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Cablegate: Tripartite Celebrates Iraqi Efforts, Remains

VZCZCXRO2703
PP RUEHDE RUEHDH RUEHDIR
DE RUEHKU #1101/01 3231337
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 191337Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY KUWAIT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4208
INFO RUEHZM/GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KUWAIT 001101

SIPDIS

NEA/ARP, NEA/I, OSD-DPMO FOR LTC BILL THOMAS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM MARR PGOV IZ KU
SUBJECT: TRIPARTITE CELEBRATES IRAQI EFFORTS, REMAINS
RECOVERIES IN KUWAIT

REF: A. 2008 KUWAIT 1160
B. KUWAIT 1048
C. KUWAIT 972

1. This is an Action Request. See Para 6.

2. Summary. Ambassador led the U.S. delegation to the 32nd
Tripartite Commission (TC) meeting on November 18, which
though it closed only one official remains file, registered a
spirit of optimism that was in stark contrast to last year's
negative assessment of progress (ref A) in repatriating Gulf
War dead. US-sparked Kuwaiti initiatives to recover the
remains of Iraqi KIAs (ref B) coupled with determined GOI
Ministry of Human Rights (MOHR) leadership and efforts were
commended roundly by the
delegations. Underscoring GOI support for remains recovery
initiatives was the active participation
in Iraqi discussions of MOHR Minister Wijdan Salem,
accompanied by newly-arrived Iraqi CDA to Kuwait Dr. Ajwad
Shaykh Taha. End Summary.

Recap of Highlights
-------------------

3. ICRC's Senior Deputy Head of Operations for the Middle
East and North Africa, Eric Marclay, recapped for the 32nd
Tripartite Commission (TC) November 18 the increased measures
taken by the GOI in the search for the Kuwaitis still missing
since 1991 and believed to be in mass graves in sites in
Iraq. These measures include GOI efforts to excavate sites
in Kerbala, Ramadi, and most recently Nasseriya, an August
public awareness campaign, and active follow-up of eyewitness
accounts. A US-sparked initiative that resulted in the
November 3-4 finding of mortal remains in the Kuwaiti desert
(ref B) was also extolled as one of the key factors that has
led to improved dialogue and bilateral cooperation in the
search for the missing. (For meeting notes, please visit
http://www.intelink.sgov.gov/wiki/Tripartite< /a> Commission for
Gulf War Missing).

Kuwaiti Action Plan
-------------------

4. Capitalizing on the current wave of goodwill and
proactivity, the GOK's National Committee for Missing and POW
Affairs (NCMPA) submitted to the TC a new action plan to
better shape the ongoing investigation into eyewitness
accounts. In this plan, the GOK called for the GOI to
provide detailed information on all 1990-91 Iraqi military
and public officials who served in the chains of command of
those who ordered the executions of the captured Kuwaitis.
The plan also offered a Kuwaiti review of pre-2003 NCMPA
files and eyewitness and survivor accounts in hopes that this
research might yield useful new leads on eyewitnesses who may
have been reluctant to give their accounts during the Saddam
Hussain years.

5. Also, the USG was requested to provide details relevant
to Kuwaiti executions that may appear in transcripts of the
criminal proceedings against Iraqi war criminal Hassan Abdul
Majeed (reportedly in USG custody). ICRC announced its
intention to have new Baghdad Head of Delegation Magne Barth
query Majeed in the near future about his knowledge of
Kuwaiti executions and burials.

Recovering Iraqi KIAs
---------------------

6. Action request. In what is believed to be the first
official GOI call for the repatriation of Iraqi war dead,
Minister Wijdan Salem requested assistance in providing
information that might result in further excavations and
recoveries of Iraqi missing believed to be buried in mass
graves in Kuwait. ICRC officials in informal remarks to
Embassy staff have indicated that they believe that the USG
may have archival material which would assist with the Iraqi
request. Embassy requests Department guidance on how to
respond.

Next Year in Baghdad?
---------------------

7. Elucidating renewed GOI support for the mandate, the GOI
restated its standing invitation to host a TC or Technical
Subcommittee (TSC) meeting in Baghdad, an offer warmly
received -- in principle -- by the delegates. March 2010 was
forecast as the first available opportunity for such an
event. (Note: The Saudi delegation, headed by their
Ambassador, was decidedly coy regarding a Baghdad venue,

KUWAIT 00001101 002 OF 002


recognizing that the Kuwaitis seemed happy to host these
events and that they -- the Saudis -- would follow the Kuwait
lead. End note.)

CAPT Speicher File Closed
-------------------------

8. Ambassador, noting for the TC the recovery and
identification of CAPT Speicher's remains over the summer,
officially closed his file and extended to the TC USG
gratitude for keeping the case active since 1991.

********************************************* *********
For more reporting from Embassy Kuwait, visit:
visit Kuwait's Classified Website at:

http://www.intelink.sgov.gov/wiki/Portal:Kuwa it
********************************************* *********
JONES

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