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Viewing cable 06REYKJAVIK218, ICELANDERS AGREE PROCEDURAL ISSUES SHOULD BE FOCUS

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06REYKJAVIK218 2006-06-16 11:11 2011-01-13 05:05 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Reykjavik
VZCZCXYZ0002
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHRK #0218/01 1671118
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 161118Z JUN 06
FM AMEMBASSY REYKJAVIK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2832
INFO RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS IMMEDIATE 0005
RUEHAM/AMEMBASSY AMMAN IMMEDIATE 0002
RUEHKB/AMEMBASSY BAKU IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHBP/AMEMBASSY BAMAKO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING IMMEDIATE 0015
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHEG/AMEMBASSY CAIRO IMMEDIATE 0007
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA IMMEDIATE 0007
RUEHLM/AMEMBASSY COLOMBO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHKA/AMEMBASSY DHAKA IMMEDIATE 0005
RUEHDJ/AMEMBASSY DJIBOUTI IMMEDIATE 0002
RUEHGT/AMEMBASSY GUATEMALA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD IMMEDIATE 0002
RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHKL/AMEMBASSY KUALA LUMPUR IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JUN 0001
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHMK/AMEMBASSY MANAMA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHML/AMEMBASSY MANILA IMMEDIATE 0008
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA IMMEDIATE 0008
RUEHPL/AMEMBASSY PORT LOUIS IMMEDIATE 0002
RUEHSA/AMEMBASSY PRETORIA IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHRB/AMEMBASSY RABAT IMMEDIATE 0005
RUEHRH/AMEMBASSY RIYADH IMMEDIATE 0018
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL IMMEDIATE 0001
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO IMMEDIATE 0010
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON IMMEDIATE 0051
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 0062
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA IMMEDIATE 0035
C O N F I D E N T I A L REYKJAVIK 000218 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/15/2016 
TAGS: PHUM PREL IC
SUBJECT: ICELANDERS AGREE PROCEDURAL ISSUES SHOULD BE FOCUS 
OF FIRST UNHRC SESSION 
 
REF: SECSTATE 94561 
 
Classified By: AMBASSADOR CAROL VAN VOORST, REASONS 1.4 (B) 
AND (D). 
 
1. (C) SUMMARY. In meetings with Embassy officials June 13 
and 14, Icelandic MFA officials indicated agreement on most 
key issues for the June 19-30 first session of the UN Human 
Rights Council (HRC). The Declaration on Rights of Indigenous 
Peoples may prove to be a sticking point, as Nordic 
solidarity dictates that Iceland should not openly oppose 
what has been a Norwegian priority.  End Summary. 
 
2. (U) Poloff discussed reftel demarche with MFA Political 
Department Human Rights Officer Ingibjorg Davidsdottir June 
13.  The Ambassador followed up June 14 with a call on MFA 
Permanent Secretary Gunnar Snorri Gunnarsson in which she 
emphasized establishing effective HRC processes and 
maintaining a lean agenda, and outlined the potential 
problems with the Declaration on Rights of Indigenous 
Peoples.  Both Davidsdottir and Gunnarsson expressed sympathy 
with U.S. views but said final decisions on Icelandic 
positions would need to be cleared by new Foreign Minister 
Valgerdur Sverrisdottir (note: who took office June 15; end 
note).  Sverrisdottir may herself travel to Geneva for the 
HRC session. 
 
NATURE OF THE FIRST SESSION 
--------------------------- 
3.  (C) Iceland MFA officials agree that the first session of 
the HRC must avoid the rancor of the organization's 
predecessor body by eschewing country-specific resolutions 
such as those that the Organization of the Islamic Conference 
may intend to raise against Israel.  That said, Iceland 
will/will take positions on any country resolutions that do 
 
get discussed. 
 
ESTABLISHMENT OF WORKING GROUPS 
------------------------------- 
4.  (C) The GOI agrees that there must be a review of Human 
Rights Commission mandates and that older mandates and 
special procedures (rapporteurs) should be extended one year 
for review -- indeed, Davidsdottir said she saw no realistic 
alternative.  She added, however, that as Iceland has a 
member on the Sub-Commission on Human Rights the GOI probably 
would not speak out in favor of that body's elimination. 
 
5.  (C) Davidsdottir agrees that there should be a working 
group to establish the processes and rules for the new 
Universal Periodic Review mechanism. 
 
DECLARATION ON RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES 
------------------------------------------- 
 
6. (C) The Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples 
presents the main impediment to full Icelandic cooperation 
with the U.S. in Geneva.  While Davidsdottir personally 
shares our concern that the Declaration's text is seriously 
flawed, she and Gunnarsson asserted that Iceland's equities 
lie with following the Scandinavian lead in supporting the 
document.  Iceland is the only Nordic country without an 
indigenous population. 
 
7. (C) Comment:  As Sverrisdottir, who comes from six years 
at Iceland's Ministry of Industry and Commerce, is a foreign 
affairs neophyte, we expect her to accept the MFA career 
officials' advice on what positions Iceland should take at 
the HRC.  Unfortunately, that is likely to include going 
along with the other Nordics in their outreach to indigenous 
peoples.  End comment. 
Van Voorst