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Cablegate: Media Reaction On Drug Trafficking, July 18, 2003

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS TEGUCIGALPA 001710

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/PDA (JGREENBLATT); WHA/CEN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP PREL KPAO PGOV IZ HO
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION ON DRUG TRAFFICKING, JULY 18, 2003


1. Editorial in Tegucigalpa-based moderate daily "El Heraldo" on
7/18 entitled "Tough fight against narco trafficking".
"Undoubtedly, drug trafficking in Honduras is considerable, as
shown by the recent drug seizures that have evidenced the
determination of police authorities against this criminal
activity that is destroying the lives of millions of young people
around the world."

"The seizure of more than 2 tons of drugs in the Bay Islands this
week was a hard hit against drug trafficking, and according to
the Minister of Security Oscar Alvarez, it demonstrates the
determination of the Honduran authorities to continue in the
fight against narco trafficking."

"For that reason, we encourage the police, prosecutors and judges
to keep their upfront fight against narco traffickers, and don't
give in to their power and financial resources."

2. Article in Tegucigalpa-based liberal daily "La Tribuna" on
7/18 entitled "80 prominent people are being investigated for
drug trafficking". "Roy Medina, the Honduran General Attorney
affirmed that more than 100 tons of drugs come through Honduras
destined to the US, according to the information provided by US
anti-drug agencies to the US Embassy in Honduras."

"Medina stated that it's evident that a large amount of drugs go
through Honduras even though it's impossible to determine exactly
how much, but he acknowledged that US Ambassador Larry Palmer is
well informed about this issue."

"Medina said, `we are determined to stop drug trafficking and
that's why we have strengthened our investigation work. Among
those being investigated, there are 80 renowned narcos that will
be brought to justice when our investigation is through'."

"About the seizure of 2,000 kilos of cocaine in Roatan after a
serious warning from the US Embassy, Medina noted, `I believe
it's just a coincidence, it isn't a direct response for what the
US Ambassador has recently said'."


Palmer

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