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Cablegate: Outreach On London Conference On Afghanistan

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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 16 STATE 006355

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV ECON EFIN AF
SUBJECT: OUTREACH ON LONDON CONFERENCE ON AFGHANISTAN

REF: A. (A) STATE 2082 (NOTAL)
B. (B) STATE 4108 (NOTAL)

1. (SBU) SUMMARY AND ACTION REQUEST. The United States
expects the main headlines of the London Conference on
Afghanistan on January 28 will be the announcement of an
international trust fund to support Afghan-led reintegration
efforts and the wide endorsement of NATO,s plan for
conditions-based, province-by-province transition to Afghan
lead. The conference will provide a valuable opportunity for
the international community to demonstrate its support for
the Afghan government's ambitious agenda as outlined in
President Karzai's inaugural speech. This cable outlines our
overall priorities for the London Conference, and requests
posts convey and seek support as appropriate for these points
from host governments by January 25. Embassies Moscow,
Beijing, Ankara, Berlin, Abu Dhabi, and Riyadh see also
paragraphs 8-11. END SUMMARY AND ACTION REQUEST.

BACKGROUND
----------

STATE 00006355 002 OF 016

2. (SBU) On January 28, approximately 77 delegations will
meet in London to discuss security, economic development and
governance, and international coordination in Afghanistan.
Secretary Clinton will lead the U.S. delegation to the
conference, which will be chaired by UNSYG Ban Ki-Moon,
Afghan President Hamid Karzai, and UK PM Gordon Brown.

3. (SBU) The U.S. is seeking the following desired outcomes
of the London Conference:

-- Reintegration. The London Conference will demonstrate
strong international support for Afghan-led reintegration
efforts by announcing a reintegration trust fund. The
governments of the United Kingdom and Japan are working
closely with the government of Afghanistan (GoA) and the
United Nations Development Program to outline the structure
of the trust fund and will also demarche key donor capitals
to seek announcements of initial commitments at the London
Conference. A specific U.S. commitment has not yet been
determined.

-- Transition. On January 20, the North Atlantic Council
(NAC) provisionally approved a plan for conditions-based
security transition to the GoA. After consultations with

STATE 00006355 003 OF 016


non-NATO ISAF contributors, the NAC plans to finally approve
the plan before January 28. The plan outlines the security
criteria and the process for authorizing and implementing
province-by-province transition. Transition will need to
take into account governance and development factors in each
province which the NATO Senior Civilian Representative will
develop in consultation with the GoA and international
civilian stakeholders over the next month in Afghanistan. The
London Conference will welcome this ISAF plan, look forward
implementing transition as soon as conditions allow, and note
that transition planning is not an exit strategy from
Afghanistan.

-- Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). The London
Conference will endorse the concept of annual targets for
ANSF growth, but will stress the primary importance of the
quality as well as the number of ANSF. The London Conference
will endorse ANSF force-level targets for 2010 and 2011
approved by the JCMB on January 20 and will urge the
international community to provide all necessary support to
reach those targets. The JCMB approved growing the Afghan
National Police to 109,000 in 2010, 134,000 in 2011, and
growing the Afghan National Army to 134,000 in 2010 and
171,600 in 2011.


STATE 00006355 004 OF 016


-- Development and governance. We expect Afghanistan to
present plans on governance and anti-corruption reform at the
London conference. On corruption, the government of
Afghanistan plans to establish an Independent Oversight Board
to oversee the functions of the High Office of Oversight
(HOO, the main anti-corruption body in Afghanistan), second
prosecutors to the HOO to give it enforcement capabilities,
prioritize the passage of legislation to enforce the
requirement for asset declarations by Afghan officials, and
improve administrative procedures. On governance,
Afghanistan intends to establish an independent merit-based
civil service appointment and vetting process, seek
Parliamentary approval for a sub-national governance policy
clarifying the roles and responsibilities of provincial and
district officials, and implement targeted programs to
improve service delivery in key districts.

-- International Civilian Coordination. The UN may announce
plans to strengthen its presence in Afghanistan in order to
reinforce UNAMA's preeminent role in the coordination of
civilian assistance. Similarly, NATO may announce plans to
strengthen the NATO Senior Civilian Representative in order
to coordinate the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) and
other civilian assistance delivered through ISAF channels,
support UNAMA's preeminent role in civilian assistance, and

STATE 00006355 005 OF 016


coordinate political aspects of the ISAF mission. We hope
the international leadership team can be introduced at the
London Conference, including a new UN Special Representative
of the Secretary General (SRSG), NATO Senior Civilian
Representative (SCR), and EU/EC single representative.

-- We are not seeking comment on Afghanistan's elections at
the London conference.

4. The outcomes of the London Conference will lay out an
agenda for Afghanistan and the international community in the
coming months. We will work with the Government of
Afghanistan and other partners to produce more detailed plans
and programs on reintegration, anti-corruption, governance,
development, and other critical issues. When planning is
sufficiently advanced to warrant another meeting of Foreign
Ministers, the Government of Afghanistan will host a
conference in Kabul, presumably this spring.

