188569 1/23/2009 15:09 09BUCHAREST43 Embassy Bucharest CONFIDENTIAL 09STATE4297|09STATE5430 VZCZCXRO3728 PP RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSR DE RUEHBM #0043 0231509 ZNY CCCCC ZZH P 231509Z JAN 09 FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9131 INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 0173 C O N F I D E N T I A L BUCHAREST 000043
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/22/2019 TAGS: EUN, PGOV, PREL, ENRG, RO SUBJECT: ROMANIA ON U.S. JANUARY GAERC VIEWS
REF: A. STATE 5430 B. STATE 4297
Classified By: Charge d'affaires, a.i. Jeri Guthrie-Corn; Reasons 1.4(b ) and (d).
1. (C) POLOFF on January 22, delivered January GAERC demarche (Ref B) to MFA Director for EU External Affairs Cristian Olimid and Deputy Director (Transatlantic issues) Florin Vlad. Poloff also drew upon UN Gaza points (Ref A). Olimid acknowledged that the Middle East Peace and energy security issues were going to dominate the discussion at the Council.
2. (C) On MEPP, Romania would press for supporting immediate humanitarian relief and addressing the urgent needs among the Palestinians of Gaza. He added that foreign ministers would assess developments more thoroughly following the meeting of 27 with Jordanian, Egyptian, Turkish and Palestinian representatives in the coming days. In terms of specifics, he cautioned that the issues of humanitarian aid and preventing rearmament of HAMAS were still actively under discussion. It is clear, he noted, that there would be a role for the EU; what precisely that role would be remained to be seen since there were some in the EU who believed that the EU should support a unity government. Romania, like the U.S., would prefer to see the assertion of the Palestinian Authority in Gaza, he underscored.
3. (C) Olimid was optimistic that the EU would begin to consolidate a position regarding Black Sea energy security. He said the recent Russia-Ukraine fiasco had damaged the credibility of both countries as reliable EU partners. Romania was hopeful, he added, that the recent gas disruption event had strengthened the EU's will towards energy diversification and -- more importantly -- the principle of EU solidarity. Olimid pointed out that Romania was able to weather the energy disruption through its ability to draw upon strategic reserves and shift towards alternate fuels (fuel oil and coal). However this was no substitute for developing new mechanisms to improve the energy networks in southeastern Europe, which suffered from the lack of interconnectivity. The lack of flexibility plays into Russia's ability to control energy politics and flows throughout the region, he noted.
4. (C) Comment: Except for a brief exchange on Guantanamo detainee resettlement -- Vlad was curious which countries had been approached -- Olimid and Vlad had nothing to add regarding the Western Balkans or African issues raised in the Ref B. On Guantanamo, POLOFF noted that if there was a formal request for information, mission would endeavor to find out more details. Vlad declined the offer. End Comment. GUTHRIE-CORN