Viewing cable 07USUNNEWYORK497
Title: CHURKIN CONTINUES TO SAY NO ON AUTOMATICITY

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
07USUNNEWYORK4972007-06-20 00:29:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 CONFIDENTIAL USUN New York
VZCZCXYZ0009
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0497/01 1710029
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 200029Z JUN 07
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2100
INFO RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBW/AMEMBASSY BELGRADE PRIORITY 0157
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW PRIORITY 0982
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY
RUEHPS/USOFFICE PRISTINA PRIORITY 0913
C O N F I D E N T I A L USUN NEW YORK 000497 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/20/2017 
TAGS: PGOV PREL UNSC UNMIK YI
SUBJECT: CHURKIN CONTINUES TO SAY NO ON AUTOMATICITY 
 
 
Classified By: Ambassador Alejandro D. Wolff, Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
CHURKIN CONTINUES TO SAY NO ON AUTOMATICITY 
 
¶1. (C) Summary: During a June 18 meeting at the Russian 
Mission, Ambassador Churkin yielded no ground on Russia's 
objection to Kosovo independence unless agreed by Serbia. 
Churkin stressed that the recent Quint meeting in Paris had 
"left a bad taste" in Russia's mouth as it gave the 
impression that unilateral scenarios were being prepared; 
that automaticity on independence was a redline for Russia; 
that agreeing before Kennebunkport would be nice but was not 
a goal in itself; and that Russia hoped we could work from 
the language it proposed at the G-8 summit and come up with 
something agreeable to all.  Ambassador Wolff underscored 
that automaticity was the core point for the U.S., as well. 
In response to a question, Churkin asserted that there were 
signs that the Serbs were becoming more cooperative, but that 
independence for Kosovo now would likely bring the radicals 
to power, taking Serbia farther away from the EU.  Ambassador 
Wolff stressed that the path Russia was pointing to would 
place a huge weight 
on the Serbs and disappointment with them would increase 
because of a process destined to fail.  Churkin insisted that 
he could not agree to language that made it look like Russia 
was duped or tied its hands for a new Council decision. 
Churkin expressed opposition both to meetings in the 
Coordinating and Drafting Group (CDG) and full Security 
Council format and said it would be better to keep talks 
bilateral for the moment.  End summary. 
 
Churkin Delivers Four Tough Points 
---------------------------------- 
 
¶2. (C) During a June 18 meeting at the Russian Mission, held 
at Ambassador Churkin's request, Ambassador Wolff and Churkin 
discussed recent developments on Kosovo.  Welcoming 
Ambassador Wolff, Churkin said he had four points to deliver 
on instructions.  Churkin stated that: 1) The Quint meeting 
in Paris had "left a bad taste" in Russia's mouth.  Russia 
knew the format had been used before but coming at this 
juncture it left the impression that unilateral scenarios 
were being prepared.  Furthermore, it would be absurd to 
continue Russian/U.S. bilateral discussions if Russia's 
concerns were being ignored, Churkin charged.  2) The Russian 
Mission was under instructions that "no automaticity" on 
independence was a redline for Russia.  Churkin opined that 
automaticity tied into President Bush's statement in Albania 
on the inevitability of independence and undermined the whole 
idea of new status negotiations.  He said he saw "no prospect 
for agreement before Kennebunkport" if automaticity were not 
resolved.  3) Coming to agreement before Kennebunkport would 
be nice, but was not a goal in itself.  Churkin said 
substance is more important than timing.  4) At the G-8 
Russia had proposed language along the lines of "support any 
solution agreed by the parties and if no agreement is 
reached, the Security Council will take a new decision," but 
this was not accepted by partners.  Churkin urged continued 
work on what kind of decision the Council would take and 
looking to see if other things could be discussed. 
 
¶3.  (C) Ambassador Wolff responded that automaticity was the 
core point for us, as well.  He asked Churkin whether Russia 
had any indications that for the Serbs more negotiations 
could lead to anything other than broadly defined autonomy. 
Churkin alleged that we were seeing signs of serious 
preparations and pointed to Serbia's recent letter to SYG Ban 
that contained no reference to autonomy or the new 
constitution.  It was unrealistic to think of Serbia 
re-imposing its authority on Kosovo, conceded Churkin, but, 
again "there is no going back from sovereignty," he said. 
Serb leaders do have interesting thoughts, he commented. 
 
¶4.  (C) Ambassador Wolff explained that independence was the 
only acceptable outcome for the Kosovar side while   for the 
Serbian side it is inconceivable that any leader could ever 
agree to that independence.  That meant the path Russia was 
pointing to could place a huge weight on the Serbs to agree 
to something that was politically impossible for them; 
disappointment with Belgrade would only increase, as we would 
have invested more time in a process destined to fail.  This 
is unfair to them and we would end up in the same situation 
with even more bitter feelings. 
 
¶5.  (C) Churkin responded that we were acting as if the path 
of independence now will solve the problem.  "An American 
consultant told me he thought this would bring the radicals 
 
to power, taking Serbia farther away from the EU," said 
Churkin.  This outcome could be more dangerous and traumatic 
for the Serbs that what you are proposing, he asserted.  We 
cannot just have a perfunctory process that leads to 
Ahtisaari, Churkin continued, adding that Russia cannot 
"agree to language that makes it look like Russia was duped 
or tied our hands for a new Council decision."   We have no 
new ideas to propose now, but are open to hearing yours, he 
concluded. 
 
¶6.  (C) Ambassador Wolff asked Churkin whether he envisioned 
any scenario whereby Russia's position on sovereignty would 
differ from Serbia's?  Churkin responded that Russia wanted 
to do what was right.  We cannot be more Serb than the Serbs 
and can make gentle recommendations, said Churkin, but 
"sovereignty is theirs to give."  "We cannot tell them to 
take away part of their country," he added. 
 
Russia Negative On CDG Or Full Council Meetings 
--------------------------------------------- -- 
 
¶7.  (C) Ambassador Wolff explained that time does not play in 
favor of the Kosovars on this critical issue. "We are trying 
to explore translating certainty of outcome in a way that 
helps us to  manage a real process for negotiations," he 
stated, adding that "without that certainty it is difficult 
to see any way around this."  Ambassador Wolff noted that 
USUN had been sharing some of our elements with the Europeans 
and asked Churkin if he saw utility in a CDG meeting. 
Churkin responded negatively; he said a CDG meeting would be 
counterproductive and could leak immediately.  Maybe when we 
are closer, said Churkin, but not now.  Ambassador Wolff 
informed Churkin that we were considering  moving again in 
the Security Council.  Churkin stated that it would be better 
to keep discussions bilateral.  Ambassador Wolff asked 
Churkin to share any further thoughts on a formula and 
promised to report the day's meeting, but said that we 
clearly appeared to be at an impasse. 
 
 
WOLFF