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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
04SANAA2556
2004-10-06 07:08:00
SECRET
Embassy Sanaa
Cable title:  

FM QIRBI WANTS TO OVERCOME OBSTACLES TO EXPAND

Tags:   PREL  PTER  PGOV  EFIN  YM  DEMOCRATIC  REFORM  COUNTER  TERRORISM  TERFIN 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 SANAA 002556 

SIPDIS

NSC (HEFFERNAN), EB/ESC/ESP(GGLASS), S/CT (TNAVRATIL),
NEA/ARP, IO/PHO(APEREZ), TREASURY (JZARATE) AND OFAC
DIRECTOR (RNEWCOMB)

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/04/2014
TAGS: PREL PTER PGOV EFIN YM DEMOCRATIC REFORM COUNTER TERRORISM TERFIN
SUBJECT: FM QIRBI WANTS TO OVERCOME OBSTACLES TO EXPAND
U.S.-YEMEN BILATERAL RELATIONSHIP

REF: A. SECSTATE 207290

B. SANAA 415

Classified By: Ambassador Krajeski for reasons 1.5 (b and d)



1. (S) Summary: In a follow-on meeting from his recent visit
to UNGA, FM Qirbi raised questions on BMENA process with
Ambassador on October 4. Noting successful and positive
meetings in Washington, Qirbi promised to look into recent
irritants in the bilateral relationship including recent
setbacks over intelligence sharing agreements. Ambassador
broached ROYG obligations under UNSCR 1526 to freeze
Zindani's assets. Qirbi replied that he was still waiting
for proof from Washington of Zindani's guilt. End Summary.



--------------------------

--
BMENA - Process Should Reflect Democratic Goals


--------------------------

--



2. (C) Expressing surprise over the process that chose
Morocco as the next Forum for the Future host, Qirbi
emphasized that substance was still the most important issue
at hand for the Broader Middle East and North Africa
Initiative (BMENA). Nevertheless, Qirbi complained that the
way the decision was made and presented to the Middle East
Ministers (i.e. as a fait accompli) creates the "wrong
impression among countries that were present at the outset."
Qirbi pointed out that Morocco was among several nations who
did not attend the Sea Island conference and suggested that a
Forum for the Future based on democracy should have clear and
transparent processes. The Morocco decision, Qirbi added,
puts Morocco in a difficult position and raises questions
over how they will promote the USG agenda. Ambassador agreed
with Qirbi that substance is more important than location and
underscored that Washington considers Yemen a regional leader
in promoting reform.



--------------------------


Ambassador Calls for Consistent Cooperation


--------------------------





3. (S) Qirbi said that his New York meetings, particularly
with U/S Grossman were "very positive." Ambassador took the
opportunity to reply to Qirbi's request for expanded USG
assistance for Yemen, ref A. Highlighting progress in
security, human rights and democracy, Ambassador said the
Yemen-U.S. relationship now rests on a solid foundation.
But, Ambassador continued, some smaller issues that have
great resonance in Washington are complicating the overall
relationship. Ambassador cited recent hiccups over requests
to expand intelligence-sharing as an example. After
al-Houthi was captured, Ambassador said President Saleh, MoD
Chief of Staff Qassimi, and Minister of Interior Alimi all
agreed to maintain the request for expanded intelligence
sharing. In response, USG proposed U-2 mission to gather
intelligence requested by ROYG. This mission was rejected by
MoD,s General Gassemi. Such a response, Ambassador said,
generated some in Washington to question the overall
relationship. Responding that he was "surprised by changes
in attitude," Qirbi promised to look into the matter further
and to overcome "little obstacles" in the relationship.



4. (C) Raising recent problems between Yemeni ministries
resulting in the cancellation of US Mission in-country
travel, Ambassador requested more coordination to ensure that
USG teams did not waste time and money waiting for permits.
Qirbi asked that Post consult with the relevant governors and
appropriate ministries to ensure coordination, but added that
he would also talk to the Ministry of Interior about these
issues.



--------------------------


ROYG still not moving on Zindani


--------------------------





5. (S) Ambassador inquired if the ROYG had taken any action
from the March designation of Zindani under UNSCR 1526 as a
terrorist financier. Qirbi replied that Zindani and his
associates no longer travel outside of Yemen out of fear that
they may be arrested. Recalling earlier requests for
complete evidence on Zindani's financial activities (ref B),
Qirbi said that until the ROYG receives a full explanation of
his guilt, they will not take action. Ambassador closed by
raising Yemen's UN obligation to freeze Zindani,s assets.



--------------------------


Comment


--------------------------





6. (S) FM Qirbi was clearly pleased with his Washington
meetings and appeared willing to consider Ambassador's
requests for more consistency in the relationship. We will
continue to push this theme with key ROYG officials,
including Saleh. While the issue of Zindani is contentious,
the ROYG believes the ball is in our court and will likely
not take any action to freeze his assets in the near term.
KRAJESKI