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Viewing cable 09CAIRO1180, EGYPTIAN RESPONSE TO DEMARCHE ON AN INTERNATIONAL PIRACY COURT REF: STATE 58579 Classified By: Minister Counselor for Economic and Political Affairs William R. Stewart for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09CAIRO1180 2009-06-23 13:01 2011-02-16 21:09 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Cairo
VZCZCXRO6825
PP RUEHDE RUEHROV RUEHTRO
DE RUEHEG #1180 1741344
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 231344Z JUN 09
FM AMEMBASSY CAIRO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2961
INFO RUCNSOM/SOMALIA COLLECTIVE
C O N F I D E N T I A L CAIRO 001180 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR NEA/ELA, AF/E, PM/PPA FOR FORAN, IO/UNP FOR 
FITZGERALD 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/23/2019 
TAGS: PREL PHSA PGOV PHUM EWWT MARR KCRM SO EG
SUBJECT: EGYPTIAN RESPONSE TO DEMARCHE ON AN INTERNATIONAL PIRACY COURT REF: STATE 58579 Classified By: Minister Counselor for Economic and Political Affairs William R. Stewart for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).
1.(C) Summary: -- Post delivered reftel demarche and the non-paper on an international piracy court on June 23 to Egyptian MFA Deputy Assistant Foreign Minister for East and South African Affairs, Ambassador Abdelhameed Marzouk. Marzouk stated that the Government of Egypt (GOE) was one of the first countries to espouse some type of international court to prosecute pirates and it still supports the idea. -- The GOE believes that creating national piracy laws will take significant time and will lead to inconsistencies in punishments for pirates. -- Piracy has been around for some time and will continue to be a problem because of the situation on the ground in Somalia. An international piracy court is an appropriate long-term solution to deal with the piracy phenomenon.

2.(C) Comment: Marzouk is often supportive of U.S. initiatives on piracy. However, he was adamant that USG insistence on creating national legislation to prosecute pirates was illogical. Egypt has little desire to create national legislation that would allow it to detain and prosecute pirates. We do not expect that it will support the U.S. request, but rather will side with the Russian and German positions in support of an international court. End Comment. --------------------------------------------- ------- National Piracy Laws Time Consuming and Inconsistent --------------------------------------------- -------

3.(C) Marzouk expressed skepticism at the assertion that an international court would be a more costly and time consuming mechanism. He stated that most of the nations in the region do not have existing national legislation to deal with piracy and he opined that to create such legislation would take significant time even if nations agreed to pursue it. He told us that in Egypt's case creating a national law to prosecute pirates would involve Ministry of Justice (MOJ) studies, discussions with multiple agencies such as the MFA, MOJ, Ministry of Defense, the intelligence services, and the President's office. If all agencies agreed on the need for a law then legislation would need to be written, presented to the President's office, the cabinet, and parliament for approval. Marzouk estimated that this process would take at least one year, but probably longer. He also stated that using national laws to prosecute pirates would lead to inherent inconsistencies in punishments because each country would decide the appropriate punishment for piracy. --------------------------------- An Appropriate Long-Term Solution ---------------------------------

4.(C) Marzouk stated that piracy has been around for a long time and is not a short-term phenomenon. He said that the international community needs to focus on a long-term solution to the problem. Marzouk stated that efforts by naval fleets in the Gulf of Aden had disrupted some pirate attacks, but had failed to stop piracy. He added that the situation in Somalia is not improving, and piracy will continue to exist. Marzouk, who led Egypt's delegation to the June 9-10 International Contact Group on Somalia meetings in Rome, told us that the Kenyan representative complained to him that Kenya was taking all the pirates and no longer had the capacity to do so. Thus, Marzouk felt that an international piracy would be an appropriate long-term legal solution. He did agree that the one downside to an international court would be that the legal capacity in Somalia and East Africa would not increase. SCOBEY