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Cablegate: Canadians Working On Response to Request For

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DE RUEHOT #1254 2632034
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 192034Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY OTTAWA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8528
INFO RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RUCNCAN/ALL CANADIAN POSTS COLLECTIVE
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 0835
RUEHKL/AMEMBASSY KUALA LUMPUR 0349
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0961
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RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 1527
RUEHSM/AMEMBASSY STOCKHOLM 2054
RUEHTC/AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE 3482

UNCLAS OTTAWA 001254

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR PM, PM ACTION TEAM, EUR/RPM, AF/RSA, AND IO

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL MARR MOPS MCAP XW CA
SUBJECT: CANADIANS WORKING ON RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR
EXTENSION OF WFP ESCORT

REF: STATE 100149

1. (SBU) In response to reftel demarche on September 19,
Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT)
Advisor for Defense and Security Sarah Robertson said that
Canadian officials were now consulting internally on whether
they could extend the HMCS Ville de Quebec's current
deployment in support of World Food Program (WFP) shipments
to Somalia past September 27. Robertson promised to convey
the government's final decision to Embassy as soon as
possible, but warned that she could not hold out hope for a
quick response.

2. (SBU) Robertson pointed to three potential obstacles in
the way of an extension: Canada's Navy has other national
and NATO obligations to fulfill; until now, Canada had
expected the French- and Spanish-led European initiative to
result in the deployment of European escorts for WFP vessels
by September 27; and, the Canadian government is in
"caretaker mode" until after the October 14 federal election.
Even if DFAIT and defense officials make a positive
recommendation, she said, approval of such an extension would
then have to come from elected officials in the government,
who currently are focused on getting re-elected in their home
ridings (districts).

Visit Canada,s Economy and Environment Forum at
http://www.intelink.gov/communities/state/can ada

WILKINS

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