Viewing cable 08USOSCE185
Title: OSCE,S ANNUAL SECURITY REVIEW CONFERENCE -

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08USOSCE1852008-07-18 13:51:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Mission USOSCE
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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 USOSCE 000185 
 
SENSITIVE 
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TAGS: PARM PREL OSCE KCFE XG
SUBJECT: OSCE,S ANNUAL SECURITY REVIEW CONFERENCE - 
AFGHANISTAN AND GEORGIA SHARE CENTER STAGE 
 
¶1. (SBU) Summary:  Delegations and speakers alike called for 
the OSCE to move from symbolic words to concrete action 
during this year's Annual Security Review Conference (ASRC), 
held July 1-2 in Vienna.  NATO SACEUR General Craddock called 
on the international community to do more in Afghanistan and 
said the OSCE could have a "tremendous impact" by helping 
train the country's police.  Several delegations spoke out on 
the need to collaborate on combating terrorism and improving 
border security in the OSCE region, especially in Central 
Asia.  While speakers assessed the utility and practicality 
of OSCE conflict resolution mechanisms, there were, as 
expected, heated exchanges on the protracted conflicts, 
especially South Ossetia and Abkhazia.  End Summary. 
 
--------------- 
Opening Session 
--------------- 
 
¶2. (U) Highlighting what would be one of the major themes of 
the conference, the EU, US (DASD Daniel Fata), and Canada 
spoke out in support of increased OSCE activities in customs 
and border security in northern Afghanistan.  In stark 
contrast, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grushko did not 
even mention Afghanistan in his opening remarks but instead 
urged the OSCE to "pause to assess the situation, and take a 
break on projects" while at the same time calling for a 
high-level forum to discuss a Treaty on European Security. 
Grushko depicted Russia as being the aggrieved party on all 
matters of European security, lambasting NATO enlargement and 
U.S. missile defense plans as undermining security in the 
region writ large.  Comment:  Although he referred to the 
"indivisibility of security," it was clear that Russia 
envisages a treaty which would require UN-approval for 
any/all security actions taken, a clear non-starter for the 
U.S. and NATO.  End Comment.  The US, the EU, Georgia, and 
Canada also expressed their concern about increasing tensions 
in Abkhazia and South Ossetia and urged Russia to resume 
implementation of the CFE.  DASD Fata called on the OSCE to 
increase its efforts to resolve the protracted conflicts in 
South Ossetia, Transnistria and Nagorno-Karabakh and increase 
OSCE activity in reducing tension around Abkhazia.  Fata 
stressed that the U.S. hand remains outstretched to Russia on 
missile defense, CFE and other areas and that despite Russian 
claims to the contrary, the ballistic missile threat is one 
Russian officials have privately told the U.S. is one of 
their greatest security concerns. 
 
--------------------------------------------- 
Session I:  Transnational Security Challenges 
--------------------------------------------- 
 
¶3. (SBU) EU Special Representative for Central Asia Amb. 
Pierre Morel noted the need for a coherent approach in 
tackling transnational security challenges, specifically to 
improve the control of external borders as well as to enhance 
domestic stability through political, economic and 
administrative reforms geared toward increasing living 
standards of the population, strengthening the rule of law 
and accelerating economic development.  This could be partly 
addressed through closer collaboration between the EU and the 
OSCE, as evidenced by their ongoing work to help Tajikistan 
improve its border security management. 
 
¶4. (SBU) In a stimulating and thought-provoking intervention, 
Dr. Zellner, the head of the Centre for OSCE Research (CORE) 
in Hamburg, said the OSCE needed to move from symbolic to 
real action.  Zellner proposed that the OSCE revive the idea 
of thematic missions, integrate the missions into one 
Secretariat department, and streamline OSCE's agenda by 
focusing on long-term challenges.  In this regard, the 2010 
Kazakhstan Chairmanship and the border security initiative 
for Afghanistan and Central Asia provide unique opportunities. 
 
¶5. (SBU) Germany welcomed OSCE's work on the whole package of 
16 Afghanistan-Central Asia border assistance projects. 
Russia noted that the narcotics trafficking situation in 
Afghanistan had "run amok" and called for increased 
international counter-narcotics efforts as well as a 
discussion of time-limited thematic missions.  Turkey 
strongly supported the Afghanistan proposals and said it 
would provide a train-the-trainer program for Afghan border 
officials as well as a financial contribution.  Uzbekistan 
called for the EU to put Hizb-Ut-Tahrir on its terrorist 
 
USOSCE 00000185  002 OF 003 
 
 
sanctions list.  Afghanistan thanked the international 
community for its efforts to help stabilize the country and 
welcomed the OSCE's efforts while criticizing recent actions 
by Iran and Pakistan. 
 
------------------------------ 
SACEUR Craddock on Afghanistan 
------------------------------ 
 
¶6. (SBU) NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) 
General Bantz J. Craddock said the international community 
needed to do more to secure Afghanistan.  Craddock 
highlighted the three top security concerns:  1) progress in 
improving governance has been slow and uneven due to 
political leaders' emphasis on elections rather than 
delivering services; 2) laboratories need to be shut down and 
drug lords arrested as narcotics trafficking has helped fuel 
the insurgency; and 3) the transit of insurgents needs to be 
contained as the situation in Pakistan was contributing to 
instability in eastern Afghanistan.  He noted that the OSCE 
has made indispensable contributions to peace and stability 
for the past 30 years and that it could have a "tremendous 
impact" by helping train Afghanistan's police force, which 
was not progressing as well as the nation's military. 
 
