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Cablegate: Gor Supports Unsc Resolution On Somalia But

VZCZCXRO6056
OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHGI RUEHJO RUEHMA RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN RUEHTRO
DE RUEHMO #3755 3641340
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 291340Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1369
INFO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 0451
RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS MOSCOW 003755

SIPDIS

ADDIS PLEASE PASS TO USAU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL UNSC KPKO SO ET RS
SUBJECT: GOR SUPPORTS UNSC RESOLUTION ON SOMALIA BUT
OPPOSES A DEFINITIVE PKO STARTING DATE

REF: STATE 134229

1. (U) This message is sensitive but unclassified, and is
not meant for Internet distribution.

2. (SBU) Per reftel request, Poloff discussed the draft
Security Council resolution on establishing a peacekeeping
mission in Somalia with MFA Department of International
Organizations First Secretary Sergey Zhdanov, and sought the
GOR's support for the resolution. Zhdanov indicated that
this redraft was much improved and more balanced in approach
than the original version. The GOR particularly supported
the proposal to establish a trust fund to provide financial
support to the Africa Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and
to hold a donors conference to solicit contributions to the
fund.

3. (SBU) However, Zhdanov stated that the GOR was not in
favor of setting a definitive starting date of June 1, 2009
for the United Nations Mission in Somalia (UNMISON), and
instead preferred the more flexible language "at an
appropriate time" contained in the British and French
counter-proposal. While understanding and sharing the U.S.
concern about a possible security vacuum in Somalia, the GOR
believed that the first order of business should be to
support fully the African Union mission already on the
ground, so as to send a positive signal that the
international community and the Security Council would not
abandon the African peacekeepers. Zhdanov took note of our
assurance to make every effort to support additional
deployment under AMISOM in preparation for its eventual
"rehatting," but expressed concern that the transition
process would not be conclude by June 1 and that the security
situation in Somalia would not be sufficiently conducive to a
switch to a UN mandate at that time. As an aside, he noted
that the proposed 10,000 troop level was probably too low to
tackle the full spectrum of challenges in Somalia, but too
high considering the previous peacekeeping failures in that
country.

4. (SBU) Nevertheless, Zhdanov indicated that Russia was
supportive of adopting a Security Council resolution on
Somalia before the new year that demonstrated strong support
for the AU mission and confirmed the Security Council's
willingness to continue to work on an eventual "rehatting" to
a UN mandate.
RUBIN

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