2008-04-23 17:02:00
Mission USOSCE
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DE RUEHVEN #0110/01 1141702
P 231702Z APR 08




E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: A. STATE 40664

B. STATE 40727

Sensitive but Unclassified; please protect accordingly. Not
for Internet.




E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: A. STATE 40664

B. STATE 40727

Sensitive but Unclassified; please protect accordingly. Not
for Internet.
1.(SBU) Summary: At the April 22 Joint Consultative Group
(JCG),Russia spoke at length about returning to a discussion
about the terms for states wishing to accede to the a/CFE
Treaty. After Poland delivered a joint statement on behalf
of CFE States Parties in NATO, the U.S., UK, and Germany (in
a long but strong response) responded by rejecting Russia's
contentions and urging Russia to take up the parallel actions
package as the basis for resuming CFE before we discuss
elements for a/CFE. Russia says it is a chicken and egg
situation - NATO wants the chicken (package),Russia wants
the elements (eggs) - which comes first? In addition, the
U.S., Turkey, Norway, Romania, and Germany expressed concern
about Russia,s non-compliance with the quarterly reporting
requirements for Kushchevskaya under the flank document. The
next plenary will be on April 29, with a Hungarian
presentation on "stationing and temporary deployments under
a/CFE" and a Russia raising "specific elements to restore
viability" to CFE. See para 7. The May 6 JCG is likely to be
cancelled. End summary.

Chicken or Egg?

2. (SBU) Russia (Ulyanov) began his lengthy presentation by
recalling that it had raised the subject of accession for new
Treaty members previously on November 20, 2007, and not much
has been said about it in the last five months. Russia
believes it is still an important issue, and it understands
that work has been going on with the four prospective members
(Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Slovenia). Reports on the
subject would be welcome. Following are key remarks of the
Russian presentation:

--Russia has seen problems since some of these countries
joined NATO, including a noticeable increase in the military
potential of its neighbors near its northwest border.
Addressing this threat is an essential prerequisite toward
restoring the viability of the Treaty. Territory in these
countries is not subject to limits and this has an impact on

trust for the European continent;

--In 1998, Russia made a commitment to show restraint -
conditioned on the existing military situation - in the
Leningrad Military District and Kaliningrad and Pskov
Oblasts. Russia must stress yet again, that the situation is
radically different now. The NATO military bloc has
increased its membership and its armaments. Russia is
considering its own commitment again in light of this
military escalation within NATO. The military balance of 8-9
years ago should be restored. "Russia,s preference would be
for this balance to be restored by NATO reductions instead of
Russian increases;"

--The territory of the Baltic states should be in the flanks.
How we determine the levels for these new states is
important. Russia has heard no rationale or response to its
questions from last fall, and wonders why Allies are
reluctant to respond. Russia knows that NATO will discuss
terms for accession and an effort is underway to map out the
Baltics, future participation;

--Russia reminds us of the December 8, 1998 NATO communique
that includes a commitment concerning the use of restraint
and flexibility with respect to the pending Adapted CFE
Treaty. But what is NATO doing to abide by that statement?
According to the protocols for adaptation, each and every
state of former Eastern Europe established levels for
national and territorial ceilings (NC/TC). This should hold
for the Baltics as well (NC=TC). There is no reason for it
to be otherwise. "I would be interested in hearing if anyone
has a different perspective."

--In reaching agreement on NC and TC for the Balts, we need

to consider the reinvigoration of the NATO Alliance. The
March 28 NAC statement reaffirmed Allies willingness to
ratify the a/CFE and to consider other measures. However,
there has been no follow-up so far. Silent refusal by NATO
to discuss these terms refutes, rather than affirms the NAC
statement. (Statement will be in the Journal)

3.(SBU) Poland, on behalf of each CFE NATO state, read the
text prepared by the JCG-T on the previous day, recalling the
paragraph on accession from the March 28 NAC statement. Begin

