Cablegate: Exbs: Russia Advisor Monthly Reporting Cable - December
DE RUEHMO #3147/01 3641436
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 301436Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5834
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RULSJGA/COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC
RECNEXC/EXPORT CONTROL AND RELATED BORDER SECURITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
UNCLAS MOSCOW 003147
STATE FOR ISN/ECC JFRIEDMAN, ACHURCH, NJOHANSON, LSPRINGER
CBP FOR INA, PLEASE PASS TO TCORWIN
USDOE WASHDC ALSO FOR NNSA, PLEASE PASS TO TPERRY
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETTC MNUC PARM PREL KSTC KNNP UP RS
SUBJECT: EXBS: RUSSIA ADVISOR MONTHLY REPORTING CABLE - DECEMBER
1. Begin summary: BROAD ITEMS OF INTEREST TO ADVISORS AND AGENCY
MANAGERS: Planning with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs proceeds on
the reinstituted Program Review and Export Licensing Exchange
scheduled for February 2010. EXBS has submitted data on training
conducted through the program for the past 5 years at the request of
UGA/CITS, which is doing an assessment of the Russian export
controls system. End summary.
2. Completed Actions for Reporting Period.
A. Site Assessments and Meetings During the Reporting Period.
i. December 8 - EXBS Advisor and Assistant met with representatives
of the export controls section within the Security and Disarmament
Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry. The meeting was
organized to present to EXBS feedback from MFA and other agencies
regarding the agenda for the Program Review and the Program Plan for
FY08, FY09, and FY10. During this meeting, MFA took the opportunity
to raise concerns about issues related to implementation of UNSCR
1540 and arms control compliance - items outside the focus of the
meeting agenda. These concerns are the topic of a separate cable,
MRN 003018, dated December 16.
ii. December 9 - EXBS Advisor participated in a roundtable
discussion at the embassy led by Ambassador Bonnie Jenkins,
Coordinator for Threat Reduction Programs, which also included DTRA,
DOE, and EST, plus the U.S. Civilian Research and Development
Foundation (CRDF)and the Center for Policy Studies (PIR Center),
regarding the future of the International Science and Technology
Center (ISTC). One PIR Center representative commented that Russia
finds itself in a complex position in nonproliferation efforts:
some forces within the government are trying to get to nuclear zero,
while other forces support continued nuclear testing.
iii. December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the 15th anniversary
conference of ISTC in Moscow. The breakout session on "ISTC Impacts
- Nuclear" had the most relevance for EXBS, in that it presented
ISTC's cooperation with US and European scientists to jointly
develop peaceful uses for nuclear energy.
iv. December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the Customs Attache Club
event at the Chinese Embassy. The program included speeches by the
Chinese ambassador and other prominent embassy staff recalling the
60th anniversary of the People's Republic; the achievements of China
Customs; and China's longstanding cooperation with the Soviet Union
and Russia. There was also a Chinese tea-drinking ceremony and
performances by Chinese opera and pop singers and, of course,
v. December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the 10th anniversary
celebration of the Open World program at Spaso House, the
Ambassador's residence. The Advisor had several productive
conversations with embassy staff from the political, economic, and
scientific sections, which have resulted in greater information
vi. EXBS Advisor met with the DCM to deliver a year-end report of
EXBS activities and a look ahead to 2010. DCM agreed with Advisor's
suggestion that occasional updates can be very useful and will be
scheduled during the coming year.
vii. December 30 - EXBS Advisor and FBI Legal Attache Bryan Earl
met with University of Georgia Center for International Trade and
Security (UGA/CITS) Washington representative Julia Khersonsky.
Discussion was very general, touching on topics of mutual interest
in the areas of export controls and nonproliferation and ways to
improve cooperation with Russian government officials.
B. Training Conducted During Reporting Period.
i. US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and
Customs Enforcement (ICE) accompanied 8 Russian Customs officers on
an International Visitor Program (IVP) to US ports of entry December
12-20 in Southern California and Washington, DC. Feedback from
various sources, both US and Russian, indicated that the delegation
was very impressed by the technological and procedural efficiency of
U.S. Customs operations, especially at the Long Beach port. The
group left the U.S. to return to Russia one day later than planned,
due to massive snowfall on the East Coast.
C. Equipment Delivered During Reporting Period.
i. The EXBS Russia program does not distribute equipment.
3. Imminent Training or Equipment Status Update
i. In January, EXBS will reconnect with CBP, which is working with
the Russian Embassy in Washington, on an IVP for Rosgranitsa, the
new federal agency charged with security of border facilities.
Rosgranitsa had approached CBP last fall for assistance in visiting
US ports of entry. The visit was postponed to at least March 2010
due to the holidays and the extended medical leave of the CBP
Program Manager. EXBS has been working with CBP on this trip and
may also develop program activities with Rosgranitsa and CBP.
4. Significant Developments in Export Controls, Nonproliferation,
or Related Border Security
i. On January 1, the customs union with Russia, Kazakhstan and
Belarus will go into effect. The three countries will use the same
foreign trade tariffs and rules with one another, though it will
likely take another six months for all tariffs to be synchronized.
5. Country Plans and Other Assistance
i. EXBS sent a cable MRN 003030 dated December 17 regarding Post
concurrence with the FY08, FY09, and FY10 Program Plan. The Russian
MFA will provide its comments on the abstract of the programs,
submitted on December 7, when the Advisor meets with MFA at their
request on January 12. As the lead agency, MFA has previously given
broad approval to our program ideas. In addition to receiving final
stakeholder approval for the Program Plan, the purpose of this
meeting will be to continue to move forward arrangements for the
reinstituted Program Review and additional Export Licensing Exchange
planned for February in Washington.
6. CONTACT INFORMATION. Joan Agerholm is the EXBS Advisor for
Russia and can be reached at AgerholmJA@state.gov, or +7 (985)