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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
07USUNNEWYORK97 2007-02-02 23:03:00 CONFIDENTIAL USUN New York
Cable title:  

KOSOVO: USUN RUNS INTERFERENCE AT UN FOR AHTISAARI

Tags:   PGOV PREL YI UNMIK 
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VZCZCXYZ0024
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0097/01 0332303
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 022303Z FEB 07
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1269
INFO RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBW/AMEMBASSY BELGRADE PRIORITY 0128
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW PRIORITY 0951
RUEHPS/USOFFICE PRISTINA PRIORITY 0728
					  C O N F I D E N T I A L USUN NEW YORK 000097 

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E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/01/2017
TAGS: PGOV PREL YI UNMIK
SUBJECT: KOSOVO: USUN RUNS INTERFERENCE AT UN FOR AHTISAARI
PAPERS


Classified By: Acting Permanent Representative Alejandro D. Wolff for R
easons 1.4 B/D.



1. (C) SUMMARY. USUN has delivered strong messages at several
UN levels making clear our conviction that Special Envoy
Ahtisaari should have the last word on the composition of his
own settlement proposal and report. UN Department of
Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) Europe Director Harland
reassured us that an agreement had been struck with Ahtisaari
whereby DPKO and the UN department of political affairs (DPA)
and office of legal affairs (OLA) provide input to Ahtisaari
but leave the final pen to him. Acting Permrep and P-3
counterparts strongly cautioned U/SYG For Political Affairs
Gambari against attempting to edit the Ahtisaari report once
submitted. Gambari was receptive, but his staff members were
defensive about what they saw as their traditional role as
reviewers of SE products. Ahtisaari having thereafter
privately indicated that SYG Ban had assured him he would
have the last word on the report, Ambassador Wolff and U.S.
Special Representative Wisner used an already scheduled
meeting with Ban chief of staff Nambiar to solicit and
receive assurances that there would be no UN-induced delay in
the status process. END SUMMARY.

USUN PUSHES DPKO ON AHTISAARI REPORT


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





2. (C) USUN Deputy Polcounselor and Poloff met with DPKO
Europe and Americas Director David Harland on January 22 to
relay concerns that Special Envoy Ahtisaari's final report
should reach the Security Council without DPKO or other UN
edits. Deputy Polcounselor underscored reports that certain
parties in the UN were expecting to substantively edit
Ahtisaari's report. Harland said Ahtisaari had afforded DPKO
access to the UNOSEK drafting process for several months and
that DPKO has recently enjoyed a virtually continuous
presence on the drafting team. Drawing on this working
relationship, Harland added, Ahtisaari and he had recently
concluded two days of meetings with an agreement that DPKO
would continue to provide suggestions to UNOSEK but would
leave the final drafting pen to Ahtisaari. Qualifying his
comments with an express acknowledgment that he spoke with
authority only with regard to DPKO's relations with
Ahtisaari, Harland said he understood that DPA and OLA had
made similar arrangements. He added that DPA and OLA had
been in direct communication with UNOSEK drafters only since
January 4 and consequently were providing relatively more
input of late than was DPKO. He said OLA in particular was
actively scrubbing the Ahtisaari draft in light of UN
equities, in Kosovo and elsewhere, far beyond UNOSEK. He
said there would be a meeting soon between Ahtisaari and SYG
Ban ki-Moon and concluded that,"unless the SYG has strong
views, we can expect this approach will be finalized."
(NOTE. Ahtisaari meets with Ban on February 8 in New York.
END NOTE.)



3. (C) Harland elaborated his understanding of how
Ahtisaari's product would reach the Security Council,
employing the analogy of a wedding cake saying that the
bottom layer would be Ahtisaari's settlement proposal, the
middle his report explaining how he got there together with
his final status recommendations, and the top (with the bride
and groom) a note of transmission from SYG Ban to the
Security Council. He said the goal of this structure was to
allow Russia and China to take aim at the middle layer if
necessary without damaging the whole cake. Harland then
volunteered he had heard through the DPKO grapevine that Ban
might be looking to carve out for himself a larger role on
Kosovo and, almost in the same breath tasked DPKO Kosovo Desk
Chief Marco Bianchini with drafting talking points calling
for U/SYG for Peacekeeping Operations Guehenno to counsel Ban
to respect DPKO's deal with Ahtisaari by declining to modify
his report. Summing up, Deputy Polcounselor suggested that
DPKO, in keeping with the arrangements made with Ahtisaari,
should confine future comments on the settlement proposal to
areas in it that Ahtisaari himself changes after consulting
with the parties and should have no suggestions on
Ahtisaari's report after its submission to the SYG. Harland
agreed.