¶7. (SBU) Canada said it will remain in Kandahar until 2011, 
noted that it pledged Can Dollars 600 million for Afghan 
assistance at the Paris Donors conference in June, and called 
on the OSCE to support the 2009-10 Afghan elections.  Norway 
said it was increasing its assistance by 40 percent to EUR 
100 million per year for the next 5 years and welcomed OSCE's 
initial efforts on the Afghanistan project.  Russia said it 
would contribute to one Central Asia project and argued that 
all OSCE-Afghanistan projects should be subject to Permanent 
Council approval, something to which the U.S., EU and others 
have already expressed their opposition. 
 
--------------------------------------------- -------- 
Session II: Arms Control, CSBMs and Security Dialogue 
--------------------------------------------- -------- 
 
¶8. (SBU) Keynote speaker Alyson Bailes, former Director of 
SIPRI, expressed concern over the CFE impasse caused by 
Russia's suspension and said the underlying cause was a 
"globalization of the security agendas" of the expanded NATO 
and EU.  Russia blamed NATO expansion and U.S.-backed 
European missile defense for destroying OSCE unity on arms 
control.  It said the U.S. must immediately ratify the 
adapted CFE Treaty if it wants to preserve the European 
security regime.  The U.S. insisted that Russia needs to 
implement its CFE obligations and fulfill other conditions 
before ratification will occur.  Germany, Turkey, and the 
Czech Republic offered varying degrees of support for the 
U.S. position.  Russia concluded by announcing a new proposal 
for naval confidence- and security-building measures that 
parallel existing provisions in the Vienna Document 1999. 
(See also USOSCE 171.) 
 
--------------------------------------------- -- 
Session III: Conflict Prevention and Resolution 
--------------------------------------------- -- 
 
¶9. (SBU) Keynote speaker Dr. Arie Bloed, editor-in-Chief of 
"Security and Human Rights" (formerly the "Helsinki 
Monitor"), welcomed the use of OSCE mechanisms in principle, 
but expressed concern that these mechanisms were being used 
as weapons rather than as tools for constructive dialogue. 
He stressed that if they were to be effective, they should be 
used in a "cooperative" manner.  Bloed criticized Permanent 
Council meetings as having become mere "rituals", rather than 
a forum for dialogue.  He partially attributes this change in 
atmosphere to the increased use of unified EU statements. 
Discussion that used to take place in the Permanent Council 
now takes place elsewhere, behind closed doors. 
 
¶10. (SBU) Georgia reiterated its position on the need to 
change the negotiating formats in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, 
and called for the OSCE to facilitate discussion with the 
Russian peacekeeping force (PKF) in Abkhazia.  Georgia 
praised the OSCE conflict resolution mechanisms, but 
recommended that procedures be established to allow every 
OSCE participating State to request the CiO and/or the FSC 
Chairmanship to dispatch a fact-finding mission to its 
 
USOSCE 00000185  003 OF 003 
 
 
territory after an incident occurs.  Russia warned that 
Georgia's attempt to break with current negotiating formats 
is counterproductive and irresponsible, particularly in light 
of the PKF's positive contribution to ensure "peace and 
stability" for the past fifteen years. 
 
¶11. (SBU) Russia asserted that if Georgia truly wants to 
reduce tensions in Abkhazia, it would sign the non-use of 
force agreement and withdraw forces from the Upper Kodori 
Gorge immediately and without additional conditions. 
Regarding South Ossetia, Russia is concerned that Georgia has 
"consciously adopted a policy aimed at dismantling the JCC." 
The 2 2 2 format suggested by Georgia is artificial and lacks 
a legal basis.  Russia urged the Mission in Georgia to take a 
more active stance in restarting the work of the JCC. 
Germany emphasized that the OSCE must agree immediately to 
increase the number of monitors in South Ossetia.  It also 
praised the Economic Reconstruction Program in South Ossetia, 
which should be used as a model for the entire region. 
 
¶12. (SBU) Azerbaijan criticized the Minsk Process, saying 
"sixteen years of OSCE mediation hasn't brought any 
progress."  If the organization does not revise its approach 
to "distinguish between culprit and victim," it will never 
make any progress.  It also harshly criticized Armenia's 
"policy of ethnic cleansing of minorities" as well as its 
"brutal" violation of the principles of international law. 
In response, Armenia reiterated its continued support for the 
Minsk Process, and observed that it is impossible for the 
Minsk Group to achieve any progress when Azerbaijan 
continuously criticizes its lack of effectiveness.  The 
French Minsk Group Co-Chair, Ambassador Fassier, defended the 
work of the Minsk Group and emphasized that progress made at 
the December 2007 Madrid Ministerial was confirmed during the 
June 26-27 visit of the Co-Chairs to the region. 
FINLEY