Monthly Archives: September 2009

09MOSCOW2490, STAFFDEL BRUDER VISIT TO MOSCOW

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2490 2009-09-30 12:29 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0002
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #2490/01 2731229
ZNR UUUUU ZZH (CCY ADBB5B30 MSI4074-695)
R 301229Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4945
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS MOSCOW 002490 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
C O R R E C T E D COPY CAPTION 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PREL PGOV SENV OREP RS
SUBJECT: STAFFDEL BRUDER VISIT TO MOSCOW 
 
1. (SBU) Summary:  Senate Staff Delegation Bruder visited Moscow 
August 31-September 4 to seek ways to sustain momentum in the 
U.S.-Russian relationship after the successful July 2009 
Presidential meeting in Moscow.  While Federation Council Foreign 
Affairs Committee Chairman Margelov suggested rebuilding U.S.-Russia 
trust levels via joint projects in Somalia, Sudan, or the Congo, the 
MFA urged the U.S. to form an interparliamentary group as an 
umbrella for activities at lower levels, and said Russia would 
welcome the joint development of President Medvedev's proposed 
European Security Architecture.  U.S. Civilian Research and 
Development Foundation representatives highlighted successful joint 
programs with Russia, including the establishment of Research 
Education Centers and Technology Transfer Offices at Russian 
universities.  Analysts proposed that Russian Muslims should seek 
closer ties with the West than with the Middle East, but did not 
think that Chinese migration to the Russian Far East posed a threat 
to Russia.  End summary. 
 
------------------ 
Federation Council 
------------------ 
 
2. (SBU) During their August 31-September 4 visit to Moscow, 
Staffdel Bruder (Senate Foreign Relations Committee Staff Member 
Jason Bruder and Senator Shaheen's Legal Assistant Chad Kreikemeier) 
met with Federation Council Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman 
Margelov, who urged the U.S. and Russia to work together in areas 
that were not in "either's backyard."  He noted that Russia was 
still in the process of nation building and therefore sought 
friendly relations with neighboring countries in order to 
concentrate on domestic issues.  Russia today was not a "new USSR" 
that wanted to impose its will on independent states or buy 
influence in foreign countries by selling cheap oil and gas, he 
added.  Claiming that a unipolar or multipolar world did not work, 
Margelov said that the U.S. and Russia instead needed to adopt a 
pragmatic, strategic orientation towards each other and global 
politics.  Noting that the U.S. and Russia shared the same goals of 
a stable, functioning and predictable African continent, Margelov 
suggested finding pilot projects in Somalia, Sudan, or the Congo, in 
which the U.S. and Russia could work together.  As the Russian 
President's Special Envoy to Sudan, Margelov lauded the "200 
percent" understanding he shared with U.S. Envoy Gration on the 
issues in Sudan, and proposed a joint U.S.-Russia resolution on 
Sudan.  On other issues, Margelov revealed that Russian and Georgian 
officials still meet in Moscow at prayer breakfasts, one of which he 
had attended that morning, and claimed that both Russia and Turkey 
could play a roll in solving the Iran nuclear problem.  Margelov 
closed by restating his open invitation to Senator Kerry to visit 
Moscow. 
 
--- 
MFA 
--- 
 
3. (SBU) At the MFA, Staffdel met with representatives from the 
North America Department, the Department of European Cooperation, 
and the IVth CIS Department.  North America Department Section Head 
Alexey Korzhuev indicated Russia's strong desire to refresh the 
interparliamentary connections that previously existed, giving as an 
example Senator Bill Nelson's unexplained cancelation of his yearly 
meeting with Margelov.  Korzhuev explained that the GOR needed 
formality in contacts in order to arrange meetings and visits.  As 
such, an interparliamentary group could act as an umbrella for 
propelling activities at lower levels.  However, the MFA was unsure 
about how to move forward in cooperation with the U.S. Congress. 
 
4.  (SBU) Deputy Director of the European Cooperation Department 
Saltanovskiy agreed that more confidence building measures between 
the U.S. and Russia were needed, and said Russia would welcome the 
joint development of President Medvedev's proposed European Security 
Architecture.  Saltanovskiy also discussed ways that the NATO-Russia 
Council could be more effective. 
 
5.  (SBU) IVth CIS Deputy Director Alexey Dvinyanin stressed that 
the issue of restoring Georgia's territorial integrity was moot. 
Russia had no plans to absorb South Ossetia, and would defend 
Russian citizens abroad. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ---- 
U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation 
--------------------------------------------- ---- 
 
6. (U) U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) 
representatives told Staffdel the Russian government was striving to 
make science more competitive, by basing government funding on 
outputs, such as publications, rather than prior years' budgets. 
Russian scientists continued to have difficulty publishing their 
research without Western co-authors.  Brain drain and aging of the 
scientific community were problems, despite government programs to 
attract and retain scientists.  CRDF staff did not believe recent 
budget cuts in science funding would adversely affect President 
Medvedev's innovation priorities, citing as an example continued GOR 
support for Rusnano, a state c
orporation which partners with private 
investors to commercialize nanotechnology products.  CRDF praised a 
new law allowing universities and institutes to commercialize the 
results of their R&D programs.  Some of CRDF's successful joint 
programs in Russia included the establishment of 20 Research 
Education Centers (RECs) and eight Technology Transfer Offices at 
Russian universities -- a model which the Russian government hopes 
to replicate by creating 450 additional RECs in the next three years 
-- and the Lake El'gygytgyn drilling project that will provide new 
insights into the climate evolution of the Arctic. 
 
-------- 
Analysts 
-------- 
 
7. (SBU) Aleksey Malashenko, a recognized expert on religion and 
society at the Carnegie Center's Moscow office, claimed that radical 
Islamism was a normal tendency, not a deviation from true Islam. 
Islamic jihadism was always a reaction against something, for 
example, against the failure of reforms in Iran.  Malashenko did not 
believe Islam was compatible in society with Western values, but 
speculated that an evolution in Islam would be driven by contact 
with the West, and not arise from Islam itself.  Therefore, Russian 
Muslims should seek closer ties with the West than with the Middle 
East.  However, Malashenko contended that imposing European-style 
democracy on Islam would result in more Hamas-like organizations. 
 
 
8. (U) Dr. Gontmakher of the Institute for Contemporary Development 
told Staffdel that the proportion of the population that fit the 
Institute's rather restrictive definition of "middle class" had 
stagnated since 2000 at 10 percent.  He said that of the 
approximately 500 "mono-cities" (cities that depend on one company 
and massive subsidies) in Russia, 80-100 were in dire straits, while 
10-30 should be completely shut down and the inhabitants relocated. 
Gontmakher did not share the belief that Chinese migration to the 
Russian Far East posed a threat.  He noted that the migrants were 
seasonal and did not want to permanently reside in that 
"inhospitable region," while demographic pressures in China would 
abate in the coming decades.  Aside from illegal logging to feed 
Chinese demand, Gontmakher noted that an intergovernmental agreement 
with the government of North Korea allowed the clear-cutting of 
40,000 hectares of forest in the Russian Far East. 
 
