05BUCHAREST212 / 2005-01-24 14:34:00
Embassy Bucharest
                C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 BUCHAREST 000212 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/24/2015 
REF: A. A) 04 STATE 253728 
     B. B) 04 BUCHAREST 2700 
     C. C) 04 BUCHAREST 1832 
 A, B, AND D 
1.  (C) Summary.  Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry 
officials met with Embassy officers January 19 to discuss the 
GOR's proposals for an "integrated approach for security 
cooperation in the Black Sea region."  Romania envisages an 
expanded NATO role in the region and mirrors its proposed 
strategy for maritime security on the "four pillar" approach 
under discussion at USEUCOM.  At the same time, the GOR 
counts on the U.S. to convince Turkey to "go along" with 
Romania's ideas.  Romania will host a meeting with Turkey and 
Bulgaria January 24 to discuss possible joint strategies for 
Black Sea security.  The GOR would also like a meeting 
between GOR and US officials in Washington, possibly in 
March, to discuss Black Sea issues.  End Summary. 
Seeking an "Integrated Approach" to Black Sea Security 
--------------------------------------------- --------- 
2.  (C) MFA Director General of the Strategic Policies 
Directorate Cristian Istrate, MFA NATO Division Director 
Mirela Maghiar and two MOD representatives met with PolChief, 
Naval Attache and PolMilOff January 19 to discuss the GOR's 
views on enhancing security in the Black Sea region.  Istrate 
began the discussion by remarking that President Traian 
Basescu emphasized in a January 18 speech (septel) the 
importance of the Black Sea region.  Istrate stressed that 
the GOR seeks to help develop an "integrated approach to 
security in the Black Sea region" which will encompass "as 
much Western involvement as possible...with NATO and the EU 
taking a more prominent profile in the region." 
"Three Dimensions" 
3.  (C) Istrate delivered an outline titled "A Basis for an 
Integrated Approach for Security Cooperation in the Black Sea 
Region.  Building Synergy Among Various Initiatives," which 
the Romanians classified as confidential.  Using the outline 
as a template for discussion, Istrate underscored that the 
GOR seeks U.S. input and feedback on how best to develop an 
integrated security approach in the Black Sea region.  The 
GOR proposes an "integrated approach" that focuses on three 
"dimensions" in the following sequence: the "political 
dimension," the "operational dimension," and "security sector 
reform."  Istrate said that the paper had been approved "at 
the highest levels" in the new Romanian government and would 
also be shared by Romanian ambassadors with U.S. 
interlocutors in Washington and at USNATO.  Istrate 
emphasized that the paper represented "only the security" 
angle of the new government's emerging approach towards the 
Black Sea, which would "also address political and economic 
angles."  Post will transmit the full text of the paper to 
Department, DOD, and USNATO septel. 
"Four Pillars" and "Three Allies" 
4. (C) The operational dimension - the area to which the 
outline devotes the most attention - comprises four focal 
points that mirror USEUCOM's discussions of a possible "four 
pillar" approach to the Black Sea: "maritime security," "land 
and air security," "border defense," and "civil emergency 
planning."  Within the rubric of "maritime security," the GOR 
proposes the establishment of a "Black Sea Task Force" 
comprising "three allies," Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania. 
Istrate stated that Turkey and Bulgaria had been invited to 
participate in a meeting in Bucharest January 14 to discuss 
possible task force cooperation in connection with NATO 
command and information exchange structures.  Turkey was 
unable to participate in the meeting because severe fog 
January 14 prevented the Turks from arriving in Bucharest; 
the meeting has been rescheduled for January 24. 
5. (C) Addressing expected Turkish reticence to participate 
fully in the proposed Black Sea Task Force, Istrate stated 
that U.S. "encouragement" of Turkey could overcome their 
objections, opining that the "Turks do not want to be 
perceived as opposing NATO's role in the Black Sea."  Istrate 
continued that the Turk's "cautious approach" reflects their 
desire to not "upset" Russia or "create stress with France 
and Germany." 
6. (C) In addition to creation of a Black Sea Task Force to 
increase maritime security, the GOR's outline also proposes a 
heightened role for NATO in the region, including 
"information exchange and command support for the Black Sea 
Task Force" and joint patrolling in the Black Sea.  The 
outline envisages a relatively limited role for BLACKSEAFOR 
"in preventing terrorism and WMD trafficking through the 
scope of the current agreement." 
7. (C) Under the "pillar" of land and air security, the GOR 
proposes the establishment of a "Joint Interagency Task 
Force" (JIATF) modeled on the USG's JIATF.  The JIATF would 
integrate law enforcement, customs and defense assets from 
participating states.  The GOR's proposed border defense 
"pillar" envisages using the "Border Defense Initiative" (the 
"Black Sea Border Security Initiative" (BSBSI)) proposed by 
the GOR (Ref C).  The  "pillar" dealing with civil emergency 
planning proposes establishment of "common procedures and 
mechanisms of civil emergency planning." 
