81685 10/13/2006 8:06 06BUCHAREST1576 Embassy Bucharest CONFIDENTIAL 06STATE110161|06STATE116608|06USNATO569 VZCZCXRO8078 RR RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR DE RUEHBM #1576 2860806 ZNY CCCCC ZZH R 130806Z OCT 06 FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5341 INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE C O N F I D E N T I A L BUCHAREST 001576
DEPT FOR EUR/NCE AARON JENSEN AND EUR/RPM STERLING
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/10/2016 TAGS: PREL, PGOV, MARR, MOPS, RO SUBJECT: ROMANIA ON CFE ENTITLEMENT TRANSFERS
REF: A. STATE 110161 B. STATE 116608 C. USNATO 00569
Classified By: Political Counselor Ted Tanoue for Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)
1. (C) Polmiloff met October 11 with MFA Office of Non-proliferation and Arms Control Director Dan Neculaescu and Daniela Marca on approaching Greece on the transfer of TLE Entitlements. They were appreciative but cautious. Neculeascu mentioned that the Norwegians had raised the issue (without details), adding that he was pleased to hear that the Norwegians were being helpful. On the other hand, Neculaescu and Marca wondered why neither Turkey nor Greece have mentioned the Flank entitlement issue directly with Romania. Neculeascu and Marca were surprised to hear that Turkey would cover MBT entitlements, especially since they thought Turkey has not been particularly helpful recently on Flank issues.
2. (C) Neculaescu said that he would consult the interagency group and see about reaching a consensus on whether approaching Greece directly would be useful. He cautioned that thrusting Romania into what is clearly a Turkish-Greek issue (Cyprus), while also giving leverage to Turkish-Russian deliberations on the Black Sea, may not be an encouraging or persuasive formula. Polmiloff noted that the discussion on Flank Entitlements was ongoing and that some formula might be found that would satisfy the Greeks, but since Athens had the TLE abundance in ACVs, this seems the best and most simple approach. Neculaescu noted that there would also be some serious concerns in the GOR about the bigger picture, including the risk of Russia using the Flank issue to play NATO allies off one another in the context of Transnistra and Georgia. Barbelescu said that perhaps Romania could see whether it has anything that could be used as leverage. Polmiloff suggested that Romania might want to consider a joint demarche with Bulgaria, if carrying the message alone would be uncomfortable. Neculeascu said they would certainly consider that as a possible course but only after the GOR has made the larger calculus.
3. (C) Neculeascu raised Romania,s support for the US non-paper on possible responses to Russian claims on the CFE Treaty (REF A). He underscored that it was critical that NATO get in front of the public affairs agenda and not allow Russia to dictate the terms of the dialogue. Noting Russian skill at controlling the agenda, Neculeascu feared that there could be a weakening of support in the Alliance for the Istanbul Commitments, with Transnistra sacrificed for the sake of Adapted CFE expediency. Polmiloff noted that Washington would appreciate an answer by mid-October to complete any entitlement transfers by the end of 2006. Neculeascu said he understood and would get back to us as quickly as the interagency process would allow.
4. (C) Comment: All politics are local and Romania has unique Black Sea concerns. On the one hand the Adapted CFE treaty is important to Bucharest, but not necessarily if it weakens our leverage in forcing a Russian withdrawal from neighboring Moldova. Furthermore, Romania is very focused on the frozen conflicts and is concerned about the Russians linking them to Kosovo developments. Finally, Bucharest is still sensitive to its earlier frictions with Turkey over Black Sea security issues, which are only now dissipating. End Comment. Taubman