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Cablegate: Iaea: Uk Pessimistic About Avoiding Further

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R 211331Z AUG 09
FM AMEMBASSY LONDON
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 3225
INFO ARAB ISRAELI COLLECTIVE
IRAN COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L LONDON 001932


NOFORN

ISN/RA FOR JODY DANIEL AND RICHARD NEPHEW

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/19/2019
TAGS: AORC PREL PARM KNNP IAEA EG IS IR UK
SUBJECT: IAEA: UK PESSIMISTIC ABOUT AVOIDING FURTHER
CONFLICT OVER MIDDLE EAST AT GC REF: STATE 85128

Classified By: Political Counselor Robin Quinville for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).

1. (C/NF) Duncan Johnson of the Regional Issues Section of the FCO's Counter Proliferation Department told Poloff on August 20 that the UK shares USG frustration (reftel) that Arab-Israeli debates at the IAEA General Conference (GC) since 2006 have detracted from the GC's effectiveness, but was not optimistic that the 2009 GC would be any different. He said that the Europeans still have not seen the text of the Egyptian resolution, but that he was expecting it to retain the passages that have caused acrimony over the past several years. Jon Knight, Nuclear Issues Desk Officer in the Counter Proliferation Department, said the June 2009 Board of Governors meeting had only heightened the atmosphere of tension due to the Israelis' "unwise" intervention, which led to increased attention on Israel. Knight said the Iranians may be trying to keep the tension as high as possible with their tabling of a resolution to replace a 1990 resolution banning attacks on "nuclear installations devoted to peaceful purposes" with one banning attacks on "nuclear sites" (i.e. removing the "peaceful" provision).

2. (C/NF) Johnson welcomed the U.S. suggestion of working on a single consensus resolution on the Middle East, though he was pessimistic given the tensions described above. On a more positive note, he said that HMG had spoken with EU colleagues and that there is a consensus that the Arab resolution singling out Israel's nuclear program (tabled once again this year) is unproductive. Johnson said that Sweden, as EU president, is working on an EU reply to the Arabs unequivocally stating the EU position. Knight also pointed out that as El-Baradei approaches the end of his tenure he is in "legacy mode," and that this may afford an opportunity to make progress despite the tense atmosphere that is likely to prevail. Visit London's Classified Website: XXXXXXXXXXXX
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