5. (SBU) Our asks from our partners for the London
conference and afterward include:

-- Support for inclusion of the above outcomes in the
conference communique and public messaging.


STATE 00006355 006 OF 016


-- Pledges of contributions to an international reintegration
trust fund.

-- Commitment of additional institutional trainers and
mentoring teams, and trust fund donations to support the
ANSF. Although this is not a pledging conference for security
assistance, both the London Conference and the NATO Defense
Ministerial meeting on February 4-5 in Istanbul provide
opportunities to demonstrate the international community's
continuing commitment to enable Afghan forces to begin to
assume security responsibility.

Posts should adapt these requests and talking points as
appropriate to host country circumstances.

TALKING POINTS
--------------

6. (SBU) Posts may draw from the following points when
raising the London Conference with host governments. See
also REF B for more detailed points on security transition.
Specific national requests for ANSF mentors and trainers and
points for use with the media on our overall Afghanistan
strategy will be sent SEPTEL. Please inquire from host
governments whether they expect to make any announcements at

STATE 00006355 007 OF 016


London.

Security

-- The United States' main priorities for the London
Conference include endorsement of a plan to implement
transition of security responsibility to full Afghan
leadership and support for Afghan-led reintegration.

-- The transition plan is a tangible demonstration of
progress in the overall stability and security of Afghanistan
and Afghan ownership and responsibility. Transition will
proceed gradually on a province-by-province basis based on
rigorous security, governance, and development conditions.

-- Transition of individual provinces to Afghan lead will be
undertaken with extensive consultations among the Afghan
government, NATO/ISAF, UNAMA, and other key stakeholders, and
will take place only when it is clear that security,
governance, and development conditions have been met and can
be sustained.

-- Transition is not an exit strategy for ISAF, although it
is an important step toward fulfilling ISAF's mission. ISAF
will retain supporting, enabling, and mentoring/advising

STATE 00006355 008 OF 016


roles throughout transition. The United States will also
maintain a civilian commitment to Afghanistan over the long
term.

-- Transition neither implies the commitment of the
international community is wavering nor does it presage an
imminent reduction in ISAF forces.

-- On the contrary, now is the time to reinforce our
contributions in Afghanistan, as President Obama stated in
his December 1 address, in order to create the conditions
that will allow us to begin the process of drawing down
combat forces in the summer of 2011.

-- While London will not be a pledging conference, we will
welcome any additional civilian or military contributions
that Allies or partners might announce there. At NATO's
Defense
Ministerial meeting on February 4-5 in Istanbul, we will
encourage nations to outline plans to deploy forces pledged
in December as rapidly as possible and to commit the
institutional trainers and mentors needed to develop the
ANSF. In particular, the JCMB's increased ANSF targets can
only be met with additional institutional trainers, mentors,
and financial contributions.

STATE 00006355 009 OF 016

Reintegration

-- Equally important will be international support for a
process of Afghan-led reintegration of insurgents who choose
to give up the fight.

-- The international community offered support to government
of Afghanistan principles for a reintegration program on
January 20. The aim of reintegration is to stabilize local
areas by providing an honourable exit to low and mid level
insurgent commanders and fighters who are not committed to
insurgent ideology and who are prepared to cease support for
insurgent activity and rejoin society.

-- Our support for reintegration is distinct from and should
not imply any plans for reconciliation of senior leaders of
the Taliban and other insurgent groups. The United States
only supports reintegration for individuals and groups
interested who cease support, whether active or passive, to
insurgency, criminality, and violence; who are willing to
participate in a free and open society; and who respect the
Afghan Constitution and have no existing association with
Al-Qaeda.


STATE 00006355 010 OF 016


-- The Afghan reintegration program will build upon former
and existing reintegration programs, and will address
shortcomings of past reintegration initiatives. While
specific programmatic elements will not be announced until
after a national Grand Peace Jirga (traditional council
meeting), key elements will be instituting appropriate
safeguards and monitoring measures to ensure accountability
of reintegrated insurgents.

-- The U.S. strongly supports this process and encourages you
to do so as well. Reintegration must be Afghan-led, but it
will also require the strong political and financial support
of the international community. To demonstrate that support
and ensure that financial resources are available as soon as
operationally required, the London Conference will announce
an international trust fund for reintegration, the Peace and
Reintegration Trust Fund.

-- The UK, Japan and government of Afghanistan expect
$300-500 million will be required to sustain the
reintegration program over several years. We will be looking
to our international partners at the London Conference to
provide support to this important initiative.

-- It is especially important for Muslim countries to

STATE 00006355 011 OF 016


demonstrate concrete support for reintegration through trust
fund commitments, even if they are not specific at this time.

-- The exact mechanics of fund administration remain under
discussion, but there will likely be opportunities to provide
assistance via UNDP or the Afghan Ministry of Finance.

