93456 1/22/2007 17:40 07LONDON249 Embassy London CONFIDENTIAL 07STATE5256|07STATE5640 VZCZCXRO4731 PP RUEHAG RUEHROV DE RUEHLO #0249/01 0221740 ZNY CCCCC ZZH P 221740Z JAN 07 FM AMEMBASSY LONDON TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1406 INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE PRIORITY RUEHBM/AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST PRIORITY 0397 RUEHSF/AMEMBASSY SOFIA PRIORITY 0302 C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 LONDON 000249
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/19/2017 TAGS: PREL, PGOV, ENRG, EAID, MARR, YI, SR, BK, IS, SO, IR, UK SUBJECT: UK PREVIEW OF THE JANUARY GAERC
REF: A) STATE 5256 B) STATE 5640
Classified By: Political Counselor Richard Mills for reasons 1.4 (B) an d (D).
1. (C) Summary. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) expects Kosovo and Iran to be major issues of discussion at the January GAERC. UK goals are to 1) keep "wobbly" EU Members on board with the need to resolve Kosovo's status as soon as possible after the Serbian elections and 2) keep the door open for EU-specific Iranian sanctions, beyond those agreed in UNSCR 1737, that could be approved later in February or March. The FCO supports the European Commission paper on external energy security, welcomes U.S. support of the paper's main points (ref B), and hopes for EU Council endorsement in March. End Summary.
2. (C) Pol Counselor conveyed ref A and B points to Martin Sherman, head of the Common Foreign and Security Policy Office, on January 19. Econ Counselor separately conveyed ref B points on energy policy to Scott Wightman, Director of the FCO's Globalization Office, as well. Sherman and Wightman provided us with the following points in reply:
-- Western Balkans. Sherman said there will be no formal actions taken on these issues, but he expects difficult discussions on the timing of Ahtisaari's proposals. Many of Serbia's neighbors -- Sherman singled out Italy, Greece, and Austria -- are "getting wobbly" about implementing Ahtisaari's status proposals soon after the January 21 Serbian elections. There is a "rising chorus" from these EU states to postpone the resolution of Kosovo's status until after at least a new government is formed in Belgrade. Sherman said London shares the USG position that there should be no further delays. In London's view, to tie a resolution on Kosovo to the formation of a Serbian Government gives Belgrade the ability to further delay action. Although Sherman expected difficult discussions, the German presidency shares the USG/UK view and Sherman anticipates the EU will stay united in support of no further delay.
-- Iran. The UK expects the GAERC to produce a statement of "political" buy-in to fast implementation of the sanctions outlined in UNSCR 1737, with approval of the necessary legal instruments later in February. Sherman said the UK's goal is to keep the door open at this GAERC for additional restrictions on Iranian individuals and institutions beyond those contained in UNSCR 1737. London has a list of an additional forty or so institutions/individuals it would like to see sanctioned, but will not move forward on that list until the EU has acted to implement the UNSC sanctions. According to Sherman, London expects some EU members to resist further sanctions without an additional UNSCR.
-- Somalia. Sherman said the UK shares U.S. goals in Somalia as expressed ref A. He did not anticipate a decision at the GAERC on release of EU funds to support peacekeeping efforts in Somalia, but said there would likely be a statement of support for the planned AU force. Sherman agreed that many EU Members will want a formal request from the AU, along with some UNSC blessing, before they release funds to support a peacekeeping force. He added that several Members, including the UK, are concerned about financial transparency and controls over any EU funds and that issue will need to be addressed.
-- European Neighborhood Policy. Sherman did not think that any formal endorsement of the Commission proposals for strengthening the ENP would be taken at the GAERC He said the FCO's view is that the proposals are fine, but the ENP concept needs to be carefully managed so that it does not become an excuse to slow down the broader enlargement process.
-- External Energy Policy. Both Wightman and Sherman said the UK supported the Commission's external energy report and its focus on improving energy security through increased competition and transparency in the energy sector. They welcomed the U.S. Government's support for the paper, but Wightman took exception to the U.S. Government view that "there is no single path" to achieving the objectives of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, energy security and sustainable development (ref B). Wightman argued that regulating carbon emissions is, in fact, a single mechanism that can achieve all three of these objectives. Both Sherman and Wightman did not anticipate formal action on the report at the GAERC, but Wightman expected the EU Council to endorse the report in March.
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