Political and Security Sector Dimensions 
8. (C) The GOR characterizes the "political dimension" as an 
area in which NATO can and should play a central role. 
Romania's specific proposals include "enhancing political 
debates in NATO on the security situation in the region" and 
establishment of a "Black Sea caucus" to build NATO awareness 
of and interest in the Black Sea region.  Under the rubric of 
"security sector reform," the GOR proposes "full use" of 
Partnership for Peace (PfP) instruments.  The GOR's suggested 
strategies include "providing assistance" to Black Sea 
partners that have launched or plan to launch Individual NATO 
Partnership Action Plans and encouraging Moldova to develop 
an Individual Partnership Action Plan.   According to 
Istrate, the GOR would like to see Moldova move closer to 
Romania Will "Resist Temptation" to Expand BLACKSEAFOR 
--------------------------------------------- --------- 
9. (C) When pressed for details about the relation, if not 
potential overlap, between Romania's proposed "integrated 
approach" and BLACKSEAFOR, Istrate acknowledged that both 
BLACKSEAFOR and Romania's Black Sea Border Security 
Initiative (BSBSI) could play a role in "preventing terrorism 
and WMD."  In the GOR's view, BLACKSEAFOR must "stay within 
its limits" although an "anti-terrorism aspect, such as 
information exchange," detecting and monitoring could be 
appropriate.  He stressed, however, that the BSBSI would, by 
definition, address law enforcement issues whereas 
BLACKSEAFOR has a different principle focus e.g. search and 
rescue, humanitarian operations.  Istrate stated that Turkey 
seeks the extension of BLACKSEAFOR to include "constabulary" 
functions, notably "detection and monitoring" aimed at 
fighting terrorism and the establishment of a BLACKSEAFOR 
"permanent command center."  Istrate opined that 
significantly extending BLACKSEAFOR's role would be "against 
the letter and spirit of BLACKSEAFOR."  Pausing for a moment, 
Istrate insisted that Romania "will resist the temptation to 
turn BLACKSEAFOR into a regional military alliance," which he 
characterized as NATO's role. 
10. (C) When asked for details about the status of the BSBSI, 
Istrate conceded that Romania has made little progress toward 
organizing the project and moving beyond the political stage. 
 Istrate stated that the GOR's goal is to "continue to 
operationalize" the BSBI, but acknowledged that little has 
been done in this regard since the November 5 meeting at the 
State Department among Romanian Ambassador Ducaru, State and 
DOD officials in which USG interlocutors urged the GOR to 
effectively organize and staff the BSBSI (Ref C). 
A March Meeting in Washington? 
11. (C) Istrate emphasized that the GOR understands the 
importance of the cooperation of NATO allies in the Black Sea 
region, but underscored again that Romania would like the 
U.S. to encourage Turkey to cooperate fully in developing a 
joint NATO strategy.  He stated that the GOR would welcome 
continuing dialogue with the U.S. on Black Sea issues and 
promised to provide Embassy a readout of the January 24 
Turkey-Bulgaria-Romania meeting in Bucharest.  Istrate 
suggested a meeting between and USG and GOR interlocutors at 
the office director or DAS level in Washington, possibly in 
mid-March, to discuss development of a joint strategy in the 
Black Sea region.  PolChief promised to stay in touch with 
Istrate regarding possible scheduling of such a meeting. 
12. (C) Comment.  President Basescu's recent public 
discussion of the centrality of the Black Sea region to 
Romania's foreign policy priorities (Septel) may reflect 
increased high-level attention to the region.  Nonetheless, 
the GOR has consistently sought U.S. guidance on Black Sea 
issues and told us that it favors an expansion of NATO's 
role in the region (Refs A and B).  We anticipate that 
Romania will continue to consult closely with us regarding 
its proposals for the region.  Indeed, its proposed 
implementation of a "four pillar" approach reflects 
discussion points raised by Embassy officers during a meeting 
with MFA officials last fall.  The GOR recognizes that its 
proposals will have little weight with Turkey (or other 
littoral states) without U.S. backing.  Although we welcome 
the GOR's enthusiasm for enhancing security in the Black Sea, 
we note that Romania has apparently yet to follow through on 
its proposed BSBSI, despite strong urging last fall from USG 
interlocutors to move the BSBSI from the conceptual to 
operational phase (Ref C).  End Comment. 
13. (U) Amembassy Bucharest's reporting telegrams are 
available on the Bucharest SIPRNet website: 

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