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Cablegate: Russia Remains Concerned by Pakistan's

VZCZCXYZ0011
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #2714 2541212
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 101212Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9920
INFO RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 2539

C O N F I D E N T I A L MOSCOW 002714

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/10/2018
TAGS: PGOV PREL PTER PK RS
SUBJECT: RUSSIA REMAINS CONCERNED BY PAKISTAN'S
INSTABILITY, HOPES TO IMPROVE COUNTER-TERRORISM COOPERATION

REF: A. MOSCOW 2584
B. STATE 88734
C. MOSCOW 2502

Classified By: Political M/C Alice G. Wells for reasons 1.4 (b/d).

1. (C) Following recent comments by Kremlin Foreign Policy
Advisor Prihodko and DFM Karasin to the Ambassador expressing
concern over the security implications of political
instability in Pakistan, we met with MFA Senior Counselor for
Pakistan Aleksey Yudintsev on September 9, and stressed that
Musharraf's resignation did not affect the security of
Pakistan's nuclear weapons, which remain under military
control (refs A and B).

2. (C) Yudintsev reiterated Russian concern that the
political turmoil surrounding the Musharraf resignation drew
attention from Pakistan's effort to fight its extremist
insurgency (ref C). While the September 6 election of Zarif
Zardari as President would temporarily calm the situation,
Yudintsev predicted that by the end of the year, tensions
between Zardari and Nawaz Sharif, leader of the Pakistan
Muslim League-Nawaz, would cause the current government to
collapse. The popular Sharif would likely become the next
PM, opening up the possibility of continued political turmoil
unless the two leaders could reach an understanding on
addressing Pakistan's pressing security and economic problems.

3. (C) Yudintsev told us that the GOR hoped to get a better
picture of the situation in Pakistan when a Russian
delegation heads to Islamabad in October for a meeting of the
bilateral Working Group on Terrorism. This would be the
fourth meeting of the group, which was supposed to convene
annually but last met in Moscow in June 2006. Yudintsev
explained that the GOR wanted to improve communication
regarding each country's counter-terrorism efforts, and would
seek an explanation of the Pakistani government's plan to
fight extremists. Moscow has been disappointed in
Islamabad's failure to respond to requests for information on
suspected Chechen extremists training and operating in
Pakistan's tribal areas, and would use the meeting to improve
information sharing. Yudintsev said that there were no plans
to discuss Russian security assistance to Pakistan.
BEYRLE

=======================CABLE ENDS============================

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