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Cablegate: Russian Sherpa Seeks Smooth Nuclear Security Summit

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DE RUEHMO #0273/01 0361524
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 051524Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6173
INFO RUEHII/VIENNA IAEA POSTS COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0555
RUEHUNV/USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA 0591
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS

UNCLAS MOSCOW 000273

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PARK AORC EAID ENRG IAEA MNUC TBIO UNGA NPT
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SUBJECT: RUSSIAN SHERPA SEEKS SMOOTH NUCLEAR SECURITY SUMMIT

REF: SECSTATE 7493

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED -- PLEASE PROTECT ACCORDINGLY-QIvQQG:kov lamented that involving
non-NPT signatories India and Pakistan in the Summit will
lead to an agreed text which is "devoid of important things."
Stressing the importance of a smooth summit, he said that
resulting documents based on the lowest common denominator
will still be better than nothing. End Summary.


2. (SBU) On January 28, ESTH Counselor and Dutch DCM, joined
by nuclear affairs officers from both embassies, delivered
jointly reftel invite to the third Sherpa meeting in The
Hague on February 9-11 to Ambassador Grigoriy Berdennikov,
Russian Sherpa for the Nuclear Security Summit. Berdennikov
confirmed that his team had already registered, including
Mikhail Lysenko, Director of International Cooperation of
Rosatom, and Aleksandr Boluchev from the MFA's Department of
Security and Disarmament. A fourth person from the Russian
Embassy at The Hague may also take part. Berdennikov
confirmed he was aware of the three person delegation limit,
adding that the Russian delegation would not make itself
burdensome.

3. (SBU) Berdennikov described the Summit communique as
"more or less there," while the work plan is "more
problematic." He noted there was little enthusiasm at the
December Sherpa meeting in Tokyo for a follow-on meeting
after the Summit, adding that some do not clearly understand
the purpose of the Summit. He said the GOR was fine with no
further meetings, instead stressing the importance of a
"smooth" Summit in April.

4. (SBU) Noting that the GOR was not consulted on the list
of participants, he said the composition of the summit would
make it difficult to accomplish much. Illustrating his point,
Berdennikov said the GOR welcomed language in previous work
plan drafts in favor of increasing the membership of the
Nuclear Terrorism Convention. However, because some of the
invited participants are not members of the Convention and
opposed such language, the language is no longer in the
draft, which Russia regrets. Berdennikov further lamented
the lack of a quid pro quo, as the draft work plan does ask
the G-8 for something, but does not ask the other states to
reciprocate with action. He recalled that the G-8 text was
able to be much more ambitious because it was crafted by
likeminded nations. Berdennikov stressed that it is
difficult involve non-NPT signatories India and Pakistan in a
non-proliferation forum based on the Non-Proliferation Treaty
(NPT). He clarified that although the Summit is not billed
as being NPT-based, for all intents and purposes it is. He
added, that it's important for non-NPT signatories' voices
to be heard. But including them in this Summit leads to very
bland text, "devoid of important things."

5. (SBU) Given that India and Pakistan will want to "bargain
until the end," Berdennikov emphasized that the GOR's primary
goal is for the Nuclear Security Summit to be "as ruly as
possible." He said that the resulting documents may be based
on a lowest common denominator which is very low indeed, but
the LCD is still desirable as it is better than nothing, and
far better than a fight. Briefly animated, he stated that a
fight in Washington should be avoided at all costs as that
would be a "major blow" to the non-proliferation cause.

6. (SBU) Finally, Berdennikov noted that the GOR had wanted
Armenia and Belarus to be invited to the Summit. Armenia, he
explained, is the only country in its region with an ongoing
nuclear program and a good record on fighting nuclear
terrorism. Armenia feels left out as Georgia is in "and it
has nothing." Belarus, he continued, has nuclear research
reactors, has just signed an agreement with DOE for HEU
removal, and has a good record on anti-terrorism. Belarus is
"offended" that Ukraine is in and it is not.

7. (SBU) Comment: Despite Berdennikov's complaints, the
meeting was very cordial in tone. He appeared personally
committed to a smooth summit, even if the final results must
be watered down in order to reach consensus. End
Comment.

Beyrle

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