Viewing cable 05THEHAGUE1647
Title: NETHERLANDS/IRAQ: BOT UNDECIDED ON ATTENDING

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
05THEHAGUE16472005-06-13 06:56:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy The Hague
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

130656Z Jun 05
C O N F I D E N T I A L THE HAGUE 001647 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 6/10/2015 
TAGS: PREL PGOV EAID EIND ECON IZ NL EUN
SUBJECT: NETHERLANDS/IRAQ:  BOT UNDECIDED ON ATTENDING 
US-EU INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON IRAQ 
 
REF: STATE 103222 
 
Classified By: DEPUTY CHIEF OF MISSION DANNY RUSSEL FOR REASONS 1.4(B) 
AND (D). 
 
¶1. (C) On June 1, Ambassador Sobel raised the June 22 US-EU 
International Conference on Iraq with Dutch Foreign Minister 
Bot.  Per ref a, Ambassador Sobel urged Bot to attend the 
conference and to take advantage of the opportunity to 
announce additional Dutch contributions to the Iraqi 
Transitional Government (ITG) if possible.  Bot was aware of 
the conference and expressed interest in attending without 
making a commitment; he also suggested that we follow up 
directly with the MFA's Department of Middle East and North 
African Affairs.  Ambassador Sobel stressed that the 
conference was a top priority for the USG and noted that 
high-level Dutch attendance would send a very positive signal 
to the ITG. 
 
¶2. (C) POLCOUNS subsequently met with Michiel den Hond, 
Director of the MFA's Department of Middle East and North 
African Affairs Department on June 9.  Den Hond took note of 
our requests for specific Dutch contributions (ref a) and 
promised to study them closely.  Den Hond doubted that the 
Foreign Minister would attend the conference in person, as he 
is already committed to visiting Algeria on June 22 as part 
of a Maghreb trip.  POLCOUNS reiterated the importance of 
broad, ministerial level attendance at the conference to send 
a clear signal of international support.  Den Hond suggested 
that if Bot were unable to attend, the Netherlands would 
still be represented at a high level at the conference, but 
could not say whether the Dutch attendee would be another 
minister or a senior MFA official. 
 
¶3. (C) On June 10, POLCOUNS raised the conference again with 
Jaap Werner, Director of the MFA's Political Affairs 
Department, urging that the Foreign Minister attend.  Werner 
confirmed that the Foreign Minister had not yet made a 
decision regarding attendance, noting that opinion within the 
MFA was split.  While the Middle East Department was 
reluctant to cancel the Foreign Minister's long-planned trip 
to Algeria (where he will be received by the President), the 
Political Affairs Department was pushing him to attend the 
Iraq conference as well as the special Gymnich scheduled for 
the evening of June 22.  Werner could not predict when the 
Foreign Minister would make his decision but promised to 
inform the Embassy when he did. 
 
¶4. (C) Separately, Werner and his deputy Joep Wijnands noted 
that the EU was considering a proposal to name a Special 
Representative for Iraq and might make a decision at the 
upcoming GAERC and European Council meetings June 12-17 -- 
although both added that the EU leaders' preoccupation with 
other issue would make it difficult to reach a quick 
consensus on the issue.  They also cautioned that the 
European Commission might use the naming a Special 
Representative as an excuse to further delay opening an EC 
office in Baghdad, although the Dutch hoped it would have the 
opposite effect.  On the other hand, if the EU did reach a 
decision to name a Special Representative, Werner and 
Wijnands agreed that the upcoming Conference provided the 
perfect opportunity to announce it publicly. 
SOBEL