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Viewing cable 09LONDON2774, AFGHAN AMBASSADOR'S CONCERNS ABOUT HMG'S PLANNING FOR JANUARY 28 LONDON CONFERENCE Classified By: Ambassador Louis Susman for reasons 1.4 b and d

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09LONDON2774 2009-12-10 17:05 2011-02-04 21:09 CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN Embassy London
VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLO #2774/01 3441744
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 101744Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY LONDON
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4297
INFO RUEHBUL/AMEMBASSY KABUL PRIORITY 0871
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L LONDON 002774 

NOFORN SIPDIS 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/10/2019

 TAGS: PGOV PREL MARR MOPS EAID ECON SOCI AF PK

SUBJECT: AFGHAN AMBASSADOR'S CONCERNS ABOUT HMG'S PLANNING FOR JANUARY 28 LONDON CONFERENCE Classified By: Ambassador Louis Susman for reasons 1.4 b and d

1. (C/NF) Summary. The Afghan Ambassador to the UK told Ambassador Susman December 10 that he is upset that HMG has not consulted him or his government regarding overall Afghanistan policy or planning for the January 28 London Conference. According to the Afghan envoy, three of the proposed agenda items are proper topics for discussion at the Conference: security, economic and commercial development in Afghanistan, and regional cooperation. The Afghan stressed that two agenda items, good administration/good governance and reconciliation, should not be discussed in London, but should be raised in Kabul in March. These are "internal" topics, and the new government will not be ready to address them by January, the Afghan said. Ambassador Tandar said the conference was organized for UK domestic political reasons. Ambassador Susman delivered a strong message to Tandar, affirming that the U.S. is counting on Karzai and his government to follow through on the promises of his inaugural address. Karzai needs to send a clear message to the international community at the London Conference; he needs to give his partners confidence, Ambassador Susman stressed. Tandar also outlined his ideas for economic development goals that would promote long-term stability and regional interdependence. End Summary.

 Complaints About UK Planning -- and Agenda ------------------------------------------

2.(C/NF) Afghan Ambassador to the UK Homayoun Tandar told Ambassador Susman during a December 10 meeting that he is upset that HMG has not consulted him or his government regarding overall Afghanistan policy or planning for the January 28 London conference. "We were not consulted on the agenda at all" but should have been, he stated. The Afghan received an invitation and agenda, he said. He stressed that there should be three "inviting authorities" to the London conference: Afghanistan, the UK and the UN. Afghanistan has been kept out of the loop by HMG, he restated.

3. (C/NF) According to Tandar, three of the proposed agenda items are proper topics for discussion at the London Conference: security, economic and commercial development in Afghanistan, and regional cooperation. The Afghan stressed that two agenda items, good administration/good governance and reconciliation, should not be discussed in London. Issues of good governance (corruption) and reconciliation are "internal issues" and should be discussed in March in Kabul, not at the London Conference, Tandar insisted. One of the key reasons to keep reconciliation and corruption off the agenda is that the new government will still be in transition in January, and not ready to discuss these topics, he asserted. Tandar said that the new government would be unable to deliver in January on all five points in the envisaged agenda.

4. (C/NF) The U.S. is the "true engine of the Conference" and can help steer it in the right direction, Tandar said. The Afghan envoy said that HMG had organized the conference for domestic political reasons. Afghanistan should not be put in the position of supporting the "political game" in the UK. Tandar also said he was unhappy that Prime Minister Brown had referred to "timetables" for the withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan. It would be better to link the withdrawal of international forces with fixed objectives, he stated. 

Promoting Stability -----------------------

5. (C/NF) Afghanistan requires both short term and long-term stability, Tandar stated. Immediate stability requires a range of actions from improving governance to building roads to improving the security forces. The Afghan Embassy in London has concluded that the top priority is long-term stability. Long-term stability will require significant economic development regionally and in Afghanistan. He cited development of energy, water, and railway infrastructure as examples of what is necessary for the Afghan economy. Developing energy and irrigation resources in Afghanistan will help create regional economic interdependence, he said.

6. (C/NF) Afghanistan needs a plan for urban development that will link the countryside to the cities, making rural areas dependent on the cities, Tandar stated. He observed that since the Soviet occupation, insurgencies have arisen from the countryside, which has functioned independently of the cities. The peasants in the countryside will not take up arms if they are linked to the cities, he said.

7. (C/NF) Prior to his meeting with the Ambassador, Tandar told Poloff that it was "envisaged" that President Karzai would name his Cabinet on Saturday. 

Comment -------

8. (C/NF) Notably absent from Tandar's remarks to the Ambassador was an expression of support for the urgent necessity to address pressing issues such as good governance, reconciliation, and strengthening the security forces. Ambassador Susman delivered a strong message to Tandar, affirming that the U.S. is counting on Karzai and his government to follow through on the promises of his inaugural address. Karzai needs to send a clear message to the international community at the London conference; he needs to give his partners confidence, Ambassador Susman stressed. Visit London's Classified Website: XXXXXXXXXXXX 
Susman