US embassy cable - 03COLOMBO94

ICC Article 98: Foreign Minister assures Ammbassador that Maldives is actively reviewing proposal

Identifier: 03COLOMBO94
Wikileaks: View 03COLOMBO94 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Colombo
Created: 2003-01-16 10:28:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL//NOFORN
Tags: PREL PGOV KTIA MV Maldives
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.

C O N F I D E N T I A L COLOMBO 000094 
 
SIPDIS 
 
NOFORN 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR SA, SA/INS, T, PM, IO, DS; NSC FOR E. MILLARD 
 
LONDON FOR POL/RIEDEL 
 
E.O. 12958:  DECL:  01-16-13 
TAGS: PREL, PGOV, KTIA, MV, Maldives 
SUBJECT:  ICC Article 98:  Foreign Minister assures 
Ammbassador that Maldives is actively reviewing proposal 
 
Refs:  (A) Colombo 26 (Notal) 
 
-      (B) 02 Colombo 2323, and previous 
 
(U) Classified by Ambassador E. Ashley Wills. 
Reasons 1.5 (b, d). 
 
1.  (U) This message contains Action Requests -- 
Please see Paras 4-5. 
 
2.  (C) Ambassador Wills spoke to Maldivian Foreign 
Minister Fathulla Jameel on the telephone on January 16. 
The Ambassador reiterated the U.S. proposal that the 
Maldives sign as soon as possible a bilateral Article 98 
non-surrender agreement with the U.S.  The Ambassador 
reviewed core U.S. points arguing for the proposal, 
noting that Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, and Afghanistan in 
the South Asian region have all signed non-surrender 
agreements with the U.S. 
 
3.  (C) Foreign Minister Jameel replied that the 
Maldivian government continued to review the U.S. 
proposal actively.  It was being studied closely by the 
MFA's legal department and other government offices. 
The review was taking some time, but the government was 
doing its very best.  Jameel added that he wanted the 
U.S. to know that the Maldivian government would never 
turn over a U.S. national to the International Criminal 
Court (ICC).  The Maldivian government would not sign 
the ICC treaty and would not respect its claim to 
universal jurisdiction.  That said, the Foreign Minister 
realized that the U.S. wanted something in writing.  He 
said he would have something more definitive on the U.S. 
proposal when the Ambassador visited Male on February 4. 
 
4.  (C) COMMENT/ACTION REQUESTS:  As a very small country 
with limited capacity, things move slowly in the 
Maldives and this matter is going to take some more 
time.  Mission will continue to press it at every 
opportunity.  One possible next step may be for 
Washington to provide Mission a copy of what India 
signed with the U.S., which we understand did not 
mention the ICC at all.  (Note:  We already provided the 
GoRM a copy of what Sri Lanka signed with us.)  As the 
Maldives models its foreign policy on New Delhi's to 
some extent, it is possible that it would prefer to do 
exactly what the GoI did.  In any case, providing the 
GoRM a copy of what the Indians signed might be a good 
way of continuing the dialogue until the Ambassador's 
visit to Male in early February. 
 
5.  (C) Mission also requests any releasable information 
on where things stand re Pakistan and Bangladesh, two 
South Asian countries that apparently have not signed 
bilateral agreements.  Jameel expressed an interest in 
this subject.  END COMMENT/ACTION REQUESTS. 
 
6.  (U) Minimize considered. 
 
WILLS 

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