Viewing cable 10LISBON53
Title: U.S.-PORTUGAL SECURITY DIALOGUE

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10LISBON532010-02-05 13:09:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Lisbon
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TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8100
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INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
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C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 LISBON 000053 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR EUR/RPM JOHN BOYARSKI, EUR/WE 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/03/2020 
TAGS: PGOV PREL MARR PO
SUBJECT: U.S.-PORTUGAL SECURITY DIALOGUE 
 
REF: 09 STATE 112900 
 
Classified By: Poleconoff Mario Fernandez, reasons 1.4(b) and (d) 
 
¶1. (U) This message responds to reftel.  Answers are keyed to 
para 3 of reftel. 
 
¶2. (U) Question A: Does the U.S. currently have an 
established security dialogue with your country? 
 
Answer: The U.S. and Portugal engage in formal discussions 
that cover the entire bilateral relationship, including 
security issues, twice a year. 
 
¶3. (U) Question B: When was the dialogue or mechanism first 
established?  By what means was it established?  Is the 
frequency of such meetings controlled through a binding 
agreement, or is this dialogue regulated by an informal 
understanding? 
 
Answer: The parties signed an Agreement on Cooperation and 
Defense (ACD) in 1995, an agreement that is binding on both 
parties.  The ACD established a Bilateral Commission that 
meets twice yearly -- alternating between Lisbon and 
Washington, D.C. -- to review bilateral relations regarding 
political, military, and diplomatic issues.  The Commission 
allows subject matter experts to accompany the delegations to 
coordinate policies on issues of mutual interest. 
 
¶4. (U) Question C: When did the group last meet?  Does the 
USG or host government have a set schedule or any general 
expectations regarding the frequency of this exchange?  When 
is the next scheduled meeting? 
 
Answer: The Bilateral Commission last met January 19, 2010, 
in Washington, D.C. As provided by the ACD, the parties 
expect to meet again in approximately six months after the 
last meeting.  The Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has 
informed us that they are considering May 2010 for the next 
Bilateral Commission meeting. 
 
¶5. (U) Question D: Does the USG or host government hold any 
expectations as to the level of leadership hosting the 
exchange? 
 
Answer: When the meeting is held in Washington D.C., the EUR 
Assistant Secretary acts as host, while the Portuguese 
delegation is headed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 
Political Director -- the equivalent of the State Department 
Under Secretary for Political Affairs.  When in Lisbon, the 
meeting is hosted by the MFA's Political Director.  The U.S. 
delegation, however, is headed by the U.S. Ambassador to 
Portugal. 
 
¶6. (SBU) Question E: PM would also be interested in Post's 
brief, honest assessment regarding the overall utility of the 
dialogue.  Are new issues frequently broached, or has the 
dialogue devolved into a stagnant exchange of power point 
slides?  If necessary, please use classified communication to 
convey this honest assessment. 
 
Answer: While the semi-annual Bilateral Commission meeting 
has at times been too formalized and scripted to afford an 
opportunity for meaningful dialogue, it has still been 
effective in focusing the parties to deliver on commitments 
made throughout the year.  In addition, both parties are 
exploring ways to make the meeting more broad in scope.  At 
the last meeting in January, for example, the parties 
expanded dialogue to include issues not traditionally handled 
during the Bilateral Commission meeting, including justice 
and home affairs issues. 
 
 
¶7. (U) The Bilateral Commission Meeting discussed at paras 
2-6 has several subcommittees under it, two of which hold 
independent meetings to propose, discuss, and approve new 
initiatives and review old ones. 
 
-- Technical Committee: The Technical Committee holds 
independent semiannual meetings to discuss infrastructure 
issues directly related to the Lajes Airbase operations in 
the Azores.  The last meeting was held October 22-23, 2009, 
and the next one is planned for late February 2010.  This 
subcommittee is led by Embassy Lisbon's ODC Chief; the 
Portuguese delegation is lead by an official from the 
Armaments Directorate of the Ministry of Defense. 
 
-- Azorean Cooperation Initiative Program (ACIP): ACIP is a 
 
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cooperative initiative to manage DOD-funded projects in the 
Azores.  The subcommittee meets semiannually or as needed, 
independent of the Bilateral Commission Meeting.  The last 
meeting was held May, 2009, while the next one will take 
place in summer 2010.  This subcommittee is led by an Embassy 
Lisbon officer, while the Portuguese delegation is lead by an 
official from the Regional Government of the Azores. 
 
¶8. (U) In addition to the Bilateral Commission Meeting, the 
two countries engage in other formalized dialogue as follows: 
 
-- Joint Staff Talks: biennial, last held January 2008, 
Lisbon; planning next for Spring 2010 in Washington, D.C. 
 
-- Foreign Military Sales (FMS): Country Management Review 
Conference; annual, facilitated by the Army Office of Defense 
Cooperation (ODC) with USASAC (US Army Security Assistance 
Command), relevant U.S. Army program offices (U.S. Army 
Material Command and subordinate commands), and contractors; 
with Portuguese Army program heads. Purpose is to review 
progress in FMS business and to discuss future activity, 
including upcoming Portuguese FMS procurement needs. This 
conference is held by binding agreement with a set schedule. 
Last meeting was held September 2009. 
 
¶9. (C) An additional formalized venue for discussing mil-mil 
issues is the Intelligence Sharing Agreement Exchange, a 
binding agreement that calls for an annual meeting.  The 
event was last held in Lisbon in June 2009.  The next meeting 
is planned for Washington D.C. in 2010. 
 
¶10. (U) The parties also participate in other mil-mil ad hoc 
events, including: 
 
-- AFRICOM - Portuguese MOD/Armed Forces Staff Talks, 
planning for May 2010. Topics: Maritime security and capacity 
building; Regional engagement, including through Community of 
Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP); and Africa Center for 
Strategic Studies Senior Leader Seminar. (Note: USAFRICOM 
Commander, General Ward, officially extended a formal 
invitation to Portuguese Chief of Defense on November 10, 
2009, to establish a permanent LNO position.) 
 
-- Portuguese Navy Staff Talks with Commander, US Naval 
Forces Africa Scheduled to take place in Naples, Italy in 
March 2010 (Heads of both delegations are Rear Admirals). 
 
-- Conference of European Armies (CEA); annual; last held 
September 23-25, 2009.  General Jose Luis Pinto Ramalho, PRT 
Army Chief attended. One on one discussion with CSA and CDR, 
USAEUR. The 18th Annual CEA is scheduled to take place 
October 13-15, 2010, in Sibiu, Romania; ARMA will accompany 
PRT CSA. 
 
-- International Sea Power Symposium; annual, last held Fall 
2009, Chief of Staff of the Portuguese Navy, Admiral Melo 
Gomes, attended. Newport RI. 
 
-- Global Air Chiefs Conference; annual, last attended by PRT 
Air force Chief, General Araujo, in Spring 2008. 
 
-- US Naval Forces Africa Conference; January 2010, one 
Portuguese Lieutenant Commander participated in a US Naval 
Forces Africa sponsored Conference to synchronize engagement 
efforts in Africa with European partners. 
 
-- US Navy Sponsored African Partnership Station; Spring 
2009, 3 Portuguese Officers participated in the US Navy 
Sponsored African Partnership Station deployment to West 
Africa. (3 Portuguese Officers were scheduled to embark in 
the 2010 African Partnership Station before its deployment 
was postponed due to Haiti relief efforts). 
 
 
For more reporting from Embassy Lisbon and information about Portugal, 
please see our Intelink site: 
 
http://www.intelink.sgov.gov/wiki/portal:port ugal 
BALLARD