WikiLeaks cable: Amendments to SUA Convention

Photo / Mark Mitchell
Photo / Mark Mitchell

This is one of the diplomatic cables about New Zealand held by Wikileaks.

January 28, 2005

SUBJECT: U.S. NONPROLIFERATION AMENDMENTS TO THE SUA CONVENTION: NEW ZEALAND


Classified By: Acting DCM Katherine Hadda, For Reasons 1.4 (B) and (D)

1. (C) Acting DCM conveyed reftel points on the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Maritime Navigation (SUA) to Caroline McDonald, Director of the Disarmament Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) and Scott Sheeran, an MFAT Legal Advisor. A/DCM said she was encouraged that both were willing to discuss the issue with her, as it was important that both legal and substantive experts take an interest in SUA discussions.

2. (C) McDonald and Sheeran apologized for not knowing in depth New Zealand's views on the U.S. proposals. McDonald has monitored the issue but not worked on it directly; Sheeran just took over the portfolio; and Caroline Bilkie, the Deputy Director of the MFAT Legal Division who was at the first SUA meeting, is out of the country until next week.


Sheeran said that he understood that New Zealand is in broad agreement on the importance of the agreement covering both state and non-state actors. A/DCM stressed that it was equally important that the agreement criminalize the knowing transport of dual use items for use in prohibited weapons, and said that this proposal was consistent with UNSCR 1540 and other nonproliferation regimes to which New Zealand
belongs.


3. (C) Sheeran and McDonald promised to convey our points to New Zealand's rep to the Intersessional, Hine-wai Loose, who covers disarmament issues in Geneva. They noted that Loose's choice as representative reflects New Zealand's desire to keep a substantive focus on the talks. Sheeran said he would advise A/DCM of Loose's views after the discussions next week.

Swindells

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