RUBIN

Wikileaks

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09MOSCOW2486, REQUEST TO GOR FOR HELICOPTERS TO UNAMID DELIVERED

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2486 2009-09-30 11:47 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0002
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #2486 2731147
ZNR UUUUU ZZH (CCY ADBB59AE MSI3996-695)
O 301147Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4941
INFO RUCNFUR/DARFUR COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM IMMEDIATE 0013
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 0528

UNCLAS MOSCOW 002486 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
C O R R E C T E D COPY 
DEPARTMENT FOR IO/PSC 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KPKO MARR SU RU RS
SUBJECT: REQUEST TO GOR FOR HELICOPTERS TO UNAMID DELIVERED 
 
REF: STATE 097440 
 
(SBU)  We delivered reftel demarche to MFA IO Department 
Third Secretary Sergey Zhdanov on September 24, who said that 
the President's Special Representative for Sudan Mikhail 
Margelov had submitted a report to Medvedev emphasizing the 
importance of donating helicopters to Sudan.  Although the 
MFA had contacted the Presidential Administration multiple 
times supporting the same position, no substantive response 
had been received yet.  Zhdanov indicated that the Ministry 
of Defense had not yet obligated any helicopters. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2483, AMBASSADOR BEFORE FED COUNCIL: “RESET” WITH

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2483 2009-09-30 07:59 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO7690
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
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FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4936
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 002483 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/28/2019 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PMAR PHUM PINR ECON EFIN RS
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR BEFORE FED COUNCIL: "RESET" WITH 
RUSSIAN PARLIAMENTARIANS 
 
Classified By: CDA Eric Rubin; reasons 1.4(b/d). 
 
1. (C) Summary: On September 21, Ambassador Beyrle addressed 
the Federation Council's International Relations Committee, 
highlighting President Obama's visit to Moscow and the 
importance of developing closer relations between the U.S. 
and Russia.  Questions from committee members focused on how 
to get beyond Jackson-Vanik, anti-Russian (and anti-American) 
attitudes, and how to bring our societies together through 
culture, educational and sports exchanges.  Federation 
Council members participating in the 90-minute session 
expressed appreciation for the U.S. effort to build closer 
links with their chamber of the parliament.  End Summary. 
 
2. (SBU) At the invitation of Federation Council 
International Relations Committee Chairman Mikhail Margelov, 
the Ambassador on September 21 addressed both a session of 
the committee open to the press, and a closed session in 
which he and members had a productive exchange on bilateral 
relations.  The remarks in the presence of media received 
considerable coverage in the Russian press and can be read on 
the Embassy website.  Margelov set the context for the 
discussion by noting the importance of good will in the 
development of relations between two countries as the pretext 
for practical cooperation.  Margelov and the Ambassador spoke 
to Russian and foreign media after the session, stressing the 
frank open dialogue they had had, noting that in spite of 
differences on some matters, they agreed that there is more 
that unites Russia and the U.S. than divides the two 
countries. 
 
Top Issues in Private 
--------------------- 
 
3. (C) After press were ushered from the room, Margelov 
continued the session, opening the floor to questions from 
Federation Council members (from the International Relations 
Committee and others, including Defense) and invited outside 
experts, including USA and Canada Institute Director Sergey 
Rogov.  Discussion addressed: 
 
-- Jackson-Vanik: Federation Council member Toshkin asked how 
it was possible that Jackson-Vanik remains in force when more 
than ten percent of Israeli Knesset members are Russian 
emigres.  He followed up by inquiring whether Russia could 
enter the WTO with Jackson-Vanik still in force.  Ambassador 
reminded members that President Obama had referred to J-V as 
an "anachronism" during his July visit to Moscow.  He 
encouraged Federation Council members to continue to raise 
the matter with Members of Congress, but at the same time to 
ensure that protectionist steps taken in Russia, such as the 
instituting of barriers to the importation of U.S. meat and 
other products were not allowed to take root and thereby 
complicate the situation. 
 
-- Anti-Russian sentiment in the U.S.: Responding to a 
question from Aleksandr Dzasokhov, Chairman of the Federation 
Council Committee on Culture about how to address 
anti-Russian sentiments in the U.S., the Ambassador observed 
that anti-Russian views in the U.S. - and anti-American views 
in Russia - are the result of 50 years of Cold War 
confrontation, and that the positive benefits of good 
bilateral relations will take time to alter public attitudes. 
 He observed that good will for the development of closer 
ties exists at the top levels of both governments, and that 
as relations produce concrete results, public sentiment will 
change in both countries.  Ambassador reinforced the 
importance of cultural exchanges between both countries, and 
in particular educational exchanges for young students.  He 
reminded members that the chairmen of the Civil Society 
Working Group under the Bilateral Presidential Commission 
(BPC), Mike McFaul and Vladislav Surkov, would tackle these 
issues, among others, in the coming months. 
 
-- Inter-parliamentary exchanges: Nikolay Tulayev, chair of 
the parliamentary activities committee, argued that the 
promise of inter-parliamentary exchanges, especially through 
the OSCE, as a means of improving relations among countries 
had faded. 
 
-- Arms Control: Tulayev lamented the loss of connections 
between elected officials of different countries, since those 
ties contributed to cooperation on arms control and other 
areas throughout the 1990's.  Ambassador agreed that these 
contacts had been useful, but noted that the U.S. did not see 
the need to create a new organization to promote such 
 
MOSCOW 00002483  002 OF 002 
 
 
interaction.  Rather, we were counseling that countries 
should make use of existing organizational structures. 
 
-- Sports and Culture: Chair of the Federation Council 
Committee on Sports, Hockey Hall of Famer Vyacheslav Fetisov, 
put in a plug for including sports exchange in the work of 
the BPC. 
 
-- Promoting Greater U.S. Trade with
 and Investment in 
Russia: Ambassador reported that senior executives from major 
American companies, including Microsoft, Walmart and Pepsico 
had all participated in the recent Sochi Economic Forum, 
interested in investment and bolstering trade. 
 
4. (C) Sergey Rogov, Director of the USA-Canada Institute 
prefaced his questions with a detailed assessment of 
U.S.-Russian relations over the past year, covering the 
difficulties encountered in trying to deal with fallout from 
the Georgia war, missile defense and concerns over possible 
NATO membership for Ukraine and/or Georgia.  But, with the 
decision to reconfigure how the U.S. (and Allies) address 
Iranian missile threats, including canceling the construction 
of missile defense facilities in Poland and the Czech 
Republic, the U.S. was actually taking into account Russian 
concerns. In spite of progress on other issues, including 
cooperation on Afghanistan, as well as the good personal 
relationship between Presidents Obama and Medvedev, Rogov 
nonetheless worried that the START follow-on agreement might 
get hung up in the U.S. Senate.  He asked what Russia should 
do to maintain the good will momentum.  Ambassador argued 
that Russia, together with the other P-5, projecting a united 
front against Iranian threats and joining in tough, 
coordinated action that imposes costs (sanctions) on Tehran 
for flaunting the UNSC would also show Russia's willingness 
to confront Iran, and create an atmosphere more conducive to 
easy ratification of START. 
 
