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Cablegate: Estonia's 63rd Unga Priorities

VZCZCXYZ0019
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTL #0293 2351416
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 221416Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY TALLINN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0779
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0367
INFO RUEHRA/AMEMBASSY RIGA 2994
RUEHVL/AMEMBASSY VILNIUS 6737
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS TALLINN 000293

STATE FOR EUR/NB (RODRIGUES)
DEPT FOR EUR/PGI UNGA COORDINATOR (TESSLER)
DEPT ALSO FOR IO/UNP (SUN) and P (REINEMEYER)
NSC FOR MCDONALD

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV UNGA EN
SUBJECT: ESTONIA'S 63rd UNGA PRIORITIES

1. (U) In a conversation with Poloff on August 21,
Veikko Kala, UN Desk Officer at the Estonian MFA
discussed Estonia's priorities for the 63rd UNGA.
(SBU) Kala noted that in light of recent events in
Georgia, GOE briefing papers and other preparatory
documents are now being revised. For example, Estonian
President Ilves' September 24 address to the General
Assembly is currently being rewritten to reflect the
GOE's position on the conflict. The recent cyber
attacks against Georgia will also play a central role in
the GOE's intended call to other nations to join the
Council of Europe Cyber Security Convention.

2. (U) After cyber security, mainstream gender and HIV
policies are top GOE UNGA priorities. During the 62nd
UNGA, the GOE closely monitored the Third Committee
proceedings related to the United Nations Development
Fund for Women (UNIFEM). This year, Estonia would like
to see the creation of a UN Gender body. With respect
to HIV, Kala referenced the UN High-level Meeting on
AIDS held in New York last June that was attended by the
Estonian Ambassador to the U.S. and representatives from
the GOE Ministry of Health. During this meeting, HIV
prevention policy goals were set through 2010. The GOE
would like to see the UN move forward in pursuit of
these goals.

3. (U) Finally, Kala stated that the GOE is concerned
that Russia will again propose a resolution on 'racism'
in the Third Committee as it has done for the past
several years. The resolution calls for an increased
effort to combat neo-Nazism and racism in Europe. The
GOE is worried that despite GOR claims that this
resolution is intended to combat racism, it is in
reality 'aimed' at certain countries, including Estonia.
As an example, Kala cited a similar resolution the GOR
introduced last year which contained a reference to the
removal or transfer of monuments. (Note: Last year's
UNGA took place 5 months after the GOE decision to move
the Soviet-era 'Bronze Soldier' monument sparked riots
in Tallinn and damaged Estonia-Russian bilateral
relations. End Note.) Kala acknowledged that the U.S.
has voted against this resolution in the past. However,
he expressed concerns over the GOE's ability to convince
other EU countries, many of whom have previously voted
in favor of the resolution, to do the same this year.

4. Kala also highlighted shared EU priorities for UNGA,
of which the Millennium Development Goals and counter
terrorism strategy are at the top of the list. With
respect to the Millennium Development Goals, Kala cited
EU concerns over food security and supply, climate
change, trade and the environment. The EU would also
like to see progress made towards ratifying the United
Nations Convention on International Terrorism.

Phillips

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