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Cablegate: Croatia Pitches Unsc Candidacy

VZCZCXYZ0002
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHVB #0759 2261108
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 141108Z AUG 07
FM AMEMBASSY ZAGREB
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8022
INFO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0048

UNCLAS ZAGREB 000759

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EUR/SCE - HOH, BALIAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV UN HR
SUBJECT: CROATIA PITCHES UNSC CANDIDACY

1. (SBU) SUMMARY AND COMMENT: During an August 7 introductory call,
MFA Assistant Minister for International Organizations and Security
Pjer Simunovic briefed the DCM on Croatia's bid for a non-permanent
seat on the UN Security Council. Simunovic said Croatia's unique
political and cultural experience would allow it to make a valuable
contribution to the UNSC in dealing with emerging issues from both
the perspective of a modern European nation and a developing,
post-conflict state. END SUMMARY AND COMMENT.

WAR EXPERIENCE KEY TO ADDRESSING CONFLICT
-----------------------------------------

2. (SBU) According to Simunovic, the war in Croatia and its location
at the cross-roads of Central European, Eastern European, and
Islamic culture give it significant advantage in understanding both
the causes of conflict and how to operate in combat zones in places
such as Iraq and Afghanistan. As a small state still in the process
of recovery and development, Croatia can bring a helpful perspective
of similar nations to what he called "the dialogue of
civilizations," helping to create policies to resolve conflicts and
promote development.

PEACE SUPPORT OPERATIONS KEY TO SECURITY POLICY
--------------------------------------------- --

3. (SBU) Simunovic pointed to participation in international peace
support operations as a cornerstone of GoC security policy. In
addition to Croatia's service in the UN Peacebuilding Commission, he
highlighted the nearly 200-strong Croatian contingent in
Afghanistan, engaged in a wide spectrum of ISAF activities, and
contributions to 11 UN peacekeeping missions. With no territorial
threats, Simunovic said the Croatian military is increasingly
aligned for deployment with UN, NATO and EU operations.

4. (SBU) Simunovic noted that the GoC has also become active in arms
control and non-proliferation, becoming party to nearly every major
international convention and initiative, including recent acceptance
into the Australia Group and endorsement of the USG-organized Global
Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism. With Embassy assistance,
the GoC has developed an active and effective export control
regime.

POSITIVE REPUTATION DRIVES SUPPORT
----------------------------------

5. (SBU) While Croatia is competing with the Czech Republic for the
UNSC seat, Simunovic emphasized that the campaign has been
completely positive, with neither side attempting to attack the
other's candidacy. The campaign, he said, has given Croatia a
better perspective on how they are viewed by the rest of the
international community. According to Simunovic, Croatia has
developed a strong reputation over the years as demonstrated by the
support from many EU nations and major developing states for
Croatia's candidacy. Among these supporters is Serbia, which,
Simunovic noted, is a testament to Croatia's positive role in the
region. He attributed this is in great part to the image of Croatia
as an "honest broker" when it comes to dealing with peacebuilding
and conflict resolution.

x. (U) An MFA document providing additional details on Croatia's
UNSC candidacy is available at
http://www.mvpei.hr/CustomPages/Static/HRV/Fi les/
kandidatura_VSUN.pdf.

BRADTKE

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