Search

 

Cablegate: Nas Monthly Report for May 2007

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHPE #2017/01 1592002
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 082002Z JUN 07
FM AMEMBASSY LIMA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5767
INFO RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 4726
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 7384
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JUN QUITO 1259
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF STATE AIR WING PATRICK AFB FL
RHEHOND/DIRONDCP WASHDC
RHMFIUU/COGARD INTELCOORDCEN WASHINGTON DC
RULSJGA/COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC//G-CI/G-M/G-OLE//
RUCOWCA/COMLANTAREA COGARD PORTSMOUTH VA
RUWDQAA/COMPACAREA COGARD ALAMEDA CA

UNCLAS LIMA 002017

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR INL/LP
STATE FOR WHA/PPC
ONDCP FOR LT COL RONALD GARNER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR KCRM ASEC PREL PE
SUBJECT: NAS MONTHLY REPORT FOR MAY 2007

REF: A. A) LIMA 1818
B. B) LIMA 1762
C. C) LIMA 1788
D. D) LIMA 1944

---------
SUMMARY
---------
1. (U) The key developments in May 2007:

** A total of 1,583 hectares of coca has now been
eradicated and 10,752 square meters of seedbeds have been
eliminated.

** A second eradication front in Ucayali is slated to start
in early June.

** The U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) offered to
provide ICT with USD 400,000 to develop a sustainability plan
for marketing and exporting cacao.

** President Garcia inspected the two police academies and
an eradication operation--a first for a Peruvian President.

** Peruvian university finds that coca represents around 90
percent of the exports in the Huanuco and Ayacucho regions.

** Garcia sacks Agriculture Minister Salazar, describing
the recent accord he signed with the cocaleros as "mad and
stupid."

** Graduates of NAS-supported "pre-academies" earn high
marks on police entrance exam.

** Heightened security in eradication zones pushes aviation
to exceed allocated flight time by 30 to 50 percent,
requiring more maintenance and training.

** Drug seizures at airport exceed amount for all of 2006;
55 percent of containers leaving Peru are now being scanned.

** Peruvian Congress improves the 2004 precursor chemical
law by increasing penalties and listing more chemicals.

** NAS is starting a Demand Reduction Program in Mazamari
at the behest of local leader and to support PNP base/academy.

** Peru's financial investigation unit will retain its
autonomy thanks to new law.

** Public Ministry, OAS/CICAD, and ILEA all conduct
training on money laundering.

END SUMMARY

--------------------------------------------- ---
CORAH PLANNING TO OPEN SECOND ERADICATION FRONT
--------------------------------------------- ---
2. (U) As of May 31, CORAH eradicated 1,583 hectares of
illegal coca and eliminated 10,752 square meters of seedbeds.
Starting on May 26, CORAH added an additional brigade of 40
eradicators in the Yanajanca area, for a total of five
brigades, which increased CORAH's daily eradication average
to 37 hectares per day, whereas with only four brigades, the
daily average was 25 hectares. CORAH plans to add a sixth
brigade (for a total of 240 eradicators) in early June,
pending the necessary police support.

3. (U) CORAH is planning to open a second front next month
in Ucayali, followed by Mazamari, with a smaller force of 60
eradicators to augment the eradication totals. The security
restrictions in Yanajanca prompted CORAH to look for areas
where protests would be less likely and are logistically
uncomplicated. Opening a second front will not affect the
main effort in Yanajanca. The second front will take
advantage of the existing infrastructure in Pucallpa and the
CORAH assets not being used in Yanajanca. Eradication in the
Ucayali and Mazamari areas could also be done by road, thus
freeing helicopters for other purposes. CORAH has identified
about 600 hectares of illegal coca in Ucayali that could be
eradicated in 45 days with this smaller force. CORAH will
then move to the Mazamari Police Base and start eradicating
an estimated 400 hectares over a period of 45 days. The
operations will probably begin in Mazamari in early August.
To maximize our use of personnel and equipment, NAS also
continues to look for coca that is closer to the Santa Lucia
Base and are in less conflictive areas that could be
eradicated with less police support.

