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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
09UNVIEVIENNA222
2009-05-11 15:20:00
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
UNVIE
Cable title:  

UNODC and AFPAK STRATEGIES Loom Large for Vienna Friends of

Tags:   SNAR  AF  PK  UN  PTER  UK 
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VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHUNV #0222/01 1311520
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 111520Z MAY 09
FM USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9451
INFO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1650
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS
AFGHA/AFGHANISTAN COLLECTIVE
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 0094
						UNCLAS UNVIE VIENNA 000222 

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

SRAP for Paul Jones

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR AF PK UN PTER UK

SUBJECT: UNODC and AFPAK STRATEGIES Loom Large for Vienna Friends of
Afghanistan

REF: A: 08 UNVIE VIENNA 170
B: KABUL 1064
C: UNVIE VIENNA 195
D: UNVIE VIENNA 152

-------
SUMMARY
-------

UNCLAS UNVIE VIENNA 000222

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

SRAP for Paul Jones

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR AF PK UN PTER UK

SUBJECT: UNODC and AFPAK STRATEGIES Loom Large for Vienna Friends of
Afghanistan

REF: A: 08 UNVIE VIENNA 170
B: KABUL 1064
C: UNVIE VIENNA 195
D: UNVIE VIENNA 152

--------------
SUMMARY
--------------


1. (SBU) SUMMARY: In a meeting on April 28 chaired by the UK
Ambassador, Vienna's Friends of Afghanistan heard a presentation by
the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) on its 2009-2011
Afghanistan counter-narcotics strategy. UNODC Executive Director
Antonio Costa informed delegations he would travel to Afghanistan on
the week of May 4 on a fact-finding mission, specifically with
regard to narcotic issues on the Afghanistan-Iran-Pakistan border
("triangle border"). He expressed his hope that UNODC would be
briefed on ISAF military operations executed against heroin labs,
convoys and markets. Other UNODC officials discussed new
developments in their ongoing efforts to promote the rule of law and
combat the opium poppy/heroin problem, with a specific focus on its
Triangular Initiative. Ambassador elaborated on the new U.S. AFPAK
strategy, for which delegations expressed their support. (Note:
Pakistan was not invited to join the Friends group owing to
Afghanistan's characterizing it as "premature". (Ref A) End Note.)
Reflecting sensitivity over suggestions that Indian companies had
become a major source of heroin precursors, the Indian Ambassador
persistently and aggressively questioned UNODC officials on the
origin of precursor chemicals to Afghanistan, and when UNODC would
initiate a precursor monitoring project to determine the origins of
such chemicals. Mission was encouraged by the unqualified support
for the AFPAK strategy, and by UNODC's increasing emphasis on its
long-standing regional approach for combating Afghan drugs. END
SUMMARY.

--------------
UNODC's 2009-2011 Afghanistan
Strategy and Budget Shortfall
--------------


2. (SBU) UNODC's Kabul office recently rolled out its draft
Afghanistan Strategy Paper 2009-2011 to major donors in Kabul (Ref
B). Both Costa and Bernard Frahi, Deputy Director of UNODC's
Division of Operations described the increasing regional dimension
of UNODC's efforts in Afghanistan, trying to identify within its
Rainbow Strategy where UNODC could add value and implement programs.

Frahi highlighted UNODC's efforts to strengthen Afghanistan's
western border with 25 new posts, and to supply additional equipment
and mentoring programs to the Afghan police and other law
enforcement officials, including the new police garrison in Nimroz
charged with monitoring the triangle border. Frahi also noted
UNODC's provision of basic training in office management and
alternative development programs for five Ministry of Counter
Narcotics (MCN) offices being established in the provinces, as well
as law libraries for six new provincial Justice Support Centers.
Finally, Frahi detailed the creation of a High Office of Oversight
in Kabul to help in the fight against corruption, and noted UNODC
assistance to the Afghan Bar Association in this regard. Frahi
stressed that UNODC had a total Afghanistan budget of USD72 million
for 2008, and delivered USD20 million of services with a 94pct
implementation rate.


3. (SBU) Frahi expressed concern about the projected budgetary
shortfall for UNODC's 2009-2011 Afghanistan strategy. While the
USD6 million budgeted for research and analysis will be fully
funded, UNODC expects a more than 50pct shortfall for UNODC's other
programs in Afghanistan: in health and human development, and
governance, security and rule of law. He promised to disseminate a
list of such unfunded and under-funded projects. [Note: Frahi and
Costa's power point presentations have been forwarded to INL/PC.
End note.]

--------------
Indian Ambassador Makes His Point
--------------


4. (SBU) Interrupting Costa and Frahi, the Indian Ambassador
pointedly asked why UNODC had yet to initiate a project aimed at
better understanding the origins of the precursor chemicals
currently crossing Afghanistan's borders. Costa and his staff
attempted to explain the magnitude and complexity of the precursor
problem, and the difficulty of creating any report or monitoring
mechanism. However, the Indian Ambassador insisted on UNODC
explaining "the obvious source of the precursors." Despite Costa's
plea not to make this a "bilateral issue," the Indian Ambassador

continued his aggressive line of questioning.


5. (SBU) Chair UK Ambassador asked the meeting to move on to the
next agenda item, with the understanding that the precursor
chemicals issue would need to be further addressed. Costa pointed
to the Mexican decision to outlaw the importation of potassium
pomagranate (a precursor for cocaine) as an example of how to start
the fight against acetic anhydride (a precursor for heroin). The
Afghan Ambassador pointed out that last fall Afghanistan formally
declared that the country had no legitimate use for acetic
anhydride, thereby making any import illegal. Costa, apparently
surprised by this information, stressed the need to implement this
law.


