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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
07USNATO457
2007-08-22 17:26:00
CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN
Mission USNATO
Cable title:  

NORTH ATLANTIC COUNCIL READOUT AUGUST 22 2007

Tags:   NATO  PREL  AF 
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						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 08 USNATO 000457 

SIPDIS

NOFORN
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/21/2017
TAGS: NATO PREL AF
SUBJECT: NORTH ATLANTIC COUNCIL READOUT AUGUST 22 2007

Classified By: CDA Richard G. Olson for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 08 USNATO 000457

SIPDIS

NOFORN
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/21/2017
TAGS: NATO PREL AF
SUBJECT: NORTH ATLANTIC COUNCIL READOUT AUGUST 22 2007

Classified By: CDA Richard G. Olson for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)


1. (C) Summary from the NAC Meeting:

-- Afghanistan: D/SYG commented favorably on U.S. and UK
counternarcotics strategies and noted the upcoming National
Counternarcotics Conference in Kabul. The Chairman of the
Military Committee (CMC) reported that SHAPE will host a
September conference on NATO training and equipment support
for the ANA. The IMS provided its threat assessment and
operational brief, as well as an analysis of the increase in
fighting from 2006 to 2007. The IMS also reported that some
progress had been made on Operational Mentoring and Liaison
Teams (OMLTs) but that NATO is still woefully short of its
targets.

-- Balkans: D/SYG informed Allies about the upcoming Troika
and Contact Group meetings on Kosovo. The CMC stated that
the operational tempo of KFOR remains high as it continues to
train the Kosovo Police Service, and that the Balkans forest
fires were under "reasonable control." Netherlands PermRep
mentioned recent statements by Serbian PM demanding that
Serbian troops/police be allowed back into Kosovo, and
informed Allies about Serbian criticism that KFOR is not
doing enough to protect religious sites. Portuguese Charge
informed Allies of Portuguese Foreign Minister,s visit to
Pristina today.

-- Darfur: CMC noted on-going UN and AU discussions on the
transition from AMIS to the Hybrid UN-AU Mission in Darfur
(UNAMID) and informed the NAC that NATO and the UN will hold
staff level talks on UNAMID in September.

-- Iraq: CMC informed Allies that NTMI activities are
proceeding as planned, noting that an advance team from the
Italian Carabinieri deploys to Iraq this week.

-- Statements on Political Subjects: The Spanish Charge,
speaking for the OSCE CIO, discussed the recent Kazakhstan
elections, saying the final election report will be issued in
two months.

-- Georgia Missile Incident: Under AOB, the D/SYG noted that
Georgia was discussed yesterday in the Political Committee
and that there is a broad consensus on the facts of the

August 6 missile incident, but there is no consensus on next
steps. The Council discussed the incident and investigation
at length, revealing a division between those who favor some
public statement by NATO and those who prefer to let OSCE
take the lead.

END SUMMARY.

Afghanistan
--------------

2. (C) D/SYG Minuto-Rizzo, chairing, called the recently
announced U.S. and UK counternarcotics strategies

USNATO 00000457 002 OF 008


constructive, noting they contained numerous pragmatic
proposals aimed to address the recognized linkage between the
insurgency and narcotics trade in Afghanistan. He pointed to
the strategies as excellent background in preparation for the
NAC,s September 5 NAC meeting with UNODC Director Costa.
The D/SYG also highlighted the August 28 National
Counternarcotics Conference in Kabul, noting that the Afghan
government is considering to hold a special session of the
Policy Action Group during the conference, which President
Karzai may attend to signal high-level backing.


3. (C) CMC Henault told the Council that SHAPE was continuing
preparations for a September 18-19 briefing and conference
for Allied and partner military reps on the status of NATO,s
ANA training and equipping support, and future needs. CSTC-A
officers from Kabul will participate, and will be the key
providers of information on current ANA needs.


4. (C) New IMS AD for Operations, Italian BG Ligobbi,
provided a threat assessment and operational update. He
noted the "spillover" effect from ongoing operations in Farah
in RC-West that was pushing more enemy fighters northward
into Badghis province. He labeled Musa Qala district in
RC-South,s Helmand province as a "safehaven" that permitted
enemy resupply throughout RC-South, and noted that Opposing
Militant Forces (OMF) remained intent to retake the
Sangin-Kajaki corridor, currently secured by ISAF following
intense operations over the summer. COMISAF,s main effort
remained in RC-East, he stated, where ISAF,s theater task
force was working with Afghan forces in a brigade-size
operation in and around Tora Bora, Nangarhar. Looking at the
number of significant activity reports (SIGACT), as a measure
of the level of fighting throughout the country, Ligobbi
concurred that the amount of SIGACTs in 2007 compared to
similar periods in 2006 had significantly increased, but
noted the level still remained below what ISAF had expected;
remained low in the north, west, and capital; spiked
periodically due to ISAF operations such as Medusa in fall
2006 and Achilles in spring 2007; and resulted largely from
ISAF,s significantly expanded footprint and kinetic
activities in the south and east throughout 2007.


