Search

 

Cablegate: Forum for the Future Update: Meeting at the Mfa

VZCZCXYZ0019
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHYN #2054/01 3101239
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 061239Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY SANAA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8348

UNCLAS SANAA 002054

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KWMN PGOV PHUM YM
SUBJECT: FORUM FOR THE FUTURE UPDATE: MEETING AT THE MFA


1.(U) Summary: The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abu Bakr
al-Qirbi, summoned G-8, Spanish and Dutch ambassadors, and
the head of the Civil Society Coalition for a November 5
meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) to discuss
the upcoming Forum for the Future. Al-Qirbi urged the
ambassadors to ask their capitals to pressure the Egyptians
to change their Sharm al-Sheykh conference dates, as this
remained a scheduling conflict for the Forum. Al-Qirbi could
not confirm President Saleh's participation in the Forum, but
mentioned that the President may want to use the opportunity
to meet with some foreign ministers. Al-Qirbi asked the
Ambassador if Secretary Rice might find time during the Forum
to brief ministerial colleagues on the status of the
Arab-Israeli peace process. The location change from Aden to
Sanaa for the Parallel Civil Society Forum was confirmed by
the head of the Civil Society Coalition, who solicited
financial support from the ambassadors for the event.
Al-Qirbi announced the MFA would provide equipment for a
business center for the Parallel Forum. End Summary

2.(U) The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abu Bakr al-Qirbi,
summoned G-8, Spanish and Dutch ambassadors, and the head of
the Civil Society Coalition for a November 5 meeting at the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs to discuss the upcoming Forum for
the Future. Deputy Foreign Minister Mohyaldeen al-Dhabbi,
who was also present at the meeting, updated the delegation
on Forum logistics by announcing that a website has been
established for registration purposes and that the number of
delegates to be allowed inside the meeting room was limited
to one (minister) plus six (staff), noting that badges would
not carry photo identification and would therefore be
transferable.

3.(U) In response to the Ambassador's query on whether the
scheduling conflict with the Sharm al-Sheykh conference had
been resolved, al-Qirbi replied that it had not and that,
despite the ROYG's efforts, the Egyptians refuse to change
their conference dates. Al-Qirbi said that the ROYG was
still attempting to persuade the Egyptian government to
change its dates, or at the least, begin the conference the
evening of December 5 to allow flight time between Sanaa and
Cairo for the ministers. Al-Qirbi urged the ambassadors to
ask their capitals to pressure the Egyptians to change their
conference dates, as he was concerned about the participation
of Arab foreign ministers at the Forum due to the date
conflict. (Note: The Ambassador said that we already had
raised this with the Egyptian Embassy in Washington. End
Note)

4.(U) When asked by the Ambassador if President Saleh planned
to participate in the Forum, al-Qirbi answered that at
previous forums, the prime ministers of the host country, and
not the president, had taken part, adding that President
Saleh may still be at his winter residence in Aden when the
Forum convenes. Nevertheless, he said the President may want
to use the opportunity to meet with some foreign ministers.
Al-Qirbi subsequently asked the Ambassador if Secretary of
State Rice might find time during the Forum to brief
ministerial colleagues on the status of the Arab-Israeli
peace process. The Ambassador replied that he understood the
traditional time and place for such an informal discussion
was the ministerial dinner, but assured al-Qirbi that the
request would be passed to Washington.

5.(U) To conclude the meeting, Ezzadine al-Asbahi from the
Human Rights Information and Training Center, and head of the
Civil Society Coalition, presented a brief on the Parallel
Forum. Al-Asbahi confirmed the attendance of 220 civil
society representatives from G-8 and BMENA countries and
noted that the Parallel Forum would be moved to Sanaa, from
Aden. Al-Asbahi thanked the USG, with specific mention of
the Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI), for its
financial support of the Parallel Forum. He stated that the
Civil Society Coalition needs additional funding, however,
and asked the ambassadors to make the Parallel Forum a true
G-8 initiative through broad financial support from all the
donors, not just the Americans. The Ambassador reiterated
al-Asbahi's words and asked that the remaining financial
burden be distributed among the G-8 to ensure that the
Parallel Forum does not merely receive support from the USG.
The ambassadors gave no reply. Al-Qirbi asked that they
consider al-Asbahi's request and provide a response to the
Ministry in a week's time. Al-Qirbi announced the MFA would
provide equipment for a business center for the Parallel
Forum.

6.(SBU) Comment: Considering the somber reactions of the
G-8, Spanish, and Dutch ambassadors, it is unlikely that the
Parallel Forum will receive additional funding from other
donors. Al-Asbahi, however, is reaching out to prominent
Yemeni businessmen in an effort to make the civil society
Forum not strictly a USG and MFA initiative. Regarding the
issue of the President's participation in the Forum,
al-Qirbi's efforts to play down expectations notwithstanding,
we can hardly believe Saleh will absent himself from an event
that will allow him to showcase Yemen's - and his own - close
and fruitful relations with the world's major powers,
especially the US. End Comment
SECHE

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN SDG: UN Appoints Twenty Eminent Thinkers To Shed New Light On The World’s Greatest Challenges

New York, 21 January 2021 – Twenty prominent personalities, globally renowned for their intellectual leadership in economic and social fields, will form the second United Nations High-level Advisory Board (HLAB) on Economic and Social Affairs, the ... More>>

UN: As COVID Deaths Pass Two Million Worldwide, Guterres Warns Against Self-Defeating ‘Vaccinationalism'

With more than two million lives now lost worldwide to COVID-19, the UN Secretary-General appealed on Friday for countries to work together and help each other to end the pandemic and save lives. In a video statement , Secretary-General António Guterres ... More>>

UN: Violent Attempt At US Capitol To ‘overturn’ Election, Shocking And Incendiary

A group of independent UN rights experts released ... 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>>