08ASTANA2450, KAZAKHSTAN: PRESIDENTIAL ADMINISTRATION HEAD

WikiLeaks Link

To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.
Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #08ASTANA2450.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08ASTANA2450 2008-12-11 11:24 2011-08-30 01:44 SECRET Embassy Astana

VZCZCXRO3674
OO RUEHBI RUEHCI RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHLH RUEHNP RUEHPW RUEHROV
DE RUEHTA #2450/01 3461124
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
O 111124Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY ASTANA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4090
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE 0919
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUCNCLS/SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA COLLECTIVE
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 0321
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 1026
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFAAA/DIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC 0486
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC 0395
RHMFISS/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 2419
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2087

S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 03 ASTANA 002450 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR SCA/CEN, DRL/IRF, ISN 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/11/2033 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM KCRM KDEM KIRF KNNP KZ
SUBJECT: KAZAKHSTAN:  PRESIDENTIAL ADMINISTRATION HEAD 
RAISES CONCERNS ABOUT RAKHAT ALIYEV 
 
REF: ASTANA 2445 
 
Classified By: Ambassador Richard Hoagland, Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d) 
 
1. (S) SUMMARY:  President Administration head Aslan Musin 
called in the Ambassador on December 10 to discuss Rakhat 
Aliyev, expressing concerns about international press 
reporting on the Aliyev case and explaining he had 
information that Aliyev might be seeking American citizenship 
or U.S. political asylum.  The Ambassador said he had no 
knowledge of any such citizenship or asylum claim, and 
reassured Musin that the U.S. government does not support 
Aliyev and has no contact with him.  Musin expressed 
satisfaction with the Ambassador's response, but emphasized 
that Aliyev poses a big political problem for the government: 
 as long as he remains at large, the government has failed to 
bring justice to his victims.  Musin said Kazakhstan must do 
more to try to get him extradited and indicated he would 
welcome more cooperation with the United States on this 
issue.  The Ambassador raised U.S. concerns about the pending 
religion law, suggesting that President Nazarbayev consider 
sending it to the Constitutional Council for review.  Musin 
said the Constitutional Council option remains on the table. 
He promised Kazakhstan would not damage its international 
reputation with "one signature" and that the "optimal course 
of action" would be found.  Presidential Foreign Policy 
Advisor Yerzhan Kazykhanov, who also attended the meeting, 
told the Ambassador that the Cooperative Threat Reduction 
(CTR) agreement would be submitted to Parliament for 
ratification within days.  END SUMMARY. 
 
ALIYEV: CONCERNS ABOUT U.S. CITIZENSHIP/ASLYUM CLAIMS 
 
2. (S) Presidential Administration head Aslan Musin called in 
the Ambassador on December 10 to discuss President 
Nazarbayev's former son-in-law Rakhat Aliyev.  Musin said he 
understood the Ambassador and Kazakhstani Ambassador to the 
United States Yerlan Idrisov had discussed Aliyev during a 
December 5 meeting in Washington (reftel).  The Aliyev case, 
Musin noted, is receiving a lot of attention in the 
international press, including in a December 3 "Washington 
Times" article.  He claimed that he was not questioning 
anyone's right, including Aliyev's, to express his point of 
view, or a newspaper's right to publish articles about Aliyev 
-- however, "government officials have to bear responsibility 
for their policies."  Patting an inch-thick file he'd brought 
into the meeting, Musin asked the Ambassador whether the 
United States has sufficient information about the crimes 
Aliyev committed and said he had been informed that Aliyev, 
through his attorneys, "is actively working with government 
structures in the United States" to try to get U.S. 
citizenship or political asylum. 
 
3. (S) The Ambassador responded that a frank and open 
dialogue is the key to ensuring that Aliyev is not an 
irritant in the bilateral relationship.  The United States, 
he stressed, considers the Aliyev case to be an internal 
Kazakhstani issue.  The U.S. government has never supported 
Aliyev and has no plans to do so.  No one from any agency of 
the U.S. government is in touch with Aliyev.  The Ambassador 
said he had heard nothing from anyone in or out of the U.S. 
government Aliyev might be seeking U.S. citizenship or 
political asylum.   If the Kazakhstani government has 
information on Aliyev's alleged crimes, he would be happy to 
pass this information to Washington, the Ambassador added. 
(COMMENT:  During the Ambassador's response, Musin was called 
out of the room to take a call allegedly from President 
Nazarbayev.  Although the call might have been coincidental, 
it struck us as a bit of theater to emphasize "interest at 
the highest level."  END COMMENT.) 
 
