06MOSCOW11266, KREMLIN HUMAN RIGHTS CHAIRWOMAN PROMISES NO

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06MOSCOW11266 2006-10-06 11:52 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO2136
PP RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #1266/01 2791152
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 061152Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3558
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 011266 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR/RUS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/06/2016 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM KDEM SOCI RS
SUBJECT: KREMLIN HUMAN RIGHTS CHAIRWOMAN PROMISES NO 
SUSPENSION OF NGO ACTIVITY 
 
 
Classified By: Ambassador William J. Burns.  Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
------- 
Summary 
------- 
 
1. (C) Chairwoman of the Presidential Administration Council 
for Civil Society and Human Rights Ella Pamfilova 
emphatically assured Ambassador October 5 that "nothing would 
happen" to curtail the activities of NGOs not re-registered 
by the October 18 deadline.  Pamfilova's office was 
monitoring the Federal Registration Service and planned a 
special October 18 session at which it would examine NGO 
registration status reports.  Embassy next steps:  Ambassador 
has raised the issue with Deputy Foreign Minister Yakovenko, 
and will continue to intercede with appropriate GOR 
interlocutors. Septel will report current NGO re-registration 
state-of-play. 
 
2. (C) Pamfilova said there was no legislation pending or 
being drafted that would prevent foreign financing of NGOs. 
She traced recent interethnic violence to corruption, and 
agreed that President Putin should use the remainder of his 
term to tackle the problem.  Pamfilova stressed the 
importance of U.S.-Russian cooperation in combating the 
Islamic threat. On Georgia, Pamfilova saw Saakashvili as "no 
democrat."  End summary. 
 
-------------------------- 
NGOs Will Stay in Business 
-------------------------- 
 
3. (C) Ambassador opened his October 5 meeting with 
Presidential Administration Human Rights and Civil Society 
Chairwoman Ella Pamfilova by briefly describing his concern 
that the failure of international NGOs to be re-registered by 
the October 18 deadline could mean a suspension of their 
program activities until registered by the Federal 
Registration Service (FRS).  Pamfilova, who was accompanied 
by Executive Secretary of the Presidential Council for 
Promoting the Development of Civil Society and Human Rights 
William Smirnov, noted that she had heard similar fears 
expressed by other international representatives.  She said 
--repeatedly and emphatically-- that "nothing would happen" 
to NGOs not registered by October 18. Either the deadline 
would be extended, or the NGOs would otherwise be able to 
continue their activities until registered by the FRS. 
 
4. (C) Pamfilova told the Ambassador that her Commission 
would hold a meeting on October 18 at which all information 
available at that time would be examined.  If there were any 
problems, she would intercede with the appropriate government 
agencies and with the President, if necessary.  Pamfilova 
said that she was in close contact with the FRS and would 
remain in contact as the deadline approached.  She again 
reassured the Ambassador that NGO activity would not be 
interrupted because of the October 18 deadline. 
 
---------------------------- 
No Restrictive NGO Financing 
Legislation on the Horizon 
---------------------------- 
 
5. (C) The Ambassador told Pamfilova of rumors of pending 
legislation that would prohibit foreign contributions to NGOs 
working in Russia.  Pamfilova ascribed the reports to the 
"political campaign," and insisted they were not true.  Her 
office had met recently with select members of the Federation 
Council and the State Duma.  There were, she repeated, no 
plans to introduce new legislation or modify existing laws. 
 
-------------------------------------- 
Corruption Spawns Interethnic Violence 
-------------------------------------- 
 
6. (C) September's interthnic violence in the Karelian city 
of Kondopoga had sparked increasing concerns about xenophobia 
and extremism in Russia, the Ambassador noted.  Pamfilova 
ascribed the violence there, and elsewhere in Russia, to "a 
crisis of our law enforcement system."  It was riddled with 
corruption, she said, and she argued that the "everything is 
for sale" atmosphere in local police forces spawned economic 
problems that mutated into interethnic ones.  President 
Putin, Pamfilova agreed, must squarely address the problem, 
and her office planned to make its own modest contribution 
through an October 26 roundtable on xenophobia and 
intolerance. 
 
7. (C) Pamfilova prescribed a draconian approach to 
 
MOSCOW 00011266  002 OF 002 
 
 
corruption in Russia: "a purge that would cut the connections 
between government and organized crime."  The fact that law 
enforcement agencies had been able so quickly to identify 
Georgian organized crime groups in the wake of recent 
problems with Tbilisi meant "the police know who they are and 
how they make their money."  She agreed that President Putin 
should use the remainder of his term to tackle the problem, 
noting that corruption "affects all social strata," and that 
beginning the fight "would take the edge off of things." 
 
8. (C) Pamfilova was less optimistic about prospects for 
stemming corruption in the Caucasus, noting that the re
gion's 
ethnic patchwork and traditions made success there less 
likely.  Federal "money is sent there, but never gets to the 
intended destination," she said. 
 
------------------------------- 
Russian-Western Sparring Allows 
Islamic Threat to Grow 
------------------------------- 
 
9. (C) The meeting continued with an emotional monologue by 
Pamfilova about the Islamic threat. She cited the recent 
cancellation of a performance of an opera in Berlin for fear 
that it would offend Muslim sensibilities as evidence that 
"political correctness" was causing the West to "lose to 
Islam."  "Anything can be a spark" for Muslim outrage, she 
said, even (the Russian poet) Pushkin.  Disagreements between 
the U.S. and Russia are abetted by Islamic extremists.  The 
West, Pamfilova contended, seemingly does not understand that 
the only solution is to join forces with Russia. 
 
------- 
Georgia 
------- 
 
10. (C) Pamfilova segued into an excoriation of Georgian 
President Saakashvili, "no democrat," who "understands the 
damage his actions are doing to Georgia and Georgians."  She 
deplored Saakashvili's personal attacks on President Putin. 
 
------- 
Comment 
------- 
 
11. (C) Pamfilova's unequivocal response to the Ambassador's 
concerns about the NGO re-registration process and her 
determination to remain in close contact with the FRS are 
cause for hope.  The Ambassador has brought the same concerns 
to the attention of Deputy Foreign Minister Yakovenko and to 
others in the Presidential Administration.  Septel will 
report on the registration status of international NGOs and 
preview further steps planned by the Embassy before the 
October 18 deadline. 
BURNS

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