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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
05BAGHDAD2855 2005-07-07 13:06:00 CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN Embassy Baghdad
Cable title:  

CODEL LEVIN: SRSG QAZI URGES CLOSE COORDINATION

Tags:   PREL PGOV PTER IZ 
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					  C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BAGHDAD 002855 

SIPDIS

NOFORN

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/07/2025
TAGS: PREL PGOV PTER IZ
SUBJECT: CODEL LEVIN: SRSG QAZI URGES CLOSE COORDINATION
TO ENSURE CONSTITUTION PROCESS SUCCEEDS


Classified By: Political Counselor Robert S. Ford for
reasons 1.4 (B) and (D).



1. (C/NF) SUMMARY. SRSG Qazi told CODEL Levin on
July 5 that the Sunni have finally joined the
Constitution Committee as members and technical
advisors. He stated that Sheik Hammoudi, committee
chairman, confirmed to him that all decisions,
including approval of the final draft, will be done by
consensus and not by voting, a factor favorable to
Sunni inclusion. Qazi opined that the constitution
could be completed on time, but must include the
possibility for amendment. Finally, Qazi stressed
that the UN and international donors "have our work
cut out for us," stressing that the constitution will
be beneficial to all Iraqis, with failure as the worst
possible option. END SUMMARY



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



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SUNNI PARTICIPATION ON THE CONSTITUTION COMMITTEE


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



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





2. (C/NF) UN Special Representative of the Secretary
General (SRSG) Ashraf Qazi told CODEL Levin on July 5
that the Transitional National Assembly (TNA) finally
agreed to accept the list of 15 Sunni delegates and 13
technical advisors to participate on the TNA's
Constitution Committee. This is certainly a positive
move, observed Qazi, as low Sunni participation at the
successful January elections eventually had a negative
impact on the constitution process. Qazi stated that
the lack of an identifiable Sunni leadership created
problems in determining which Sunni were truly
representative and should be on the list. Qazi opined
that the committee's decision process, favoring
consensus over unanimity, would prove favorable for
enhancing Sunni participation.



3. (C/NF) Qazi explained that he had spoken to
committee chairman Sheik Humam Hammoudi, who confirmed
the consensus style for committee decision-making. He
said that Hammoudi said the optics of Sunni Arab
participation, not the actual number of Sunni Arabs,
was important. Qazi explained that progress with the
constitution drafting depended on three important
points: Sunni Arab presence, consensus-style
agreement, and the need for the TNA to resist changing
the committee's final decision on the draft
constitution. Qazi explained that the basic draft of
the constitution would contain about 80 to 85 percent
generally agreed upon basic language, leaving the
final 15 to 20 percent that will be more difficult
find agreement. He expected the constitution would
reflect a parliamentary government, with both a Prime
Minister and a President. Qazi added that the Sunni
hope for a strong constitutional president, an office
they covet but will, in all likelihood, never hold.



4. (C/NF) In response to Sen. Levin's question
regarding meeting the draft deadline, Qazi could not
state with confidence whether or not the draft would
be completed and accepted by the TNA by August 15. He
explained that each major party has its own reasons
for meeting, or failing to meet, that deadline,
depending on whether or not the party hopes for new
elections to restart the drafting exercise, or new
elections to implement the new constitution. For the
constitution to pass at referendum, Qazi stated that
it must be in a form that can be amended to allow more
work on the most difficult issues after the new
assembly is seated. "We have our work cut out for
us," opined Qazi, indicating that the UN and the
international community must work together and
synchronize our policy messages in order to help Iraq
succeed in this process.



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

--
JULY 15 FIRST DRAFT, SUBMISSIONS, AND INDONESIA


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

--



5. (C/NF) SRSG Qazi commented on the following
topics:

-- DEPARTURE OF COALITION FORCES: When asked if the
Sunni Arabs want the Coalition Forces to depart, Qazi
stated that, in principle, they want the military to
leave, but realize that a premature departure would
lead to greater security problems. The Shi'a, on the
other hand, want the forces to remain, as they fear
the Coalition is the only deterrent to the Sunni Arabs
from retaking control.

-- CONSTITUTION WITHOUT THE SUNNI: Stressing their key
participatory role, Qazi emphasized that the actual
constitution text was less important than the drafting
process. He said that participation by the Iraqi
people was essential, including submitting comments
prior to the final draft, in order to fully claim
ownership of the constitution. He opined that a July
15 rough draft was not only possible, but also
necessary in order to increase public participation.
-- POLITICAL TRUST AND THE INSURGENCY: Qazi stated
that the level of trust between political parties was
very low, a factor which continues to impede political
cooperation. Regarding the impact of the constitution
on the insurgency, Qazi stated that a successful
constitution will likely have a favorable impact, but
it will not be automatic, and it will be interlinked
with other current issues facing Iraq.

-- UN AND INDONESIA MILITARY SUPPORT IN IRAQ: Senator
Levin asked Qazi if the UN would be willing to request
Indonesian military support to Iraq, especially since
this would increase the Muslim presence for the
coalition in Iraq. Qazi replied that the UN has not
made specific requests to individual countries, but he
offered to research the issue to determine if such a
request could be considered under UNSCR 1546.



6. (SBU) List of participants:

United Nations Assistance Mission Iraq (UNAMI)
SRSG Ashraf Qazi
Paulos Tesfagiorgis, Constitution Legal Advisor
Alexis Martin, UNDP Public Affairs Advisor
Stephen Sequiera, Special Assistant to the SRSG
Senator Carl Levin (D-MI)
Richard DeBobes, Minority Staff Director
Daniel Cox, Professional Staff Member
Charge d'Affaires David Satterfield
Poloff Campos, notetaker



7. (SBU) CODEL Levin did not have an opportunity to
clear this cable.



8. (U) REO HILLA, REO BASRA, REO MOSUL, and REO
KIRKUK, minimize considered.
Satterfield