P-3 PERMREPS PUSH DPA


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





4. (C) On January 24, Acting Permrep and P-3 counterparts
met U/SYG for Political Affairs Gambari and laid down a clear
marker that DPA, and ultimately Ban, should fall in line
behind Ahtisaari, endorse his approach, and transmit the
Ahtisaari plan untouched to the Security Council according to


the current timeline. Gambari was receptive, but his staff
indicated the UN had questions about its role and commented
that Russia was advocating that all involved should wait at
least until there is a new government in Belgrade with which
to discuss the settlement proposal. The P-3 responded that
if UN officials had questions or concerns, they should share
them with Ahtisaari before his proposal and report are in
final. Responding to a Gambari staffer's suggestion that the
EU might not speak with one voice on Kosovo policy, the
French Charge stated decisively that the EU would be united
in support of Ahtisaari's plan in both substance and timing
and sharply told the staffers that he did not want the
Secretariat sowing disunity with any ideas that drifted away

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Ahtisaari's approach. The P-3 also rebutted concerns about
timing, underscoring that the Secretariat should not fall
into the "Moscow trap" that alleges that the issue is
essentially timing and can be resolved by slowing down the
pace. The P-3 said that any slow-down could enhance the
prospect of violence.

USG PUSHES SYG's CHIEF OF STAFF


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





5. (C) On January 31, Ambassador Wolff and Ambassador
Wisner, the Secretary's Special Representative to the Kosovo
Status Talks, met U/SYG Vijay Nambiar, the SYG's chief of
staff. Having been informed just before the meeting that SYG
Ban had assured Ahtisaari that he would have the final word
on his own report, the ambassadors shifted the meeting's
focus to the endgame of the status process and several
potential problems. Noting that Serbian Prime Minister
Kostunica had refused to meet with Ahtisaari to receive his
settlement proposal even though the PM continued to meet with
visiting European officials, Ambassador Wisner warned that
Belgrade might not engage with Ahtisaari at all in February.
Wisner said we should also be prepared for ambiguity from
Moscow in that the Russians seem to have not yet made up
their minds what to do on Kosovo. The U.S., he said, was
telling Russia clearly that we have been in this negotiation
together since the beginning and want to finish it with them.
Nambiar signaled understanding of these points. His aide
said China and other Security Council members might try to
hide behind the Russians and that "the European position
needs to be solid to prevent any problems." Ambassadors
Wolff and Wisner concurred with Wisner noting that "the
European resolve I am seeing is as strong as I have witnessed
on any issue." Wisner also argued that the time frame was
important as delay risked more violence. Nambiar agreed it
would be best to move quickly. Wisner said SRSG Rucker and
UNMIK would need full backing from the Secretariat to fashion
a successful ending in Kosovo for the UN system. Nambiar's
aide said the SYG and Ahtisaari would need to discuss when
Ahtisaari's package should be taken to the Security Council
but that it should be soon, probably by "the end of February
or early March."



6. (C) COMMENT. We are somewhat comforted that DPKO seems to
have found a reasonable procedural way forward with
Ahtisaari, although our soundings indicate some DPKO
officials continue to pursue personal agendas on Kosovo, and
we aren't fully satisfied that Harland has his whole division
singing from the same sheet of music. Similarly at DPA,
Gambari is saying the right things, but his staff seems
inclined to begin walking his words back almost as soon as he
utters them. Nambiar seems to be on board, but we won't rest
easy until we hear Ban, still on travel, expressly adopt the
Kosovo process and timeline Ahtisaari envisages.
WOLFF