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Viewing cable 07BERN171, IRAN: AMBASSADOR DISCUSSES "THE SWISS PLAN" WITH \

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07BERN171 2007-02-23 14:02 2011-02-18 21:09 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Bern
Appears in these articles:
www.letemps.ch/swiss_papers
VZCZCXRO6253
OO RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHDIR RUEHKUK
DE RUEHSW #0171/01 0541446
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 231446Z FEB 07
FM AMEMBASSY BERN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3721
INFO RUCNIRA/IRAN COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
97841	2007-02-23 14:46:00	07BERN171	Embassy Bern	CONFIDENTIAL	07BERN158	VZCZCXRO6253\
OO RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHDIR RUEHKUK\
DE RUEHSW #0171/01 0541446\
ZNY CCCCC ZZH\
O 231446Z FEB 07\
FM AMEMBASSY BERN\
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3721\
INFO RUCNIRA/IRAN COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE	C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BERN 000171 \
 \
SIPDIS \
 \
SIPDIS \
 \
STATE FOR P -- U/S BURNS \
STATE ALSO FOR NEA, ISN, EUR \
 \
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/23/2017 \
TAGS: PARM KNNP PTER ETTC IR SZ
SUBJECT: IRAN:  AMBASSADOR DISCUSSES "THE SWISS PLAN" WITH \
PRESIDENT CALMY-REY \
 \
REF: BERN 00158 \
 \
BERN 00000171  001.2 OF 002 \
 \
 \
Classified By: DCM Carol Urban, Reasons 1.4 b.d. \
 \
1.(SBU) The Ambassador met with President and Foreign \
Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey on February 22.  Although the \
two had met and talked informally on several occasions since \
the Ambassador,s arrival in Switzerland last September, this \
was their first official meeting.  Calmy-Rey,s Diplomatic \
Advisor Balzaretti and Americas Division Chief Baumann, as \
well as DCM Urban, joined the meeting. \
 \
2.(SBU) Calmy-Rey began the meeting by expressing her \
personal satisfaction in successfully encouraging the Federal \
Council (Cabinet) in 2005 to broaden Switzerland,s \
perspective beyond the EU and in the fact that the first MOU \
on political cooperation Switzerland signed was with the U.S. \
 The Ambassador and Calmy-Rey then briefly discussed the \
status of the MOU, the Operative Working Arrangement and the \
Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum. The Ambassador told \
Calmy-Rey of the strong relationship that he has developed \
with Ambassador Ziswiler and of their mutual goal to double \
the annual number of Fulbright grantees.  After touching on \
the challenges both Switzerland and the U.S. face in dealing \
with agriculture in the Doha talks, the Ambassador asked to \
speak candidly and in good faith about two matters of \
importance:  the image of the U.S. in Switzerland and the \
Iran nuclear issue. \
 \
The Image of the U.S. in Switzerland \
--------------------------------------------- --- \
 \
3.(C) The Ambassador carefully expressed his concern that the \
U.S. is constantly criticized in the Swiss media and only \
rarely is there recognition of the good things the U.S. does \
or that our two countries do together.  He invited Calmy-Rey \
to work with us to find ways to get out the good news. \
 \
4.(C) Calmy-Rey noted that Switzerland relies on \
international law and that is often the source of its \
differences with the U.S., Iraq and Guantanamo being the two \
most obvious examples.  She added that there are many areas \
where we are in agreement and usefully work together.  She \
referred to the MOU as a positive story that didn,t get the \
hoped-for media coverage, but cited the successful \
partnership between Switzerland and the U.S. on the MDA as a \
story that was reflected positively in the media.  She noted \
that, "Switzerland can do things the EU can,t -- we can be \
useful in that regard," and added that Kosovo and Sudan were \
areas where our two countries could successfully work \
together and let it be known. \
 \
Iran \
----- \
 \
5.(C)  Turning to Iran, Calmy-Rey said that Switzerland and \
the U.S. share the same goals, that Switzerland is supporting \
UNSC 1737, and that the goal of the Swiss plan is to bring \
the parties to the table.  She also noted that Under \
Secretary Burns told State Secretary Ambuehl that he welcomed \
 \
SIPDIS \
working closely with Switzerland on Iran. \
 \
6.(C) Calmy-Rey went on to say she had been very upset with \
the Iranian press release that said Switzerland had proposed \
partial suspension.  "We do not support partial suspension \
and I told Larijani: we are out if you say we do."  She \
emphasized that the Swiss have been very insistent that the \
Iranians suspend enrichment and fulfill their obligations to \
the IAEA.  She assured the Ambassador that the Swiss are firm \
that there is no way for the Iranians around suspension.  And \
she made the point that Switzerland is not being \
"instrumentalized"  by the Iranians but, rather, they are \
having tough and difficult conversations with Larijani. \
"Switzerland is a credible partner.  I think if we talk with \
them we can make some progress," she concluded. \
 \
7.(C) The Ambassdor responded by acknowledging that \
Switzerland plays an important role as our protecting power \
for which we are very grateful.  He said that the U.S. is \
ready to sit down with the Iranians, but they must come to \
the table in good faith by first suspending enrichment.  He \
added that while it is good that the Swiss have been firm \
with the Iranians on suspension, now would be a good time for \
silence.  Iran knows what it needs to do.  We need to be \
resolute and stand together, and we have a better chance of \
succeeding through tougher sanctions and not sending signals \
that could be misinterpreted by the Iranians, the media or \
anyone else. \
 \
 \
BERN 00000171  002.2 OF 002 \
 \
 \
8.(C) In reply Calmy-Rey said that the Iranians are not yet \
convinced that they must suspend enrichment.  They must be \
convinced.  "If we are silent, they won,t get it."  The \
Ambassador counter-proposed, "If Switzerland is silent all of \
a sudden, Iran will wonder what that means. And that could be \
good." \
 \
9.(C) Calmy-Rey reiterated that Iran must be transparent; \
must answer to the IAEA, and must suspend enrichment.  She \
said there is much to discuss with them and that U/S Burns \
said he wants to work even more closely with Switzerland. \
She added that the Swiss always inform the Embassy of their \
discussions, and that they inform the EU-3, and the others \
(i.e., Russia and China), as well.  "And we tell the Iranians \
that we are informing you." \
 \
10.(C) The Ambassador promised to clarify U/S Burns, \
communications with State Secretary Ambuehl and give the \
Swiss something in writing.  He expressed concern that the \
Iranians might assume that the US is encouraging \
Switzerland,s discussions with them "by virtue of the fact \
that you are keeping us informed," and that the media and the \
Iranians may not understand the separation between the Swiss \
role as our protecting power in Tehran and its independent, \
proactive discussions with them on the nuclear issue. \
CONEWAY \