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Cablegate: Invitation for South East Europe Nations To

VZCZCXYZ0016
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHC #9893 2681249
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 251229Z SEP 09
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUEHBW/AMEMBASSY BELGRADE 0000
RUEHBM/AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST 0000
RUEHLJ/AMEMBASSY LJUBLJANA 0000
RUEHVJ/AMEMBASSY SARAJEVO 0000
RUEHSQ/AMEMBASSY SKOPJE 0000
RUEHSF/AMEMBASSY SOFIA 0000
RUEHTI/AMEMBASSY TIRANA 0000
RUEHVB/AMEMBASSY ZAGREB 0000
INFO RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE

UNCLAS STATE 099893

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: MASS PARM AL BK BU HR KV MK MW SI ZL
SUBJECT: INVITATION FOR SOUTH EAST EUROPE NATIONS TO
WORKSHOP ON REGIONAL APPROACH TO STOCKPILE REDUCTION

REF: A. 2008 CDRUSEUCOM 12010907
B. STATE 2919

1. (U) This is an action request. Please see paragraphs 6-8.

2. Summary and Action Request. The idea for a regional
approach to the common challenge of excess munitions disposal
first emerged at the September 2008 Adriatic Charter Chiefs
of Defense Conference. Recognizing the benefits of continued
regional dialogue and coordination on this issue, the
Department of State will host a workshop on November 3-5,
2009 in Budva, Montenegro aimed at continuing the &Regional
Approach to Stockpile Reduction8 (RASR) in South East Europe
which began in May of 2009. Posts are requested to extend
invitations to host governments. End Summary.

BACKGROUND

3. (U) South East European countries have aging, excess, and
unstable stockpiles of conventional weapons and munitions.
These stockpiles pose dual threats of illicit proliferation
and accidental explosion. These threats could cause
humanitarian disasters and/or destabilize individual
countries or the region as a whole. Since 2006, ammunition
stockpile explosions in Albania, Bulgaria, and Serbia have
caused large numbers of casualties and significant damage,
displacing many civilians.

4. (U) At the September 2008 Adriatic Charter Chiefs of
Defense Conference, the Montenegro CHOD suggested a regional
approach to the common challenges of excess munitions
disposal. U.S. European Command (EUCOM) agreed, believing
that the Department of State should help create a forum where
the governments of South East Europe could develop regional
plans to address problems associated with excess and unstable
stockpiles (ref A).

5. (U) The Department of state supported EUCOM,s proposal
and organized a workshop on the reduction of stockpiles of
conventional weapons and munitions in Zagreb, Croatia on May
of 2009 (ref B). The workshop being held in November, 2009
will continue the proactive and coordinated regional approach
for addressing the destabilizing threats posed by excess,
unstable, and loosely secured stockpiles of conventional
weapons and munitions in South East Europe which was begun in
May, 2009. We seek to foster relationships between senior
General Staff and MOD officials from the region so that they
can periodically share information, advice, and lessons
learned, as well as improve coordination in efforts, when and
where appropriate, to reduce and destroy stockpiles.

OBJECTIVES/ACTION REQUEST

6. (U) Posts are requested to undertake the following:

-- Extend invitation to the host nation MOD and General Staff
on Embassy letterhead, using the text in para 9 and providing
the concept paper, administrative details, and workshop
registration form that will be sent via email. Foreign
Ministries should be provided copies. The workshop agenda
will be sent via email on October 2 with a reminder for
participants to make hotel reservations and to submit
workshop registration form by October 7.

-- Coordinate with host government to determine which three
host nation officials will attend the workshop. While the
MOD and General Staff should each send one representative, a
third representative may come from any government agency the
host nation interlocutors believe appropriate. The ideal
invitees will have responsibility for stockpile management
and reduction policy, as well as the ability to discuss these
issues in English. If governments, workshop participants do
not speak English, inform them that simultaneous translation
will be provided.

-- Ask host government officials to consider and be prepared
to discuss their national priorities for action in each of
the five issue areas on the agenda (see paragraph 4).

-- Encourage participants to register for the workshop as
soon as possible, and to plan on arriving in Budva,
Montenegro in time to attend the opening reception on Tuesday
evening, November 3.

-- Inform participants that they must pay for their travel
and lodging. The USG will cover all administrative costs of
the workshop (workshop venue, technical support, coffee
breaks and working lunches, and the icebreaker reception).

7. (U) During the RASR initiative,s inaugural Zagreb
workshop in May 2009, participants identified the following
five issue areas where the RASR can facilitate greater
coordination among actors involved in conventional-weapons
reduction: national and regional policy; infrastructure;
training, education, and building related capacity; sharing
information and best practices; and standardization. The
agenda for this Budva workshop will examine practical steps
to be taken in these five areas. Embassies are requested to
invite host nation representatives attending the seminar to
consider and be prepared to discuss their national priorities
for action in each of the five issue areas.

8. (U) Embassy Podgorica is requested to invite
representatives from the Government of Montenegro to make
brief opening remarks and to give a 15-20 minute presentation
in English regarding its policies and plans for stockpile
security and reduction. The opening remarks will occur on
the morning of November 4 after the US Ambassador,s welcome.
The presentation will be given during the working lunch on
the same day.

TEXT OF OFFICIAL INVITATION

9. (U) On behalf of the Government of the United States, the
U.S. embassy wishes to invite up to three representatives
from the Government of (SPECIFY COUNTRY) to a workshop in
support of the South East Europe Regional Approach to
Stockpile Reduction (RASR). Hosted by the U.S. Department of
State in partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense, the
RASR workshop will be help on November 4 and 5, 2009 in
Budva, Montenegro at Hotel Avala. The purpose of the workshop
is to facilitate a regional approach to the reduction of
excess, unstable, and loosely secured conventional weapons
and munitions, which pose significant security and
humanitarian threats to the countries of South East Europe.
The idea for a regional approach to the common problem of
unstable and unsecure stockpiles emerged at the September
2008 Adriatic Charter Chiefs of Defense Conference. Inspired
by this idea, this initiative will build on the success of
the inaugural RASR workshop in Zagreb by next focusing on
identifying practical and concrete national and regional
plans for stockpile reduction and management. The workshop
will give Defense Ministry and General Staff officials
involved in stockpile management an opportunity to build
relationships with their counterparts in the region, share
best practices and lessons learned, develop regional
stockpile reduction efforts, and coordinate when and where
appropriate. They will also learn about technical and
financial assistance available to help them meet their
stockpile reduction goals.
Governments are invited to send three representatives to the
workshop, which will include an opening reception on the
evening of November 3 and working lunches on November 4 and
5. To reserve your place at the workshop, please fill out the
attached registration form and submit it by fax or email to
Brandon Sternquist at the Office of Weapons Removal and
Abatement by October 7, 2009. Please make your reservation at
Hotel Avala (Dijana Kustudic, 382 (0)33 441 554 (tel),
conference@avalaresort.com) by October 7, 2009. When making a
reservation, please mention that you will be attending the
RASR workshop. The workshop presentations and discussions
will be in English and simultaneous translation will be
provided. Questions and faxes related to the workshop should
be directed to Brandon Sternquist, U.S. Department of State,
at sternquistbs@state.gov, 1 202-663-0091 (tel), 1
202-663-0090 (fax).

END INVITATION
CLINTON

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