Don't Leave Before Addressing Georgia and CFE 
--------------------------------------------- 
 
5. (C) Taking a few last questions at the end of over 90 
minutes of presentation and discussion, Ambassador was asked 
about U.S. military support for Georgia.  Ambassador noted 
that we support Georgian sovereignty and the Georgian people 
in their ongoing efforts to build a prosperous, democratic 
future for their country.  Georgia is contributing forces to 
the military campaign in Afghanistan, and has requested and 
received assistance from the U.S. to prepare those forces for 
that assignment.  The Ambassador urged that Federation 
Council members consider the full context of the 
Afghanistan-specific assistance for Georgia.  And finally, on 
CFE, the Ambassador said he regretted Russia's decision not 
to live up to its obligations under the CFE Treaty.  CFE 
remains a cornerstone of European security, requiring Russia 
and other parties to the treaty to consider ways to revive 
and strengthen it. 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
6. (C) The session was remarkably friendly and has already 
opened doors.  Federation Council Chairman Mironov, who has 
refused to meet us for over a year, phoned the Embassy the 
day after the International Relations Committee session (and 
after extensive media coverage) to propose a date for a 
meeting with the Ambassador.  Given access restrictions to 
Duma officials, not to mention the Duma building itself, this 
outreach opportunity will hopefully open more doors for us. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2471, RUSSIAN RESPONSE TO USG PROPOSAL ON NON-MEMBERS IN NPAFC

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2471 2009-09-29 14:03 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO6947
PP RUEHLN RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHMO #2471 2721403
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
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FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4934
INFO RUEHYG/AMCONSUL YEKATERINBURG 3714
RUEHVK/AMCONSUL VLADIVOSTOK 3361
RUEHLN/AMCONSUL ST PETERSBURG 5484
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 2127
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 2798
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 4294
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 4519
RUEHIN/AIT TAIPEI 0437

UNCLAS MOSCOW 002471 
 
EUR/RUS FOR KATE SZPILA 
OES/OMC FOR JOHN FIELD 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: EFIS RS
SUBJECT: RUSSIAN RESPONSE TO USG PROPOSAL ON NON-MEMBERS IN NPAFC 
 
REF: STATE 87368 
 
On August 27, Post delivered reftel talking points to Sergey 
Simakov, Chief of the International Cooperation Department of the 
Russian Federal Fisheries Agency.  The agency's written response -- 
dated September 11, but received at the Embassy on September 23 -- 
states that the U.S. proposal on changes to the rules of procedure 
of the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission (NPAFC) remains 
under review and will be communicated to the Embassy when that 
review is completed. 
 
RUBIN

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2458, FIVE YEARS AFTER BESLAN, GOR STAYS TIGHT-LIPPED

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2458 2009-09-28 11:56 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO5797
RR RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #2458/01 2711156
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 281156Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4921

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 MOSCOW 002458 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/27/2019 
TAGS: PGOV PHUM KDEM RS
SUBJECT: FIVE YEARS AFTER BESLAN, GOR STAYS TIGHT-LIPPED 
 
Classified By: Pol Min Counselor Susan Elliott for reason 1.4 (d) 
 
1. (SBU) Summary: Five years after the Beslan terrorist 
attack, frustration continues about the GOR's handling of the 
crisis as it unfolded.  While public focus on this issue has 
dissipated, a small but vocal minority of Russians has 
continued to agitate for the GOR to open an investigation of 
what went wrong on the day of the massacre.  As the September 
1 anniversary of Beslan approached, a number of print media 
raised the topic, but the GOR continues to show a great 
reluctance to answer these questions. Organizers of civic 
groups demanding government accountability in the case have 
suffered pressure from authorities, as well as at least two 
separate beatings.  They have also been hampered by discord 
in their own ranks.  In the aftermath of the attack, aid 
flowed into the region from around the world, but local 
groups squabbled over the money, and much of the money did 
not reach those who needed it most.  In September we visited 
Beslan and the Mission's USAID staff visited Vladikavkaz to 
determine how best to target aid to rectify these problems. 
USAID intends to focus its newest tranche of aid on building 
mechanisms to lower ethnic tensions between opposing groups 
in the area.  End Summary. 
 
GOR Cover-up on Beslan? 
----------------------- 
 
2. (SBU) Five years after the terrorist attack on a school in 
Beslan in which 336 people were killed, 186 of them children, 
frustration continues about the GOR's handling of the crisis 
as it unfolded.  While public focus on this issue has 
dissipated, a small but vocal minority of Russians has 
continued to agitate for the GOR to open an investigation of 
what went wrong on the day of the massacre.  Some 
commentators have noted the discrepancy between the official 
deafening silence on Beslan when the anniversary approached, 
and the fanfare associated with other anniversaries, such as 
the one-year anniversary of the 2008 conflict with Georgia. 
Speaking with us on September 24, Yevgeniz Albats of the New 
Times said that to her distress the GOR consistently has 
swept the Beslan issue under the rug, and she reminisced 
about a Valdai Club meeting that took place immediately after 
the attack in which the topic was conspicuously absent. 
However, despite GOR hopes that the issue would fade from 
memory, it has not disappeared.  On September 1, North 
Caucasus expert Ivan Sukhov wrote an article in the liberal 
New Times voicing a number of the questions that still 
remain: "Who fired first on the hostage-filled school?  Where 
did the first explosion come from?  Wouldn't more lives have 
been saved if the negotiations had been handled differently?" 
 
 
3. (C) The GOR has shown a great reluctance to answer these 
questions.  Marina Litvinovich, creator of the activist 
website PravdaBeslana.ru ("Truth of Beslan".ru), told us in a 
recent meeting that the testimony of the surviving hostages 
differed in significant ways from the official account of the 
events of those three days.  Litvinovich had traveled to 
Beslan and had recorded conversations she had with the 
families of the victims.  "I had to take a look at the 'one 
car' that supposedly carried 32 heavily-armed terrorists with 
a gas machine," she said, rolling her eyes.  She added that 
even Yuriy Saverev, the head of the official investigation, 
wrote a report that showed that the initial fire during the 
police raid came from outside of the school.  Despite public 
knowledge of this information, Litvinovich said, the GOR has 
never officially accepted it.  She also scoffed at the 
official statements that the GOR had never negotiated with 
the hostage-takers, noting that "it is clear" that this was 
how some women and children were released.  Litvinovich said 
that the NGO Mothers of Beslan had tried for years to present 
their case on a major television talk show, but that the 
subject is taboo on Russian television. 
 