5. (C) Turning to NATO Operational Mentor Liaison Teams
(OMLTs, i.e. embedded trainers), BG Ligobbi noted the total
number of fielded OMLTs is now 24. The current shortfall
remains at 25, however. 12 additional OMLTs have been
offered, and are expected to be operational by March 2008.
Even so, as the ANA continues to increase in size according
to its development plan, NATO will find itself short 44 OMLTs
by the end of 2008 should no additional teams be contributed
by nations.


6. (C) The UK Charge asked whether it was time for ISAF to
re-evaluate commonly held assumptions about OMF territorial
ambitions, for example, the maxim that OMF sought to retake
Kandahar, as OMF use of asymmetric tactics and corresponding
information ops continued to increase in the face of ISAF

USNATO 00000457 003 OF 008


military superiority. (BG LiGobbi granted some truth to
Charge,s statement, but noted that should ISAF forces draw
down, OMF would certainly re-up efforts to take and hold
territory.) The Spanish Charge and Belgian Ambassador
commended a recent international workshop on civilian
casualties hosted by UNAMA, with the Belgian asking that
SHAPE be more diligent in providing the NAC updated
information on civilian casualties in its weekly reporting,
as the NAC had agreed in late July. The D/SYG and CMC took
the comment on board, and noted they would follow up.

Balkans
--------------

7. (C) The D/SYG informed Allies about the Troika invitation
sent out to the parties negotiating over Kosovo regarding
meetings in Vienna on 30 August. Following this, the Troika
will meet with the Contact Group to discuss the outcome of
the talks and a way forward. The D/SYG also noted that a
Contact Group Foreign Minister,s meeting is scheduled for 27
September in New York on the margins of the UN General
Assembly, where the SYG will be in attendance.


8. (C) The D/SYG then informed Council about the change of
command ceremony scheduled to take place at KFOR headquarters
on 31 August, when LTGEN Kather of Germany will be relieved
by LTGEN Bout de Marnhac of France. The Chairman of the
Military Committee (CMC) stated that the operational tempo of
KFOR remains high as discussions on a political settlement
continue. He informed Allies that KFOR,s Multinational Task
Force Monitoring Teams, particularly those in the central,
southern, and western regions, continue to closely watch the
situation on the ground. He also noted that KFOR continues to
train the Kosovo Police Service. Lastly, he noted that forest
fires in the Balkans were under "reasonable control" and that
KFOR was providing support.


9. (C) The Netherlands PermRep mentioned recent statements by
Serbian PM Kostunica demanding that Serbian troops and police
be allowed back into Kosovo; he wondered whether this was an
official position of the Serbian government or just the
personal thoughts of Kostunica, and remarked that he was
"astonished" to see this demand. He also informed Allies
about Serbian criticism that KFOR is not doing enough to
protect religious sites, and asked the D/SYG and Council how
they would like to respond to these positions. The D/SYG said
that he will put together a report covering these and other
events that have taken place in August, to provide more
organized information for next week,s NAC.


10. (C) The Portuguese Charge informed Allies about
Portuguese Foreign Minister Luis Filipe Marques Amado,s
visit to Pristina today (22 August) to meet with UNMIK and
other officials, and said that more information about the
visit will be forthcoming.

Darfur
--------------

USNATO 00000457 004 OF 008



11. (C) CMC noted that The UN and AU continue discussions on
transition from AMIS to the Hybrid UN-AU Mission in Darfur
(UNAMID). Agreement has been reached for the UNAMID
Headquarters to be located in El Fasher, however a temporary
HQ will be established in Khartoum. The main UNAMID
logistical center will be in El Obeid (outside Darfur), and
supplies will go over land 1,400 miles from Port Sudan.


12. (C) CMC said NATO International staff and International
Military Staff will have staff level talks at the UN in New
York 3-6 September to discuss likely NATO logistical support
to UNAMID.

