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Viewing cable 09MADRID551, SCENESETTER FOR JUNE 23-25 WASHINGTON VISIT BY SPAIN'S INTERIOR MINISTER

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MADRID551 2009-06-09 06:06 2010-12-06 12:12 CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN Embassy Madrid
VZCZCXRO3867
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHMD #0551/01 1600656
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 090656Z JUN 09
FM AMEMBASSY MADRID
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0742
RUEILB/NCTC WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAHLC/HOMELAND SECURITY CENTER WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUCNFB/FBI WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHLA/AMCONSUL BARCELONA PRIORITY 4018
RUEHMD/USDAO MADRID SP PRIORITY
RUEHNA/DEA HQS WASHDC PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 MADRID 000551 

NOFORN 
SIPDIS 
 
FOR EUR/WE, EUR/ERA, INR 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/07/2019 
TAGS: PREL PINS PTER PINR KHLS KCIP KCRM SP PGOV
SUBJECT: SCENESETTER FOR JUNE 23-25 WASHINGTON VISIT BY SPAIN'S INTERIOR MINISTER 
 
REF: A. MADRID 351 
     B. SECSTATE 56239 
     C. MADRID 440 
     D. MADRID 261 
     E. MADRID 484 
 
MADRID 00000551  001.2 OF 003 
 
 
Classified By: Charge D'Affaires Arnold A. Chacon for reasons 1.4 (b) a 
nd (d) 
 
1. (C//NF) SUMMARY:  Spanish Interior Minister Alfredo Perez 
Rubalcaba will meet senior officials from the DHS, DOJ, FBI, 
CIA, ODNI, NCTC, and possibly the NSC, during his June 23-25 
visit to Washington, DC.  USG interlocutors will find that 
Rubalcaba - who has wide-ranging responsibilities on 
security, law enforcement and intelligence issues - is very 
capable and serious but also charming.  A career politician, 
Rubalcaba is arguably the most impressive member of Spanish 
President Zapatero's cabinet and a very useful and powerful 
ally to have in the Zapatero Administration.  His influence 
exceeds the formal parameters of his Ministry.  Embassy 
Madrid judges the bilateral law enforcement relationship to 
be excellent, while the bilateral CT relationship is good but 
could be better.  Rubalcaba is interested in signing either 
several bilateral accords or (if the accords cannot be ironed 
out in time) political declarations of intent to do so in the 
near future.  The Minister has an extensive agenda - 
including counter-terrorism (CT), law enforcement, and 
intelligence issues - he wishes to discuss with US officials. 
 While the focus of this trip will be on discussing bilateral 
issues, Rubalcaba also will address GOS interest in increased 
collaboration on justice and home affairs issues during 
Spain's upcoming stint as President of the European Union 
(EU) during the first half of 2010.  END SUMMARY. 
 
//US-SPAIN RELATIONS// 
 
2. (C//NF) U.S.-Spain relations are strong and based on 
shared global interests.  Spain is an important friend and 
ally and we value its cooperation against terrorism and a 
range of other security issues.  Since the US presidential 
election in November, a strong atmosphere of goodwill has 
emerged in Spain for closer bilateral  cooperation.  As a 
gesture of this goodwill, the GOS presently is considering 
accepting some of the detainees currently held at Guantanamo 
(GTMO, see Ref A).  XXXXXXXXXXXX.  Spain also allows us the use of two military bases that are critical transit points between the U.S. and Iraq and Afghanistan.  Recent irritants in bilateral 
relations, however, are the efforts by the Spanish judiciary 
- invoking "universal jurisdiction" - to indict former USG 
officials for their allegedly involvement in torture at GTMO. 
(See Ref C). 
 
//RUBALCABA AND HIS MINISTRY// 
 
3. (C//NF) A member of parliament since 1996, Rubalcaba is a 
three-time Minister who in mid-2008 also served a brief stint 
as acting Defense Minister.  He is known for his 
intelligence, discretion, hard work, and mastery of detail, 
as well as his negotiating prowess.  Rubalcaba was the 
Socialist party's longtime pointman on CT issues before 
Zapatero named him Interior Minister in early 2006.  He is 
one of two or three individuals whom Zapatero often consults 
before making big decisions, and not only on issues within 
Rubalcaba's portfolio.  A senior official within the 
 
MADRID 00000551  002.2 OF 003 
 
Socialist party with a reputation for getting things done, 
Rubalcaba excels at putting out fires and is a valued contact 
of the Embassy, which finds him accessible and effective in 
getting things done for us despite his busy portfolio.  This 
will be Rubalcaba's first meeting with most of his USG 
interlocutors, although he first met DHS Secretary Napolitano 
in Berlin for the G6 1 meeting on March 15.  The Minister 
speaks English but prefers to have an interpreter present for 
some of the more technical aspects of his official meetings. 
 
