Cablegate: Eu's Solana Welcomes Us Participation In

DE RUEHRL #0945/01 1991154
R 171154Z JUL 08



E.O. 12958: N/A

SUBJECT: EU's Solana Welcomes US Participation in
Meeting with Iranians

BERLIN 00000945 001.2 OF 002

1. (SBU) On July 15-16, EU Foreign Policy Chief
Javier Solana joined a number of high-ranking
former and current foreign policy officials in
Berlin at a conference entitled "Managing Global
Insecurity (MGI)". During the course of the
conference, Solana offered generalized comments
about the multilateral system and first thoughts
on the upcoming meeting in Geneva with Iranian
Nuclear Negotiator Saeed Jalili. Solana warmly
welcomed US participation, but lamented a
previous missed opportunity for engagement in
2005. He cautioned that Iranian response timing
could be a difficulty in what he called the
"second phase" of the interactions. Solana, in a
discussion with IAEA Director General El-Baradei,
said that "an Iranian-US bilateral [meeting] is
fundamental," and commented that the U.S.'s
physical presence in Geneva is a "very
constructive" step beyond a "signature on a
letter." At the same conference, former Russian
Foreign Minister Ivanov described the existing
process as "exhausted", recommending a fresh
effort at negotiations and a direct dialogue with
the US. In separate comments, Ivanov and IAEA
DirGen El-Baradei appeared to defend Iranian
enrichment activities as being driven by security
concerns. End Summary.

Solana Welcomes US participation; 2005 a missed
--------------------------------------------- ----

2. During a session on revitalizing the
multilateral security system with Brookings
President, Strobe Talbott, a participant asked
Solana about his view of the prospects of
constructively engaging Iran. Briefly pausing,
Solana told the group that, "In the history of
negotiations since 2005, I saw a moment when
things could have been done. But there was
inadequate engagement in the international
community." He continued, "Today is much
different. For the first time, we will have the
United States with us. If we had the US in 2005,
the situation could have been very different."
Referring to former Russian Foreign Minister Igor
Ivanov, also in attendance, he added, "Ivanov
knows this." (Comment: During lunch on 16 July,
Ivanov had extended private side conversations in
Spanish with Solana, next to whom he sat. End
Comment.) Solana said, "Bad relations are better
than no relations. We must talk to everyone", a
point which was echoed by several subsequent

Iranians Informed, but response timing could be
an issue
--------------------------------------------- ----

3. He confirmed to the group that he had formally
informed the Iranians that the U.S. would be
present at the July 19 P5+1 meeting in Geneva.
He expressed concern that the issue of timing
could pose some difficulty. In a brief offline
exchange with Emboff, Solana added that while
this meeting is not a negotiation, "we're
entering a second phase of the meeting." While
cautious about putting a time limit for an
Iranian response on the second phase, he noted
the possibility that Iran may delay its answer
beyond the "customary six weeks or so."

Former Russian FM: "We have exhausted the
existing process"
--------------------------------------------- ----

4. Ivanov described the Iran situation, as
"everything is complicated". He said, "I have to
admit with regret that the current process has
not brought the expected results. In practical
terms, I believe we have exhausted the existing

BERLIN 00000945 002.2 OF 002

process." Ivanov said that new centrifuge
construction continues and that there is an
"urgent need for fresh proposals." He
recommended starting negotiations without
preconditions and involving Iran in regional
security discussions, adding that there needs to
be the beginning of a direct Iranian-US dialogue.
(Comment: In his remarks, Ivanov acknowledged to
the group that he and Solana disagreed that the
existing process was exhausted. End Comment.)

5. Drawing a distinction in the multilateral
processes used in North Korea and Iran, Ivanov
said, "With North Korea, we started [by
addressing] their security. With Iran, we have
started with their nuclear process, not with
either their security or the security of their

IAEA Director General: Security concerns driving
Iran's atomic ambitions
--------------------------------------------- ----

6. In his remarks, Director General Mohammed El-
Baradei stated that security is the primary
driver for Iran's ambitions. He said, "Unless
Iran feels secure, they won't give up their
nuclear ambitions," adding, "The Iranian
enrichment program is a symptom of their
insecurity." ElBaradei also asked the group five
rhetorical questions on nuclear non-proliferation
and disarmament: 1) How can we preach non-
proliferation to non-nuclear states while nuclear
states continue to refine and improve their own
nuclear weapons capabilities? 2) How can we
ensure that the situation will not get worse? 3)
How can we ensure that nuclear material does not
fall into extremists' hands? 4) How can we
ensure that we have a proper global verification
regime in place? and 5) How can we create an
effective international compliance regime?
During the following question and answer period,
Solana commented on El-Baradei's questions,
saying "The most important issue is establishing
trust. There is a latent nuclear distrust that
cannot continue." Solana added "An Iranian-US
bilateral is fundamental" observing that the US'
physical presence is a "very constructive" step
beyond a "signature on a letter."

Meeting Background

7. The MGI event was a Bertelsmann/ Brookings/
NYU/ Stanford-sponsored project with the goal of
providing "...recommendations and generate
political momentum for the next American
president, the United Nations, and key
international partners to launch a strategic
effort to revitalize the multilateral security
system in 2009." Opened by UN Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon and German Foreign Minister Frank-
Walter Steinmeier, the opening dinner was
keynoted by Nobel laureate and Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change Chairman, Dr. Rajendra
Pachauri and attended by a diverse mix of former
and current foreign affairs notables, including
Former Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin,
Brookings President Strobe Talbott, Former World
Bank President James Wolfensohn, and numerous


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