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Cablegate: Terrorist Finance: Usg Concern Over Illicit Cash

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHPO #0136 0792008
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 202008Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY PARAMARIBO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9214
INFO RUCNCOM/EC CARICOM COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS PARAMARIBO 000136

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

FOR WHA/CAR MATTHEW BUFFINGTON AND LAURA LUFTIG, INR ROBERT
CARHART, EB/ESC/TFS KATHERINE LEAHY, EB/ESC/TFS LEANNE
CANNON, S/CT PATTY HILL, S/CT FINANCE GALER AND NOVIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EFIN ETTC KTFN LE PREL PTER
SUBJECT: TERRORIST FINANCE: USG CONCERN OVER ILLICIT CASH
COURIERS

REF: STATE 16120

1. (U) Per reftel, Pol/EconOff raised USG concern over
illicit cash couriers with GOS Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Americas Division Head, Terence Craig. Craig agreed that
cash smuggling is a serious problem, and said his government
enforces money laundering laws whenever possible. He
acknowledged that cash couriers are used by organized crime,
drug traffickers, tax evaders, terrorist financiers, and
other criminals. He said that his government understands
that cash smuggling undermines stability, economic growth,
and the rule of law. Suriname recognizes that legal and
operational frameworks must be established and implemented to
interrupt illicit currency transiting at its borders. He
added that the GOS is increasing its capacity to enforce
these principles and expects to expand law enforcement in the
future.

2. (U) In early 2000, then-Surinamese President Wijdenbosch
established an anti-terrorism commission out of several
government agencies with responsibility for police, security,
military and intelligence functions with relation to
terrorism. Since that time Suriname has ratified six UN
anti-terrorism instruments, although not Article 18(reftel
para 10) related to terrorist financing. Instead Suriname
has implemented legislation to comply with obligations under
anti-terrorism instruments. Examples include the Money
Laundering Act, the Report of Unusual Transactions Act, and
the Seizure and Confiscation Act.

3. (SBU) COMMENT: While Craig's reassurances strike the
right tone, and we agree that GOS intentions are sincere in
this matter, follow-through on demarche obligations and
multilateral commitments tends to be weak. This is due in
part to a tendency by the GOS to remain neutral on
international issues, in part due to a genuine lack of
capacity, and in part due to uneven political will. That
said, Minister of Justice and Police, Chandrikapersad
Santokhi, is working to apply rule of law and has proved to
be a valued partner collaborating on issues of mutual
concern. Undeniably, illicit cash couriers present a serious
problem for the United States and Suriname. We will continue
to raise these issues with GOS. END COMMENT


SCHREIBER HUGHES

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