6. (SBU) Afghan Ambassador complimented the UNODC for its
Triangular Initiative, but lamented that its focus so far is only
drug trafficking. In his words, "Our neighbors are consumers as
well, and wherever these drugs go, so goes corruption. The time has
come to deal with our neighbors on increasing cooperation on
consumption, corruption and precursors." Costa demurred, but stated
that the Triangular Initiative could in the future lead to other
illegal "flows" like arms, humans and money.

--------------
UK: Helmand Plan May Work,
CARD Fully Funded
--------------


7. (SBU) Mark James, Head of UK's Counter Narcotics Strategy Team
in the Afghanistan Drugs Inter-Departmental Unit of the Foreign and
Commonwealth Office, updated the Group on UK's current
counternarcotics plan in Helmand Province and its CARD Program.
While the results of the Helmand plan will not emerge until next
growing season, James stated that initial indications show success
in depressing opium cultivation, and a very positive effect on
Afghan perceptions of the provincial government, which is
increasingly viewed by the people as responsive to and engaged in
their concerns. James also admitted that while eradication is a
controversial subject, it is one component of Afghanistan's national
strategy. He stressed that eradication should be manual,
ground-based, conducted early in the growing season, and targeted to
those areas where alternative development is possible (such as the
food zones in Helmand). Finally, James briefed the Friends on CARD,
which he described as essentially a rural development program
targeted at maintaining a province's poppy-free status. James
stated that it is currently fully funded, at least for the first 12
months of its implementation.

--------------
Costa Asks for ISAF Briefing
on Military Operations
--------------


8. (SBU) Costa expressed support for the ISAF-NATO decision to
conduct counter-narcotics military operations against the opium
market (Ref C) He named Operations Diesel, Buenos Aires, Tucker and
Henry as those of which he had knowledge from press reports.
However, he reiterated his wish to be de-briefed on current and
future operations, so that UNODC could factor these operations into
its ongoing analysis of poppy cultivation and narcotics trafficking
(Ref C).


9. (SBU) Costa also expressed satisfaction that the long-standing
and thorny issue of the ATTA trade/transportation agreement would be
addressed during upcoming Washington visits by the presidents of
Afghanistan and Pakistan. He said it is now time to "neuter the
problem" and update the agreement.


10. (SBU) Responding to a question from the German Ambassador about
the effectiveness of UNAMA coordinating activities, Costa retold the
story of Kai Eide pointing out that there are many "c's" of concern
-- including "coordination"-- and blaming member states for the lack
coordination . The Afghan Ambassador agreed, stating that such
coordination has been lacking since day 1. He described a "parallel
mechanism" that is working alongside, but not in concert with, the
Karzai government. James defended the coordination in Kabul, but
acknowledged that it is informal in nature and needs to be more
strategic.

--------------
AFPAK Strategy Receives Support
--------------


11. (SBU) Drawing on Department non-papers, Ambassador elaborated
on the goals and methods of the new AFPAK strategy, as well as the

President's support for the Kerry/Lugar legislation. The
Afghanistan Ambassador expressed his government's full support for
the strategy, calling it "even better than we could have hoped." He
referred to a Charlie Rose interview of Special Representative
Richard Holbrooke during which Ambassador Holbrooke asserted that
even with the best possible government and border control in
Afghanistan, akistan's western tribal areas would still be a
undamental problem. Germany, Canada, UK, the Euroean Commission
and Turkey expressed similar suppot. The Turkish Ambassador
reminded the Friends hat a regional approach to deal with the
problemthe Ankara Process-already exists. The German Ambssador
complimented the work of UNODC's Terroris Prevention Branch in
Pakistan, and stated his goernment was looking to continuing
funding of tha project. Japanese DCM touted the Japan's recent
USD3 million contribution to UNODC's Afghanistan rojects, and
stated it was considering another UD2 million to Iran border
projects. (Note: The SD3 million was Japan's first-ever donation
for NODC's Afghanistan activities. At Japan's request UNODC is
also preparing a country paper on Pakitan. (Ref D). End Note.)
European Commission Ambssador agreed that Pakistan demanded
"upgraded atention." Canada, Germany and EC all said they wer
looking to increase and/or widen their assistane in the region.

--------------
Comment
--------------


12. (SBU) The unqualified support for our AFPAKstrategy was
encouraging, especially in light of ssertions by Canada, Germany
and EC that they ar looking to increase and/or widen their
assistane in the region taking advantage of UNODC's unique
capabilities to operate cross-border between Pakstan, Afghanistan
and Iran. Furthermore, James' entative assessment of the gains
made in Helmandspeak to the positive impact comprehensive
countr-narcotic strategies can have on public confidenc in
government. Finally, UNODC's attempt to vie the challenges in
Afghanistan through an expanding regional lens-including Operation
TARCET against precursor chemicals and the Triangular Initiative to
promote counternarcotics cooperation among Afghanistan, Pakistan,
and Iran, reinforces the USG position that the issues of heroin,
governance, security and terrorism are inextricably interlinked and
must be tackled in a comprehensive manner.


13. (SBU) On the same day as the meeting, Embassy Kabul dispatched
a cable on "Implementing a Comprehensive Counter-Narcotics Strategy"
(Ref B) END COMMENT

PYATT