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Cablegate: Usun Reiterates Request to Join Uk Effort To

VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0862 2722329
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 292329Z SEP 09
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7224
INFO RUEHFN/AMEMBASSY FREETOWN PRIORITY 1583
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 1439
RUEHTC/AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE PRIORITY 9161

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000862

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KJUS UN SL
SUBJECT: USUN REITERATES REQUEST TO JOIN UK EFFORT TO
ESTABLISH SPECIAL COURT FOR SIERRA LEONE RESIDUAL MECHANISM
AT THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL

REF: USUN 737

1. (SBU) This is an action request. Please see paragraph
6.

2. (SBU) On July 31 of this year, USUN recommended that
the Department support the United Kingdom's effort to shift
the establishment of the Special Court for Sierra Leone's
residual mechanism to the UN Security Council and to fund
this residual mechanism through UN assessed contributions.
Time is now running short, and USUN urgently needs a response
from the Department.

3. (SBU) On Friday, September 25, Legoff met with two
officers of the UK Mission, who reiterated the UK's request
that the United States support the UK's proposal that the
Security Council establish the residual mechanism for the
Special Court for Sierra Leone, and that it be funded through
assessed contributions. The UK asserted that several steps
need to be taken in order for the Security Council to
establish the residual mechanism for the Special Court for
Sierra Leone: First, the Russians and Chinese (as well as
the French) will need to be persuaded that the Security
Council should take this issue on. Second, the Security
Council experts would need to meet at length to familiarize
themselves with the issue and debate it. Third, the Security
Council would need to negotiate a resolution that would adopt
a statute establishing the residual mechanism, well in
advance of the date of commencement of the residual
mechanism. Given the relatively slow pace of the Security
Council Informal Working Group on the Yugoslavia and Rwanda
Tribunals, and the fact that the Special Court for Sierra
Leone is scheduled to finish its cases in early 2011, it is
essential that work begin as soon as possible at the Security
Council on the Special Court for Sierra Leone.

4. (SBU) The UK advised that it will not approach Russia
or China or others to lobby for its view without clear US
support, as it understandably would not wish to be undercut
by the United States. Meanwhile, the Management Committee of
the Special Court for Sierra Leone meets regularly to review
residual mechanism issues, and the US is unable to express
support for the Security Council taking this issue on. The
delay in our response is no longer tenable.

5. (SBU) The UK envisages, ideally, that the residual
mechanism for the Special Court for Sierra Leone would
eventually merge with the residual mechanism for the
Yugoslavia and Rwanda Tribunals, given that many similar
functions will be performed by all three residual mechanisms.
This would lead to a more streamlined, efficient structure
and would reduce costs. The details would be subject to
negotiation at the Security Council, but these negotiations
cannot begin without Department authorization.

6. (SBU) Action request: For the reasons detailed in
reftel and above, USUN requests authorization, by close of
business Friday, October 2, to join with the UK in proposing
that the Security Council establish the residual mechanism of
the Special Court for Sierra Leone, including its funding
through assessed contributions from the U.N. budget.
RICE

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