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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
03KUWAIT1044 2003-03-23 12:37:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Kuwait
Cable title:  

KUWAITI PARLIAMENT MOVING FORWARD ON

Tags:   PTER EFIN PREL PGOV KU 
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					  C O N F I D E N T I A L KUWAIT 001044 

SIPDIS

TREASURY FOR TERRORIST FINANCE TASK FORCE
STATE FOR EB/ESC

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/23/2013
TAGS: PTER EFIN PREL PGOV KU
SUBJECT: KUWAITI PARLIAMENT MOVING FORWARD ON
ANTI-TERRORISM CONVENTIONS

REF: A. KUWAIT 939


B. SECSTATE 59891

Classified By: Ambassador Richard H. Jones, reasons 1.5 b and d.



1. (C) On March 22, the Ambassador joined the French
ambassador and the ambassadors of Italy, Canada and Russia as
well as the British and German DCM's to carry out the G8
demarche on adherence to counter terrorism conventions with
Mohammed al-Sagr, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs
Committee of Kuwait's National Assembly (reftels). French
Ambassador Losguardi made the pitch in his capacity as
representative of the G8 chair.



2. (C) Al-Sagr responded that his committee had completed its
review of the conventions; the National Assembly was about to
move forward on legislation that would enable Kuwait to
complete accession to four of the five agreements. He
explained that legislation on the Convention on the
Suppression of Acts against Maritime Navigation had already
passed a first reading. Its second reading would be held
during next week's assembly session (March 31). The first
reading of bills on three of the remaining four conventions
would likely be passed at the same time. This would leave
only the 1999 Convention on Suppression of the Financing of
Terrorism (CSFT) to go.



3. (C) When questioned, al-Sagr explained that the CSFT had
also been on the agenda for a first reading next week, but he
had asked that it be delayed because he was concerned that
some deputies were planning to use the debate on the bill as
an opportunity to embarrass the GOK by criticizing aid to
Jordan. He was reluctant to provide additional details, he
said, because the issue of relations with Jordan (which in
many Kuwaitis' eyes "sided" with Iraq in 1990) remains highly
sensitive in Kuwait. However, he felt that it would be
better to wait until after the current conflict with Iraq had
subsided before bringing this particular piece of legislation
to the floor of the assembly for debate.



4. (C) Al-Sagr stressed that he did not see any trouble in
passing the legislation when the time comes; "maybe only five
people are against it," he said. The Ambassador pointed out
that it might be hard for outsiders to understand why Kuwait
was moving on the other conventions but not on the CSFT. He
noted that two branches of Kuwaiti charities had had their
assets frozen for suspicion of financing terrorism. Some
would interpret inaction on the CSFT as a sign of a lack of
Kuwaiti resolve on this critical issue. The French
Ambassador supported this line of argument. Al-Sagr took the
point and agreed to consult with the Deputy Speaker of the
National Assembly about the possibility of adding the CSFT to
next week's session and avoiding criticism of Jordan. He
warned the ambassadors that he might need to ask for their
help with a few key members of the National Assembly in this
regard.



5. (C) COMMENT: The impending progress on legislation on the
remaining five counter-terrorism conventions is very welcome
news. We will continue to coordinate with our G8 colleagues
to encourage Mohammed al-Sagr and other members of the
National Assembly to keep working until all the conventions
have been approved.

JONES