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WikiLeaks: 2006-04-23: 06BAGHDAD1317: Iraq Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) Weekly Roundup for April 7-13, 2006

by WikiLeaks. 06BAGHDAD1317: April 23, 2006.

Posted: Sunday, February 19, 2012 at 03:24 PM UTC


Viewing cable 06BAGHDAD1317, IRAQ PRTS WEEKLY ROUNDUP FOR 7-13 APR 06

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06BAGHDAD1317 2006-04-23 16:17 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED
//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Embassy
Baghdad
VZCZCXRO1590
RR RUEHBC RUEHDA RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK RUEHMOS
DE RUEHGB #1317/01 1131617
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 231617Z APR 06
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4040
INFO RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC WASHDC
RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE
RUZCDAB/MNC-I BAGHDAD IQ
RUZCDAA/MNF-I BAGHDAD IQ
RUEPGAB/MNF-I C2X BAGHDAD IZ
RHMFISS/WARRIOR BRAVO CC BALAD IQ
RHMFISS/HQ AFOSI ANDREWS AFB MD
RUWICBE/I MEF CAMP PENDLETON CA
RHMFIUU/CDR101STABN DIV AASLT FORT CAMPBELL KY
RHMFISS/ASAS 4THINFDIV FORT HOOD TX
RUEPUAC/MITT 4THINFDIV FORT HOOD TX
RHMFISS/506AEG CP KIRKUK IQ
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 BAGHDAD 001317 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV ECON MOPS PREL IZ
SUBJECT: IRAQ PRTS WEEKLY ROUNDUP FOR 7-13 APR 06 
 
1. (SBU) INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY.  The Provincial 
Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) report weekly their 
activities and progress towards helping the provincial 
governments achieve self-governance capability.  The 
following paragraphs summarize their activities in 
several areas for the period 7-13 April.  Sunni Arabs 
in Ninawa Province feel marginalized, while Kirkuk 
Sunni Arab politicians want early provincial 
elections.  The Baghdad Provincial Government 
continued its boycott of the PRT that began March 27. 
Although Babil Provincial Government is talking to the 
PRT, communication is limited and has slowed progress 
in building governance capacity.  The fuel shortage in 
Ninawa continued to cause difficulties and 
dramatically increased the black market sale of 
kerosene.  Kurdish college students talked about their 
concerns with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). 
Private business owners in Babil discussed barriers to 
starting and owning a business in Iraq.  END 
INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY. 
 
------------------- 
(U) NINAWA PROVINCE 
------------------- 
 
2. (SBU) GOVERNANCE AND ECONOMIC. Sunni Sheiks told 
Ninawa PRT members that they feel marginalized.  They 
repeated suggestions that the security problems would 
go away if the Coalition Forces (CF) would pay them 
off.  They minimized the influence of elected 
officials in resolving security issues and maintained 
that sheiks are in a better position to effect changes 
in Ninawa Province. In a separate meeting with PRT 
staff, Assyrian leaders emphasized their ongoing 
concerns with KRG efforts to encroach into Assyrian 
towns and villages in eastern Ninawa Province.  The 
PRT has been working closely with Assyrian leaders and 
the CF regarding protection of minority rights in 
these areas. 
 
3. (U) The Civil Affairs (CA) team in Tal Afar 
reported that more shops are opening every month.  The 
general economy, however, remains weak.  Unemployment 
is estimated at about 65%. The CA team secured a site 
for the business center and plans to use Commander 
Emergency Relief Program (CERP) funds to furnish the 
center with computer equipment and basic furniture. 
Planning continued for the Ninewa Business Center to 
coordinate support for the Tal Afar center.  Getting 
this business center operational is critical to 
continued economic growth in Tal Afar. 
 
4. (U) The oil and fuel situation in Ninawa continued 
to deteriorate as another week passed without Turkish 
fuel imports.  Residents reported that supplies of 
propane, the primary cooking fuel, are exhausted. 
Black market kerosene increased seven fold.  There was 
no news concerning the "letter of credit" issued 
between Turkey and the Iraq Minister of Finance (MoF). 
 
