Keep Us Strong WikiLeaks logo

Currently released so far... 2497 / 251,287

Articles

Browse latest releases

Browse by creation date

Browse by origin

A B C D F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y Z

Browse by tag

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
QA
YE YM YI

Browse by classification

Community resources

courage is contagious

Viewing cable 08RABAT185, NEA A/S WELCH,S MEETINGS WITH KING MOHAMMED VI AND

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Understanding cables
Every cable message consists of three parts:
  • The top box shows each cables unique reference number, when and by whom it originally was sent, and what its initial classification was.
  • The middle box contains the header information that is associated with the cable. It includes information about the receiver(s) as well as a general subject.
  • The bottom box presents the body of the cable. The opening can contain a more specific subject, references to other cables (browse by origin to find them) or additional comment. This is followed by the main contents of the cable: a summary, a collection of specific topics and a comment section.
To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.

Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol). Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #08RABAT185.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08RABAT185 2008-02-28 16:04 2010-12-03 21:09 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Rabat
VZCZCXRO9993
PP RUEHTRO
DE RUEHRB #0185/01 0591608
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 281608Z FEB 08
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8201
INFO RUEHAS/AMEMBASSY ALGIERS PRIORITY 4700
RUEHAM/AMEMBASSY AMMAN PRIORITY 0595
RUEHBP/AMEMBASSY BAMAKO PRIORITY 0096
RUEHEG/AMEMBASSY CAIRO PRIORITY 2297
RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR PRIORITY 0444
RUEHDM/AMEMBASSY DAMASCUS PRIORITY 0705
RUEHKU/AMEMBASSY KUWAIT PRIORITY 1410
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 3534
RUEHNK/AMEMBASSY NOUAKCHOTT PRIORITY 3669
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS PRIORITY 4946
RUEHRH/AMEMBASSY RIYADH PRIORITY 0682
RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI PRIORITY 0274
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS PRIORITY 9535
RUEHCL/AMCONSUL CASABLANCA PRIORITY 3919
RUEHJI/AMCONSUL JEDDAH PRIORITY 2226
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM PRIORITY 1933
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 0786
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 RABAT 000185 

SIPDIS 

SIPDIS 

STATE FOR NEA, EUR/SCE AND AF/W 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/26/2018 
TAGS: PREL OVIP MO
SUBJECT: NEA A/S WELCH,S MEETINGS WITH KING MOHAMMED VI AND 
MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS TAIEB FASSI FIHRI 

Classified By: Ambassador Thomas T. Riley for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 

1. (C) SUMMARY: King Mohammed VI received NEA A/S Welch for 
an hour on February 25. The wide-ranging exchange of views 
focused on bilateral cooperation, the Middle East Peace 
Process (MEPP), Iran, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mauritania, Syria, 
Algeria and Western Sahara. In most respects, the audience 
mirrored the meeting that preceded it with Minister of 
Foreign Affairs Fassi Fihri and MFA Director General for 
Multilateral Affairs Mohamed Azeroual. However, we heard 
that Amr Moussa,s latest visit to Beirut had been "a 
catastrophe;" the Emir of Kuwait did not plan to attend the 
Arab summit in Damascus; and Morocco was looking at other 
Arab countries' reaction to Kosovo's declaration of 
independence. The King asked us to assist Mauritania and 
warned that the POLISARIO must not attempt to occupy the area 
east of the berm in Western Sahara. In his meeting with the 
Foreign Minister, Ambassador Welch pressed for an agreement 
on the status of the American schools in Morocco and informed 
the Minister of a planned accord with the U.S. Holocaust 
Memorial Museum. END SUMMARY. 

BILATERAL COOPERATION 
--------------------- 
2. (C) Receiving NEA A/S Welch, the Ambassador, DCM and Erin 
Yerger, the Executive Assistant to Deputy Assistant to the 
President for National Security Affairs Elliot Abrams, at the 
royal palace in Marrakech on February 25, the King thanked 
the United States for the excellent cooperation on 
counterterrorism, the Millennium Challenge Account and the 
Free Trade Agreement. Foreign Minister Fassi Fihri also 
attended the audience. 

KOSOVO 
------ 
3. (C) The King noted that he had just met with the Greek 
Foreign Minister, who urged him not to recognize Kosovo. The 
King and the Foreign Minister indicated that they intended to 
discuss recognition with other Arab leaders at the 
Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) Summit in Dakar 
in March. Fassi Fihri said the Serbian Foreign Minister has 
also requested a meeting. 

MIDDLE EAST PEACE PROCESS 
---- 
4. (C) Ambassador Welch began by underscoring that this is 
an important year for the region and that the President is 
determined to make progress on the MEPP. Welch briefed the 
King and the Minister on the process and assured them that 
the Israelis and the Palestinians are making progress, but 
the public is unaware of it. On Gaza, Welch averred that 
Israeli Prime Minister Olmert is focused on the least bad 
option. For his part, the King expressed deep concern about 
the humanitarian situation in Gaza. 