4. (C//NF) The Ministry of Interior (MOI) oversees the 
Spanish National Police (SNP) and the paramilitary Civil 
Guard (GC).  The MOI is a key cabinet post, as Spain 
confronts both the domestic terrorist group Basque Fatherland 
and Liberty (ETA) and radical Islamist terrorists and 
sympathizers.  Spain's 40-year battle against ETA has given 
its security forces - and their intelligence wings - 
considerable CT expertise, although the GOS continues to 
adapt its methods to combating decentralized radical 
Islamists.  Spain also faces a confluence of organized crime 
syndicates involved in the contraband of narcotics and other 
drugs, human trafficking and illegal immigration, money 
laundering and credit card fraud, and document falsification. 
 Meanwhile, the SNP and GC increasingly are expanding their 
representation overseas as attaches in Embassies.  Embassy 
Madrid recommends that USG interlocutors press Rubalcaba on 
sending GC and/or SNP personnel to help train security forces 
in Afghanistan and Iraq. 
 
5. (C//NF)  We believe Rubalcaba fully understands the extent 
of the lack of inter-agency cooperation between the SNP and 
the GC, as well as stovepipe problems between them and 
Spain's National Intelligence Center (CNI).  He has 
overhauled the MOI to achieve greater inter-agency 
efficiencies.  In 2006 he created an Organized Crime 
Intelligence Center (CICO) and in 2007 he created a National 
Center of Critical Infrastructure Protection (CNPIC).  The 
director of Spain's National Center for Counter-Terrorism 
Coordination (CNCA, roughly equivalent to the NCTC) reports 
to Rubalcaba.  XXXXXXXXXXXXX  Rubalcaba has overseen a 
very forward-leaning CT strategy against both radical 
Islamists and - following the late 2006 car-bombing of the 
Madrid airport, which ended its unilaterally declared 
cease-fire - ETA.  The GOS prides itself that its 
preventative justice approach, disrupting terrorist cells 
before they become operational, has resulted in no deaths at 
the hands of radical Islamists since 2004.  Rubalcaba 
realizes he needs the USG on CT issues and therefore he has 
been cooperative with U.S. interlocutors on that topic. 
 
//FOUR PROSPECTIVE BILATERAL ACCORDS// 
 
6. (C//NF) Rubalcaba's staff tells us he hopes to sign up to 
four accords during his visit: 
 
I) A US-proposed agreement on Preventing and Combating 
Serious Crime (PCSC), as discussed in Ref E. 
 
II) An agreement on Cooperation in Science & Technology for 
Homeland Security Matters, using the existing US-Mexico 
agreement as a template. 
 
III)  An MOU formalizing ongoing cooperation on the DHS's 
Immigration Advisory Program (IAP) at Madrid's Barajas 
Airport, where a successful pilot program recently was 
carried out. 
 
IV) An MOU to strengthen bilateral cooperation and reinforce 
efforts to locate fugitives. 
 
//PROSPECTIVE ITEMS FOR DISCUSSION PER MEETING// 
 
7. (C//NF) Rubalcaba hopes to sign the above accords with the 
DHS Secretary, with whom he also will discuss protecting 
critical infrastructure and combating counterfeit money.  He 
will discuss ETA, border control issues, and the CSI.  He 
also will suggest the creation of an alert system regarding 
the theft of nuclear materials by terrorists.  Finally, he 
 
MADRID 00000551  003.2 OF 003 
 
 
will propose an exchange of liaison personnel to have 
officials present in each others' headquarters.  On a 
multilateral issues, Rubalcaba will address GOS plans to 
"revitalize" the US-EU transatlantic partnership during 
Spain's EU Presidency.  This may include an embryonic idea 
for a joint US-EU declaration on the fight against terrorism 
to be signed in Madrid on March 11, 2010, the sixth 
anniversary of the Madrid train bombings. 
 
8.  (C//NF) With the Attorney General and FBI Director, 
Rubalcaba will discuss the prospective accord on fugitives 
(See above).  He also wants to discuss the CODIS database, 
cybercrime issues, cooperation regarding ETA, a proposal to 
intensify cooperation with the DEA, and efforts to fight 
organized crime and money laundering.  He also will raise the 
GTMO detainee issue.  Rubalcaba will have a role in deciding 
the GOS decision on the GTMO, based on security concerns and 
freedom of movement issues.  Post recommends that Rubalcaba 
would be a logical person with whom to press the message that 
the various universal jurisdiction cases against former USG 
officials are not helpful. 
 
9. (C//NF) Embassy Madrid is sending via other channels the 
proposed agenda for Rubalcaba's meetings with the DNI, CIA 
and NCTC. 
 
10. (C//NF) The GOS has asked for an appointment with the 
U.S. National Security Adviser, with whom Rubalcaba would 
like to discuss the US-EU transatlantic agenda, a declaration 
of CT principles (See Para 9), and the issue of Guantanamo 
detainees.  The Minister also would like to address radical 
Islamic terrorism in the Af/Pak region and in the Sahel. 
 
11. (C) We suggest Washington interlocutors thank Rubalcaba 
for the excellent anti-organized crime and counter-narcotics 
relationships we enjoy in Spain and urge that we work jointly 
to find ways to improve the already good CT relationship. 
DOJ in particular will wish to thank him for Spain's 
assistance in extraditing arms trafficker Monzer al-Kassar in 
2008. 

CHACON