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Cablegate: Un Briefs U.S., Uk On Unami/Iraq Issues

VZCZCXRO0740
OO RUEHBC RUEHDA RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK
DE RUCNDT #0923 2991733
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 261733Z OCT 07
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2899
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000923

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV IZ
SUBJECT: UN BRIEFS U.S., UK ON UNAMI/IRAQ ISSUES


1. (SBU) Summary: During a trilateral with the UK Mission and
the UN on Iraq October 24, the UN announced that Staffan de
Mistura, incoming SRSG and head of the United Nations
Assistance Mission to Iraq (UNAMI), would formally assume his
position on October 30. The UN also said deputy SRSG Michael
von der Schulenberg would visit Irbil and Kirkuk in the
coming days, after the Kurds expressed new willingness to
consider a role for the UN in addressing the Kirkuk
referendum. On UNAMI administrative issues, the UN is moving
closer to reinstating a presence in Basra, has been advised
it will receive new funds from Denmark for the Distinct
Entity Trust Fund, and is flexible about the arrangements for
adding seconded foreign nationals, including a USG employee,
to assist UNAMI. End summary.

UNAMI - POLICY

2. (SBU) Darko Mocibob, the UN team leader on Iraq, told USUN
and UKUN on October 24 that newly appointed SRSG Staffan de
Mistura would assume his new position on October 30. He will
travel to Istanbul for the Expanded Neighbors conference, and
immediately after that meeting will travel to Amman for
consultations, followed by his arrival in Baghdad, where he
will take up residence. Mocibob added that the UN had shared
with Iraqi FM Zebari a draft terms of reference for a support
mechanism to assist regional dialogue on Iraq. Zebari,s
initial reaction was positive. Later, the Iraqis asked why
the League of Arab States had not been included in the
support mechanism. The UN replied that the support mechanism
will be based in Baghdad, where the League of Arab States
does not have a presence.

3. (SBU) On or around October 31, deputy SRSG Schulenberg
will travel to Irbil to meet with Kurdish leaders, including
Massoud and Nechirvan Barzani. The UN has received
indications that the Kurds are more open to a UN role in
dealing with the Kirkuk referendum issue. Mocibob said
Schulenberg will be receptive to Kurdish proposals and will
engage them in dialogue, but will not present a formal UN
position.

UNAMI - ADMINISTRATION

4. (SBU) As of October 25, Mocibob said the UN had 71
international staff in Baghdad and 25 international staff in
Irbil. Over the coming weeks, the UN plans on moving forward
administratively to propose reopening a liaison office in
Basra. Although this has not been formally approved, Mocibob
says currently the UN is considering a ceiling of 6 permanent
staff in Basra, with a visitor limit of 12. Regarding de
Mistura,s proposal of adding liaison staff from key
countries to the UNAMI team, the UN is flexible on the
administrative arrangements, said Mocibob. The UN would be
able to accommodate either seconding liaison staff or
treating them as direct-hires within the UN.

5. (SBU) Earlier in the week, Poloff spoke with Danish
mission political counselor Klaus Simoni-Pederson, who said
Denmark will contribute 500,000 USD to the Distinct Entity
Trust Fund that pays for "middle-ring" security for the UN.
In addition, the UN said it had received expressions of
interest from Germany, France and Portugal to contribute to
the Trust Fund. Germany said it was considering a
contribution of 1 million euros. (Comment: USUN recommends
that State consider whether to formally acknowledge the
Danish contribution. End Comment.)
Khalilzad

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