Iraq
--------------

13. (C) The CMC informed Allies that NTMI activities are
proceeding as planned, particularly regarding the
gendarmerie, and noted that an advance team from the Italian
Carabinieri will deploy this week to Iraq. The main body of
Carabinieri will deploy on 28 September and the first
training of Iraqi National Police will begin on 14 October.

Statements on Political Subjects
--------------

14. (C) The Spanish Charge, speaking for the OSCE CIO,
discussed the recent Kazakhstan elections, saying the final
report will be issued in two months. The preliminary report
shows the elections made progress but had problems. They
were calm and well organized and the OSCE had good
cooperation, but problems with election laws led to a weak
and disunited opposition and their inability to pass the 7%
threshold to win seats. There is room for the Kazakhstan
government to improve its elections, and the fact that no
opposition were elected showed weakness of institution.

Any Other Business
--------------

15. (U) D/SYG introduced Martin Howard as the new A/SYG for
Operations.


16. (C) D/SYG noted that Georgia was discussed yesterday in
the Political Committee and that there is a broad consensus
on the facts of the August 6 missile incident, but there is
no consensus on next steps. The OSCE representative Zuzul
has been to Georgia and is now in Russia. OSCE is not
planning its own investigation but will rely on the two
expert reports plus the accounts from the Georgians and
Russians. NATO,s two goals should be to show support for
Georgia and to decrease tensions.


17. (C) Lithuanian PermRep: NATO should take a position in
support of Georgia,s territorial integrity and need for an
independent investigation. The expert reports show there
were three violations of Georgian airspace and his government
supports the idea (raised by U.S. at August 14 NAC) to link
Georgia to the Air Situation Data Exchange (ASDE)


USNATO 00000457 005 OF 008



18. (C) Estonian Deputy PermRep: Estonian experts
participated (with Poland and UK) in the second experts
group. Their findings agreed with the first group that
Georgian airspace was violated three times on August 6, from
the Russian side, that the missile was of Russian origin, and
that Georgian planes are not capable of carrying the AS-11.


19. (C) German Deputy PermRep: His government favors a
"neutral and independent inquiry". The OSCE is the best
framework for this and Germany would nominate German experts
for such an inquiry. But it is still an "open question"
whether the OSCE will conduct an independent inquiry. There
are still many unanswered questions, and more information
from Russia is needed. Germany does not favor issuing a NATO
statement now.


20. (C) Latvian Deputy PermRep: He supported the position of
Lithuania and Estonia, and proposed that the SYG send an
envoy to the region. He also proposed raising the incident
at the next NRC meeting in late Sept.


21. (C) Romanian Acting PermRep: Romania supports the
acceleration of the ASDE project prior to SYG,s Tbilisi
visit in October. She proposed having the NAC participate in
the October visit.


22. (C) Belgian PermRep: His government still has questions
about the nature of the incident, whether the fault lies
locally or in Moscow. He also supported the German approach.
"Let,s not confuse things; the OSCE is working on this,
let,s wait for OSCE CIO to recommend next steps," he stated.
He urged the NAC to express its concerns to Russia in
diplomatic channels rather than publicly.


23. (C) U.S. Charge: The USG supports the two goals laid out
by D/SYG - supporting Georgia,s territorial integrity and
avoiding escalation. We support the OSCE role but believe it
has not yet been fulfilled; Zuzul,s trip is political not
investigative and the OSCE,s intentions are not yet clear.
We should keep open the option of a NATO statement that would
take note of the IGE reports, praise Georgian restraint, and
support Georgia,s territorial integrity. Olson emphasized
that the NAC should visit Georgia to offer support and convey
its views to Georgians directly. He also noted that the ASDE
project signals NATO,s attention to the issue, and said that
completing this project can be a deliverable for the October
trip.


24. (C) French Deputy PermRep: She supported the German and
Belgian positions. She said that our (NATO,s) interest is
"apaisement" (translated into English as "appeasement"), and
not sure a NATO statement now would help, nor would a
statement help in advance of the October SYG visit. France
does not support raising this at the next NRC meeting. She
asked SHAPE to explain why more progress has not been made on
ASDE since it began in 2001.


USNATO 00000457 006 OF 008



25. (C) Polish Deputy PermRep: He observed that the missile
incident is a serious matter requiring thorough
investigation. (Poland participated in the second experts
group.) He supports accelerating the ASDE project, which
might help to clarify and/or deter future such incidents, and
he also supports a NATO statement, as well as the NAC
participating in an October visit.


26. (C) Czech PermRep: He supports a "well balanced" NATO
statement and supports the position of Lithuania and Estonia,
but suggested statement could be issued by a spokesman (ie,
not in the name of the SYG).