5. (U) RULE OF LAW. The Human Rights Committee 
Chairperson expressed confidence to the PRT that the 
committee and key community leaders, especially the 
Provincial Chief of Police, have significantly 
improved treatment of arrested persons and citizen 
access to information about arrested individuals. She 
agreed that detainee issues would continue to be 
monitored.  She also expressed increased interest in 
the committee mission of social minority advocacy for 
women, elderly, handicapped, and the poor. 
 
6. (U) INFRASTRUCTURE AND RECONSTRUCTION. The Dahuk 
Director of Electrical Transmission contacted the PRT 
for assistance in finding available funding for an 
electrical problem in Dahuk.  Dahuk uses virtually all 
of the power imported from Turkey and Turkish imports 
account for over half of the electricity in the 
province.  The Director is looking for approximately 
$550,000 USD to install capacitor banks on the three 
 
BAGHDAD 00001317  002 OF 004 
 
 
main distribution lines into Dahuk.  The PRT agreed to 
coordinate the request with the appropriate channels. 
 
7. (U) Turbulent Tigris River flows due to heavy rains 
during the past two months have noticeably degraded 
water quality reaching homes.  Drinking water 
treatment plant renovations within Mosul and the Tal 
Afar/Aski Mosul system are progressing well and will 
improve this situation.  Short term capacity increases 
to pump stations, however, have exceeded the plant 
treatment capacity.  Additional projects are required 
to increase treatment capacity to once again return to 
acceptable drinking water standards. 
 
------------------- 
(U) KIRKUK PROVINCE 
------------------- 
 
8. (SBU) POLITICAL. Sunni Arab politicians in Kirkuk 
told PRT Iraq Provincial Action Officer (IPAO) that 
the Sunni community in Kirkuk Province wants to 
benefit from U.S. outreach efforts, but asserted that 
the USG needs to work with political leaders instead 
of the tribes.  They argued that the coming provincial 
elections would legitimize city council leaders and 
undermine tribal and terrorist influence.  Therefore, 
they urged the USG push the Iraqi Government to hold 
provincial elections as soon as possible. 
 
9. (U) Kurdish students and recent graduates from the 
Kalar area (southern Sulaymaniyah Province) talked 
about their plans with PRT IPAO to hold demonstrations 
on or around April 14, if the KRG did not respond to 
their demands to improve city conditions.  They said 
protestors planned to prohibit government officials 
from entering the city for the eighteenth 
commemoration of the Anfal attacks in Kalar.  Students 
from Kurdish student unions in Halabjah and 
Sulaymaniyah, in another meeting with IPAO, discussed 
a list of demands to the KRG regarding the aftermath 
of the March 16 violent protests in Halabjah.  Their 
demands included releasing the detainees as soon as 
possible; facilitating a transparent investigation and 
trial of the security officer who killed a 17-year-old 
student; permitting local and international non- 
governmental organizations (NGOs) to visit detainees; 
permitting student and youth representatives to visit 
detainees; restoring a peaceful atmosphere by changing 
the language from pressure to understanding; and 
allowing representatives from student and youth unions 
to attend reconstruction meetings. 
 
10. (SBU) The Provincial Council (PC) Chairman 
expressed displeasure at the assessment of Kirkuk 
Province in the Provincial Stability Assessment dated 
January 31, 2006.  The PC Chairman obtained the news 
via a New York Times article dated April 9. (NOTE: The 
article contained parts of an unclassified assessment 
that was leaked to the press by an unknown source. END 
NOTE) He argued that the report was negative and 
questioned the lack of positive comments in the 
assessment. 
 
11. (U) RULE OF LAW.  The PRT Rule of Law (RoL) 
Coordinator visited the Police Training Academy in Al 
Sulaymaniyah.  Approximately 1,000 recruits could be 
trained at any one time and the program runs 
throughout the entire year.  Current recruits are from 
the provinces of Sulaymaniyah, Kirkuk, Diyala, Salah 
ad Din, and Ninawa.  Training is provided by an Iraqi 
staff.  The attrition rate is approximately three 
percent. 
 
