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Cablegate: Ambassador Hosts Joint Press Conference with Relative Of

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSG #0093 0301943
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 301943Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2713
INFO RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 1934
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 0774
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 1655
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JAN LIMA 5431
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 1798
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS SANTIAGO 000093

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM PGOV KPAO PREL CI
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR HOSTS JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE WITH RELATIVE OF
DISAPPEARED U.S. CITIZEN BORIS WEISFEILER

1. Summary: Ambassador Paul Simons held a joint conference at the
Embassy on January 29 with Olga Weisfeiler, sister of Boris
Weisfeiler, the U.S. citizen who disappeared in southern Chile in
1985 during the military regime. Chilean dailies and the Associated
Press highlighted Ms. Weisfeiler's "disappointment" with the
performance of the judge heading the investigation. The Ambassador
noted that resolution of this case remains a top USG priority and
the Embassy will continue to offer assistance in the investigation
and would follow up on the recent round of meetings with government
officials. End Summary.

2. Several foreign on-line news services, such as the
Washingtonpost.com and Timesunion.com, picked up the Associated
Press story headlined, "Woman Seeks Answers on Brother's Fate"

3. "Olga Weisfeiler, the sister of an American mathematician who
vanished in Chile, said on Tuesday she is frustrated by stalled
efforts to find out what happened to him under the former military
dictatorship.... In a joint news conference with U.S. Ambassador
Paul Simons, 'My faith is fading,' said Weisfeiler.... She
complained that the most recent judge in the case, Jorge Zepeda,
'has not followed up on repeated offers of help from the U.S.
Embassy including FBI assistance in the investigations and has kept
her attorney from seeing some documents.... Simons said finding out
what happened to Weisfeiler remains a 'high priority' for the U.S.
government."

4. Government-owned, editorially independent (circ. 4,200) "La
Nacion" ran an article titled: "Weisfeiler's sister makes harsh
attack on Judge Zepeda" The sub-headline read: "Accompanied by the
U.S. Ambassador, Olga Weisfeiler expressed her disappointment with
Chilean justice."

5. "In a joint press conference with U.S. Ambassador Paul Simons
yesterday, Olga Weisfeiler, sister of the Russian-American
mathematician Boris Weisfeiler... harshly criticized Judge Zepeda's
performance and even accused him of refusing a U.S. Embassy offer of
FBI cooperation and of denying her attorney access to information in
the process.... Olga Weisfeilier also called into question whether
the judge had duly used documents declassified by the U.S.
Department of State regarding this case. 'I have waited long
enough. I am very disappointed that we have not seen progress, when
we have had so many chances to do so,' said Ms. Weisfeiler."

6. In its characteristic popular and irreverent language, tabloid
"La Cuarta" (circ. 142,000) ran the headline, "Gringa looks for her
brother who vanished 23 years ago" next to a photograph of Olga
Weisfeiler with U.S. Ambassador Paul Simons in a joint news
conference at the U.S. Embassy.

7. "In one of his first activities in Jaguarland (note: Chilean's
often refer to themselves as the economic 'jaguars' of the region)
new gringo Ambassador Paul Simons lent Olga Weisfeiler a hand as she
expressed her frustration with not being able to find her brother
Boris, who disappeared in Chile 23 years ago... and with Judge
Zepeda's performance in the case. Her attorney said, 'The available
information points to a kidnapping, but the witnesses have not been
identified.... Too much time has been lost in the investigation.'"

8. English on-line publication "The Santiago Times" reported, "Case
of U.S. citizen missing in Chile has stalled"

"At a Tuesday press conference, Olga Weisfeiler expressed
frustration over the lack of new information concerning the
disappearance of her brother, Boris Weisfeiler. In the presence of
newly arrived U.S. Ambassador Paul Simons, Olga said the (local)
authorities have not done enough to investigate the case's most
important leads. 'Much time has passed and, nevertheless, the three
most important leads - the role of Chile's military in Boris'
disappearance, of Colonia Dignidad, and Mximo Pacheco's
relationship with the informant 'Daniel' have not been investigated
in depth,' Olga told reporters....

SIMONS

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