US embassy cable - 05WELLINGTON135

COUNTRY CLEARANCE TO THE COOK ISLANDS FOR IRS OFFICIALS, FEBRUARY 24 - MARCH 12, 2005

Identifier: 05WELLINGTON135
Wikileaks: View 05WELLINGTON135 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Wellington
Created: 2005-02-15 23:23:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: OTRA ECON ASEC HK NZ IRS Country Clearance
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.


 
UNCLAS WELLINGTON 000135 
 
SIPDIS 
 
HONG KONG FOR IRS/CID 
 
E.O. 12958:  N/A 
TAGS: OTRA, ECON, ASEC, HK, NZ, IRS, Country Clearance 
SUBJECT:  COUNTRY CLEARANCE TO THE COOK ISLANDS FOR IRS 
OFFICIALS, FEBRUARY 24 - MARCH 12, 2005 
 
REF:  HONG KONG 721 
 
1.  Embassy grants country clearance to IRS Officials Jay 
Van Kirk, Reginald Brown, Monte J. Myers, and Tonya Martin 
to travel to The Cook Islands, February 24 - March 12, 2005. 
The purpose of travel is to provide a 2-week Financial 
Investigative Techniques (FIT) class to Cook Island Law 
Enforcement Personnel. 
 
2.  Embassy understands no assistance is required. 
 
3.  Point of contact at Embassy Wellington is Pol/Econ 
Counselor Kathy Hadda.  Contact details are as follows: 
 
Office:  644-462-6063 
Fax:     644-472-3537 
Cell:    027-451-2539 
E-mail:  HaddaKB2@state.gov 
 
Security Assessment 
------------------- 
 
4.  The Cook Islands is a Parliamentary democracy in free 
association with New Zealand, on which they rely for defense 
and assistance in meeting low-level security threats.  The 
Embassy is not aware of any specific threats to U.S. 
facilities or personnel at this time in the Cook Islands. 
However, in light of the worldwide security alert all 
visitors should heighten their security awareness and report 
any unusual incidents to the Regional Security Office at the 
Embassy in Wellington, New Zealand. 
 
5.  Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in 
the U.S. and the November 2002 terrorist bombing in Bali, 
there has been concern that terrorists might seek to take 
advantage of the low level of security maintained in small 
island states such as the Cook Islands in order to target 
tourists in previously safe destinations.  New Zealand has 
worked with the Cook Islands to improve airport security in 
response to this possibility.  Terrorist actions may 
include, but are not limited to, suicide operations, 
bombings, or kidnapping.  Possible threats include 
conventional weapons such as explosive devices or non- 
conventional weapons, including chemical or biological 
agents.  Terrorists do not distinguish between official and 
civilian targets.  Targets may include facilities where 
Americans and other foreigners congregate or visit, such as 
residential areas, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, 
schools, hotels, outdoor recreation events, resorts, and 
beaches.  U.S. citizens should increase their security 
awareness at such locations, avoid them, or switch to other 
locations where Americans in large numbers generally do not 
congregate. 
 
6.  The Cook Islands offshore finance industry has come 
under scrutiny regarding possible money laundering.  The 
Cook Islands has been included on the OECD's list of non- 
cooperating states in the fight against money laundering. 
 
7.  As a result of recent military action in Iraq, there is 
a potential for retaliatory actions to be taken against U.S. 
citizens and interest throughout the world.  Public 
demonstrations carry the potential for precipitating 
violence directed at American citizens. 
 
8.  U.S. Government facilities worldwide remain at a 
heightened state of alert and some have drawn down their 
dependents and/or personnel.  These facilities may 
temporarily close or suspend public services from time to 
time for security reasons.  In those instances, U.S. 
embassies and consulates will make every effort to provide 
emergency services to American citizens.  Monitor the local 
news and maintain contact with the nearest American Embassy 
or U.S. Consulate. 
 
9.  Crime:  Appropriate common sense precautions should be 
taken, especially at night, to avoid becoming a target of 
opportunity. 
 
10.  Weather:  Severe cyclones present a threat during the 
hurricane season, which is from November to March. 
 
Swindells 

Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04