Search

 

Cablegate: Codel Reid's Visit to Foz Do Iguacu, Brazil

VZCZCXRO9762
PP RUEHRG
DE RUEHSO #0966/01 3460923
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 120923Z DEC 07
FM AMCONSUL SAO PAULO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7739
INFO RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 8872
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 2979
RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 3219
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0629
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 2535
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ 3615
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO 2238
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 1624
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO 0832
RUEHGT/AMEMBASSY GUATEMALA CITY 0107
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 8484
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 3916
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RHMFISS/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC 2984
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 SAO PAULO 000966

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/FO, WHA/BSC, WHA/PDA, AND H
STATE PASS USTR FOR KATE DUCKWORTH
NSC FOR TOMASULO
TREASURY FOR JHOEK
USDOC FOR 4332/ITA/MAC/WH/OLAC
USDOC ALSO FOR 3134/USFCS/OIO
SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD
USAID FOR LAC/AA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINR PTER KCRM OPRC BR
SUBJECT: CODEL REID'S VISIT TO FOZ DO IGUACU, BRAZIL

REF: (A) ASUNCION 989; (B) ASUNCION 986

-------
SUMMARY
-------

1. (U) During a November 27-28 visit to Foz do Iguacu, Brazil,
Codel Reid met with the Ambassador and Embassy Brasilia and ConGen
Sao Paulo officers, visited Federal Police headquarters and an
operating center of the Maritime Federal Police, and toured Itaipu
Dam. The delegation dined with three influential Brazilian Senators
as well as the Mayor of Foz and several members of his Cabinet.
This successful visit afforded the Senators an opportunity to learn
about the tri-border area (TBA - Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina) from
the Brazilian side, and to strengthen contacts and ties with
national and local political leaders. End Summary.

2. (U) Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), accompanied by Senators Byron
Dorgan (D-ND), Kent Conrad (D-ND), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Jeff Bingaman
(D-NM), Thad Cochran (R-MS), and Robert Menendez (D-NJ), as well as
six staff members, arrived in Foz do Iguacu from Asuncion, Paraguay
the morning of November 27. They were greeted by Paulo MacDonald
Ghisi, Mayor of Foz and Consul General (CG) White. The entire
delegation, which was followed by local media throughout the day,
first paid a visit to the world-famous Iguacu Falls national park,
followed by a briefing conducted over lunch by Ambassador and
Embassy and ConGen staff.

-------------------------
VISIT WITH FEDERAL POLICE
-------------------------

3. (U) At the headquarters of the Federal Police (DPF), DPF
Director Jose Carlos Calazane presented a video highlighting DPF's
efforts against organized crime, drug trafficking, illegal
immigration and contraband (e.g., marijuana, firearms, electronics,
and clothing). Asked by one Senator why the U.S. should be
concerned with the TBA when we have our own problems along the
U.S.-Mexican border, the Director was quick to respond that illegal
immigration and drug trafficking take various indirect routes before
reaching a final destination, possibly the U.S., suggesting that the
focus of interdiction efforts should be expanded. The Director
addressed mostly smuggling issues as opposed to international
terrorism concerns, but he did touch upon the Joint Intelligence
Center and the question of cooperation with Argentina and Paraguay,
indicating, without elaborating, that law enforcement entities
representing the three countries do have a working relationship.

4. (U) At the Federal Police Maritime facility (DEPOM) located on
Lake Itaipu, the delegation received an additional briefing
regarding specific interdiction operations along the waterways with
Paraguay and were shown a vast array of confiscated items taken from
smugglers trying to cross the border via boat. The DPF agent in
charge stated that the majority of incidents involving smugglers end
up in conflict, with shots fired. Advanced radar tracking
capabilities as well as high-tech communications were also
highlighted, but manpower remains an issue: The facility could
accommodate up to 30 DPF agents, but only 12 were assigned there.

5. (U) Finally, the Senators were taken on a brief windshield tour
of Itaipu Dam, now the world's second-largest hydro-electric
facility (after the Three Gorges Dam in China), a bi-national
project jointly conceived and operated by the Governments of Brazil
and Paraguay. Itaipu generates approximately 95 percent of
Paraguay's electricity and between 20 and 25 percent of Brazil's.


