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Cablegate: Netherlands: Dutch Support On Goldstone Report

VZCZCXRO0587
PP RUEHSL
DE RUEHTC #0615 2881017
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 151017Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3352
INFO RUEHZJ/HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHTV/AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV PRIORITY 2941
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM PRIORITY 0836
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 1446
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 4597

C O N F I D E N T I A L THE HAGUE 000615

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR IO/RHS KELLY RAZZOUK AND CARI ENAV
DEPT FOR IO/UNP ANDREW MORRISON
DEPT FOR NEA/IPA JEFFREY GIAUQUE
USUN/NY FOR AMY SCHEDLBAUER AND ELLEN GERMAIN
GENEVA FOR MARC CASSAYRE

E.O. 129...


229782

2009-10-15

09THEHAGUE615

Embassy The Hague

CONFIDENTIAL

09SECSTATE106423|09THEHAGUE582

C O N F I D E N T I A L THE HAGUE 000615

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR IO/RHS KELLY RAZZOUK AND CARI ENAV
DEPT FOR IO/UNP ANDREW MORRISON
DEPT FOR NEA/IPA JEFFREY GIAUQUE
USUN/NY FOR AMY SCHEDLBAUER AND ELLEN GERMAIN
GENEVA FOR MARC CASSAYRE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/13/2019
TAGS: IS KPAL PREL PHUM PTER NL EU
SUBJECT: NETHERLANDS: DUTCH SUPPORT ON GOLDSTONE REPORT

REF: A. SECSTATE 106423
B. THE HAGUE 582

Classified By: POLECON Counselor Andrew C. Mann for reasons 1.5(b,d)

1. (C) SUMMARY: The Dutch generally support the U.S. approach
on the Goldstone report in New York and Geneva. The Dutch
MFA hopes for additional information from the U.S. on next
steps on the Goldstone report and on Middle East peace
negotiations. There is a high-level political conflict
between Development Minister Koenders and FM Verhagen on the
Goldstone report. END SUMMARY.

2. (C) SUPPORTING USG: Post shared reftel A points with MFA
contacts on the Middle East, human rights, and NATO. MFA
policy officers Dorine Wytema (Israel, Peace Process),
Michael Thijssen (Palestine), and David Zeverijn (Israel)
responded that the Dutch are on the same line, with little
daylight between Dutch and American positions. In New York,
the Dutch support a broad focus in New York on the progress
of peace negotiations, rather than just a discussion of the
Goldstone report. The Dutch are not certain whether they
will intervene. However, the EU will make a statement which
includes the assertion that debate over the Goldstone report
belongs in Geneva. Zeverijn suggested that additional
statements by EU members would sacrifice clarity and unity.
In Geneva, the Dutch have not received definitive reporting
on the EU strategy. However, they believe the Jerusalem
element to the Palestinian draft resolution is inappropriate,
and that that specific issue should be considered by UNESCO
(for the cultural issues) and UNGA / UNSC (for the political
issues). FM Verhagen, and possibly Development Minister
Koenders, are reviewing the proposed instructions for the
Dutch embassy in Geneva. Staff has advised FM Verhagen to
vote no on the current draft resolution from the
Palestinians, but the jury is still out as of October 15.
(Note: Verhagen supports the U.S. approach and would probably
support a no vote, but he must contend with Dutch coalition
politics -- see paragraph 4. End Note.)

3. (C) SEEKING ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: MFA contacts would
welcome further details on the U.S. strategy for action in
the UN Third Committee or plenary 3ebate on the Goldstone
report. The Dutch would also welcome an update on progress
with the peace talks after Special Envoy Mitchell's recent
visit.

4. (C) DUTCH POLITICAL FRICTION OVER REPORT: Pieter De
Gooijer, Director General for Political Affairs (P
equivalent) told Charge on October 1 that Verhagen (of the
Christian Democrat party) and Koenders (of the Labor party)
had a major argument in New York over the Goldstone report.
Verhagen had proposed a letter to the Dutch parliament
finding fault with the report. According to De Gooijer,
Verhagen believes we should tell Israel, you have friends,
but you have to make concessions. Koenders, who wants to
push Israel, went ballistic, prompting late-night
mediation by PM Balkenende. Balkenende called in De Gooijer
to draft compromise language for the letter. The letter
defused the conflict in the Dutch parliament over Israel's
conduct, allowing the Parliament to turn to the more
controversial issue of Afghanistan.
Qcontroversial issue of Afghanistan.
LEVIN

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