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2005-02-15 16:28:00
Embassy Madrid
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						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MADRID 000617 


E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/15/2015

REF: A. STATE 25111


Classified By: Political Officer Robert Riley for Reasons 1.4 (b) and (

1. (C) SUMMARY. We discussed Transatlantic Relations, the
Middle East Peace Process, Iraq, the Western Balkans,
Ukraine/Moldova, Sudan, the Great Lakes, and Iran with
Enrique Mora Benavente, MFA Head of EU Planning on February

15. Mora Benavente said that the February 21 GAERC meeting
would serve to set the agenda for February 22 meetings with
President Bush and Secretary of State Rice. The EU welcomes
the results at the recent Sharm El Sheikh summit regarding
the Middle East Peace Process. Spain's proposed training
course for Iraqi lawyers, policemen, and prison officials
will be formally endorsed at the GAERC meeting. The GAERC
meeting will focus on the Kosovo issue due to the presence of
the UN Secretary General Special Representative for Kosovo.
The EU will sign Action Plans with Ukraine and Moldova. The
EU approves of peace efforts in Sudan, but prefers to use the
International Criminal Court to resolve problems. There will
be no discussion of Iran at the GAERC, and the EU's February
22 discussion with Secretary Rice on Iran will be brief
because, according to Benavente, she has heard the same
message numerous times. END SUMMARY


2. (C) Mora Benavente said that the February 21 GAERC
meetings would serve to prepare the agenda for the February
22 EU meetings with President Bush and Secretary Rice.
Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos will be one of the
keynote speakers at the February 22 meetings with Secretary
Rice; he will discuss the Middle East Peace Process. The
agenda for the February 22 meetings will include the Middle
East Peace Process, Iraq, Iran, the Western Balkans, and
possibly Ukraine.


3. (C) The EU welcomes the results of the Sharm El Sheikh
summit. Spain looks forward to the London meetings on
Palestinian reform during the first of March. Mora Benavente
said that there would probably be discussion of the recent
assasination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
He noted that in his opinion Hariri had done more than any
other Lebanese citizen to improve the lives of ordinary
Lebanese since the end of the Lebanese civil war.


4. (C) Spain will provide a training course for Iraqi
lawyers, policemen, and prison officials that will formally
be endorsed at the GAERC meeting. The EU will be involved in
thirteen training courses. Spain's training course will be
held in Spain. Spain gave USD 20 million for Iraqi election
efforts under the UN framework and is currently looking for
ways to spend close to USD 140 million of the USD 300 million
pledged during the Madrid Iraqi Donor Conference. (NOTE:
Further details of Spanish intentions for spending in Iraq
can be found in Ref B.) The GAERC meeting will call on the
Sunnis to further integrate in Iraq's political process. The
Spanish are encouraging the EU to upgrade its presence in
Iraq to a mission. A permanent presence of the EU will be
needed in order to select recipients for the numerous
training courses. Spain is seriously considering upgrading
its presence in Iraq by changing its current Charge
d'Affaires to an Ambassador and adding additional staff;
Spain's future staffing in Iraq will be dependent on the
security situation and the political process.


5. (C) UN Secretary General Special Representative for
Kosovo Soren Jessen-Petersen will address the GAERC meeting.
Discussions of the Western Balkans will focus on the
situation in Kosovo. The EU agrees with U.S. goals on
priorities and standards in Kosovo. Croatian accession to
the EU may also be discussed. The EU encourages Croatia to
deliver Gotovina to the Hague prior to starting EU accession
talks. Croatian accession talks are scheduled to begin March
17, and Mora Benavente told Poloff that the decision to begin
or cancel accession talks on March 17 is now up to the EU
Presidency, currently run by Luxembourg. Spain's view is
that Croatia is so eager to start EU accession talks that
they will do anything not to upset accession talks, including
delivering Gotovina quickly.


6. (C) The EU will sign Action Plans for Ukraine and
Moldova immediately following the GAERC meeting at
Cooperation Councils held individually with both countries.


7. (C) Spain welcomed the recent peace agreements signed
between warring factions in Sudan, and favored EU efforts to
give assistance to the Sudanese as a peace dividend. The EU
is still very concerned about the situation in Darfur and is
waiting for UNSC action regarding sanctions. If sanctions
are approved by the UNSC, the EU will support the sanctions.
If sanctions are not approved, the EU will look at other
measures that can be taken. Spain fully supports the
International Criminal Court and believes this is the proper
forum for accountability for the atrocities in Darfur.


8. (C) The EU welcomes U.S. initiatives in the Great Lakes.
EU Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Aldo Ajello reported
that there were good discussions at the Tripartite Joint
Commission talks in Washington in February.


9. (C) Poloff asked Mora Benavente if the GAERC meeting
would take up Iran, since the EU was putting Iran on the
agenda for talks with both President Bush and Secretary Rice.
He said that Iran would not be discussed at the GAERC
meeting and that discussion with Secretary Rice concerning
Iran would be brief on February 22 since the EU had already
"informed Rice several times" that the EU prefers a
negotiated settlement in Iran. Mora Benavente said that Iran
is basically looking for three things: (1) support for its
civilian use of nuclear power, (2) increased economic
cooperation, and (3) security guarantees. He said that the
EU could deliver on the first two of Iran's goals but that
only the U.S. could give Iran security guarantees. He told
Poloff that high-ranking members of the Spanish MFA and the
Spanish Ambassador in Tehran believe that the U.S. is waiting
for the results of the Iranian presidential elections in June
to see if the U.S. can work with the new team before the U.S.
"takes any actions" in Iran.