4. (SBU) Muckraking journalist Elena Milashina, a friend and 
associate of Litvinovich, wrote a lengthy article in the 
August 31 Novaya Gazeta providing evidence that at least some 
Russian special services learned of the likelihood of the 
attack several weeks before it occurred.  Laying out a 
detailed paper trail, Milashina alleges that GOR special 
services had inserted an agent named Abdullah Khodova into 
Chechen terrorist Shamil Basayev's organization, but that 
Basayev succeeded in flipping Khodova to become a double 
agent.  (Note: The article also quotes Basayev saying that 
the militants, including Khodova, had attacked the school by 
mistake, intending to attack a building housing Russian 
agents instead, but could not go back once the attack was 
underway.  End note.)  According to Milashina, once 
authorities realized that they had lost control of their 
agent, they backed off from any meaningful investigation of 
the Beslan attack, out of a desire to conceal their 
 
MOSCOW 00002458  002 OF 003 
 
 
association with Khodova. 
 
Civil society orgs hampered from without and within 
--------------------------------------------- ------ 
 
5. (C) Despite the scale of the tragedy, and despite the 
GOR's failure to respond competently to the crisis, attempts 
to organize civil society organizations demanding government 
accountability have consistently failed.  One reason for this 
has been GOR encroachment on freedom of assembly for 
Beslan-related groups.  Litvinovich found a lawyer for the 
victims' families, and gathered evidence, documents, and 
photos.  In March 2006 she was attacked and beaten on a 
street in Moscow.  She told us that during the attack, she 
lost consciousness, but that her attackers brought her to the 
side of the street and kept her on her side in order to help 
keep her alive.  They waited for her to regain consciousness, 
and then told her, "Be careful, Marina."  Since then, she 
said, she has kept a lower profile. 
 
6. (SBU) Civil society organization has also failed because 
of discord within the Beslan families themselves.  In the 
highly emotional context that followed the tragedy, people 
who had suffered were easy targets for people with ulterior 
motives.  The first organization promoting government 
accountability for Beslan was the Mothers of Beslan; however, 
some members of this organization began following a local 
charlatan named Grigoriy Grabavoy, who claimed that he could 
resurrect the children who had been killed.  (Note: In July 
2008 Moscow's Tagansky Court found Grabavoy -- whose name 
literally means "thief" -- guilty of 11 acts of fraud in 
Beslan.  End note.)  Those who refused to follow Grabavoy 
started Voice of Beslan, which has pursued a legal strategy, 
including opening a case, still pending, at the European 
Court of Human Rights against the GOR for violation of the 
right to life.  The two groups followed divergent paths in 
their relations with the GOR; Voice of Beslan had trouble 
registering, and began receiving pressure in the form of 
"extremism" cases opened against them locally (later 
dropped).  Meanwhile, according to Litvinovich, Mothers of 
Beslan has cozied up to local authorities, and their leader 
announced publicly that "no one was to blame" for the tragic 
results of the attack. 
 
Aid is also a complicated issue 
------------------------------- 
 
7. (C) Regrettably, discord also arose among the Beslan 
families over the large quantities of aid money that flowed 
into Beslan.  In the aftermath of the attack, worldwide 
attention focused on Beslan and aid poured in from both 
governments and private citizens.  Litvinovich said that much 
of the money had not reached those who needed it the most, 
and added that some Beslan residents -- including even 
officials -- who had no connection to the attack attempted to 
receive some of this money fraudulently.  (Note: She did not 
have figures on the amount of money in question. End note.) 
While noting that people there are poor and that some of this 
cupidity was therefore understandable, Litvinovich still 
heaped scorn on those who allowed themselves to be co-opted 
by the GOR in exchange for silence about GOR failings during 
the crisis.  "The worst thing is to see how parents will 
trade in their dead children for benefits -- for example, 'If 
you don't criticize Putin, we'll give you an apartment.'" 
 
8. (SBU) Corruption has also complicated aid; a recent Moscow 
Times article reported that Beslan's main hospital that had 
treated victims of the attack, had supposedly received 6.2 
million rubles (240,000 USD) in federal aid after the attack, 
but remained in abysmal condition for several years. 
According to the article, a surgeon had lost his job when he 
acted as a whistleblower.  In 2007 a new hospital was finally 
built, but it still has not opened its doors.  We observed a 
complete lack of activity there during a September visit, and 
also learned that the hospital has no child psychology 
department.  We also noted that both the school and the 
cemetary are still full of fresh flowers, toys, and bottled 
drinks (the latter because the victims went three days 
without anything to drink).  Those in the community with whom 
we spoke expressed the fear that the wider world would forget 
them.  It was clear that the grief remained raw, and that no 
healing had taken place. 
 
9. (SBU) The Embassy's USAID office is working to target aid 
so that it will produce constructive long-term results in the 
region.  The level of sympathy that led to the initial 
massive influx of aid was misplaced, because the aid was 
indiscriminate and not necessarily tied to the actual needs 
that existed.  USAID intends to focus its latest tranche of 
aid on building mechanisms to lower communitarian tensions 
between opposing groups in the area.  As many observers have 
 
MOSCOW 00002458  003 OF 003 
 
 
noted, the Beslan attack took place against the backdrop of 
enmity between some members of the Ingush community (who 
constituted most of the attackers in this instance) and some 
members of the Ossetian community (who constituted most of 
the victims).  As USAID wraps up the current five-year plan 
for assistance to the North Caucasus, a representative from 
their office visited Vladikavkaz during the last week of 
September to determine how best to target aid to meet this 
long-term goal of greater stability. 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
10. (C) Although Beslan was a terrorist attack, it remains 
inextricably linked to the GOR's questionable human rights 
record, especially given Putin's opportunist moves to curtail 
democracy immediately following the attack, including 
abolishing direct election of regional governors.  The GOR's 
intransigence in refusing to order an investigation, or 
answer any questions related to Beslan, directly raises human 
rights concerns: At best, the government has violated the 
right to freedom of assembly and the right of civic groups to 
demand accountability from their government over perceived 
failures.  At worst, it has shown a blatant disregard for 
human life, especially if there is truth to the allegation 
that authorities sacrificed hostages' lives in pursuit of 
their anti-militant goals.  As Beslan continues to be a a 
"third rail" issue, we will calibrate our support for 
Beslan's unfortunate residents according to the needs on the 
ground, while working with authorities to ensure that our 
message of collaboration is not lost in translation.  At the 
same time, we will show our support for the civil society 
groups that continue to struggle for answers to their 
questions. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2450, UNITED RUSSIA POISED TO SWEEP ELECTIONS IN MOSCOW

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2450 2009-09-26 13:52 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO5079
RR RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #2450/01 2691352
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 261352Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4910
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 MOSCOW 002450 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/25/2019 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM PINR EFIN KDEM KCOR RS
SUBJECT: UNITED RUSSIA POISED TO SWEEP ELECTIONS IN MOSCOW 
OBLAST 
 
REF: A. MOSCOW 2102 
     B. MOSCOW 571 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott.  Reason:  1. 
4 (b), (d). 
 
