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07KYIV131, UKRAINE/GUAM: NEW MFA TEAM IN CHARGE, TIMING OF

January 19, 2007

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07KYIV131 2007-01-19 12:09 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Kyiv

VZCZCXRO2768
PP RUEHDBU
DE RUEHKV #0131/01 0191209
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 191209Z JAN 07
FM AMEMBASSY KYIV
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0960
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 KYIV 000131 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/18/2017 
TAGS: PREL KDEM MARR RS AZ GG MD UP
SUBJECT: UKRAINE/GUAM: NEW MFA TEAM IN CHARGE, TIMING OF 
CHARTER RATIFICATION REMAINS UNCERTAIN 
 
REF: KYIV 4229 
 
Classified By: Acting DCM Kent Logsdon for reasons 1.4(b,d) 
 
1. (SBU) Summary.  The Ukrainian MFA team overseeing GUAM 
issues told us they anticipate approval of the GUAM Charter 
bill in the Rada session that starts February 6.  However 
Rada Foreign Policy Committee Chairman Vitaliy Shybko, a 
Socialist Party member, was more pessimistic.  He noted the 
opposition to GUAM by the Communist Party, a member of the 
governing coalition, and was noncommittal when asked when the 
vote on the Charter might occur.  The MFA team said that the 
law on privileges and immunities for GUAM Secretariat 
personnel should be approved at the next GUAM Summit in June 
and that the Secretariat premises should be ready for 
occupancy in November.  They envision a strong Secretariat as 
key to energizing GUAM, particularly the eight substantive 
working groups.  The MFA also felt that GUAM would be more 
effective if it focused at the outset only on a few issues, 
among them energy security, trade and transportation 
facilitation, and a movement towards European standards.  End 
Summary. 
 
2. (SBU) We met with Acting Head of the MFA's Political 
Department Oleksandr Tsvietkov, Executive Director of the 
GUAM Information Office Heorhiy Nazarov, who recently 
replaced Yevhen Koziy, and Political Department GUAM desk 
officer Victor Ponomariov January 10 to discuss recent GUAM 
developments, including Ukraine's plans for making the 
organization more effective and prospects for getting the 
Secretariat up and running.  Tsvietkov noted that the 
 
SIPDIS 
Political Department oversaw GUAM issues at the MFA because 
most decisions on GUAM-related issues at this stage were 
political ones requiring coordination with a number of other 
MFA offices.  Once GUAM was fully stood up as a regional 
organization, responsibilities for GUAM would probably be 
transferred to the MFA's International Organizations 
department. 
 
Current Problems 
---------------- 
 
3. (SBU) The Rada bill to approve the GUAM Charter is 
scheduled to be considered in the next session which starts 
on February 6.  Tsvietkov said he anticipated approval but 
noted the issue is "sensitive."  When we spoke with the Rada 
Foreign Policy Committee Chairman Vitaliy Shybko (Socialist) 
January 12, he sounded more pessimistic.  He highlighted the 
continuing opposition to GUAM by coalition member the 
Communist Party, which views GUAM as an anti-Russian 
organization.  Shybko was noncommittal when asked when there 
might be a vote on the Charter.  (Note: The Charter bill was 
submitted to the Rada on September 2 but has not been brought 
to a vote, despite President Yushchenko's December 8 call to 
do so.) 
 
4. (C) Tsvietkov opined that Moldova was waiting for 
Ukrainian parliamentary action before its own parliament 
passed the Charter, as a way of political cover and avoiding 
complication of Moldova's relations with Russia.  In addition 
to the Charter, Nazarov said there needed to be a separate 
agreement defining the relationship between the GUAM 
Secretariat as an international organization and the host 
 
SIPDIS 
nation, i.e., Ukraine.  He had reviewed the law on privileges 
and immunities for Secretariat personnel when he assumed his 
duties as head of the Information Office and suggested 
several changes, which he expected to be finalized at the 
upcoming National Coordinator's meeting and approved at the 
Baku GUAM Summit in June.  The approved agreement on 
privileges and immunities would then be submitted to the Rada. 
 
5. (U) Nazarov said renovation work for the Secretariat 
building would not be completed until November, at the 
earliest.  He noted that money for the renovation work was in 
the 2007 budget, but time would be needed to develop the 
project, announce a tender, and complete the work.  The MFA 
was also negotiating with Kyiv city authorities to extend the 
one-year lease to ten years. 
 
6. (C) Nazarov said all countries except Moldova had 
designated a Secretariat staff member (each member state 
seconds an official to work on the four-person GUAM 
international staff) and approved in principle an annual 
$120,000 contribution per member to GUAM.  Moldova had wanted 
to save money by having a diplomat at its Embassy in Kyiv 
also serve part-time as Moldova's contribution to the GUAM 
Secretariat's full-time international staff.  The other GUAM 
 
SIPDIS 
members rejected this approach.  Nazarov explained Moldova 
had not understood that GUAM members were obligated not only 
to pay dues but also to pay the salary and other costs of 
providing an international staff member to the Secretariat. 
 
KYIV 00000131  002 OF 002 
 
 
As always, financial questions were problematic for Moldova. 
The Ukrainian MFA expected Moldova would be slow to pay its 
ann
ual contribution but it understood Moldova's financial 
constraints and would be flexible if, for example, Moldova 
wanted to make its contributions on a quarterly basis instead 
of in one lump sum. 
 
And Some Small Reforms 
---------------------- 
 
7. (SBU)  Nazarov envisioned a strong Secretariat as key to 
energizing GUAM, but, in the meantime, was working as 
director of the GUAM Information Office to make operational 
improvements.  He said his efforts focused on improving GUAM 
member coordination within international organizations and 
strengthening GUAM's eight working groups.  He hoped the 
Ukrainian government, for its part, could develop an 
"enforcement mechanism" to require lead ministries to take 
their role in the GUAM working groups more seriously.  The 
Energy Working Group, for example, rarely met under the 
leadership of the Ukrainian Ministry of Fuels and Energy even 
though it should be meeting twice yearly.  Tsvietkov said 
that GUAM would be more effective if it focused on a few 
strategic areas, such as energy security, trade and 
transportation facilitation, and compliance with EU 
standards.  Nazarov also said the chairmanships of the 
working groups should be made permanent, rather than rotating 
with the GUAM presidencies, as is the case now. 
 
Comment: Nazarov Eager, but Four Countries Must Deliver 
--------------------------------------------- ---------- 
 
8. (C) During the course of our conversation, we were 
impressed that Nazarov was anxious to make an impact as 
Executive Director.  He did not refrain from pointing out 
weaknesses in the work of his predecessors or his 
dissatisfaction with the accomplishments of the working 
groups.  He provided clear timelines for renovation of the 
Secretariat premises.  We are hopeful that he can work 
 
SIPDIS 
aggressively to operationlize GUAM and make it more 
effective. 
 
9. (SBU) We share the view that the Secretariat will be the 
key to operationalizing GUAM as a regional organization.  It 
would provide a concrete contact point for GUAM as opposed to 
the current four disparate MFA POCs, and it would greatly 
improve the internal coordination and decision making process 
within GUAM.  Once the Secretariat is operational, the USG 
GUAM-Framework assistance program will help the Secretariat 
establish an accounting system for its budget in line with 
international norms.  In the months ahead, Post will continue 
to look for ways to help the GOU move forward on the steps it 
must complete for the Secretariat to become operational in 
2007.  However, other members states will also have to follow 
through on their deliverables if the GUAM Secretariat is to 
be a reality in 2007. 
 
10. (U) Visit Embassy Kyiv's classified website: 
www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/kiev. 
Taylor

Wikileaks

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