Find a Security Clearance Job!

Intelligence

DATE=2/26/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-227347
TITLE=U-S DRUG REPORT (L)
BYLINE=RON PEMSTEIN
DATELINE=STATE DEPARTMENT
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 
INTRO:  THE UNITED STATES HAS RELEASED ITS ANNUAL LIST OF 
COUNTRIES COOPERATING IN THE FIGHT AGAINST ILLEGAL DRUGS. IN THIS
YEAR'S VERSION, 22 COUNTRIES WERE DESIGNATED BY PRESIDENT CLINTON
AS FULLY COOPERATING WITH THE UNITED STATES.  FOUR WERE 
COMPLETELY DE-CERTIFIED AND CUT OFF FROM ANY AMERICAN AID OR 
INTERNATIONAL LOANS. FOUR OTHERS WERE ALSO DE-CERTIFIED BUT THE 
PRESIDENT GAVE THEM A WAIVER FROM SANCTIONS. RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS
FROM THE STATE DEPARTMENT, THE DECISIONS REGARDING COLOMBIA AND 
MEXICO WERE THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL.
TEXT: FOR TWO YEARS, COLOMBIA HAS BEEN COMPLETELY DE-CERTIFIED BY
THE UNITED STATES AS NOT COOPERATING IN THE WAR AGAINST DRUGS. 
THE DECISION WAS BASED ON CHARGES THAT PRESIDENT ERNESTO SEMPER'S
CAMPAIGN WAS FUNDED BY DRUG MONEY. 
THE U-S CONGRESS REQUIRES THE REPORT BUT THE CHAIRMAN OF THE 
HOUSE INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS COMMITTEE, BENJAMIN GILMAN, SAYS 
COLOMBIA DESERVES A WAIVER TO HELP THE NATIONAL POLICE FIGHT 
NARCOTICS. 
                        ///GILMAN ACT/// 
         FOR THE PAST TWO YEARS THE ADMINISTRATION HAS 
         DE-CERTIFIED COLOMBIA, REFUSING TO PROVIDE A NATIONAL 
         INTEREST WAIVER, PRIMARILY BECAUSE OF ALLEGED DRUG 
         RELATED CORRUPTION AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT. 
         THAT POLICY MAY HAVE MADE THE DESK BOUND BUREAUCRATS IN 
         WASHINGTON FEEL SOMEWHAT ELATED HOWEVER THE NET EFFECT 
         ON THE GROUND HAS BEEN TO VIRTUALLY STARVE THOSE 
         COLOMBIANS DEDICATED TO FIGHTING THE DRUG TRADE. 
                          ///END ACT/// 
PRESIDENT CLINTON HAS AGREED WITH CONGRESSMAN GILMAN AND GRANTED 
COLOMBIA A NATIONAL INTEREST WAIVER THAT WILL ALLOW AMERICAN 
ECONOMIC AID AND SUPPORT FOR INTERNATIONAL LOANS TO RESUME. 
SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT SAYS THE UNITED STATES 
WANTS A NEW START WITH THE COLOMBIAN GOVERNMENT TO BE ELECTED 
LATER THIS YEAR. 
                       ///ALBRIGHT ACT/// 
         THE COLOMBIAN NATIONAL POLICE AND COUNTER-NARCOTICS 
         FORCES HAVE CONDUCTED AN EFFECTIVE ERADICATION AND 
         INTERDICTION EFFORT, BUT THE CURRENT GOVERNMENT HAS NOT 
         DEMONSTRATED FULL POLITICAL SUPPORT FOR 
         COUNTER-NARCOTICS EFFORTS.  COMING ON THE EVE OF THAT 
         COUNTRY'S CONGRESSIONAL AND PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS, THE 
         WAIVER DECISION IS INTENDED TO LAY THE GROUNDWORK FOR 
         INCREASED FUTURE COOPERATION AND TO SUPPORT THOSE IN 
         COLOMBIA WHO ARE STRIVING TO STRENGTHEN THE RULE OF LAW 
         AND BUTTRESS THEIR EMBATTLED DEMOCRACY. 
                          ///END ACT/// 
WHILE COLOMBIA WAS UPGRADED, PARAGUAY AND CAMBODIA ARE NO LONGER 
CONSIDERED FULLY COOPERATING.  THEY ALSO RECEIVED WAIVERS FROM 
THE PRESIDENT TO ALLOW AMERICAN AID TO CONTINUE FLOWING. (OPT) 
PARAGUAY WAS CRITICIZED FOR A LACK OF ACHIEVEMENT IN MEETING ITS 
COUNTER-NARCOTICS GOALS BUT THE RISK OF CUTTING OFF ASSISTANCE 
COULD NOT BE JUSTIFIED.  THE SAME EXPLANATION WAS USED TO EXPLAIN
CONTINUED AID TO CAMBODIA, WHERE POLITICAL INSTABILITY HAS 
DISRUPTED COUNTER-NARCOTICS EFFORTS.  THE CENTRAL AMERICAN 
COUNTRY OF BELIZE HAS MOVED IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION WITH A 
RECORD YEAR OF COCAINE INTERDICTION AND IS NOW DEEMED FULLY 
COOPERATING WITH THE UNITED STATES. (END OPT) 
ANOTHER CONTROVERSIAL CASE IS MEXICO.  PRESIDENT CLINTON HAS 
AGAIN CERTIFIED MEXICO AS FULLY COOPERATING BUT THAT DOES NOT 
MEET THE APPROVAL OF GEORGIA SENATOR PAUL COVERDELL. 
                       ///COVERDELL ACT/// 
         WE HAVE SOME COOPERATION AROUND THE MEETING TABLE BUT 
         LITTLE REAL PROGRESS ON THE GROUND AND IN THE FIELD 
         WHERE IT MATTERS.  BY ALL OF THESE MEASURES, MEXICO DOES
         NOT MEET THE STATUTORY REQUIREMENT FOR FULL COOPERATION 
         THAT WOULD JUSTIFY FULL CERTIFICATION AND I WILL OPPOSE 
         THE ADMINISTRATION'S DECISION TO FULLY CERTIFY MEXICO. 
                          ///END ACT/// 
ONLY BURMA, NIGERIA, AFGHANISTAN AND IRAN HAVE AGAIN BEEN 
COMPLETELY DE-CERTIFIED.  HOWEVER, SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT 
SAYS IRAN MAY JUSTIFY ANOTHER LOOK. 
                       ///ALBRIGHT ACT/// 
         IN IRAN, HOWEVER, THE TREND IS ENCOURAGING. 
         COUNTER-NARCOTICS EFFORTS ARE SHOWING VIGOR AND THE 
         THREAT POSED BY TRANS-SHIPMENT OF DRUGS IS BEING TAKEN 
         MORE SERIOUSLY. ALTHOUGH WE ARE UNABLE TO CERTIFY NOW 
         BECAUSE WE LACK HARD DATA TO VERIFY THE EXTENT OF 
         REPORTED PROGRESS, WE ARE SEEKING MORE INFORMATION AND 
         WILL RESPOND APPROPRIATELY TO REAL IMPROVEMENTS. 
                          ///END ACT/// 
LAST NOVEMBER, PRESIDENT CLINTON REMOVED SYRIA AND LEBANON FROM 
CONSIDERATION IN THE DRUG EVALUATION SAYING THE BEKAA VALLEY IS 
NO LONGER A MAJOR PRODUCER OF ILLEGAL DRUGS. (SIGNED)
NEB/RP/KL
26-Feb-98 4:30 PM EST (2130 UTC)
NNNN
Source: Voice of America
.



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list