117664 8/3/2007 6:48 07BUCHAREST890 Embassy Bucharest UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY 07STATE56715 VZCZCXYZ0000 RR RUEHWEB DE RUEHBM #0890/01 2150648 ZNR UUUUU ZZH R 030648Z AUG 07 FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7098 INFO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC RHMCSUU/FBI WASHINGTON DC UNCLAS BUCHAREST 000890
STATE FOR PM/DDTC -- BLUE LANTERN COORDINATOR: ROMERO
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: KOMC, ETTC, RO SUBJECT: BLUE LANTERN: POSSIBLE UNAUTHORIZED EXPORT OF U.S. ORIGIN FIREARMS TECHNOLOGY - RESPONSE
REF: A. STATE 56715
B. ROMERO-ELLIS EMAIL 05/16/07 - ADDITIONAL BACKGROUND C. ELLIS-ROMERO EMAIL 05/15/07 - PRELIMINARY RESPONSE
1. (SBU) This message is in response to question of possible unauthorized export of U.S. origin firearms technology between Romarm Cugir and two U.S. companies, Century Arms and Tennessee Guns (refs). At issue was the possible transfer of U.S. hardware or technical data without authorization for the production of AK-type (Kalashnikov-styled) sniper rifles in violation of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
2. (SBU) Polmiloff discussed with Conventional Arms Director Paul Pasnicu and Deputy Director Gicu Pop of the MFA Export Control Agency (ANCEX) on 14 May, the points in reftel and the relationship of Fabrica de Arme Cugir (FAC) to ROMARM, MOD etc. According to ANCEX, under Romanian law, FAC cannot/does not have a license for commercial production for export/import. Those licenses are only issued to ROMARM and not subsidiaries like FAC. They said that because of the licensing requirements, FAC could not/not have a separate agreement with either Century Arms or Tennessee Guns. If such an arrangement came to light then FAC could lose its production license for ROMARM.
3. (SBU) Pasincu and Pop reviewed with polmiloff all of the import licenses associated with Century Arms and Tennessee Guns over the past year. The files revealed that there was an 2006 import license for ROMARM involving conversion of 2 x Vz-58s assault rifles of 7.62mmx39 mm caliber from Century Arms (note: the Vz-58 resembles an AK-47 but uses a completely different internal mechanisms of Czech origin. end note.); for conversion of 2 x wz88 Tantals of 5.45mm x 39.5 caliber (AK-74-inspired Polish origin assault rifle); and 8 x Galil SARs 5.56mm (Israeli origin). There was one export to Tennessee Arms from Armexim (not FAC), but that export was accompanied by the BATF certification and delivery verification documentation. There were no relevant licenses on file for import or export of any AK-47-styled sniper rifles. Pasincu and Pop noted that these conversions typically refer to changing from full-automatic to semi-auto for export purposes. But they also pointed out that there would be no reason for either ROMARM or FAC to import any technical data or hardware from the U.S. to manufacture or otherwise service any AK-type rifles because Romania has been manufacturing Kalashnikovs since 1960, and would have no reason to import any related materials or specifications from the U.S. ROMARM Director General Ioan Garbacea did not respond to our inquiry on this matter.
4. (SBU) Specific responses keyed to questions:
Does Romarm Cugir presently have contracts with Century Arms and Tennessee Guns for the manufacture of AK-type sniper rifles? ANSWER IS NO.
How long has the contract been active? ANSWER IS N/A.
What are the specific services being provided by your firm? ANSWER IS FAC OFFERS FOR EXPORT RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT OF MILITARY TECHNICAL REQUIRMENTS INCLUDING COMPUTER DESIGN (CAD AND CAM) AND CONVERSION FROM PRINTED SUPPORT TO COMPUTER FORMAT; MECHANICAL MACHINING AND PROCESSING CAPABILITIES.
What other, if any, similar contracts does Romarm Cugir maintain with other U.S. companies? ANSWER IS N/A.
Has, either Century Arms or Tennessee Guns, provided technical data and/or hardware in support of the agreements? ANSWER IS NO.
Can you please specify any and all technical data or hardware provided by both companies? ANSWER IS N/A.
Does the MFA (ANCEX) have record of any imports (hardware or technical data) from Century Arms and Tennessee Guns to Romarm Cugir in support of a manufacturing agreement for the production of AK-type rifles? ANSWER IS NO.
Can you please specify the commodity imported from the U.S.? CONVERSION OF KALASHNIKOV-TYPE RIFLES TO SEMI-AUTOMATIC.
5. (SBU) Comment: Mission believes that there is no evidence of a transfer of U.S.-origin technical data or hardware for the manufacture of AK-type (Kalashnikov-styled)
rifles of any type to ROMARM or its subsidiaries. We also note that Romanian-origin AK-type rifles are readily obtainable on the U.S. market, however there is no evidence in Romania to suggest that the manufacture of these weapons or production of their components in Romania rely on transfer of data or hardware from the U.S. in contravention of U.S. law. End Comment. TAPLIN