Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin 09USOSCE16 2009-02-04 16:16 2011-08-24 01:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Mission USOSCE
VZCZCXRO3036 OO RUEHSK DE RUEHVEN #0016/01 0351616 ZNR UUUUU ZZH O 041616Z FEB 09 FM USMISSION USOSCE TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6178 INFO RUCNCFE/CONVENTIONAL ARMED FORCES IN EUROPE PRIORITY RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO PRIORITY 1709 RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY RUEKJCS/DIA WASHDC PRIORITY RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY RUESDT/DTRA-OSES DARMSTADT GE PRIORITY RHMFISS/CDR USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE PRIORITY RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC//J5-DDPMA-IN/CAC/DDPMA-E// PRIORITY RUEAHQA/HQ USAF WASHINGTON DC//XONP// PRIORITY RUEADWD/DA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY RUEASWA/DTRA ALEX WASHINGTON DC//OSAE PRIORITY UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 USOSCE 000016
STATE FOR VCI/CCA, EUR/RPM NSC FOR HAYES JCS FOR J5/COL NORWOOD OSD FOR ISA (PERENYI)
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: KCFE OSCE PARM PREL RS AJ AM SUBJECT: CFE/JCG: FEBRUARY 3 PLENARY - AZERI/ARMENIA REDUX, TWO PLENARIES CANCELLED IN MARCH
REF: A. USOSCE 0015
¶B. BAKU 73
Sensitive but Unclassified, please protect accordingly. Not for internet.
¶1. (SBU) Summary: The February 3 Joint Consultative Group heard another exchange of accusations between Azerbaijan and Armenia regarding excess holdings of Treaty-limited equipment. The JCG POET working group met briefly with little result. At the JCG-T, the Dutch provided a readout of the January 29 HLTF meeting. Russia responded to our accounting question about the Leningrad military district. The JCG agreed to cancel plenary meetings on March 3 and 17 given other FSC events scheduled those two weeks. End Summary.
Azeri and Armenian exchange continues
¶2. (SBU) Azerbaijan and Armenia each both made two more lengthy statements per the debate initiated three weeks ago, with the political rhetoric increasing (Ref A). See JCG.JOUR/686 for both sets of statements. Below are some further CFE-specifics not previously raised. Azerbaijan (Jafarova) began by claiming again that Armenia has always been in breach of the CFE Treaty. Armenia is an aggressor and occupier. She said it is ridiculous for Armenia to complain about 9 units in Azerbaijan when it is hiding 40 units in N-K. The Armenian TLE hidden in N-K is in the Treaty's zone of application, presenting a technical issue not merely a political one.
¶3. (SBU) She recalled that the current case on the transfer of weapons from Russia to Armenian forces in Nagorno-Karabakh is similar a case from 1996 that was ultimately acknowledged at high-levels to have taken place. For future reference, Azerbaijan reminded that it has made statements regarding this issue in JCG meetings before, including those recorded in Journals 599, 618, 646, and 665. Specifically, questions raised in the June 10, 2008 (JCG Journal 665) have never been answered ) there is no single document since 1992 where Armenia has provided information about combat units on the conflict line nor are there any inspection reports.
¶4. (SBU) She also disputed Armenia's claim made last week that the Azeri's have only reported 5 ACVs and 7 artillery pieces removed from service, noting that altogether 250 pieces of equipment have been decommissioned in the last 5 years. The pieces were decommissioned so that it would confirm to its Treaty limits. She later cited five Azeri CFE notifications that provided info on the decommissioned equipment: AZ/03/009/F00/O; AZ/04/001/F00/O; AZ/05/007/F00/O; AZ/07/004/F00/O; AZ/07/005/F00/O.
¶5. (SBU) She also cited several recent Armenian government press releases, one from January 28 regarding the celebration day of Armenian Armed Forces, at which the Armenian Minister of Defense was quoted as calling it a glorious day for the Armenian Army serving on the borders and "Arta" ) which she said is Armenian language for N-K. Also, if Armenia claims that N-K has its own forces, how do they explain the use of Armenia declared CFE TLE (SU25 and MI 24 helicopters) from the 124th Gumry and 15th Air Base in Yerevan. Another article from an N-K paper reported on a large scale exercise in April 2008 using equipment that it does not possess (again helicopters). Comment: On the margins, USDel sought clarification from the Azeri delegation on its previous claims concerning Armenian TLE numbers. The Azeri military advisor provided a lengthy document summarizing their sources. Document is available by unclass email upon request. End Comment.
¶6. (SBU) Armenia (Papikayan) replied twice without addressing the specific questions mentioned, mainly drawing on previous
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political references. He stressed the right of self defense for the people of N-K, and claimed Azerbaijan did not dispute this when the ceasefire was signed in 1994. Comment: Russia and all other delegations remained silent on this subject once more. End Comment.
POET Working Group
¶7. (SBU) After the plenary, the Canadian Chair (Linteau) of the Protocol on Equipment Types (POET) held a short small group (U.S., UK, France, Germany, and Russia) meeting to review possible areas for future work (as requested by Germany). He suggested advancing some of the old JCG.TOI equipment list documents, but Russian reps said they are now outdated. The Chair asked Germany if it would prepare an update to the Consolidated Matrix to include any new equipment entered into service in 2008. Germany said it would try to provide such an update by the end of March. The Chair said at some point he will need to report to the JCG on what the working group has discussed since last June, albeit if it is a "nil" report. Comment: Delegation personnel turnover has contributed to a lack of understanding on the history of the working group as well as the status quo of current documents. The Chair does not expect any activity pending further policy developments on the CFE suspension issue. End comment.
¶8. (SBU) The JCG-T met prior to the plenary meeting to hear a readout of the January 29 HLTF meeting. Dutch rep Kleinjan, as is current custom, provided a concise and accurate review of the main points, highlighting the upcoming calendar of security-related meetings that may have a bearing on future work in Vienna, including: Feb 6-8 Werkunde, Munich; Feb 18 Russian Deputy Foreign Minister visit to the OSCE; 3-4 April NATO Anniversary; June 10 German-hosted Foreign Minister Steinmeier meeting; and ASRC 23-24 June in Vienna. Allies will meet next week and will discuss pending preparations for the February 18 joint FSC/PC meeting.
Russia Data Answer
¶9. (SBU) On the margins of the JCG, Russian delegation rep (Zabello) answered a question about the numbers reported in the Leningrad Military District posed during the last December meeting on the one-page summary of Russian CFE data received for 2009. The Pskov Division is not reflected in the summary total for the Leningrad Military District since the Pskov Oblast has not been part of this district since 1996, in accordance with the flank agreement. No other oblasts were excluded. As CFE reports on brigades and smaller units while Vienna Document reports on brigades and larger units the resulting numbers are different.
Two JCG Plenaries in March Cancelled
¶10. (SBU) France, as current Chair of the Forum for Security Cooperation (FSC), requested that the JCG cancel its meetings on March 3 and March 17 in light of special FSC meetings being held on those days. The Czech JCG Chairman had introduced this possibility at the previous meeting, and the JCG readily agreed to cancel these two meetings.