtime (e.g., expediter, airport pick-up and drop-off,
accommodation exchange, representational event support),
field travel-lodging and M&IE by Embassy employees, vehicle
rentals, long distance telephone calls, equipment rentals,
office supplies and all other costs that are directly
attributable to visitor needs. Please note that all visitors
should be prepared to be charged approximately ninety-five
dollars (subject to periodic adjustment) for airport pick-ups
and drop-offs that occur after normal business hours.

B. In accordance with worldwide ICASS policy, TDYers over
thirty (30) days, are subject to a charge for ICASS support
services. If your sponsoring agency is not signed up for
ICASS services at post, please be prepared to sign an MOU for
ICASS support services upon arrival. The agency should
provide post with written communication, generated by the
traveler's headquarters, that confirms the agency will pay
ICASS charges for the TDYer and provides the agency ICASS
billing code to which TDY support charges should be applied.

C. Where travel is urgent, the TDYers should bring this
documentation with them to ensure there are no interruptions
in the provision of service. We regret that due to budget
restraints, Post will not provide service to a TDYer staying
in excess of thirty days without provision of this
documentation. We thank you in advance for your
understanding.

4. Security Concerns

A. Mandatory Personal Security Training (Ref: 04 State 066580
and 001360): Effective June 1, 2004, all personnel
transferring to an overseas location under Chief of Mission
authority must complete appropriate overseas personal
security training prior to their travel. Effective January
1, 2005, this same requirement will also apply to American
personnel requesting country clearance to perform extended
temporary duty (TDY defined as more than 30 days) at overseas
locations.

B. Terrorism:

In March/April 2007, a series of terrorist bombings occurred
in Casablanca, two of which simultaneously targeted the U.S.
Consulate General and the private American Language Center.
In 2003, a series of similar attacks in Casablanca targeted
hotels and restaurants. The potential for terrorist violence
against American interests and citizens remains high in
Morocco. Moroccan authorities continue to disrupt groups
seeking to attack U.S. or Western-affiliated and Moroccan
government targets, arresting numerous individuals associated
with international terrorist groups. With indications that
such groups still seek to carry out attacks in Morocco, it is
important for American citizens to be keenly aware of their
surroundings and adhere to prudent security practices such as
avoiding predictable travel patterns and maintaining a low
profile. Establishments that are readily identifiable with
the United States are potential targets for attacks. These
may include facilities where U.S. citizens and other
foreigners congregate, including clubs, restaurants, places
of worship, schools, hotels, movie theaters and other public
areas. Such targets may also include establishments where
activities occur that may offend religious sensitivities,
such as casinos or places where alcoholic beverages are sold
or consumed. Travelers should stay abreast of recent
developments within the country and read the latest State
Department Consular Information Sheet covering travel to
Morocco and any current Worldwide Caution Messages about
travel to the Middle East and North Africa before arrival in
country. The Mission takes all information concerning
terrorist incidents and terrorism very seriously. The

RABAT 00001117 002 OF 003


Mission investigates all incidents fully in conjunction with
Moroccan authorities. All travelers are expected to report
any suspicious incidents or information to the RSO
immediately, 24 hours a day, at Tel. 037-76-96-39.

C. Crime:

The threat level for crime in Morocco has been designated
"high." Crimes ranging from aggressive panhandling pick
pocketing, purse snatching, theft from vehicles, and
harassment of women occur periodically. Attempted break-ins
of mission residences by burglars have occurred, but in
general crime in Morocco tends to be non-violent. Most
criminals look for opportunities to steal by stealth rather
than confrontation but there are exceptions.

Women walking alone in certain areas of cities and rural
areas are particularly vulnerable to verbal harassment from
young men. Women are advised to travel with a companion or in
a group when possible and to ignore any harassment. Some
women who have responded to verbal harassment have come under
physical attack. If physical provocation occurs, visitors
are urged not to resist in order to avoid injury and to
report the incident to the Regional Security Officer
immediately (see telephone number above).

Travelers should be alert for pickpockets and
purse-snatchers, especially in outdoor shopping areas,
tourist attractions, and in transportation centers. Taxis
and trains in Morocco are relatively safe, city buses are not
considered safe. Avoid carrying large sums of cash, and
credit cards should be secured in the safe deposit box at
your hotel. In the event you are victimized by crime, or an
attempted crime, or experience any security-related incident
during your stay in Morocco, please report the incident to
the RSO as soon as possible.

D. Demonstrations/Harassment:

When regional tensions increase many diplomatic missions,
including ours, from time to time receive threatening phone
calls, e-mails and harassing letters/faxes. Should you
receive any of these while at post, contact Marine Post One
and/or the RSO immediately.

Further, the Mission has received several white powder
letters through the local mail. Please note: Mission Policy
strictly prohibits any unopened mail, packages or boxes from
being brought into any facility prior to screening by the
Embassy and Consulate mailroom staff. There are no
exceptions to this policy and all personnel are expected to
abide by it rigidly for the protection of the Mission and its
personnel.

Finally, demonstrations do occur with some frequency in
Morocco during periods of heightened tension. Occasionally,
a few of these demonstrations have been anti-American/Western
with a small number of these resulting in some minor
destruction of personal and public property. Travelers
should be cognizant of the current levels of tension in the
region, always be alert to their surroundings and avoid large
crowds. Demonstrations and suspicious incidents should be
immediately reported to the Marine Security Guard (Post 1)
and the RSO.

E. Electronic Devices:

Privately owned laptops, PCs, cellular telephones, cameras
and similar devices are strictly prohibited in controlled
access areas (CAAs) of the chancery and Consulate. Travelers
with USG unclassified and classified laptop/notebook
computers must notify the Information Management Officer
(IMO) through Marine Post One or the RSO before bringing
these machines into the Embassy or Consulate. Questions
concerning other types of electronic devices must be directed
to either the IMO or the RSO.

F. Cultural Awareness:

Travelers need to be cognizant of the fact that Morocco is an
Islamic country despite the appearance of some aspects of
Western culture. Generally, women should not travel alone
and should dress conservatively for all occasions to avoid
harassment from young men in public or offending Moroccan
interlocutors during social occasions. Men should not wear
ostentatious apparel that draws attention. The purchase and
consumption of alcohol is permitted in Morocco but Islamic
conservatives in Moroccan society are fundamentally against
its sale or use. Travelers should let common sense prevail
and only buy or consume alcohol in shops, restaurants and
hotels where it is readily available and permitted.

RABAT 00001117 003 OF 003


G. Post Specific Security Briefings:

Travelers planning to stay in Morocco 14 days or longer
should request that their sponsoring office schedule a
security briefing for them with the RSO.

******************************************
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website;
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/rabat
******************************************

RILEY

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