|07USNATO431||2007-07-27 15:00:00||CONFIDENTIAL||Mission USNATO|
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C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 USNATO 000431
4 (b and d)
1. (C) SUMMARY. The Verification Coordinating Committee
(VCC) and experts met on July 17. Regarding the
food-for-thought (FFT) paper (Ref A) on coordinating Vienna
Document (VD) inspections, consensus could not be reached due
to German objections. There was much unfocused discussion
over how to collaborate with non-NATO countries despite no
resolution on internal NATO coordination, which the FFT paper
is meant to address. Germany will provide comments to be
discussed at the next meeting on September 13. See USDel
recommendation for a U.S. FFT paper on pairing inspections
with non-NATO countries in para 4. The VCC chair (Paksoy)
provided an update on the CARs Seminar, indicating that they
are still seeking a lead nation. Turkey proposed changes to
the staff papers on documenting ambiguities and the
definition of the term "inspection site," which will be
addressed at the next meeting. See para 9 for a list of
changes in the CFE inspection schedule, para 10 for a summary
of remaining VCC meetings, and para 11 for a recommended list
of issues to prepare for the September 13 VCC meeting. END
VD Coordination with Non-NATO States
2. (C) The VCC experts met to discuss the food-for-thought
(FFT) paper (Ref A) regarding coordination within NATO of
Vienna Document (VD) inspections. The Netherlands and Germany
raised concerns over the FFT paper and the chair asked for
comments on the discussion of whether the coordination should
take place in Brussels or Vienna. The ensuing discussion
became a stream-of-consciousness debate on if and how to
coordinate with non-NATO states. Germany was particularly
unrestrained, suggesting without instructions informal
meetings or conferences. Per guidance (Ref B), U.S. rep
expressed support for the paper as it is, stated we cannot
support coordination outside of NATO at this time, and that
coordination must take place within NATO before any
collaboration with non-NATO participating states (pS).
3. (C) Germany alone objected to the paper as it currently
reads and could only offer to provide comments on the
language for discussion in advance of the next meeting.
Confusion over the result of the experts meeting led to a
minor rehash of the debate in the VCC when discussing how to
proceed. The VCC chair (Paksoy) correctly explained that
NATO does not currently have an internal coordinating
procedure, and after establishing one, the VCC can then
address how to collaborate with non-NATO pS.
4. (C) The VCC agreed to keep the current paper open for
comments until August 31 (NOTE. The International Staff (IS)
will not re-issue the paper beforehand. END NOTE). After
receiving comments (likely only from Germany), the IS will
re-issue the revised paper for discussion at the September 13
VCC and experts meeting. Based on previous guidance (Ref C),
USDel recommends that Washington formulate and distribute a
FFT paper on pairing of VD inspections before the next
meeting. This would accomplish two important objectives.
First, it would illustrate the distinction between
coordinating within NATO, which the current paper (Ref A)
addresses, and collaboration with non-NATO pS. Second, it
would provide a tangible basis for discussion on how to
collaborate with non-NATO pS (i.e. pairing) after internal
NATO coordination is resolved. Efforts within the VCC to
address the latter point are the cause for not finding
resolution on the former point.
5. (SBU) The VCC chair provided a summary of discussions on
the Central Asian Republics (CARs) Seminar, stating that
experts agreed any follow-up would take place in 2008. He
described Ashgabat, Turkmenistan as a possible location with
Almaty, Kazakhstan as an alternate, and explained that
USNATO 00000431 002.2 OF 003
nations who provide instructors at the NATO school for
CSBM,s would provide those or comparable instructors for the
seminar. This topic will be discussed at the September VCC
meeting and a lead nation is still being sought. In response
to Germany,s suggestion that there could be a linkage
between discussion on CSBM,s in Vienna and the development
of the CARs Seminar, the chair asked nations to provide
updates on this issue from Vienna at the next meeting.
6. (C) Regarding CFE inspections, the VCC chair noted that
an inspection quota in the Russian flank is still available.
Norway asked to be tentatively scheduled to conduct the
inspection and will confirm at the next meeting. Georgia,s
request for a paired inspection (January 17, 2007 letter)
remains unfulfilled. The Netherlands tentatively volunteered
to pair with Georgia on an inspection in Russia and will
confirm at the next meeting.
7. (SBU) Discussions on the staff papers relating to
documenting ambiguities (Ref D) and the definition of the
term "inspection site" (Ref E) consisted of Germany calling
for movement on documenting ambiguities, Turkey distributing
comments and proposed changes for both papers, and the U.S.
offering the minor proposed change to the document on
inspection site as referenced in the guidance (Ref B). The
Turkish and U.S. comments will be incorporated in the
documents and discussed at the next meeting.
8. (SBU) While some questions were raised regarding the
effects of a Russian suspension of the CFE Treaty, the VCC
chair informed delegations that the HLTF would be discussing
political, legal, and some operational considerations. Until
a report from the HLTF, the VCC could not address those
questions. However, he did indicate that he may include
"Effects of Russian Suspension" on the agenda for the next
VCC in the event that the outcome of the HLTF meeting
provides a basis for VCC discussion.
9. (C) The following changes to the CFE inspection schedule
- France in Russian flank moved from time block 52 to 31
(supplementary inspection) (NOTE. Time block 52 would be
during the period of Russian suspension whereas time block 31
would not. END NOTE.)
- Portugal in Russia moved from time block 20 to time block
- Spain in Russia moved from time block 28 to time block 32.
- Germany in Russia moved from time block 50 to time block 36
(NOTE. Time block 50 would be during the period of Russian
suspension whereas time block 36 would not. END NOTE.)
- Germany in Ukraine moved from time block 20 to time block
31 (quota inspection).
- Germany in Ukraine moved from time block 31 to time block
20 (supplementary inspection).
- Germany in Russia moved from time block 38 to time block 39.
10. (SBU) The following is a schedule of remaining meetings
of the VCC in 2007:
- September 12: Experts on Russian Flank Data at 10:30.
- September 13: Experts at 9:30 (CFE and VD), VCC at 13:30.
- October 4-5: VCC Seminar.
- November 15: Experts at 9:30 (including VD evaluation
coordination), VCC at 13:30.
- December 19: Experts for quota allocation.
Norway raised the issue of having too few meetings and the
chair stated we can return to that issue at the next meeting.
11. (C) USDel recommends preparing the following issues for
USNATO 00000431 003.2 OF 003
discussion at the next VCC meeting on September 13:
- Comments on re-issue of FFT paper on NATO coordination of
VD inspections (after Germany,s comments are included).
- If prepared and distributed, a U.S. FFT paper on
collaborating with non-NATO pS on VD inspections through
pairing, after internal NATO coordination is resolved.
- U.S. perspective on the CARs Seminar and any efforts to
link to CSBM discussions in Vienna as proposed by Germany.
- Staff papers regarding documenting ambiguities and defining
the term "inspection site" with changes by Turkey. (Refs D
- Operational considerations (i.e. scheduling of
inspections), in anticipation of a Russian suspension of the
CFE Treaty, pending the outcome of upcoming HLTF meetings.