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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05AMMAN4228
2005-06-01 07:01:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Amman
Cable title:  

DEPUTY SECRETARY ZOELLICK'S MAY 20 MEETING WITH

Tags:   PREL  PTER  KISL  KMPI  KPAL  ECON  EFIN  IZ  SU  SY  JO 
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						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 AMMAN 004228 

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/01/2015
TAGS: PREL PTER KISL KMPI KPAL ECON EFIN IZ SU SY JO
SUBJECT: DEPUTY SECRETARY ZOELLICK'S MAY 20 MEETING WITH
KING ABDULLAH OF JORDAN


Classified By: CDA David Hale for Reasons 1.4 (b), (d)



1. (U) Friday, May 20, 2005, 1:30 p.m., King Hussein
Convention Center, Dead Sea, Jordan.



2. (U) Participants:

U.S.

The Deputy Secretary
Executive Assistant to the Deputy Secretary Ross Wilson
Embassy Amman Charge d'Affaires David Hale (notetaker)
Farah Pandith (NSC)

Jordan

King Abdullah II
Prince Ali Bin Al-Hussein
Royal Court Minister Marwan Muasher
Finance Minister Bassem Awadallah
Foreign Minister Farouq Qasrawi
Jordanian Ambassador to the U.S. Karim Kawar

REFORM AND PROMOTING MODERATE ISLAM



3. (C) The Deputy Secretary reviewed the state-of-play in
overall BMENA activities, and in that context praised
Jordan's work in educational reform, the promotion of Islam's
message of tolerance, and political decentralization. He
encouraged the King to consult with Malaysian PM Badawi,
whose "Islam Hedari" initiative to start a broader debate
about modern Islamic civilization seemed to parallel Jordan's
"Amman message." The King agreed on the value of
coordination, and looked forward to a July conference in
Amman that will broaden engagement in the Amman message to
include non-Arab Muslim groups, including in southeast Asia,
an area, especially in Thailand, where he saw dangerous
extremist trends. He pointed to Singapore, which he had
recently visited, as a model of progressive thinking. The
King particularly admired how Singapore's educational
curriculum promoted interfaith tolerance, and said he would
include it as part of the Amman message process.

SUDAN



4. (C) The Deputy Secretary, noting King Abdullah's contacts
in Sudan, reviewed U.S. efforts and recent developments. The
Deputy Secretary outlined in brief our next diplomatic steps,
including his plans for a June visit to meet first Vice
President Taha. The King acknowledged that because of his
excellent relations with the Sudanese government, he had been
asked many times to intercede on their behalf with the U.S.
However, he did not believe they had reached a point of
transparent motivations; until they were sincere, he said he
has told them, he would not get in the middle diplomatically.
Jordan was prepared to contribute peacekeepers in the south;
Jordan's positive experience in Croatia and East Timor
demonstrated that Jordanian troops could help even in areas
of Muslim/Christian conflict.

IRAQ



5. (C) The Deputy Secretary recounted his May 19 visit to
Iraq, where he was impressed by the rich potential of the
country and the courage and conviction of its new leaders.
The insurgency, having failed to stop the elections, now was
targeting the constitutional process and seeking to stimulate

sectarian violence. However, despite some resistance in the
UIA, sincere efforts were underway to bring Sunni figures
into the political process. The Deputy Secretary knew Jordan
would continue to use its ties to the Sunni community to
help. He also stressed the need for more Muslim voices to
condemn Zarqawi's indiscriminate murder and outrageous
statements. The King said the U.S. could count on Jordan's
continual cooperation.

PALESTINIAN BADR BRIGADE



6. (C) The King raised the Badr Brigade, a Palestinian
security unit trained by the Jordanians but never deployed in
the West Bank as intended. He said Shimon Peres had
explained to him that Israel now opposed their deployment
because of concern that these outsiders could generate
tensions within the existing security elements. The King
observed that President Abbas remained supportive of their
deployment, and should be a better judge than the Israelis of
their impact on other units.

DEBT RELIEF AND GULF STATES OIL GRANTS



7. (C) Finance Minister Awadallah expressed gratitude for
U.S. supplemental assistance and outlined Jordan's fiscal
challenges in familiar terms. Oil price rises have added
$255 million annually to the budget bill; Jordan needs help
from the Saudis and others to meet its oil needs while
reducing its use of subsidies and dependence on oil aid over
a three year period. Jordan also needed help to further
reduce its debt burden. Beyond raising the debt swap ceiling
from 30 to 50%, Jordan sought cancellation of 80% of its
debt. World Bank and IMF leaders attending the World
Economic Forum had said a case could be made for debt relief
based on oil price shock. Awadallah hoped language helpful
to Jordan could be inserted in the Gleneagles G-8 summit
communiqu. The Deputy Secretary acknowledged that Jordan
faced a difficult fiscal challenge and asked for further
background information. On oil assistance, the Deputy
Secretary noted the President had encouraged Saudi Crown

SIPDIS
Prince Abdullah to help during their Crawford meeting, and we
would continue to urge support from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and
the UAE.

SYRIA



8. (C) Turning to Syria, the King said he and Prime Minister
Jaafari were in agreement with the U.S. on the continued flow
of insurgents from there to Iraq. Syria was playing the same
old game. The Deputy Secretary stressed the need to maintain
international pressure on Syria. The King agreed, and said
he understood that in coordination with the President, Crown
Prince Abdullah had delivered a tough message to Bashar
al-Asad during the Saudi's recent visit to Damascus.



9. (U) This cable has been cleared by the Deputy Secretary.



10. (U) Minimize considered.
HALE