4. (U) The U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) has
offered to provide the Institute for Tropical Crops (ICT)
with USD 350,000 to assist in the development of a business
plan for marketing and exporting cacao, which is part of
NAS's goal of making the Institute sustainable. The FAS
assistance is on hold pending the approval of the Ministry of
Agriculture.

--------------------------------------------- -------
GARCIA VISITS POLICE ACADEMIES AND ERADICATION SITE
--------------------------------------------- -------
5. (U) President Garcia visited the USG-supported police
academies at Mazamari and Santa Lucia and over flew an
eradication operation in Yanajanca on May 15 (Ref C). He
inspected the two police basic training academies and gave
stirring CN speeches to candidates applying for places at the
academies, their families, and local authorities. Garcia
inspected the eradication operations from an MI-17
helicopter, and delivered a strong message of support to
CORAH eradication workers and police--the first time a
Peruvian president has done so--it was a huge morale boost
for the workers. Garcia was eloquent and emphatic in calling
for an integrated fight against all aspects of
narcotrafficking, to include eradication. He ordered them to
"eradicate with all the force of the law and stop the entry
of precursor chemicals" into the zone.

--------------------------------------------- ------------
SEMINAR REVEALS SERIOUS SOCIAL COSTS OF COCA CULTIVATION
--------------------------------------------- ------------
6. (U) On May 9-10, as part of a program to reinforce public
support for CN efforts, the Institute for International
Studies of Catholic University organized a seminar of
distinguished Peruvian experts who addressed 200 attendees.
With an integrated focus on national security, democracy and
governability, the speakers presented research on the threats
to Peru by the narcotics industry in economic, social,
health, and environmental terms, with recommendations for a
public policy response. Respected economist Dennis Pereyra
from Tingo Maria made a presentation on the economic
distortions caused by coca and narco-trafficking in Huanuco
(the region recently closed down by cocalero strikes). He
concluded that coca represents around 90 percent of the
exports in the Huanuco and Ayacucho regions.

--------------------------------------
GARCIA SACKS THE AGRICULTURE MINISTER
--------------------------------------
7. (U) President Garcia finally accepted the resignation of
his Minister of Agriculture, Juan Jose Salazar, May 21 (Ref
A). Salazar had signed the Tocache accord with cocaleros
March 15 that emboldening cocaleros to step up violent
strikes and protests. A few days later, Salazar stood on the
steps of the Congress and called the GOP's anti-drug policy a
failure. Nonetheless, Garcia continued to back him in a
gesture of APRA solidarity. The President's patience finally
ran out when Salazar signed an agreement with the cocaleros
of Quillabamba (Cusco) on May 15 that committed the
government to consider withdrawal from the Vienna Convention
on Psychotropic Drugs. Garcia, who had made a strong public
commitment to anti-drug efforts that same day, did not
forgive this last act, characterizing it as "mad and stupid."

--------------------------------------------- ------
PRE-ACADEMY GRADUATES DO WELL ON PNP ENTRANCE EXAM
--------------------------------------------- ------
8. (U) On May 27, 1,700 applicants took the entrance
examination for the three NAS-supported police academies.
Among the applicants were 300 students who were evaluated and
prepared for the exam by the pre-academies in Mazamari, Santa
Lucia, and Ayacucho that are managed by a NAS-funded NGO.
Two graduates from the pre-academies qualified to take the
first two slots in the new class in Mazamari.

9. (U) In the VRAE, Palma Pampa interdiction operations have
destroyed 132 cocaine-production laboratories this month.
According to DIRANDRO statistics, to date 184
cocaine-production laboratories were destroyed; 349,255 kg of
precursor chemicals, 1,638 kg of cocaine base, and 3,502 kg
of cocaine HCl were seized. Local sources report that coca
leaf in the Huallaga and the VRAE is selling for an average
of 70 nuevo soles per arroba, a reduction of up to 15 nuevo
soles.