1. (SBU)  Summary:  United Russia has a great advantage and 
is poised to sweep the elections in the Moscow Oblast, where 
opposition groups have little support and laws are easily 
broken.  The hot button political issues in the October 11 
elections are taxes, land distribution, and corruption.  End 
Summary. 
 
2. (SBU)  On October 11, in Moscow Cblast, 289 heads and 
3,000 deputies of city councils and local governments, 
including mayors, will be elected.  According to the election 
observation NGO GOLOS, "tense struggles are underway in many 
municipal Moscow Oblast entities." 
 
Moscow Oblast Elections - What's at Stake? 
------------------------------------------ 
 
3. (C)  Moscow Oblast, with an estimated population of seven 
million people (distinct from the city with an official 
population of 11.5 million), has 4,000 communities and 300 
mayors and it includes 15 cities with more than 100,000 
inhabitants.  The Moscow Oblast is huge and difficult to 
control, with different political regimes within various 
cities.  Georgiy Prokopov, an expert on regional studies, 
told us July 15 that Moscow Oblast is a "closed region" and 
the local government withholds a lot of information about it. 
 Aleksey Titkov, a regional studies expert, added July 21 
that "Moscow Oblast is one of the most difficult regions to 
follow because it has so many separate cities and political 
systems."  According to Titkov, the most compelling political 
issues are in regions closest to Moscow City where most 
resources are concentrated. 
 
4. (C)  Boris Nadezhdin, Moscow Oblast leader for the newly 
elected Kremlin-backed, pro-business Right Cause party told 
us June 10 that the three main areas of interest in the 
upcoming October 11 elections are the fair distribution of 
land resources, lowering taxes, and corruption.  Regional 
expert Prokopov confided, however, that the elections are 
unlikely to make a difference and explained that Governor 
Boris Gromov controlled all of the Moscow Oblast elections 
conducted last year.  He told us that Gromov allocated budget 
money to certain cities as a favor or bribe so that the 
mayors would ensure that the elections ran in United Russia's 
favor.  Regional expert Titkov added that almost all 
candidates have skeletons in their closets, often involving 
bribes, illegal privatization, illegal construction, and real 
estate.  According to Titkov, real competition in elections 
exists, but the Moscow Oblast government uses its 
administrative resources to pressure certain candidates. 
Independent regional analyst Aleksandr Kynev was more cynical 
July 24 when he stated that elections in the Moscow Oblast 
would merely be personal fights between businessmen. 
 
Land Distribution Affects Wealth 
-------------------------------- 
 
5. (C)  The distribution of land in the Moscow Oblast is a 
point of controversy because it means wealth.  Some areas are 
more agriculturally based, while others have more industry. 
The wealthiest and most developed regions are within 25 km of 
Moscow City.  Apartments in Moscow City are very expensive, 
while land in the Moscow Oblast is less expensive, especially 
the further out one goes.  There are a few big cities 
connected to the Moscow Oblast Government administration, so 
these areas receive preferential treatment.  Titkov told us 
that the western portion of the Moscow Oblast, which includes 
some nature reserves, has the most land-related scandals 
since it is a very desirable area for residential 
development. 
 
Paying Taxes in Moscow City or Moscow Oblast 
-------------------------------------------- 
 
6. (C)  Nadezhdin told us that residents often live in the 
Moscow Oblast, but work in Moscow City.  About a million and 
a half cars are driven into Moscow City each day.  These 
commuters pay income taxes through their workplace and the 
money goes to the Moscow City, while the Oblast is not 
included in this tax revenue stream.  (Note:  One hundred 
percent of these income taxes goes to the Moscow City budget 
since 70 percent are regional and 30 percent are municipal, 
but Moscow City enjoys the same status as that of a region.) 
According to Nadezhdin, the average income in Moscow City is 
 
MOSCOW 00002450  002 OF 003 
 
 
40,000 rubles per month while it is only 20,000 rubles per 
month in the Moscow Oblast, so it is advantageous to live in 
the Oblast but work in Moscow City.  However, the cost of 
living in Moscow Oblast is much lower than in Moscow City. 
It should be noted, however, that two million Muscovites live 
in their dachas, or summer homes, in the Moscow Oblast during 
the summer sea
son and do not pay income taxes in Moscow City 
when they are not working. 
 
Extreme Corruption 
------------------ 
 
7. (C)  According to experts and political observers, Moscow 
Oblast is rife with corruption, which has a great impact on 
politics.  Prokopov confirmed that journalists do investigate 
and at least some of the corruption is revealed.  Examples 
have included officials using their positions to buy the best 
pieces of land for the most favorable prices, as well as 
corruption related to Moscow Oblast's debt.  According to 
Prokopov, Governor Gromov controls state-owned companies, 
such as construction companies, which have large debts that 
impact the Oblast budget (ref. A).  Ultimately, the residents 
have shouldered the burden of these debts. 
 
8. (C)  Kynev told us that there are very big corruption 
scandals in Moscow Oblast which result in political killings 
every few months.  These "criminal politics" have involved 
killing journalists and politicians, as well as taking 
enormous bribes.  Kynev cited four recent scandals in 
addition to the one in Khimki, where in 2008, an attempted 
murder on journalist Mikhail Beketov, resulted in his being 
hospitalized with severe injuries including the amputation of 
his leg and fingers (ref. B).  Kynev said that several years 
ago in Podolsk, former Mayor Aleksandr Fokin was found guilty 
of organizing the murder of a rival candidate during the 
elections.  Three years ago, the mayor in the town of 
Chekhov, a huge criminal figure, died in a suspect automobile 
accident.  Likewise, the mayor in Troetsk was killed, and the 
mayor in Ozeri disappeared and was never found.  Kynev said 
that, "most deaths are related to the real estate business in 
Russia, a real criminal enterprise."  He added that ethnic 
criminal groups in the Moscow Oblast, including ones 
comprised of Chechens, Dagestanis, Tatars, and Tajiks, 
congregate in the Moscow Oblast.  The further away from the 
center of Moscow, he said, the more difficult it is to 
control the chaos. 
 
The Political Players in the Moscow Oblast 
------------------------------------------ 
 
9. (C)  Political opposition in the Moscow Oblast is very 
weak, but there are some influential individuals, whose 
personal politics revolve around protecting their business 
interests.  Right Cause's Nadezhdin was a Deputy in Khimki, 
so he has some support there and in the city of Dolgoprudni. 
He told us that he is not supported in the entire region and 
does not have enough resources to have a strong influence 
oblast-wide.  Nadezhdin told us that Vladimir Pekarev is a 
United Russia-backed Deputy in the Russian State Duma who 
owns the spirit production company "Ost-Alco."  He has a 
factory in Chernogolovka and is influential in the east of 
Moscow Oblast.  He backs political candidates who are not 
always on the United Russia ticket.  Gennady Gudkov, a Just 
Russia Deputy in the State Duma, also has political interests 
in the region.  He has a lot of different businesses and is 
connected with the city of Mytishchi.  He is linked to the 
management in a factory that produces trains in which he 
formerly worked.  Gudkov has been known to try to advance his 
own people as mayors and the person he supported in Stupinski 
region successfully won on a Just Russia platform.  These 
influential individuals are presumably making political 
strides which they hope could eventually catapult them to the 
gubernatorial level. 
 
