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Cablegate: Haiti: Italian Contributions to Expanded Minustah

VZCZCXRO4681
PP RUEHFL RUEHNP
DE RUEHRO #0186 0471559
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 161559Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY ROME
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3287
INFO RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHPU/AMEMBASSY PORT AU PRINCE PRIORITY 0001
RUEHMIL/AMCONSUL MILAN PRIORITY 0488
RUEHFL/AMCONSUL FLORENCE PRIORITY 4046
RUEHNP/AMCONSUL NAPLES PRIORITY 4274
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 1074
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO PRIORITY 3084
RHMFISS/HQ USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY

UNCLAS ROME 000186

SIPDIS

HAITI EARTHQUAKE TASK FORCE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV MARR MOPS NATO IT AF
SUBJECT: HAITI: ITALIAN CONTRIBUTIONS TO EXPANDED MINUSTAH
FORCE

REF: STATE 12558

1. (U) Poloff raised reftel points with MFA
Political-Military Officer Andrea Romussi on February 11.
Romussi said that the Ministry of Defense is ready to deploy
a self-sustaining Formed Police Unit (FPU) of 125 Carabinieri
to Haiti under the MINUSTAH mandate. Approval from the Prime
Minister's Office (which is required due to the extraordinary
funding involved) is expected in the coming days, and the FPU
should deploy on schedule by the end of February. A small
Carabinieri advance party is already in Haiti to prepare the
deployment. There are no plans to extend the deployment
period beyond the initial six month commitment, but an
extension is theoretically possible if conditions on the
ground warrant it.

2. (U) Romussi said Italy is unlikely to be able to deploy
additional FPUs simply because the Carabinieri are
overstretched with over 700 deployed to Kosovo, Bosnia,
Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon and elsewhere. Romussi noted that
Italy's FPU is about twice the size of those offered by other
European partners. In addition, the Carabinieri have already
contributed significant training to the officers of other FPU
contributing countries (Pakistan, Nepal, India) at CoESPU
(Center of Excellence for Stability Police Units), the
U.S.-Italian peacekeeping training center in Vicenza.
Italy's FPU is willing to provide enabling support for one
additional platoon of police (20 pax), and the Italians have
been contacted by Serbia and Israel about this possibility.
Italy's FPU is part of a larger European Gendarmerie Force
(EGF) commitment of three FPUs to MINUSTAH within the
framework of the EU effort in support of Haiti, and
discussions are underway within the EGF steering committee
(which Italy chairs this year) regarding how to distribute
logistical responsibilities for the FPUs (which will also
include units from France, the Netherlands, Spain, Lithuania,
Poland and possibly Turkey, which has EGF observer status).

3. (U) According to Romussi and data provided by the Joint
Operations Command, Italy currently has 896 military
personnel deployed to Haiti, including the crew (440) of the
aircraft carrier CAVOUR which arrived on February 4 with 197
Army engineers and equipment (186 trucks, tractors and
recovery vehicles); 416 Navy personnel (force protection,
medical, diving teams and crew and maintenance for 6 medevac
and heavy lift helicopters (2 EH101 and 4 SH3D); 16 Air Force
(force protection and airport coordinators), and 8
Carabinieri (military police). The bulk of the engineer unit
disembarked from the CAVOUR on February 4 in the Dominican
Republic and made its way to Port-au-Prince overland. The
CAVOUR is now anchored off Port-au-Prince and its Role 2
Medical Facility on board has been treating patients
continually since its arrival. The CAVOUR also brought over
200 tons of relief assistance from the World Food Program,
the Italian Red Cross and the Italian NGO Padana, in addition
to Brazilian units that it picked up en route.

MINIMIZE CONSIDERED

THORNE

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