116594 7/25/2007 15:22 07BUCHAREST858 Embassy Bucharest CONFIDENTIAL 07BUCHAREST104|07BUCHAREST157|07BUCHAREST226 VZCZCXYZ0002 PP RUEHWEB DE RUEHBM #0858/01 2061522 ZNY CCCCC ZZH P 251522Z JUL 07 FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST TO RUEHGB/AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD PRIORITY 0108 RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7056 INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC C O N F I D E N T I A L BUCHAREST 000858
DEPT FOR EUR/NCE AND NEA/I; ALSO FOR L/HRR, L/PM AND L/EUR; DOJ FOR OIA
E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/24/2017 TAGS: CASC, IZ, PGOV, PREL, KJUS, RO SUBJECT: JUSTICE MINISTRY'S NOTE REQUESTING ASSISTANCE ON MUNAF'S WHEREABOUTS
REF: A. BUCHAREST 104 B. BUCHAREST 157 C. BUCHAREST 226
Classified By: A/DCM Bryan Dalton for Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).
1. (SBU) Embassy received by fax on July 20, the below note regarding the case of Mohammad Munaf from the Romanian Justice Ministry (MOJ) sent to us upon the recommendation from the MFA. The MOJ note cites the 1999 bilateral agreement with the United States on judicial assistance in seeking U,S, assistance in the GOR's efforts to specify the exact location of Munaf and to help clarify the question of jurisdiction over Munaf. Both the Justice Ministry's note and the courtesy copy of the MFA's letter to MOJ have been faxed to EUR/NCE. Because the original notes are in Romanian, we are providing an informal translation in paras 2 and 3.
2. (SBU) /Begin Translation of MOJ Note/
Romania Ministry of Justice Directorate of International Law and Treaties
No. 79665/ 2007
To: The Embassy of the United States of America in Bucharest
CC: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs Directorate of America General Directorate for Judicial Affairs
The Romanian Ministry of Justice presents its compliments to the Embassy of the United States of America in Bucharest and, regarding the case that is the object of the file no. 6595/2/2006 of the Bucharest Court of Appeals, Section I Penal, regarding the American and Iraqi citizen MOHAMMAD MUNAF, given the address no. H2/2773 from July 11, 2007, of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs - the General Directorate for Judicial Affairs, annexed in copied form, has the honor to request (the Embassy's) support in locating the defendant Mohammad Munaf.
The request is based on the provisions of article 1, paragraph 2, letter c) of the Treaty between Romania and the United States of America regarding judicial assistance on penal matters, signed in Washington on May 26, 1999.
Regarding the position repeatedly expressed by the honored Embassy that, in this case, the Romanian authorities should request assistance to the Iraqi authorities, and not to the American ones, as de jure Mohammad Munaf is under Iraqi jurisdiction, the Ministry of Justice underlines that the present request is made given that, on the basis of information the Ministry has, the defendant continues to remain in the physical custody of the American contingent of the Multi-National Coalition Force - Iraq (MNF-I) and, from the notifications received from the Iraqi authorities through diplomatic channels, results that, for this reason, they are not able to summon the defendant and to communicate the exact location where Munaf is held.
Under these circumstances, in conformity with the provisions of article 1, paragraph 2, letter c) of the Treaty between Romania and the United States of America regarding judicial assistance on penal matters and in the spirit of the strategic partnership between our countries, including in the global war on terrorism, the assistance of the American authorities is essential in fulfilling the act of justice in this complex case of terrorism currently on the role of Romanian courts.
The Ministry of Justice underlines that the present request refers to the factual situation mentioned above, which entails that exact information regarding the whereabouts of Mohammad Munaf can only be provided by the American authorities.
Regarding the legal situation, more precisely the authorities entitled to solve the request of the Bucharest Court of Appeal for a rogatory commission to hear Mohammad Munaf and other witnesses, Iraqi citizens, we would like to inform the honored Embassy that, over the last 19 months, the Ministry of Justice has repeatedly sent to the Iraqi authorities requests for judicial assistance, without, unfortunately, obtaining a clear answer. Given this situation, the Ministry
of Justice would appreciate greatly the Embassy's assistance to obtain the support of the American authorities in Iraq for the steps taken by Romania in the demarches to the Iraqi authorities, to obtain a response to the numerous requests for judicial assistance from the Romanian authorities.
The Romanian Ministry of Justice thanks in advance the Embassy of the United States of America in Bucharest for the kind support and avails itself of this opportunity to renew the expression of its highest consideration.
Bucharest, July 20, 2007
3. (U) /Begin Text/
Ministry of Foreign Affairs General Directorate for Judicial Affairs
Dear Mr. Director,
Regarding your note no. 79665/2007 by which you request information on the coordinates of the location where Mohammad Munaf is held, this information being essential in completing the procedure of summoning decided by the Bucharest Court of Appeal, we send you attached the answer received from the Romanian Embassy in Baghdad which specifies that Mohammad Munaf is in the custody of the American military authorities, which did not communicate the location of his detention to the Iraqi authorities.
From the notes received from the Romanian Embassy in Baghdad on this case, it appears that no information other than that already communicated to the Romanian authorities can be obtained from the Iraqi authorities, given the procedural discrepancies between the two legal systems and the absence between the two states of a judicial basis that would allow international co-operation.
Under these circumstances, we think it might be useful that the Ministry of Justice approach the American authorities on the basis of mechanisms for international co-operation in penal matters, to complete the procedure of summoning Mohammad Munaf that was decided by the Bucharest Court of Appeals.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs does not have any other information that might help the Ministry of Justice on the issue raised in the note no. 79665/2007.
With extreme consideration,
Cosmin Dinescu General Director
To: Mr. Florin Razvan Radu Director Directorate of International Law and Treaties Ministry of Justice
4. (SBU) Embassy requests Department's guidance on responding to the MOJ note. TAUBMAN