"Poland, on behalf of (list of NATO CFE states),wishes to
recall for all delegations that the North Atlantic Council
statement issued on 28 March 2008, states that "upon
agreement by NATO and Russia on the parallel actions
package... NATO members that are not Parties to the CFE
Treaty will publicly reiterate their readiness to request
accession to the Adapted Treaty as soon as it enters into
force. Following consultations with Allies, they will be
open to discussions with all States Parties to the Treaty,
including with Russia, on the conditions for their
accession." End Text: (see Journal)

--Comment: At the JCG-T the day before, all Allies agreed on
the need for a common response to the expected Russian
intervention. However, several Allies had instructions to
quote directly from the March 28 NAC statement regarding the
paragraph on accession, rather than the longer U.S. draft
statement. End Comment.

4. SBU) Germany (Richter) followed with its own lengthy
remarks, recognizing the concerns Russia has with the "grey
zone" on its border that is not controlled by arms control.
However, the Baltics and Slovenia have the prerogative to
ensure their own security and whether they want to be in the
flanks or not under the a/CFE. This is a matter for future
negotiations, but at the end of day it does not matter
whether ceilings are the same (meaning NCs and TCs are
equal),but whether we can ensure national security for all.

--According to the NATO principles from 1997-8 concerning
restraint, Germany is prepared to talk about numbers, but
NATO does not intend to increase its forces/numbers near the
Russia,s borders, and have not so far. Does Russia share
this view or has something happened since 1998?

--Within the JCG, Germany also supports the March 28 NAC
statement, including the paragraph referenced by Poland on
accession. Four states have repeatedly notified their
willingness to accede to the a/CFE. This would expand the
arms control network in Europe, and would yield a positive
result for European security as a whole;

--After agreement is reached to work on the basis of the
parallel actions package, then we can discuss conditions for
EIF, including work with states not currently represented in
the JCG. We should not discuss this without them;

--Russia should not view this issue in isolation, but as part
of NATO,s package. Has Russia reviewed NATO,s offer yet?
How does Russia plan to respond?

5. (SBU) Per Ref A, the U.S. (Neighbour) delivered our
statement on the March 28 NAC statement paragraph on
accession, and other provisos for discussion with the four
prospective members. (see Journal).

6. (SBU) The UK (Gare) supported Germany and the U.S., and
refuted Russia,s idea that we begin discussions on NC and
TCs without the four states since they are entitled to be
present for such discussions. With respect to Russia,s
claim of massive military force increases, she reminded that
the UK provided two presentations on the subject, that proved
that military forces had decreased by 50 percent. This was
certainly not the result of Russian reductions and NATO

--She expressed concern that Russia may be reconsidering its
commitment to show restraint in Kaliningrad, Leningrad and
Pskov, and asked for confirmation that this is not being done
while negotiations on the parallel action package are
underway. She also urged Russia to resume Treaty
implementation. While Russia pleas for NATO to restore
viability to the Treaty, Russia could also restore viability
by restarting its participation.

NATO enlargement threatens Russia...

7. (SBU) In response to Allies replies: Russia agreed that
it is not normal to discuss procedural issues for Baltics
without their presence. In fact, on November 20, 2007,
Russia was ready to invite them to JCG meetings. We need a
procedural solution to do so. So far, Russia has only
received vague, general answers to its November 20 questions:
Would the Balts be in the flanks? What would their NC/TC,s
be? Would there be sizable ceilings for them?

--NATO is engaging in sizable increases in Estonia and
Lithuania - although not so much in Latvia. For example,
Lithuania has 396 APCs - almost the same as the UK, exceeds
Portugal and Norway, and is more than most other NATO states.
NATO is engaged in arms escalations.

--Russia is not yet reconsidering its policy of restraint,
but it is being asked to continue such restraint while the
Allies are not doing so in the Baltics. Russia prefers the
military balance of 1999 and wants it to be restored, but not
by Russian arms increases, but by its neighbors reducing
arms. Russia wants a constructive approach.