10. (C)  According to Prokopov, Pekarev and Gudkov are inside 
the system and do not represent real opposition to the ruling 
United Russia party.  Prokopov told us that although there is 
no real opposition in the Moscow Oblast, there are some weak 
political networks in addition to Nadezhdin's Right Cause, 
such as the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF), 
that have a presence and offices in different cities.  Kynev 
told us that the previous Communist structure still exists in 
the Moscow Oblast and that the Communists are growing in the 
larger cities.  He said that the Communists are concentrated 
in science towns and places like Kolomna and Lubertsy. 
According to Titkov, Yabloko is weak in the Moscow Oblast, 
and the Solidarity Movement is not a registered political 
party and therefore cannot fill a slate of candidates.  Kynev 
added that business tycoon Alexander Lebedev always gets 
 
MOSCOW 00002450  003 OF 003 
 
 
10-15 percent popular support in the Moscow Oblast.  Titkov 
argued that not a single party openly speaks out against 
Gromov.  Mariya-Luiza Tirmaste, a journalist at Kommersant, 
told us July 28 told us that although opposition parties 
technically exist in the Moscow Oblast Duma, there is no real 
opposition and everything is done through relationships and 
through the use of the budget. 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
11. (C)  Despite repeated efforts, officials in Moscow Oblast 
have refused to meet with us.  Although elections are 
looming, it appears that, as in Moscow City, United Russia 
and big business have a firm grip on the area.  The elections 
will unlikely have much impact on the deep-rooted criminal 
activity and corruption that permeates the region. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2448, PUTIN’S YAMAL MEETING WITH INTERNATIONAL ENERGY

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2448 2009-09-25 12:42 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO4460
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
DE RUEHMO #2448/01 2681242
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 251242Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4907
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 002448 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR/RUS, EEB/ESC/IEC GALLOGLY AND GREENSTEIN, 
S/EEE MORNINGSTAR 
DOE FOR HEGBURG, EKIMOFF 
DOC FOR JBROUGHER 
NSC FOR MMCFAUL 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/15/2019 
TAGS: EPET ENRG ECON PREL RS
SUBJECT: PUTIN'S YAMAL MEETING WITH INTERNATIONAL ENERGY 
CEO'S YIELDS FEW RESULTS 
 
Classified By: Econ MC Matthias Mitman for Reasons 1.4 (b/d) 
 
------- 
Summary 
------- 
 
1. (C) Lack of GOR coordination with Gazprom reportedly 
preceded PM Putin's September 25 meeting in Yamal with 
executives from eleven global energy giants.  Press reports, 
industry newsletters and postings on the PM's website provide 
only general information on the meeting's outcomes without 
stating whether the GOR will offer tax breaks for development 
of the gas-rich Yamal peninsula.  Even with tax breaks and 
international participation, gas from the region is likely 
many years, if not decades, away.  End summary. 
 
------------------- 
"NOT AN INVITATION" 
------------------- 
 
2. (SBU) Press reported September 21 that PM Putin would meet 
"CEOs" from eleven international energy companies in the 
remote city of Salekhard in Yamalo-Nenetsk Autonomous Okrug 
on September 24 to discuss their potential participation in 
the development of the gas-rich Yamal Peninsula.  According 
to contacts at some of the invited companies, Gazprom sent 
out invitations several weeks to ten days before the meeting 
to six companies with whom it already has working 
relationships -- Mitsui, Mitsubishi, Shell, Total, 
StatoilHydro, and Korgas.  Then, less than one week before 
the meeting, the Russian White House announced that the Prime 
Minister would be meeting with the heads of eleven companies, 
including ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, ENI, Suncor, and Gaz de 
France. 
 
3. (C) According to our contacts, these later invitations 
were issued without Gazprom's knowledge.  ConocoPhillips 
government affairs manager Lena Zemskova (strictly protect) 
said that Gazprom Deputy CEO Alexander Medvedev only learned 
on September 17 of the addition of the five companies it did 
not itself invite to the meeting.  She added that none of her 
contacts at the Ministry of Energy knew anything about the 
meeting and were asking her to provide them with details. 
 
4. (C) In a September 22 conversation, ExxonMobil Russia 
President (strictly protect) Steve Terni called the 
invitation process "insulting."  Terni equated it to the USG 
"sending cables to embassies instructing them to inform their 
host governments that President Obama would be meeting with 
their presidents in Nebraska in 3 days."  Given the extremely 
short notice, ExxonMobil could not send its CEO.  The company 
instead was represented by Neil Duffin, head of ExxonMobil 
Development. 
 
5.  (C) Zemskova said the letter ConocoPhillips received 
(late night on Friday September 18) "could not be described 
as an invitation."  She said it was signed by a mid-level 
bureaucrat, was not addressed to any specific individual, and 
contained very few details as to what the meeting was about. 
She paraphrased it like this:  "According to decree X and 
government decision Y, you have been approved to be included 
in a meeting with the Prime Minister..."  Although 
ConocoPhillips CEO Jim Mulva made the meeting, Zemskova said 
the lack of information, short notice, and logistical 
difficulties of reaching the remote location of the meeting 
caused many headaches at her company. 
 
6. (C) Shell government affairs manager Elena Polyakova 
(strictly protect) described the process as "very strange." 
Polyakova said Shell received its invitation about 10 days 
prior to the meeting and that her CEO attended.  She said the 
confusion between Gazprom and the Russian White House 
resulted in constant changes to the time and agenda of the 
meeting, which she described as "very general." 
 
----------- 
FEW RESULTS 
----------- 
 
7. (C) Given the apparent organizational disarray and the 
 
MOSCOW 00002448  002 OF 002 
 
 
usual experience with such events, company representatives 
expected little substance from the meeting.  As of mid-day 
September 25, company representatives had not yet received a 
debrief from their principals.  None of those with whom we 
spoke expected any new substantive incentives to have been 
presented by the Russians. 
 
8. (SBU) The few details made public by press reports, 
industry newsletters, and information posted on the PM's 
website indicate that Russia might be ready to offer some 
tax-breaks for development of Yamal gas resources.  These 
sources indicate that Russia would be looking to ship some 
gas from the region as LNG and is interested in obtaining 
expertise and technology as well as investment from western 
companies.  On his website, Putin noted that Russia might 
expect asset sw
aps from participating companies.  Beyond 
that, Putin simply described the vast gas production 
potential of the region and stressed that international 
companies would be welcomed as "members of our team." 
 