10. (U) An average of 600 (300 per rotation) DIRANDRO,
DIROES, and Peruvian Army (EP) personnel as well as a canine
unit have been supporting the eradication operation in
Yanajanca. In the last four weeks, 22 cocaine-production
laboratories have been destroyed in the region.

--------------------------------------------- --------------
DEMANDS ON AVIATION SUPPORT INCREASES WITH SECURITY THREAT
--------------------------------------------- --------------
11. (U) NAS Aviation continues at a high tempo due to the
increased security risk in the Yanajanca area. The UH-2s
exceeded their allocated flight time by 30 percent in May and
the NAS-funded PNP MI-17 exceeded its time by 50 percent.
This is the first time the EP and PNP Special Operations
Group have been integrated with eradication security police.
These new security forces have had to be trained on the
standard operating procedures for using helicopters. They
have received additional classes and training after the
accidental discharge of a weapon on board a helicopter (no
one was injured).

12. (U) The increase in flying hours and the recent surge of
new pilots has affected fleet readiness by requiring
additional, unscheduled maintenance. The less experienced
flight crews have caused over-torques--exceeding power
limits--causing NAS aviation to review procedures for flying
with heavy aircraft loads (ACL), air speeds, high
temperatures, and high altitude environments.

----------------------------------------
SEIZURES SKYROCKET AT AIR AND SEA PORTS
----------------------------------------
13. (SBU) This month 431 kg of cocaine was seized at the
International Airport in Lima, leading to 78 arrests. So far
this year, 2,281 kg have been seized at the airport,
surpassing the entire CY 2006 amount of 2,048 kg, which was
more than double the amount in 2005 (978 kg). NAS began
supporting airport interdiction operations in January 2006.
The seizures were made in commercial air cargo, passenger
luggage, and drugs carried on a passenger. We expect an
increase in seizures and arrests when the x-ray body scanner
is deployed in July 2007 (Ref B).

14. (U) The pace of container inspections at the Ports of
Callao and Paita has increased significantly. Starting in
January 2006, NAS introduced container scanners as well as
non-intrusive instruments (NII) such as ion-scans and
fiber-optics into the interdiction operations. Back in May
2005, an average of only three containers were inspected
every month. In May 2007, 5,015 containers were inspected
with an x-ray scanner in Callao alone and 341 received
thorough manual and NII inspections. In the Port of Paita,
2,149 containers received x-ray scanning and 58 were
subjected to intensive inspections. The total number of
containers inspected this month was 7,563 export containers
(vice three containers two years ago). Since NAS acquired
the container scanner in October 2006, an estimated 55
percent of all containers leaving Peru have been scanned.
With NAS support, Peruvian port officials are developing the
following:
-- specialized diving teams to look for drugs attached to
or hidden on the outside of a ship's hull,
-- a remote-control camera surveillance system to spot the
insertion of drugs into cargo and containers post-inspection
and to stop crews and port officials from carrying drugs on
board, and
-- no-notice roadblocks within the port to re-inspect
cargo/containers prior to being loaded on a ship.

15. (SBU) NAS is coordinating with U.S. Customs and Border
Protection (USCBP) for 18 Peruvian Customs and Counterdrug
Police to attend the International Border Interdiction
Training (IBIT) on June 18-22. The training will be
conducted at the USCBP Land Border Entry Station in McAllen,
Texas.