--Russia challenged (again) the U.S. point that accession can
only be done after the EIF of a/CFE. This is a false
premise, and Russia will not entertain the veracity of such
an assertion. The territory of three Baltic states was
excluded from the CFE Treaty by a decision of JCG experts,
and therefore they can join the current Treaty by the same
mechanism. Does not mean discussions cannot take place on
the topic. The point is not whether they are willing to
accede -all know they are willing, but under what terms?

--Russia acknowledges the statement made by Poland on the
March 28 NAC statement paragraph on what is clearly a Bloc
policy. There are four Allies that should be able to consult
accordingly. A Bloc approach is not helpful, but reflects
the reality on the ground.

--In response to Germany, Russia wants to engage in
substantive talks and not to wait for a year (until EIF
a/CFE),but NATO is not prepared to do so yet. Is Russia
happy about NATO restraint? How should such a question be
answered? Depends on the definition of substantial combat
forces? Russia has been waiting 11 years for NATO clarity of
this concept. In Russia,s view, a Lithuanian airfield is
being prepared for substantial combat aircraft operations.
The NATO Alliance has failed to take up the issue, including
how this definition applies to combat aircraft.

--Much has been said about the parallel actions package, but
Russia sees a discrepancy as to the way ahead. NATO wants
agreement on the package before any elements can be
discussed. Russia wants to discuss certain elements, like
accession of new states. Which is the chicken, and which is
the egg? What do we really stand to benefit by waiting to
discuss the elements after the package has been agreed. We
will discuss them, now or later - the only difference is
tactics. The entire approach should be discussed further at
the April 29 JCG Plenary.

--Comment: Per Russia,s request for further discussion of
"chickens and eggs" on April 29, USDel does not believe any
new ground will be covered on this subject. The March 28 NAC
statement speaks for itself, and there is strong allied
support in Vienna to maintain that position here. On April

23, Hungary, as JCG Chair, received and shared with us
Russia's outline of points for the April 29 discussion
including: "When will it be more appropriate to start
discussing the practical issues of restoring the viability of
the CFE Treaty: before or after the package solution has
been agreed upon?" Russia asserts that practical issues
include: defining "substantial combat forces," collective
ceilings for NATO, and accession. Mission welcomes additional
Washington views. End comment.

...NATO is not a threat to Russia

8.(SBU) Germany made several additional strong points:

--Germany cannot see any plans in the Baltic states as a
threat to Russia,s national security. What is the threat
to Russia,s northwest borders by 396 APCs in Lithuania?
This number of APCs must have been taken from the Arms
Transfers Register, which is only "raw material." Such APCs
have not yet been assigned to or modified for specific tasks
(reconnaissance, look-alikes, etc.) and may not be covered by
CFE, or some may not be used at all (i.e., spare parts).
Russia should wait for specific information on their
assignments before drawing conclusions.

--NATO has made it clear it does not intend to station
substantial combat forces there. However, these states
should have the ability to support the Alliance as a whole.
The threat environment under the bloc approach is over, and
we are in an era of cooperative security now.

--Germany wants a formal response from Russia to the March 28
NAC statement and parallel actions package, but it is not
trying to prescribe how Russia responds. Germany is
interested in Russia,s ideas, and would welcome a response
in the JCG.

Kush non-compliance

9.(SBU) Per Ref B, the U.S. (Neighbour) read the statement on
Russia,s non-compliance with the quarterly information
exchange requirements under the flank document for
Kushchevskaya. (JCG.DEL/16/08). Turkey (Begec) supported
the U.S. finding, and expressed disappointment that Russia
has not implemented this obligation since its "suspension."
Turkey is ready to maintain the flank arrangement and to work
with the security concerns of all States Parties, but it
expects reciprocity in return. Romania (Neculaescu) and
Norway (Schroder) also expressed regret about Russia,s
non-compliance in this area.