SAO PAULO 00000966 002 OF 003


6. (U) The Senators' spouses separately visited Fundacao Nosso Lar,
a shelter for victims of human trafficking established with USAID
assistance and operated by the municipality, and participated in a
march organized by the Mayor and Mrs. MacDonald to call for more
research, prevention, and treatment of breast cancer.

------------------
SENATORS AND MAYOR
------------------

7. (U) The CODEL hosted a dinner for three Brazilian Senators who
flew from Brasilia for the occasion - Heraclito Fortes (Democratic
Party (DEM) from Piaui), Chairman of the Foreign Relations and
National Defense Committee; Joao Tenorio (Brazilian Social Democracy
Party (PSDB) from Alagoas), a sugar cane grower who is on the
Permanent Subcommittee on Biofuels; and Adelmir Santana (DEM from
the Federal District), a successful businessman who serves on the
Economic Affairs Committee. Also present were Mayor MacDonald and
the Municipal Secretary of International Affairs, Sergio Lobato, and
of Government, Carlos Fernandes Duso, and the Technical Director of
Itaipu Dam, Antonio Otelo Cardoso.

8. (U) In his informal welcoming remarks, the Mayor thanked the
U.S. Senators for visiting his city and the three Brazilian Senators
for helping him draw attention to wonders of Foz do Iguacu. In an
interesting turn, Mayor MacDonald launched into criticism that the
United States is devoting so much attention to China instead of
taking greater advantage of the trade opportunities Brazil offers.
He contrasted Brazil's commitment to democracy with China's
totalitarian system and accompanying human rights violations. The
Mayor was eager to demonstrate that Foz and the TBA are not all
about terrorism, and called for more partnerships between the USG
and the GoB, as well as state and local governments, to help the
region achieve its economic potential. Senator Fortes spoke briefly
about his positive experience with inter-parliamentary engagement
with his U.S. counterparts and stressed the benefits and rewards of
such dialogue.

--------------
MEDIA COVERAGE
--------------

9. (U) Media coverage of CODEL Reid included extensive local
coverage of the group's activities in Foz but also gained some
limited play in the national media. Most national media comments
cited the brevity of their time in Brazil within the overall context
of their five-nation visit. The local Foz do Iguacu papers, A
Gazeta do Iguacu and Jornal do Iguacu, provided favorable coverage
of the CODEL in a national security context. The Senators' spouses
(along with the Ambassador's and CG's wives) were pictured on the
front page of the November 28 Gazeta do Iguacu participating in the
breast cancer awareness march. Several Brazilian on-line sites
picked up the coverage of the local papers and repeated the national
security themes echoed in the previous days reporting. All in all,
media coverage was positive.

-------
COMMENT
-------

10. (U) The visit to Foz was informative and useful in improving
our relations in this tri-border region. It enabled the Senators to
demonstrate the U.S. interest in South America and the TBA, and to
exchange views with national and local political figures. The
presentations by the Federal Police were especially useful in
highlighting the law enforcement challenges posed by the proximity

SAO PAULO 00000966 003 OF 003


of other countries. End Comment.

11. (U) This cable was cleared by CODEL Reid following the
delegation's departure, and approved by Ambassador Sobel.

WHITE

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

New IPCC Report: ‘Unprecedented Changes’ Needed To Limit Global Warming

Limiting global warming to 1.5°C will require “far-reaching and unprecedented changes,” such as ditching coal for electricity to slash carbon emissions, says a special report that finds some of the actions needed are already under way, but the world must move faster… 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:

Sulawesi Quake, Tsunami: Aid Response Begins

Oxfam and its local partners are standing by to deploy emergency staff and resources to the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, as an estimated 1.5 million people are thought to be affected by the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit on Friday. More>>

ALSO:

Decriminalising Same-Sex Relationships: UN Rights Chief Applauds Indian Decision

“This is a great day for India and for all those who believe in the universality of human rights," Bachelet said. "With this landmark decision, the Indian Supreme Court has taken a big step forward for freedom and equality...” More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC