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Cablegate: (C) Demarche Request: Gtmo Detainee Emergency Medevac

VZCZCXYZ0001
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHC #0626 2602112
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 172058Z SEP 07
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUEHDG/AMEMBASSY SANTO DOMINGO IMMEDIATE 0000
RUEHSJ/AMEMBASSY SAN JOSE IMMEDIATE 0000
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA IMMEDIATE 0000
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO IMMEDIATE 0000

C O N F I D E N T I A L STATE 130626

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/17/2017
TAGS: PTER PHUM PINS PREL MARR DR CS PM MX
SUBJECT: (C) DEMARCHE REQUEST: GTMO DETAINEE EMERGENCY MEDEVAC
STANDBY ARRANGEMENT

CLASSIFIED BY WHA A/S THOMAS A. SHANNON, REASONS 1.4 (B) AND (D).

Summary
-------

1. (C) Department requests that Embassies Santo Domingo, San Jose,
Panama City, and Mexico City approach the Governments of the
Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, and Mexico about a standby
arrangement that would enable DoD to transport Guantanamo detainees
in need of critical care to a medical facility in one of those
countries, if needed, on an emergency basis.

Objectives
----------

2. (C) Department requests that Embassies Santo Domingo, San Jose,
Panama City, and Mexico City pursue the following objectives:

-- Inform each respective government that the USG seeks to conclude a
standby arrangement that would enable DoD to transport Guantanamo
detainees in need of critical care to a medical facility in the
respective country, if needed, on an emergency basis;

-- Advise each respective government that DoD would provide
appropriate security for any detainee transported under the
arrangement, and that the USG would bear all costs associated with
care provided under the arrangement;

-- Stress that the arrangement the USG seeks would be invoked only on
an as-needed, emergency basis, and that currently there are no
detainees at Guantanamo in need of transportation for critical care
under such an arrangement;

-- Persuade the government to enter into such an arrangement with the
USG on a humanitarian basis, to assist in rendering life-saving
procedures for a detainee(s), if needed.

-- If asked, draw from the information in paragraph 6 to explain why
the USG cannot transport detainees to the United States for emergency
medical treatment.

Reporting Deadline
------------------

3. (C) Department requests that Embassies Santo Domingo, San Jose,
Panama City, and Mexico City report the results of their efforts by
cable slugged for S/WCI - Ambassador Williamson by Wednesday,
September 19.

Background
----------

4. (C) The Deputy Secretary has agreed to the Deputy Secretary of
Defense's request that the Department approach the Governments of the
Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, and Mexico (in that order of
preference) about a standby arrangement that would enable DoD to
transport Guantanamo detainees in need of critical care to a medical
facility in one of those countries, if needed, on an emergency basis.
DoD seeks such an arrangement in the event that a detainee were to
require life-saving procedures that DoD cannot provide at Guantanamo
- i.e., an unanticipated emergency that requires a type of treatment
DoD cannot transport to, or maintain at, Guantanamo. The proposed
arrangement would be a non-binding political understanding and would
not constitute a formal international agreement. Currently there are
no detainees at Guantanamo in need of transportation for critical
care under such an arrangement.

5. (C) Detainees receive state-of-the-art medical care at Guantanamo
for routine, and many non-routine, medical problems. There are,
however, limits to the care that DoD can provide at Guantanamo, and
serious risks (outlined in paragraph 6) associated with the
transportation of detainees to the United States for medical
treatment. DoD Health Affairs policy experts have identified the
Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, and Mexico as countries with
the requisite level of emergency medical care, in relatively close
proximity to Guantanamo, where detainees could receive life-saving
procedures that are unavailable on short notice at Guantanamo.

6. (SBU) At this time, the USG is not admitting any Guantanamo
detainees into the United States for several reasons, including that
admitting particular detainees might lead litigants to argue that
U.S. courts should order the USG to admit other, more dangerous,
detainees. These concerns are unique to the United States and are
not something that third countries face. Terrorism is an
international problem, and we believe efforts to counter it should be
shared among all nations that are potentially its targets. Other
countries, such as Albania, have in the past acknowledged the need
for all to share in this counter-terrorism effort by accepting
Guantanamo detainees who are not their nationals for resettlement.

7. (C) DoD would provide appropriate security for any detainee
transported under the standby arrangement. DoD also would bear all
costs associated with care provided under the arrangement. The USG
would view a country's decision to enter such an arrangement as an
important humanitarian gesture.

8. (C) Department understands that the proposed arrangement raises
significant legal and logistical issues that would need to be
resolved before such an arrangement could be concluded. At this
juncture, we are simply seeking to determine whether any of the four
countries identified by the DoD Health Affairs policy experts would
be receptive to discussing the matter further.

Point of Contact
----------------

9. (SBU) Point of contact for this request is S/WCI - Mark Stamilio,
phone: (202) 647-5234, email: StamilioMA2@state.sgov.gov.
RICE

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