-------------------- 
(U) BAGHDAD PROVINCE 
-------------------- 
 
12. (SBU) POLITICAL.  The PRT has not engaged in 
regular discussions with the PC since it ceased 
 
BAGHDAD 00001317  003 OF 004 
 
 
engagement with the Embassy on March 27.  The PC 
declared that its decision applies to the Amanat (City 
Hall) and all other subordinate councils.  Baghdad 
Mayor encouraged the PRT to disregard the PC 
directive.  The PRT has informed the PC, including its 
chairman, through numerous informal communications 
that the PRT is ready to engage.  Several subordinate 
councils have not endorsed the PC declaration and 
conveyed their disagreement to the PRT.  While PRT 
communication with almost every sub-governate council 
has continued, it occurred only when initiated by the 
council members. 
 
13. (U) ECONOMIC.  PRT-Baghdad members finished a 
nine-month development of a turn-key seminar in Arabic 
and delivered it to the Ministry of Industry and 
Minerals, the Iraq Federation of Industries, and the 
Iraqi Business Center.  Accessible through the 
Department of Commerce website, the seminar provides 
training on preparation of business plans for start-up 
or struggling companies to attract foreign partners, 
investment capital, loans from state-owned or private 
banks, micro-finance centers, foreign governments or 
multi-lateral lenders. 
 
14. (SBU) RULE OF LAW. The PRT RoL coordinator visited 
Rasafa Prison, a Ministry of Justice (MoJ) facility 
near the Ministry of Interior (MoI).  The cells were 
not as crowded as in the MoI detention facilities. 
The detainees whom the coordinator met were removed 
from the MoI "Bunker" in December.  Of the 168 inmates 
removed from the bunker in December, 155 remain in 
detention.  While detainees had scars, some of which 
were possibly from abuse and torture while in the 
Bunker, none complained of abuse since being detained 
in the MoJ facility.  Most claimed they have yet to 
see an investigative judge and many claimed that a 
bribe is required for release. 
 
------------------ 
(U) BABIL PROVINCE 
------------------ 
 
15. (SBU) POLITICAL. While some communication occurred 
between the PRT and the Babil Provincial Government, 
it continued to claim it is "boycotting" the PRT and 
CF.  The standoff has hindered the PRT ability to 
promote and monitor governance action.  National 
politics continued to affect the province as public 
discontent increased as politicians failed to reach a 
compromise and form a new government in Baghdad. 
 
16. (U) ECONOMIC.  Two representatives from privately 
owned businesses told PRT members that lack of lending 
institutions and energy sources keep them from 
reaching their potential.  In another meeting, a 
successful hotel owner identified several problems and 
issues that confront Baghdad businesses.  He said 
there are at least 22 agencies that must approve a new 
business.  This creates a cumbersome bureaucracy with 
too many layers and discourages growth in the private 
sector.  Both the provincial and national levels have 
no laws to govern foreign investment and resulted in a 
recent loss of potential Dutch investment.  There is a 
lack of useful small business financing other than low 
value, high interest loans with a short payback 
period.  He also argued that relevant state-owned 
enterprises should be privatized and returned to their 
original owners. 
 
17. (U) RECONSTRUCTION. On April 11, the PRT conducted 
a Babylon Ruins site visit to review tourist potential 
and restoration requirements.  The team met with lead 
site archeologist, two Babil PC members and the deputy 
head of security at Babylon. The site archeologist 
highlighted damage from CF, looters, Saddam regime, 
and decay from neglect.  She pointed out canals 
reportedly dug by CF that she claimed jeopardize the 
foundations of Babylon ancient walls and the base of 
 
BAGHDAD 00001317  004 OF 004 
 
 
the Babil Tower.  According to the PRT, her claim may 
be unfounded as the trenches are over 7' deep, appear 
older than three years, and have no military value. 
 
KHALILZAD

 


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