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Cablegate: Argentina: No Time Wasted in Naming New Vice

VZCZCXYZ0008
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBU #0329 0741524
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 141524Z MAR 08
FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0469
INFO RUCNMER/MERCOSUR COLLECTIVE
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 1412

UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 000329

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV AR
SUBJECT: ARGENTINA: NO TIME WASTED IN NAMING NEW VICE
FOREIGN MINISTER

REF: BUENOS AIRES 320

1. (SBU) The Foreign Ministry, according to stories just
coming out in the local press, has moved quickly to replace
outgoing Vice FM Roberto Garcia-Moritan, who offered his
resignation on March 11 (reftel). On March 13, Foreign
Minister Taiana reportedly offered the VFM position to
current Argentine Ambassador to Italy, Victorio Taccetti.
Early press reports had indicated that Garcia-Moritan would
replace Taccetti in Rome, but that is unconfirmed. Embassy
spoke with Italian Political Counselor here in Buenos Aires,
who said his Ambassador had spoken to Taccetti and that
Taccetti had confirmed he had accepted the position.

2. (SBU) Per reftel, Garcia-Moritan, 60, claims he resigned
the VFM position to attend to "personal matters" after almost
40 years in the Argentina's foreign service. The local press
portrayed his departure as the consequence of a long string
of missteps by the MFA. Garcia-Moritan is not directly
implicated in any of the missteps, but it is conjectured that
he is a convenient fall-guy.

3. (SBU) Bio information in the local press notes that
Victorio Taccetti, 65, is a lawyer and career diplomat and a
long-time Peronist who worked as an advisor on Nestor
Kirchner's 2003 presidential campaign. He has held the rank
of Ambassador since 1992, and has served in Argentine
diplomatic and consular missions in Houston, New York,
Washington and Mexico, where he was Ambassador from
1994-1999. He has also served as Subsecretary for Latin
America and Subsecretary for International Coordination and
Cooperation. Taccetti has studied in Florence, Italy, and
has a Master's in Political Science from the University of
Houston. A journalist told emboff that Taccetti is known
among career diplomats to be "pro-Brazilian" rather than
"nationalist" in foreign policy orientation.
WAYNE

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