Cablegate: Diplomatic Note Regarding Ukrainian Link Outage


DE RUEHC #3861 2522114
P R 092057Z SEP 09



E.O. 12958: N/A


1.This is an action request. Embassy Kyiv please see
paragraph 3.

2. Background: The Department has a direct
Government-to-Government Communications Link (GGCL) with
Ministry of Defense of Ukraine in Kyiv. This link has been in
place since 1994 and serves as a method for the Department,
through the U.S. Nuclear Risk Reduction Center and the
Verification Center of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, to
exchange arms control notifications required under the START
and INF treaties. This is an older, relatively slow 4.8 kbs
link; the Bureau of Information Resources Management (IRM)
has been in negotiation with Ukrainian officials for several
years to replace it with a new digital circuit at the more
modern 64kbs level. The current link has been non-functional
since August 24. IRM technical staff have been working with
international carriers and the Ukrainian MOD to restore this
circuit to operations without success. In order to exchange
necessary arms control treaty information, Embassy Pol-Econ
and Embassy DTRO-K have delivered START notifications to
representatives of the MOD Verification Center; their work is
much appreciated by the Department and the START Interagency.
In order to help resolve this ongoing outage situation,
Embassy is requested to pass the diplomatic note at para 3 to
appropriate host government officials at both the Ministry of
Defense and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Embassy is
requested to confirm delivery of the points, the name and
office of the official to whom they were delivered, the date
of delivery, and any comment or reaction provided at that

3. Text of diplomatic note:
Complimentary Opening. The Government-to-Government
Communications Link (GGCL) between the Department of State,s
Nuclear Risk Reduction Center and the Verification Center of
the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, in Kyiv, is the primary
and most effective mechanism used to exchange the arms
control notifications required under the START and INF
treaties. The GGCL forms a vital link for arms control
treaty communications between our governments, and has been
in place since 1994. Unfortunately this data channel has
been inoperable since August 24, 2009. Treaty-required
notifications have continued to be conveyed through the
United States Embassy in Kyiv to the Ministry of Defense
Verification Center, at mutually-agreed intervals.

The United States of America wishes to convey growing concern
over the continued outage of the GGCL. Technicians and
engineers from both Ukraine and the United States have spent
many hours attempting to restore this unique communications
link, without success. Department of State technicians and
Ukrainian commercial service providers have successfully
tested the entire circuit path from Washington to the
Ukrainian Ministry of Defense's service provider, but have
been unable to test beyond that point. Ukraine's Ministry of
Defense engineers must complete successful tests within their
facility and to their Earth Station. Because we have tested
each section of the circuit pathway from Washington to the
Ukraine's Ministry of Defense, it appears likely that the
problem exists between the Ministry of Defense and the
Ukrainian service provider.

Given the significance of this data communications link, we
encourage Ukraine to address this issue at the earliest
possible opportunity. The United States stands ready to
offer further technical assistance and advice if required.
Complimentary closing.
4. The POC s at the Department are IRM/OPS/MSO/SMO Danny
Branch, telephone (202) 647-7884, and Wayne Payton (202)
747-7779, EUR/UMB, Elizabeth Zentos (202-647-6799), VCI/NRRC,
Ned Williams (202-647-0027). Post support is greatly

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