Cablegate: Germany's Coalition Agreement Stresses Priority Of

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E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (U) Summary: The Christian Democratic Union (CDU),
Christian Social Union (CSU) and the Free Democratic Party
(FDP) signed a coalition agreement in the early morning of
October 24, laying the groundwork for their next four years
of cooperation as the country's governing coalition. The
agreement stresses the primacy of a unified Europe and a
strong transatlantic relationship and indicates foreign
policy continuity in many areas. Highlights include:

--Afghanistan conference to develop a new strategy;
--removal of nuclear weapons from Germany via NATO;
--increasing economic ties with Russia;
--Turkish EU accession is an open ended process;
--NATO can take in new members, but no mention of whom;
--reduction of German UNIFIL role; and
--an international conference on Middle East peace.

Along with the coalition agreement, decisions on ministerial
portfolios were also taken, with FDP leader Guido
Westerwelle, as expected, named as Foreign Minister-designate
(see septel on the new cabinet). (Note: The new cabinet is
scheduled to be sworn in on October 28 at approximately 1600
local time. End note.) The agreement is comprehensive and
includes sections on international economics and finance, the
environment and climate change, counter-terrorism and
domestic security, and foreign policy. Highlights of the
latter will be covered in this cable, with the other issues
reported septel. End Summary.


2. (U) The coalition agreement stresses the need for strong
partnerships and effective multilateral structures. It
identifies transatlantic cooperation and the European Union
as central to this policy. The agreement states that the
parties are determined to use the opportunities presented by
the transatlantic relationship and will thereby
systematically strengthen the German-American "relationship
of trust." The agreement also states that close coordination
with the United States will strengthen German interests,
thereby increasing Germany's weight within Europe and the


3. (U) The coalition agreement reaffirms Afghanistan's
importance as a security policy priority, noting that it
makes Germany safer; this policy also serves as an important
symbol that Germany is an active member of the transatlantic
alliance. The agreement emphasizes the importance of the
upcoming Afghanistan conference, which Chancellor Merkel,
President Sarkozy and Prime Minister Brown proposed earlier
this year. Stressing that the comprehensive approach remains
valid, the coalition agreement expresses the expectation that
a new Afghanistan strategy -- which is to focus on
transferring authority to capable Afghan National security
forces -- should be developed at that conference. The
agreement calls for the appointment of a special envoy on
Afghanistan. It also calls for a strengthening of Germany's
contributions to international civilian police training
efforts, particularly in Afghanistan. Improvements in the
staffing of Germany's international police training missions
are to be achieved by establishing corresponding units within
the Federal police and creating pools of available
state-level officers. The agreement emphasizes the need to
help the Afghan government in developing the capacity to
provide for its own security and indicates that Germany will
increase its contributions to the EUPOL police training


4. (U) The agreement stresses the coalition's commitment to a
diplomatic approach towards Iran and, together with the E3 3
(P5 1), calls for working to prevent Iran from possessing
nuclear weapons. If necessary, it supports tougher sanctions
against Iran. The agreement calls for full transparency of
Iran's nuclear program. It calls for assurances that Iran's
civil use of nuclear energy is carried out in such a way that
security threats do not arise for other countries.


5. (U) The parties agreed to "stand up for" a recall of
nuclear weapons that remain in Germany and to discuss this
matter both inside the alliance and with the United States.

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More broadly, the agreement welcomes President Obama's
initiatives on disarmament, including the aim toward a
nuclear-weapons-free world. It calls for seizing the
opportunity to turn around the "global trend of new arms
races" and making progress on disarmament and arms control.
Only indirectly mentioning nonproliferation, the parties
express concern about the "erosion" of the international
treaty based on disarmament and an arms control framework.


6. (U) The agreement recognizes Russia as an important
partner in dealing with regional and global challenges such
as Afghanistan, the Middle East, Iran, terrorism and climate
protection. It calls for supporting Russia in its continuing
drive for modernization and in reducing its deficiencies in
human rights, the rule-of-law, and democracy. It calls for
promoting dialogue within civil society. The agreement calls
for increasing economic ties with Russia and creating
long-term, reliable energy partnerships without unilateral
dependencies. The agreement also calls for considering the
legitimate concerns of neighboring states in shaping
bilateral relations.


7. (U) The agreement calls for pursuing further EU
enlargement with "a sense of proportion." It underscores
that the EU's ability to admit new members is of equal
importance to the candidate's ability to meet accession
criteria. It characterizes EU accession negotiations with
Turkey as "an open-ended process" which is not automatic and
"the outcome of which cannot be guaranteed at the outset."
It also states that if either the EU or Turkey are unable to
fulfill membership obligations, the EU should continue to
develop a privileged relationship with Turkey.


8. (U) In addressing the Middle East, the agreement first
recognizes Germany's "special responsibility toward Israel as
a Jewish State." It calls for a two-state solution for
Israel and the Palestinians. The agreement also calls for a
"conference approach" in the Middle East on the basis of the
roadmap and the Annapolis process which should include, aside
from the parties to the conflict, the U.S., the EU, Russia,
and the UN. The agreement also calls for the strengthening
of stability and sovereignty of Lebanon, the continued
development of democracy in Iraq and its reconstruction.


9. (U) The parties agreed that NATO remains the "strongest
anchor" of their common security, as it binds Europe and
America together. In general terms, the parties call for the
"blockades between the EU and NATO" to be overcome. The
coalition agreement also calls for intensifying dialogue with
Russia through the NATO-Russia Council and to build a close
partnership with Moscow, based on proven institutions,
including the OSCE and Council of Europe." "In principle"
the German government is open to new members in the Alliance
-- without having named any candidates. Ukraine and Georgia
are not mentioned in this context.


10. (U) The agreement calls for "working at the UN" to
gradually reduce Germany's contributions to UNIFIL's maritime
component with the long-term aim to end participation.
Germany currently leads UNIFIL. The agreement also calls for
a "critical review" of the mandates related to piracy and
counterterrorism off the Horn of Africa, with the end result
perhaps being a single mandate for all German missions there.


11. (U) The agreement expresses the parties' commitment to
strengthening the United Nations (UN) and toward
comprehensive reform of the UN, aiming at a better reflection
of today's realities. Within the context of broad reform,
the new coalition calls for a permanent EU seat in the UNSC.
It goes on to state that, "On the way (to the EU securing a
seat), Germany is ready to assume greater international

BERLIN 00001337 003 OF 003

responsibility by taking a permanent seat...." For the
period 2011/2012 Germany will seek a non-permanent seat in
the UNSC.


12. (U) The new government continues Germany's special
relationship with France and plans to increase cooperation in
the areas of education, climate protection, space as well as
security and defense. The coalition agreement also calls for
deepening of "the close friendship and cooperation" with
Poland and to better utilize the possibilities of the Weimar
Triangle. German-Polish cooperation should also send a new
impetus for European unification.


13. (U) The agreement calls for engaging for worldwide
freedom of religion, with special attention paid to the
situation of Christian minorities. It advocates for the
worldwide abolishment of the death penalty, torture and
inhumane treatment. It calls for the international
prohibition of human trafficking, child labor, infant
soldiers, forced prostitution, forced marriage and genital
mutilation. The coalition advocates an evaluation of the
Rome statute to the International Criminal Court and a better
enforcement of the international criminal code. It warns
against using the UN Human Rights Council as a playground for
national power interests and wants its establishment as an
international organ against human rights violations.


© Scoop Media

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