9. (SBU) Industry sources note that Gazprom had previously 
said that the Bovanenkovo field would begin producing gas in 
late 2012.  Gazprom was also looking to the combined Yamal 
fields (including Bovanenkovo) to produce 75-115 bcm/year in 
2015, rising to over 300 bcm/year by 2030.  Gazprom CEO 
Alexei Miller, following the Salekhard meeting, is now quoted 
as saying that, "currently we are at the pre-project stage; I 
don't believe this will happen earlier than 2015-2017." 
Industry analysts belief that the delay is due, in part, to 
reductions in Gazprom's capital expenditures.  In addition to 
looking for western investment, technology and expertise, 
Gazprom is also reportedly looking to off-load some of the 
costs of Yamal development to other companies, with the cost 
of transportation infrastructure reportedly being moved to 
the Russian Railways company, thereby reducing Gazprom's 
costs. 
 
------------------ 
COMPANIES CAUTIOUS 
------------------ 
 
10. (SBU) ConocoPhillips CEO James Mulva is quoted in 
industry press as saying that "it is necessary to develop as 
soon as possible a formula, a term contract for the industry 
to understand how companies will invest their money.  It is 
also very important to know not only what the incentives will 
be, but also how the project will be managed." 
 
11. (SBU) Shell CEO Peter Voser is quoted as saying, "We 
believe that difficulties can be overcome through a 
constructive partnership between Russian and international 
companies."  Yet even he limited his statements, noting that 
Shell "is ready to undertake a study on the viability" of LNG 
projects in Yamal, but not committing the company to anything 
other than studies at this point. 
 
12. (C) Responding to the question of why Chevron wasn't 
included in the meeting, Sergey Kuznetsov (strictly protect), 
Chevron's Vice President for Policy, Government, and Public 
Affairs, ridiculed interest in developing Yamal.  "Why would 
we want to sink billions of dollars in a swamp," he told us 
September 22.  He described Yamal as posing such logistical, 
technical, and financial challenges that it was simply not 
attractive to Chevron.  BP's government and public affairs 
manager Anton Mifsud-Bonici (strictly protect) told us that 
BP prefers to work in Russia through TNK-BP, and that this 
meeting was only "act 1, scene 1, of a very long opera." 
 
------- 
COMMENT 
------- 
 
13. (C) We will seek out more details in the coming days of 
the GOR's and Gazprom's presentations at this meeting.  As 
various contacts and analysts have pointed out, even with 
incentives for foreign participation, gas is unlikely to be 
flowing from Yamal anywhere close to the proposed 2012 date 
suggested by the GOR.  End comment. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2446, GEORGIA: RUSSIAN VIEW OF SEPTEMBER 17 GENEVA TALKS

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2446 2009-09-25 11:23 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO4393
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
DE RUEHMO #2446/01 2681123
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 251123Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4903
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 MOSCOW 002446 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/25/2019 
TAGS: PREL PGOV RS GG
SUBJECT: GEORGIA: RUSSIAN VIEW OF SEPTEMBER 17 GENEVA TALKS 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott for reasons 1 
.4 (b), (d) 
 
1.  (C) Summary.  MFA 4th CIS Deputy Director Dvinyanin told 
us that the status question was the biggest obstacle for 
progress in the September 17 Geneva talks.  Russia rejected 
the co-chairs' drafts in the security working group, as they 
did not proceed from the starting point of Russian troops and 
EU monitors guaranteeing security on either side of the 
administrative boundary lines.  The only role Russia saw for 
the OSCE and UN was in the Incident Prevention Mechanisms 
(IPRMs), which could be expanded to cover a wider range of 
issues.  However, the IPRMs, like the Geneva talks, could not 
be expected to produce decisions, instead only serving to 
reduce tensions and make possible a dialog between the 
parties.  Signing non-use of force agreements between Georgia 
and the breakaway regions was Russia's top priority now, 
while DFM Karasin later said stopping the "remilitarization" 
of Georgia was another priority.  Dvinyanin welcomed the 
co-chairs' intent to redraft a document submitted to the 
humanitarian working group under consideration of all sides' 
views.  Taken together, Russia appears to be emphasizing 
activities that the USG does not participate in (monitors, 
IPRMs).  End Summary. 
 
--------------- 
Regions' Status 
--------------- 
 
2.  (C) MFA 4th CIS Department Deputy Director Alexei 
Dvinyanin told us September 23 that the status question for 
South Ossetia and Abkhazia was the greatest problem during 
the September 17 Geneva Talks, in part due to the breakaway 
regions' linkage of the status question to the return of 
IDPs.  Russia had no intention of prevailing upon the regions 
in this regard, as the regions' position on status was the 
same as Russia's. 
 
------------------------- 
Working Group on Security 
------------------------- 
 
3.  (C) Dvinyanin said that the substance of the draft 
document the co-chairs had submitted to the Working Group on 
security contained many unacceptable points, including the 
unexplained term "separation of forces" and references to 
restricted armament zones as well as demilitarized zones. 
Although Russia had made similar proposals in the OSCE and UN 
before, the West had opposed them, and now Russia's 
suggestions were "off the table."  According to Dvinyanin, 
Russia no longer had any interest in an OSCE or UN presence 
in Georgia proper, and concurred with the Abkhaz and South 
Ossetians views that international forces on their territory 
were unwelcome, even if the regions might have stated the 
opposite earlier.  Instead, Russia would now only negotiate 
from the starting point of Russian troops providing stability 
and security in the regions, and the EU Monitoring Mission 
(EUMM) doing the same in Georgia proper. 
 
------------------------------ 
Incident Prevention Mechanisms 
------------------------------ 
 
4.  (C) Dvinyanin said that the Incident Prevention and 
Response Mechanisms (IPRMs) were now the only means Russia 
foresaw for UN or OSCE engagement in Georgia.  However, their 
representatives could not be based in Georgia, but would have 
to fly in from Vienna or Geneva. 
 
5.  (C) Despite the agreement in Geneva on the usefulness of 
the IPRMs for Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Dvinyanin conceded 
that they were not very productive.  He blamed the EU for 
this, saying it remained inflexible regarding the 
chairmanship and the languages of the meetings. 
 
6.  (C) Still, Russia considered the IPRMs to be useful, if 
they led to the reduction of tensions, exchange of 
information, and discussion of issues.  Dvinyanin urged that 
the IPRMs be developed further to allow a much wider range of 
issues to be discussed.  The mechanisms could not be expected 
to produce decisions, however. 
 
--------------------------- 
Non-Use of Force Agreements 
--------------------------- 
 
 
MOSCOW 00002446  002 OF 003 
 
 
7.  (C) Calling the signing of non-use of force agreements 
(NUFs) between Georgia and South Ossetia and Abkhazia 
Russia's top priority, Dvinyanin welcomed that the co-chairs 
had agreed to rewrite their submitted draft NUF.  The 
"deadlock" that Russia's rejection of the first draft caused 
lay in that the co-chairs envisioned Russia as a party to an 
NUF, while Russia insisted it was a mediator. 
 