LEBANON 
------- 
5. (C) Turning to the continuing leadership vacuum in 
Lebanon, A/S Welch said that we see three options: 1) to 
continue efforts to elect a President by consensus; 2) to 
elect a President with 50 percent of the vote plus one; or 3) 
to support the Siniora government. Welch indicated that we 
increasingly believe the third option affords the best means 
to support Lebanon,s institutions. Asked about Arab League 
Secretary General Amr Moussa's visit to Beirut, Fassi Fihri 

SIPDIS 
characterized it as 'a catastrophe.' 

SYRIA AND THE ARAB LEAGUE SUMMIT 
-------------------------------- 
6. (C) Noting that Kings Mohammed VI and Abdullah II of 
Jordan had come to power at approximately the same time as 

RABAT 00000185 002 OF 003 


President Bashar al-Assad, Welch decried Syria,s lost 
opportunities. Welch said that he understood that the Syrian 
Foreign Minister would be in Marrakech on February 26 to 
deliver an invitation to the Arab Summit in Damascus, and 
Welch predicted that attendance would be poor. The King said 
he understood that the Emir of Kuwait did not plan to attend, 
implying that Morocco would be represented at the ministerial 
level at best. 

IRAN 
---- 
7. (C) Ambassador Welch asked if he might say a few words 
about Iran and its pursuit of nuclear weapons. The King 
responded that he understood that Iran had suspended its 
nuclear weapons program. Welch thanked the King for the 
opportunity to clarify, declaring that the U.S. intelligence 
estimate had been misunderstood and that the reporting on 
this issue has been unclear. Welch said that we continued to 
believe that Iran was pursuing nuclear weapons; so President 
Bush was seeking a middle ground "between the bomb and 
bombing," without giving up any option. Diplomatic pressure 
is best for now. When the King asked what that middle ground 
might look like, Welch said that more Security 
Council-approved sanctions loom and that Iran must accept a 
diplomatic solution. 

ALGERIA 
------- 
8. (C) The conversation then turned to Algeria, and Welch 
asked if the GOM had any views on President Abdelaziz 
Bouteflika,s plans. The King said he understood that 
Bouteflika was amending the Constitution to permit a third 
term, and Welch noted wryly that Bouteflika was doing so 
without Syrian assistance. The King praised the "frustrated" 
Algerian Ambassador in Rabat for his tireless efforts to 
improve bilateral relations, stating, &We have no relations 
with Algeria, except for limited cooperation on security 
issues." In spite of obvious opportunities for cooperation 
in agriculture, energy and a host of other areas, President 
Bouteflika and his government clearly prefer the status quo. 
The King noted that he had even traveled to Algiers to try to 
break the impasse, but the GOA continues to insist on the 
Western Sahara issue being resolved before proceeding with 
other bilateral or regional initiatives. 

WESTERN SAHARA 
-------------- 
9. (C) The King and Fassi Fihri expressed grave concern 
about the POLISARIO's stated plans to move people into the 
area east of the berm. The King said bluntly that Morocco 
could not allow that. Praising the King,s autonomy 
initiative, Welch urged the GOM to press ahead with the 
Manhasset talks. He said support for Morocco,s position is 
growing ever so slowly. Separately, Welch cautioned the 
King's intelligence chief against militarization of the 
dispute. 

MAURITANIA 
---------- 
10. (C) Looking at Western Sahara's neighbor Mauritania, the 
King stressed that Mauritania needs help and that he will see 
the Mauritanian President in Dakar. 

AMERICAN SCHOOLS 
---------------- 
11. (U) Welch took advantage of a few private minutes with 
Fassi Fihri to underscore the need for an agreement on the 
status of the American schools in Morocco. Noting that he 
had attended the Rabat American School (RAS)as a child, Welch 
said if a solution is not found soon that RAS could not 
produce more David Welches. Fassi Fihri replied that he had 

RABAT 00000185 003 OF 003 


been in contact with Prime Minister Abbas El Fassi and 
Director General of Taxation Nouredine Bensouda about our 
proposal. 

U.S. HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM 
------------------------------ 
12. (U) Welch also raised made the Minister aware of the 
planned signing of an accord between the U.S. Holocaust 
Memorial Museum and the Moroccan National Archives. Welch 
also mentioned that the Museum still planned to host a 
conference on the Holocaust in Arab lands. 

COMMENT 
------- 
13. (C) Although his face looked puffy, the King appeared 
relaxed and rested after four weeks in France. The meeting 
itself underscored how much U.S. and Moroccan views coincide. 
END COMMENT. 

14. (U) NEA A/S Welch has cleared this message. 


***************************************** 
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website; 
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/rabat 
***************************************** 

Riley