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Cablegate: Somali Mission Waives Inviolability of Residence

VZCZCXYZ0015
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0726 2261628
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 131628Z AUG 08
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4788
INFO RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI PRIORITY 0700

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000726

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OFDP PREL SO UN
SUBJECT: SOMALI MISSION WAIVES INVIOLABILITY OF RESIDENCE

REF: A. A) USUN 0713
B. B) STATE 82138 AND PREVIOUS

1. USUN has received a diplomatic note from the Somali
Mission to the UN waiving the inviolability of the PermRep's
residence in New Rochelle so that the City can enter to make
necessary repairs to mitigate the existing health and safety
hazards. Text of the Somali note appears in paragraph 2
below. Text of letter USUN proposes to send to New Rochelle
informing it of the waiver appears in paragraph 3.

2. Begin text of the Somali note: Complimentary
salutation...and has the honor to refer to Diplomatic Note
HC-70-08, dated July 30, 2008 addressing the Somali Permanent
Representative's residence at 250 Elk Avenue, New Rochelle,
NY.

The Permanent Mission of the Somali Republic to the United
Nations has accepted the United States Mission request in
which we formally waive the inviolability of the property for
the sole purpose of allowing the City of New Rochelle to
enter and make necessary repairs to mitigate existing health
and safety hazards. Complimentary close. End Text.

3. Begin text of draft letter from USUN to Charles Strome,
New Rochelle City Manager:
Dear Mr. Strome: Thank you for your letter of July 3, 2008
regarding the City of New Rochelle's request for "an
immediate lifting of diplomatic immunity to mitigate public
safety hazards" at the Residence of the Republic of Somalia
at 250 Elk Avenue. Your letter notes that certain Housing
Code Violations exist at the property, including an in-ground
pool with an inadequate fenced area, broken windows, doors
and other defects to exterior structures, the abandonment of
motor vehicle(s) and overgrown weeds, grass, and bushes.

After having received your letter, the United States Mission
requested that the Permanent Mission of Somalia provide a
limited waiver of the inviolability of the property at 250
Elk Avenue for the sole purpose of allowing the City of New
Rochelle to enter said property and make necessary repairs to
mitigate existing health and safety hazards. I am happy to
report that on August 12, 2008, the Permanent Mission of
Somalia indeed affirmatively responded to the United States
Mission's request and has formally waived the inviolability
of that residence for that purpose. The Permanent Mission of
Somalia has been informed that it can expect an abatement
bill for the cost of the repairs. The waiver of the
property's inviolability is limited in both scope and time,
however, and should not be seen to persist beyond the minimum
time necessary for New Rochelle to accomplish the currently
necessary repairs. The Permanent Mission of Somalia's
limited waiver of inviolability does not alter the diplomatic
status of the property at 250 Elk Avenue, which, as the
residence of the Permanent Representative, enjoys both
inviolability and exemption from property taxes.

Although the Permanent Mission of Somalia has been informed
that it will be billed for the cost of the repairs undertaken
and has been encouraged to make prompt payment, the Somali
Mission has informed the United States Mission that it has no
funds with which to do so, at least in the short term. In
that light, the City of New Rochelle may wish to consider
which specific repairs it wishes to undertake to mitigate the
hazards in a cost-effective manner. The City may also find it
in its interest to inform the United States Mission in
advance of the precise steps the City plans to take and the
date or dates on which the work will be done so that we can
monitor progress and continue to seek the cooperation of the
Somali Mission.
/s/ Russell F. Graham, Minister-Counselor for Host Country
Affairs. End text.


Khalilzad

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