10. (SBU) Germany (Richter) pointed out that transparency
provided by the quarterly reports agreed in 1996 during the
first Review Conference, was the result of a Russian request
for an exemption to the flank zone for certain places,
including Kushchevskaya. This is just one more example of
the hole growing from the lack of information exchange, which
will surely have an impact of overall European security.
Germany reiterated its previous call from February 26 for
Russia to engage on the approach in the parallel action

Russia: "for the 1,001st time"

11.(SBU) Russia impatiently shot back that at the previous
meeting it had already reserved its right not to respond to
such statements, and sees no need to keep trotting out
previous Russian answers. "So for the 1,001st time: Russia
suspended all its obligations, including the flank document,
and Russian law prohibits it from doing otherwise."
Delegations should recall that CFE was signed at a time
preceded by colossal strategic shifts, including the demise
of the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union. The Treaty was
outdated soon after signature, especially the flanks. Russia

tried for five years after signature to change this and it
was amended when others finally realized its negative impact
to Russia,s security.

--Russia was forced to accommodate many extra inspections,
semi-annual notifications, and quarterly reports for
Kushchevskaya. This was an act of discrimination. No other
state was asked to accept such terms. Russia accepted them
for the sake of the arms control regime.

--As a result of NATO enlargement, NATO states are the ones
violating CFE in a flagrant manner by breaching in physical
terms over 5000 tanks and countless APCs and artillery
pieces. The U.S. has exacerbated the situation by stationing
in Bulgaria and Romania with new ceilings. This makes lack
of Kushchevskaya reporting pale by comparison. This
discrimination should end.

12. (SBU) The U.S. responded briefly by recalling our
explanations in the JCG last fall of U.S. activity in
Bulgaria and Romania, and noted that there is no U.S. TLE
present there. Turning to Russia's response on Kushchevskaya,
the U.S. said Russia remains a party to the CFE Treaty and
still has an obligation to provide this information since
there is no Treaty provision for "suspension." Also, we
referred to Russia,s last (March 2007) quarterly report on
Kushchevskaya and highlighted the large numbers of TLE
located there. Turkey reiterated its right to raise issues of
non-compliance with the Treaty to the JCG.

13. (SBU) Germany reacted negatively toward Russia,s use of
the word "discrimination" and said it was not appropriate for
our negotiations. All are subject to discrimination in some
way or another - we are all different sizes, have different
geography, military forces, etc. Thus, we all have different
duties with respect to information exchange. Under
Germany,s 4 2 Treaty, it agreed that no foreign troops may
be present on certain parts of the combined German territory.
This was a compromise, and we all have to do so to enter
into agreements. We need a stable, transparent system for
mutual confidence.

14. (SBU) Russia, unable to resist the last word, took
Germany,s point about preventing foreign troops on part of
ones territory, but recalled that CFE prohibits Russia from
stationing Russian troops on its own territory. Perhaps this
should be considered a "colonialist" view rather than
discriminatory. Lastly, Russia echoed Turkey,s point that
it is prepared to take on board the concerns of others and
hopes consultations will provide the basis for a common


15. (SBU) TOI Chair (Fardellotti, Italy) drew attention to
the reference document agreed by the JCG Treaty Operations
and Implementation working group (TOI) last week, as
circulated under JCG.TOI/8/08. This TOI Chairman,s
Statement, and its attachment will become the new version of
the reference document for the "List of Notifications and
Formats," replacing the 1991 version.

16. (SBU) Norway announced that it will swap dates with
Poland for chairing the JCG.

17. (SBU) Poland, as current JCG-T chair, noted that on May 6
an important meeting will be held in Brussels, and
recommended that the JCG Plenary be canceled for that date.
Hungary, as current JCG Chair, has consulted on the proposal,
including with Russia, and says there is consensus to cancel
the meeting on May 6. This will be formally agreed at the
April 29 JCG plenary.

18. (SBU) Hungary reminded delegations that it would be
making a presentation to the April 29 JCG on "stationing and
temporary deployments during a/CFE and beyond."

19. (SBU) At the JCG-T, Germany said it would move its
planned presentation to May 13 given the May 6 HLTF date.