Search

 

Cablegate: Ethiopia-Eritrea: Response to Usg Instructions On

VZCZCXYZ0004
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0597/01 2012328
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 202328Z JUL 07
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2301
INFO RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA PRIORITY 0150
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA PRIORITY 1402
RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS PRIORITY 1331
RUEHAE/AMEMBASSY ASMARA PRIORITY 1169
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN PRIORITY 0826
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS PRIORITY 1488
RUEHDR/AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM PRIORITY 0254
RUEHLI/AMEMBASSY LISBON PRIORITY 0494
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO PRIORITY 0745
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 8296
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000597

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ER ET PBTS PREL UNSC
SUBJECT: ETHIOPIA-ERITREA: RESPONSE TO USG INSTRUCTIONS ON
TWO-TRACK APPROACH

REF: SECSTATE 097935

1. (SBU) On July 20 Acting PolCouns delivered reftel points
to Ms. Margaret Vogt, Deputy Director of the Africa I
Division in the United Nations Department of Political
Affairs (DPA). Also present was DPA Africa I Division
Political Officer Mamadi Toure and Poloff. (NOTE: DPA
Under-Secretary-General Pascoe became unavailable on short
notice for this meeting. END NOTE). Acting PolCouns
stressed the USG wish to see the Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary
Commission (EEBC) take advantage of its early September
meetings with the parties to move the reconciliation process
forward faster, given what appeared to be imminent
hostilities between the sides. He highlighted the
"break-through potential" offered by the EEBC September
meeting in getting outstanding differences, particularly in
terms of demarcation definitions and interpretations,
clarified between the sides.

2. (SBU) Acting PolCouns emphasized the USG belief that the
Secretary-General take the lead on the second track parallel

SIPDIS
to the EEBC process by considering sponsoring meetings on the
margins of the EEBC September session as a forum for
discussions on issues more "normal" than the divisive border
talk between the two. Acting PolCouns said the USG would be
willing to engage with the Witnesses to the Algiers
Agreements, the Friends of the UN Mission to Ethiopia/Eritrea
(UNMEE) and other interested parties to lend support to and
generate momentum for this second track effort. Acting
PolCouns pointed out that the USG role was best played
behind-the-scenes, given our somewhat strained relationship
with Eritrea.

3. (SBU) Deputy Director Vogt was encouraged to hear that the
USG shared DPA's view of the importance of underlying issues
between the sides, beyond the "technicalities of
demarcation." She stressed the need to focus on issues such
as the Eritrean economy, Ethiopian access to the sea, and
Eritrea's insecurity over respect for its territorial
integrity. She said that Eritrea considers pillar erection
as the ultimate confirmation of its independence in the face
of what Eritrea sees as lingering Ethiopian refusal to
recognize that Eritrea has gone its separate way. Likewise,
Vogt noted that Ethiopia needed a way to reassure its
domestic constituencies that it did not "sell out" by
granting Eritrea its independence. She considered Acting
PolCouns' suggestion of creating a forum for discussion of
confidence-building measures outside the border context as a
way to give both sides a ladder to climb down.

4. (SBU) Deputy Director Vogt "did not see the
Secretary-General saying no" to reftel request but warned

SIPDIS
that Eritrea had traditionally not been receptive to the
SYG's offer of good offices. She expressed hope that
interested parties, especially Norway, would play a
supporting role if the SYG came out in front on the
initiative. Vogt considered that discussions between the
sides begin in advance of the September EEBC meeting as a way
to "soften the ground" for the parties, something, as DPA
Poloff Toure added, had been done before the agreement on the
Bakassi peninsula through an SYG-convened meeting in Geneva.
Both Vogt and Acting PolCouns agreed that September could
represent the apex of an intensive outreach effort, in the
months both before and after, in the run-up to the EEBC
November deadline.

5. (SBU) In separate conversations with Poloff, the Italian
and UK Missions expressed support for the EEBC September
meeting. UKUN Poloff said London considered it "an
opportunity not to be wasted," and both the UK and Italy saw
the meeting as a chance to extend the EEBC's withdrawal
deadline beyond November. Italian Poloff supported any
initiative to build confidence between the sides, including
through utilizing the Military Coordination Commission.
Regarding the SYG's good offices, Italian Poloff saw
appointment of a Special Representative as a possible way
forward, including as a way to acknowledge the Eritrean
position. He was concerned, however, that the latest SYG
Report on the UN Mission in Ethiopia/Eritrea (S/2007/440),


could hinder the SYG's good offices efforts, since the
Report's language was "rightly tough" on Eritrea on some
areas but no so in others.
KHALILZAD

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Washington Riot And The Georgia Results
Hong Kong and Washington DC. On the same morning, the tyrants in power in Beijing and their counterpart in the White House have shown how they refuse to accept the legitimacy of any different points of view, and the prospect of losing power… More>>

WHO: Vaccination No Guarantee Of Virus Eradication

In the final World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 press conference of the year, on Monday, senior officials warned that the virus is 'not necessarily the big one', and that there is a real chance of another, more serious pandemic spreading ... More>>

Covid: Two Billion COVID Vaccine Doses Secured, WHO Says End Of Pandemic Is In Sight

The end of the pandemic is in sight but we must not let our guard down, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday, as he welcomed the news that the global vaccine partnership COVAX has lined up almost two billion doses of existing ... More>>

UN: Guterres To Seek Second Five-year Term
António Guterres will be seeking a second five-year term as UN Secretary-General, which would begin in January 2022.... More>>


UN Rights Office: Iran Execution Of Child Offender Breaks International Law

The execution of an Iranian man for a crime allegedly committed when he was 16 years old has been condemned by the UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR) and raised concerns over violations of his right to a fair trial. In a statement released on Thursday, ... More>>

UN News: Fighting Displaces Over 500,000 In Northern Mozambique, Reports UN Refuge Agency

Attacks by armed groups in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado, Nampula, Zambezia and Niassa provinces have displaced more than 530,000 people, many of whom have been forced to move multiple times, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said on Friday. According to ... More>>