--------------------------------------------- ----
PERU'S CONGRESS IMPROVES CHEMICAL PRECURSORS LAW
--------------------------------------------- ----
16. (U) On May 31, the Peruvian Congress approved a law
modifying the 2004 Precursor Chemical Control Law (and the
Implementing Regulations) to include penalties and more
specificity. It increases the penalties (5-10 years in
prison) for trafficking in precursor chemicals, provides for
more chemicals to be added to the prescribed list, and
invalidates the licenses of companies found guilty of
diverting chemicals to the drug trade. It added nitric acid
and calcium hydroxide to the list of controlled chemicals, as
well as some solvents. Companies using controlled substances
are required to provide monthly input to special registries
on the amount in their chemical stocks. The database
prescribed in the 2004 Act has yet to be implemented although
steps are being taken by the Ministry of Production in
coordination with SUNAT.

--------------------------------------------- ----
NAS PLANS A DEMAND REDUCTION PROGRAM IN MAZAMARI
--------------------------------------------- ----
17. (U) NAS met several times with Andres Alvarado,
"Lieutenant Governor" of Mazamari (a non-elective, but
influential position), to discuss ways that NAS could reduce
drug abuse in the area and educate the populace about the
social/economic dangers of coca cultivation and
narcotrafficking. Alvarado has shown himself to be a
dynamic, proactive leader who is willing to tackle the hard
development problems. Two NGOs familiar with the region will
conduct a needs assessment in June to understand the
cultural, social, and economic situation in Mazamari. In
July, NAS plans to start a drug prevention program there.

18. (U) On May 10, NAS Director participated in an event
organized by a community anti-drug coalition (CAC) where
municipal officials, the police, and over 100 members of the
community pledged to coordinate efforts to reduce drug,
alcohol, and tobacco use. Local youth groups performed
dances and anti-drug skits. While the event was an
impressive show of support for combating drugs, event
organizers acknowledged that daily activities are what will
ensure long-term impact and sustainability.

--------------------------------------------- ---------
TRAINING INITIATIVES FOCUS ON MONEY LAUNDERING ISSUES
--------------------------------------------- ---------
19. (U) NAS initiated a six-part lecture series, in
cooperation with the Public Ministry, on money laundering and
organized crime. The first event was attended by over 70
lawyers, prosecutors, judges and other law enforcement
authorities. With OAS/CICAD, NAS is planning a seminar in
August on money laundering and international terrorist
financing for Southern Cone countries. Officials from
Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, and Uruguay attended a
three-day seminar conducted by the U.S. Department of
Treasury at the ILEA Regional Training Center in Lima on the
prevention of money laundering in non-bank institutions.

---------------------------------------------
CONGRESS PASSES LAW TO PRESERVE FIU AUTONOMY
---------------------------------------------
20. (U) At the end of the month, the Peruvian Congress
approved a law that incorporates the GOP Financial
Intelligence Unit (FIU) into the Superintendency of Banking
and Insurance (Ref D). Prior to this new law, the FIU was
going to be moved to the Ministry of Economy and Finance,
raising concerns that the FIU would lose its autonomy to
carry out its work. With this decision, the FIU will be in a
position to continue to pursue money laundering cases
autonomously.
STRUBLE

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

COP24: Rapid Action Urged At Climate Change Conference

Following a year of devastating climate disasters around the globe, from California to Kerala, and Tonga to Japan, the annual UN Climate Change Conference opens with the goal of finalising the implementation guidelines for the Paris Climate Change Agreement. More>>

ALSO:

New Report: Refugees In PNG Being Pushed To The Brink

Refugee Council of Australia and Amnesty International paint a stark picture of a traumatised refugee population hit hard by Australia's recent healthcare and counselling service cuts, as well as continued threats to their safety. More>>

ALSO:

Jamal Khashoggi: UK, France, Germany Join Calls For Credible Investigation

Germany, the United Kingdom and France share the grave concern expressed by others including HRVP Mogherini and UNSG Guterres, and are treating this incident with the utmost seriousness. More>>

ALSO:

MSF Not Wanted: Nauru Government Shows Continued Callousness

The Nauruan Government’s decision to ask Doctors Without Borders to immediately leave shows continued callousness towards asylum seekers desperately seeking a safe place to call home, Green MP Golriz Ghahraman said today. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC