Oct 192014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2008/12/08STATE132020.html#
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08STATE132020
2008-12-17 14:30
2011-08-30 01:44
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Secretary of State

VZCZCXRO8551
OO RUEHDT RUEHPB
DE RUEHC #2020/01 3521437
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O P 171430Z DEC 08
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 STATE 132020

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL ARF ASEAN EAID MARR MOPS RP
SUBJECT: REPORT: ARF MOVES FORWARD ON DISASTER RELIEF EXERCISE, WORKPLAN, AND CIVIL-MILITARY ISSUES

REF: A. SECSTATE 122937

¶1. SUMMARY: ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) members made important
progress on key disaster relief initiatives at ARF’s annual
Inter-Sessional Meeting on Disaster Relief (ISM-DR) in Banda Aceh,
Indonesia on December 4-6. The United States and the Philippines
undertook extensive discussions with a number of ARF members on their
participation in the May 2009 ARF Disaster Relief Exercise. In
addition, delegations exchanged views on the development of important
initiatives such as an ARF Disaster Relief Workplan and an ARF model
legal agreement for the use and status of military forces involved in
disaster relief. Disaster relief remains among the most productive
issue on ARF’s agenda. END SUMMARY.

————
KEY OUTCOMES
————
¶2. ARF DISASTER RELIEF EXERCISE (VDR): Along the margins and during
the plenary of the ISM-DR, USDEL and the Philippines extensively
discussed ARF members’ participation in the May 2009 ARF Disaster
Relief Exercise in the Philippines (Ref A). Specifically, USDEL held
substantive discussions with China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand,
Indonesia, Canada, the European Union, and Papua New Guinea (reported
septel to country desks and embassies). Overall, participation and
interest from ARF nations, particularly military participation, is
growing in advance of the January 19-28 planning meetings. EAP/RSP
will continue to closely work with State, DoD, and embassies to
clarify ARF participation in the exercise, termed Voluntary
Demonstration of Response (VDR), and associated planning events.

¶3. ARF HADR WORKPLAN: In part due to U.S. financial assistance to the
ARF Unit of the ASEAN Secretariat, the Secretariat presented a draft
workplan for ARF’s efforts in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster
Relief (HADR). Designed to more effectively focus, organize, and
strengthen ARF’s HADR efforts, the workplan will continue to be
developed leading up to its endorsement at the July 2009 Ministerial
meeting. Based on the recommendations of the delegations of
Australia, the United States, and others, the workplan identified
disaster management/emergency response capacity-building and disaster
risk reduction as two key, short-term areas of focus for ARF’s HADR
efforts.

¶4. MILITARY AND CIVIL DEFENSE ASSETS (MCDA) STATUS TEMPLATE:
Following the mandate given by ARF Foreign Ministers in July 2008 in
Singapore to explore the feasibility of the proposal, ISM-DR
participants briefly discussed the development of an ARF model legal
agreement on the use and status of MCDA. As this concept progresses,
ARF would develop the text of a model agreement that ARF nations
could legally activate on an individual and bilateral basis between
assisting nations and the affected state in the event of a disaster
requiring foreign MCDA. USDEL presented its views on the concept.
The presentation received largely positive, but limited agreement on
the utility of developing the agreement. Along the margins, USDEL
met with Indonesian Foreign Ministry (DEPLU) and a disaster relief
agency representative to further discuss the concept. In principle,
the Indonesian representatives agreed on the utility of developing a
model ARF agreement. Furthermore, they suggested that the ARF
multilateral text could lead to the development of more extensive
-bilaterally-based arrangements. Indonesia suggested that the
development of these multilateral and bilateral arrangements, similar
to temporary Status of Forces Arrangements (SOFAs), could be branded
under a different name such as Memorandums of Understanding on HA/DR
Missions. State and DoD will help develop this concept further with
ARF, particularly through the ARF VDR Exercise and the early April
ARF Seminar on Legal Regulations in Disaster Relief Military
Operations hosted by China.

———————-
REMAINING AGENDA ITEMS
———————-

¶5. ARF HADR STRATEGIC GUIDANCE and STANDBY ARRANGEMENT SYSTEM:
Australia continued to press for efforts by ARF members on further
refining the ARF HADR Strategic Guidance document and ARF’s draft
concept for a standby arrangement system continued to stall. The
document is intended to provide guidance to senior regional disaster
relief civil and military policymakers. The meeting discussed next
steps for the document including testing and validating the Strategic
Guidance through future tabletop or field exercises. (Note: This
initiative was extensively discussed at a smaller working group on
December 4th of the ISM-DR Shepherds.) Furthermore, it appears that
the concept for the development an ARF Standby Arrangement System may
be put on hold for some time. That proposal’s potential relationship
to the ASEAN Standby Arrangement System and Operating Procedures

STATE 00132020 002 OF 002

(ASEAN SASOPs) still remains unclear to those in ASEAN and more
broadly in ARF.

¶6. EXISTING ASEAN AND GLOBAL COOPERATION ON DISASTER RELIEF: Various
government and non-government representatives briefed ARF on the
existing regional and global HADR work, both regionally and globally.
Discussions and/or presentations distributed on the following topics
included:

— ARF Workshop on Stabilization and Reconstruction Issues, September
10-12, 2008 in Bangkok, Thailand.
— ARF Desktop Exercise on Disaster Relief, May 1-2, 2008 in Jakarta,
Indonesia
— 13th Tokyo Defense Forum “International Cooperation in Disaster
Relief,” October 21-24, 2008 in Tokyo, Japan
— 3rd Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction,
December 2-4, 2008 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Ongoing and emerging global and regional HADR efforts discussed
included:
–The Australia-Indonesia Disaster Reduction Facility just
established in Jakarta, Indonesia.
–EU Crisis Response and Prevention Framework Management system.
–Aceh, Indonesia Strategy National Action Plan
–UNOCHA Disaster Relief Operations and Standby Arrangements
–World Bank Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction
–UN International Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction and the
2005-2015 Hyogo Framework for Action.
–European Commission Early Warning System

¶7. POC INFORMATION: POC for further questions, comments, or to obtain
more background and ISM-DR meeting documents and briefs is: EAP/RSP
Kevin Sheives, sheiveskw@state.gov, 202-647-1217. For additional
background on ARF and U.S. participation in ARF, please visit the
State Dept Intranet Site at
http://eap.state.gov/EAPOffices/RSP/ARF.cfm

¶8. COMMENT: Disaster relief has emerged as a key topic for ARF to
make substantive, concrete contributions to regional security. The
United States and other like-minded countries are seeking to focus
its agenda where it can bring added value to the panoply of existing
regional and global efforts (ASEAN, APEC, among many others). For
now, ARF’s HADR efforts will focus on developing civil-military
interoperability, linking many of these ongoing regional HADR
efforts, and potentially disaster risk reduction.
RICE

   

 

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