8.  (C) Dvinyanin said the Georgian delegation during the 
talks might have hinted at flexibility with regard to the 
NUF, but had been unclear about linking the signing of the 
NUFs to acceptance of international forces in the breakaway 
regions, and never explicitly offered to sign NUFs with the 
regions. 
 
------------------------------------ 
Working Group on Humani
tarian Issues 
------------------------------------ 
 
9.  (C) Dvinyanin called the draft document on IDP return 
submitted by the co-chairs to the Working Group on 
humanitarian issues unacceptable, but praised the co-chairs' 
willingness to redraft the document based on all sides' 
contributions.  He noted as one problem that the South 
Ossetian proposal from September 17 spoke of the return of 
South Ossetian IDPs dating back to 1989, while the co-chairs' 
draft only addressed Georgian IDPs. 
 
10.  (C) Noting that IDP return was of lesser importance to 
Russia, as there were no Russian IDPs in Georgia, Dvinyanin 
said Russia mainly cared that the international standards of 
voluntariness, safety, and dignity be upheld in any agreement 
found. 
 
---------------- 
Tone and Outlook 
---------------- 
 
11.  (C) Dvinyanin criticized the co-chairs for submitting 
draft documents only one day before the meetings began, 
robbing the Russian delegation of any chance to discuss the 
proposals interagency.  That "impolite and unhelpful" 
procedure caused Russia's hostile reactions in the working 
groups, Dvinyanin said. 
 
12.  (C) Dvinyanin accused the Georgians of creating a bad 
atmosphere in the talks, by refusing to accept any Russian 
contribution, and by using such rhetoric as "occupation," 
"illegal military presence," and the construction of "tens of 
military bases" by Russia, a highly inflated number according 
to Dvinyanin.  He acknowledged that South Ossetian 
participants used unconstructive language, but said they only 
used sharp rhetoric in retaliation when Georgia referred to 
their leadership as "separatists" or a "proxy government." 
 
13.  (C) Dvinyanin went on to say he felt Georgia had no 
interest in achieving concrete results in Geneva, and was 
actively placing obstacles in progress' path.  However, he 
lauded the U.S. delegation's "quiet and constructive" 
approach, which helped reduce tensions. 
 
14.  (C) Dvinyanin closed by saying he remained pessimistic 
the Geneva talks would produce real results, but optimistic 
that continued talks would be a tension-reducing and 
trust-building measure.  He considered that the talks might 
at best produce non-obligatory recommendations on yet-to-be 
determined issues. 
 
----------------- 
Public statements 
----------------- 
 
15.  (C) In a September 18 announcement drafted by Dvinyanin 
(protect), the MFA said that the "tense" discussions in the 
working groups showed that Georgia did not intend to work 
constructively and instead sought to restore its territorial 
integrity by force.  Dvinyanin explained that recent remarks 
by the former Georgian Defense Minister and by Georgian 
President Saakashvili had in part also prompted this view. 
 
16.  (U) In a press conference immediately after the talks, 
Russian DFM Karasin said Russia would make stopping the 
"remilitarization" of Georgia a priority and advocated the 
signing of NUFs.  He credited the Russian troops' presence in 
the regions for the reduction in tensions there and praised 
the EUMM's role in Georgia proper. 
 
MOSCOW 00002446  003 OF 003 
 
 
 
------- 
Comment 
------- 
 
17.  (C) Russia's insistence on using only the EUMM as 
observers in Georgia proper, advocacy for expanding the scope 
of the EUMM-led IPRMs, and reduction of the Geneva talks to a 
trust-building discussion forum add up to the near exclusion 
of the United States from activities in Georgia. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2443, RUSSIA SEEKS TO BALANCE ON GOLDSTONE REPORT

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Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #09MOSCOW2443.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2443 2009-09-25 10:03 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO4340
PP RUEHSL RUEHTRO
DE RUEHMO #2443 2681003
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 251003Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4900
INFO RUEHZJ/HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION COLLECTIVE
RUEHGG/UN SECURITY COUNCIL COLLECTIVE
RUEHTV/AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV 2241
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM 0337

C O N F I D E N T I A L MOSCOW 002443 
 
SIPDIS 
 
CARI ENAV AND KELLY RAZZOUK (I/RHS) AND JEFFREY GIAUQUE 
(NEA/IPA). 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/24/2019 
TAGS: PREL PHUM PTER KISL KPAL IS RS
SUBJECT: RUSSIA SEEKS TO BALANCE ON GOLDSTONE REPORT 
 
REF: STATE 98567 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan M. Elliott for reason 
s 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
1.  (C) Post delivered reftel demarche to Russian MFA Human 
Rights Department Section Chief Andrey Lanchikov on September 
25.  Lanchikov said that the GOR had not yet developed an 
agreed position on the Goldstone report, but commented that 
the U.S. and Russia shared common positions on the way 
forward. 
 
2.  (C) Lanchikov said that the Russian delegation in Geneva 
had been instructed to balance any HRC resolution, and that 
the GOR opposed transfer of the report to the UNSC.  He 
commented that while the report did contain language on 
Hamas, it was "minuscule" when compared to the amount of text 
regarding Israel's actions.  He generalized that Russia 
opposed the precedent of the HRC referring items to other 
bodies of the UN, including the ICC.  Lanchikov agreed that 
moving this case to the ICC would stymie peace process 
efforts, but said that Israel had lost the right to express 
its views on the report when it refused to cooperate. 
 
3.  (C) Lanchikov told us that the Russian delegation in 
Geneva would be willing to work with us to seek a balanced 
outcome. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW2442, DELIVERY OF U.S.-PROPOSED DRAFT START FOLLOW-ON

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To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.
Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #09MOSCOW2442.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2442 2009-09-25 09:13 2011-08-30 01:44 SECRET Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0003
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #2442 2680913
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
O 250913Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4899
INFO RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA IMMEDIATE 5381

S E C R E T MOSCOW 002442 
 
SIPDIS 
 
GENEVA FOR JCIC, DEPT FOR VCI/SI 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/24/2029 
TAGS: KACT PARM START RS US
SUBJECT: DELIVERY OF U.S.-PROPOSED DRAFT START FOLLOW-ON 
ELIMINATION PROTOCOL 
 
REF: A. STATE 99070 
     B. STATE 99072 
     C. STATE 97473 
     D. KUEHNE-BRASSIL 9/22 EMAIL 
 
Classified By: Deputy POL M/C David Kostelancik for reasons 1.4 (b) and 
 (d) 
 
(S) We delivered on September 24 the U.S.-proposed draft 
START Follow-on Treaty Elimination Protocol (refs A and B) to 
MFA DVBR Second Secretary Dmitriy Kostyuchenko, who made no 
substantive comment.  We also delivered at the same time the 
courtesy Russian translation of the U.S. proposals for the 
content of the Memorandum of Understanding of the START 
Follow-on Treaty (refs C and D). 
Rubin

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