27. (C) Spanish PermRep: As OSCE CIO, Zuzul,s OSCE trip is
not investigative, since that would require agreement from
both Russia and Georgia. Spain supports the German/French
position. He said that an investigation should involve all
parties, and urged that all statements should address the
reports and not make conclusions not made in the reports. He
also stated that Russia and Georgia must both cooperate to
clarify the facts of the incident. He does not support a NAC
visit to region, as that would not be "favorable to NATO,s
interests vis--vis Russia."


28. (C) Bulgarian PermRep: There is no sign that Russia will
accept the experts, reports; Russia is still saying it is
all a plot. So an OSCE report based on Russia input not
likely to be productive. Noted that this is not the first
violation of Georgian airspace and NATO should make clear to
Russia it sees this as a serious incident. Supports a NATO
statement or raising the issue in the NRC, as welQas
accelerating ASDE, and a NAC visit.


29. (C) The Netherland PermRep: His government supports the
Belgian/French position on a NATO statement. He stated that
whether or not clarification is forthcoming on why the
missile was dropped, NATO should make clear to Russia that
the repeated overflights are unacceptable. The Netherlands
could possibly support a NAC visit, but not on the basis of
support for Georgia in this incident.


30. (C) British Deputy PermRep: The next step should be
getting clear information on the incident, and to do so, an
OSCE investigation with Russian participation would be best,
but it is not clear that Zuzul can achieve that. Should keep
open the option of a NATO statement or NAC trip until it is
clear if Russia will cooperate with OSCE or not, but does
support accelerating ASDE, though the capabilities of the
system mean it will not make a big difference in preventing
or clarifying any future incidents.


31. (C) Turkish PermRep: His country supports the
Belgian/French position: NATO should support the OSCE and
avoid escalation. He supported the ASDE project and reported
that Ankara is working on an MOU with Georgia and is looking
to resolve a funding issue.


USNATO 00000457 007 OF 008



32. (C) NOTE: The Turkish PermRep said that there were
"financial aspects" of connecting Georgia to the air
situation data exchange. Per SHAPE sources, Turkey is
raising the issue of annual operating cost for the data links
from Georgia to the Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC) at
Eskisehir (Turkey). SHAPE will pay for the initial
connection from NATO (NSIP) funds. According to Turkish
military authorities at NATO, they currently are discussing
how to resolve this issue with the Turkish General Staff. If
Turkey opts not to meet the annual operating costs, they
could seek NATO common funding. Getting approval for those
funds could be difficult because, strictly speaking, they do
not meet a minimum military requirement, the baseline
rationale for a military funding decision. In NATO terms,
they would be considered a partner relationship cost. END
NOTE.


33. (C) Italian PermRep: NATO should wait for the conclusion
of Zuzul,s OSCE mission. A NATO statement now would be
premature, particularly since there is obviously not
consensus in the NAC. He encouraged the NAC to "make clear"
to Russia how serious NATO sees the incident. Italy supports
the ASDE project.


34. (C) Lithuanian PermRep, again: To those opposing a NATO
reaction, he argued that there is little point in waiting for
OSCE to decide its role or for participation from Russia,
since those would never be forthcoming, and meanwhile, time
is passing. The silence from NATO does not help to calm the
tensions in the region, he claimed.


35. (C) Greek Deputy PermRep: Supports the German/French
position "given that the OSCE is currently looking into the
matter."


36. (C) Portuguese Deputy PermRep: A NATO statement should
follow a "wrap up" of the various reports, so we should wait
to get the OSCE assessment and a clear Russia reaction. He
suggested that by waiting NATO can issue a more
"comprehensive statement."


37. (C) The D/SYG closed the discussion by drawing the
following conclusions:
-- NATO supports the two goals of supporting Georgia,s
territorial integrity and seeking to reduce tensions, but
there are differences in the NAC on how to achieve this.
-- It,s not true to say NATO has done nothing. NATO is
paying attention to the situation and DSYG and others have
been in contact with Georgian officials.
-- NATO wants to take a "moderate and responsible" approach.


38. (C) The D/SYG suggested the following next steps:
-- Accelerate the ASDE project; SHAPE "says they,re ready to
go".
-- Georgia has not asked for formal political consultations
with NATO, but we could do that if they request.
-- Leave option open for a future statement, waiting for

USNATO 00000457 008 OF 008


Zuzul to finish his mission.
-- The SYG,s trip to Tbilisi is Oct 2-3, which is fairly
soon.
-- The idea of a NAC visit will be raised again.


OLSON