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Cablegate: Readout From the Icelandic Participant at E-Pine Meeting

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DE RUEHRK #0213 3371556
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 031556Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY REYKJAVIK
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4229

UNCLAS REYKJAVIK 000213

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TAGS: PGOV PREL IC
SUBJECT: READOUT FROM THE ICELANDIC PARTICIPANT AT E-PINE MEETING

1. (SBU) Charge d'Affaires met with Greta Gunnarsdottir, Director
General for International and Security Affairs at the Icelandic
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on November 30 to discuss her
participation in the November 5 Enhanced Partnership in Northern
Europe (E-PINE) meeting in Washington. Gunnarsdottir called the
E-PINE meeting an enormous success and said that her Nordic
colleagues, in private follow-up conversations, had expressed
similar satisfaction. Gunnarsdottir felt that the E-PINE meeting
clearly laid out the tremendous role that Europe must play in
resolving the world's most pressing problems, notably Iran and
Afghanistan. She added that she felt the U.S. sent a strong message
in the meeting that it intends to cooperate with Europe on these
complicated matters.

2. (SBU) The discussions regarding Iran clearly resonated with
Gunnarsdottir. Were Iran to develop nuclear capabilities, she said,
it could destabilize the entire region and potentially lead
neighboring countries to also acquire nuclear weapons.
Gunnarsdottir said that if the situation does not improve, sanctions
may be the only viable response. She added, however, that the
decision to impose sanctions on Iran would need to be approved by
the U.N. Security Council, which would require the support of
Russia. Gunnarsdottir expressed hope that U.S. relations with
Russia are indeed improving as she felt that Russian cooperation
would be necessary for reaching a solution on Iran.

3. (SBU) Gunnarsdottir also reported that a productive conversation
on Afghanistan occurred at the E-PINE meeting. She said
participants agreed that Hamid Karzai must do more to combat
corruption in Afghanistan and also that more attention must be
placed on the important role Pakistan plays in the matter.
Gunnarsdottir added that Afghanistan will remain a top priority for
the Government of Iceland. (Note: Iceland has five individuals
serving in Afghanistan and expects to maintain that commitment for
the foreseeable future. End Note.)

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