-- Along with a possible contribution to the Peace and
Reintegration Trust Fund, the U.S. will use other civilian
and military funds to support Afghanistan's reintegration
efforts.

-- We envision international funds will be used towards
providing economic support to communities, deradicalization
and assimilation, conflict resolution, community security,
stipends and relocation, administration, training, safeguards
and third party assessments and auditing. In no event will
these funds be used to simply pay insurgents to stop
fighting.

-- All of these programs will be coordinated with the
government of Afghanistan. The programs will be tailored to
the unique conditions at the local level and may vary
community to community. They will benefit law abiding
citizens in communities throughout Afghanistan and will not

STATE 00006355 012 OF 016


be exclusively targeted at one political group or
geographical area.

Development and governance

-- We also want the London conference to bolster Afghan
efforts to fight corruption and promote good governance,
human rights, and economic development.

-- At the January 20 JCMB, the Afghan government shared its
plans for a series of reforms that will boost its ability to
combat corruption, provide more public services to its
people, and effectively manage international aid. We expect
the Afghan government to present these plans at the London
conference.

-- We support these reforms as the next step toward improved
governance and accountability in Afghanistan, recognizing
that the Afghans will need to take additional actions to
implement these reforms in the coming months.

-- In order to support Afghanistan in these efforts, we
expect to announce significant progress toward Afghanistan's
qualification for debt relief from the Paris Club and the
international financial institutions. On January 25 and

STATE 00006355 013 OF 016


January 26, we anticipate that the International Monetary
Fund (IMF) and World Bank Executive Boards will certify that
Afghanistan has completed the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries
(HIPC) initiative, which would qualify Afghanistan for one
billion dollars in debt forgiveness. After final
negotiations, the Paris Club could provide the debt relief as
early as its March 2010 meeting.

International civilian coordination

-- Strengthening the coordination of international assistance
to Afghanistan is the final theme of the conference.

-- As the international community increases the support
provided to the GoA's ambitious agenda, it becomes
increasingly important that assistance be closely monitored
and coordinated.

-- We are working with the UN to help UNAMA fulfill its
preeminent role in coordinating civilian assistance and with
NATO to strengthen the role of the NATO Senior Civilian
Representative in order to coordinate the Provincial
Reconstruction Teams (PRTs), certain assistance, political
aspects of the ISAF mission, such as reintegration and
provincial transition.

STATE 00006355 014 OF 016

COUNTRY-SPECIFIC ISSUES
-----------------------

7. (SBU) FOR MOSCOW AND BEIJING: In preliminary planning
meetings in London on the draft joint communique to be
published at the conference, Russian and Chinese
representatives expressed concern about the communique
endorsing a NATO document on transition. The London
Conference is being used to welcome and provide wide
international endorsement of the outcomes of other processes,
including JCMB decisions, World Bank and IMF decisions, and
ad hoc negotiations on the reintegration trust fund.
Welcoming NATO transition planning fits into this framework
and should not be seen as a replacement for other important
international fora, such as the UN Security Council. Posts
may want to note previous compromises, such as the language
used at the Afghanistan conference at The Hague in March 2009
endorsing the ISAF mission.

8. (SBU) FOR ANKARA: The conference will also welcome
recent actions taken in regional forums to support the
government of Afghanistan, including the
Afghanistan-Pakistan-Turkey trilateral summit on January 25
and the Afghanistan Neighbors Summit in Istanbul on January

STATE 00006355 015 OF 016


26. We encourage regional partners to support and
participate in these types of forums and look forward to
talking further with Turkey about ways to bolster
international support for regional initiatives.

9. (SBU) FOR RIYADH AND ABU DHABI: Saudi Arabian and Emirati
support for the reintegration trust fund is vital for both
practical and symbolic reasons. Saudi Arabia has previously
expressed interest in Taliban mediation initiatives, and they
should be encouraged to demonstrate political support for
Afghan-led, internationally-supported reintegration by
announcing commitments to the trust fund at the London
Conference. The UAE is supportive of the reintegration trust
fund, but has concerns about how and when the money will be
spent. The UAE should be reassured that the US shares its
concerns and will work to ensure that the fund is
transparent, effective and quick to disburse money to worthy
projects.

10. (SBU) FOR BERLIN: Germany continues to seek endorsement
of end-state targets for ANSF levels at the London
conference. While the Afghan Minister of Defense has also
sought a longer-term international commitment, the JCMB only
endorsed 2010 and 2011 targets, and United States is only
ready to comment on figures for the next two years.

STATE 00006355 016 OF 016

REPORTING DEADLINE AND POINT OF CONTACT
---------------------------------------

11. (U) Please report results of demarche request by cable
by January 25, 2010. Please direct questions and slug cables
to Jarrett Blanc in S/SRAP and Tom Gramaglia and Carolyn
Coberly in SCA/A.
CLINTON

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