4. (S) Musin thanked the Ambassador, stressing that he was 
"very satisfied" with the response.  He noted that this was 
the first time he had discussed Aliyev with the Ambassador 
and claimed the initiative to do so was his own.  Musin said 
he had studied materials from the Aliyev case and the court 
decisions, and had spoken to Aliyev's victims -- "some of 
 
ASTANA 00002450  002 OF 003 
 
 
them just ordinary citizens" -- and was "shocked" that "such 
a person" could have held a high-ranking government position. 
  "When I talked to the father of one of the missing bankers" 
-- i.e., one of the two bankers Aliyev was convicted in 
absentia of kidnapping and who are presumed dead -- "he said 
he doesn't trust anyone anymore because so
 much time has 
passed and he doesn't know his son's fate," Musin related. 
"It's beyond any normal comprehension that Aliyev has been 
tried and convicted and yet he is at liberty in Vienna, 
traveling around the world, and publishing his materials," 
Musin continued. "How can we explain this to the victims?," 
he asked.  According to Musin, the most important issue is 
not Aliyev's revelations of private government matters or 
state secrets, but rather the trust of common citizens in 
their government.  The government can not remain indifferent 
to what Aliyev is doing, including his public relations 
campaign, Musin argued.  Government officials, procurators, 
and judges need to work more actively to get Aliyev 
extradited to Kazakhstan.  Kazakhstan would welcome more 
cooperation with the United States on this issue, Musin 
concluded. 
 
5.  (C) Later in the day, the Ambassador attended President 
Nazarbayev's annual meeting with the diplomatic corps.  At 
the end of the event, the President was standing aside with 
his most senior advisers, including Musin, and asked for a 
word with the Ambassador.  After small talk, including praise 
for the election of Barak Obama, the President said, 
gesturing toward Musin, "He told me about your meeting. 
Perhaps you and I should talk soon."  The Ambassador 
responded he would be delighted to meet with him at his 
earliest convenience. 
 
6.  (S) COMMENT:  As we have reported separately, the Aliyev 
issue has already impacted sensitive elements of the 
bilateral relationship.  Two points:  1) it is not 
inconceivable that Kazakhstan is receiving disinformation 
seeking to harm the bilateral relationship that Aliyev is 
negotiating secretly with the United States for political 
asylum.  2) We must remain adamant that Aliyev is a 
Kazakhstani affair and we have no dog in that fight, even 
though Nazarbayev seems to think we could help if we wanted 
to.  END COMMENT. 
 
RELIGION LAW:  "OPTIMAL COURSE OF ACTION" PROMISED 
 
7. (C) The Ambassador raised the pending religion 
legislation, explaining that Washington and European capitals 
are concerned it would limit the rights of smaller religious 
groups.  He suggested that President Nazarbayev consider 
submitting the bill parliament has passed to the 
Constitutional Council for review.   Musin responded that the 
Kazakhstani government understands our concerns.  He noted 
that Nazarbayev has 30 days to take action on legislation 
following parliamentary approval.  (NOTE:  Since parliament 
passed the religion law on November 26, this means that 
Nazarbayev must act by December 26.  END NOTE.)  Presidential 
Administration lawyers, Musin explained, are carefully 
reviewing the religion law and comments about it made by 
NGOs, foreign governments, and international organizations. 
Various options remain on the table, including Constitutional 
Council review.   The Presidential Administration has 
reasonable people who are not going to take precipitous 
action.  Kazakhstan, Musin argued, has built up its 
international reputation over its 17 years of independence, 
and is not going to damage that reputation "through one 
signature."  In the end, the government will come up with the 
"optimal course of action," he reassured the Ambassador. 
 
CTR AGREEMENT:  SUBMISSION TO PARLIAMENT WITHIN DAYS 
 
8. (SBU) The Ambassador asked Presidential Foreign Policy 
Advisor Yerzhan Kazykhanov, who was also in the meeting, 
about the status of ratification of the Cooperative Threat 
Reduction (CTR) agreement.  Kazykhanov said that the 
ratification package is the Cabinet of Ministers, awaiting 
final approval.  He expected it would be submitted to 
 
ASTANA 00002450  003 OF 003 
 
 
Parliament within days. 
HOAGLA ND

Wikileaks

Advertisements
Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: