NETHERLANDS/OSLO PROCESS: DUTCH SUPPORT INTEROPERABILITY AS A REDLINE

Identifier: 
08THEHAGUE308

C O N F I D E N T I A L THE HAGUE 000308

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/31/2018
TAGS: PREL, MOPS, PGOV, PARM, NL
SUBJECT: NETHERLANDS/OSLO PROCESS: DUTCH SUPPORT
INTEROPERABILITY AS A REDLINE

REF: SECSTATE 30699

Classified By: POLITICAL COUNSELOR ANDREW SCHOFER FOR REASONS 1.5(B) AN
D (D)

1. (C) SUMMARY: On March 28, 2008, POLOFF delivered reftel
points to Wouter Wormgoor at the Dutch MFA, and in a follow
up conversation, Wormgoor said that resolving the
interoperability issue was a redline for the Netherlands. At
the same time, Wormgoor expressed concern about prospects for
resolving differences between like-minded countries and
Ireland and Norway. END SUMMARY.

2. (C) Wormgoor stated that along with other like-mindeds,
the Netherlands believes that interoperability is a key
condition that should be dealt with in the treaty, and not in
an annex or note. It is "quite important." Wormgoor
disagreed with the idea that "that there is no problem, based
on the land mine experience and joint operations."
Interoperability is a redline for the Dutch because they want
to avoid violating any treaty and want to be able to
participate in joint operations. A second redline for the
Dutch is resolving the issue of exceptions to the ban. For
the Dutch, key criteria for the exceptions are reliability
and precision. The Dutch support "an exception for sensor
fused weapons with a fail safe system."

3. (C) Wormgoor cautioned that the Wellington proposals
opposed by the USG were informal ideas, with the Canadians
"explicitly noting that they were 'food for thought.'" There
are several texts under consideration. A compromise text
can be found. However, the German proposals, among others,
have not been favorably received by either the core group or
NGOs. It will be difficult to convince Ireland and Norway,
but some countries appear willing to compromise. Some
parties are aiming for a norm against the use of cluster
munitions that is so high that most countries will not be
tempted to use them.
Gallagher