Cablegate: Mfa Plans Foreign Policy Dialogue

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




E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (SBU) Summary: FM Carrion has announced his intention to
develop a foreign policy strategy for 2005-2020. He intends
to build support for the strategy through a series of topical
seminars over the coming year. End Summary.

2. (SBU) PolChief and PolOff met on November 8 with
Ambassador Javier Ponce, President of the Ecuadorian
Diplomatic Association, to discuss on Carrion's foreign
policy strategy for 2005-2020. Ponce, a career diplomat,
expressed concern over damage done to Ecuador's foreign
policy under the Gutierrez government, and confirmed that
Carrion had asked him to develop a document charting
Ecuadorian foreign policy through 2020. Ponce said that he
and FM Carrion are friends, having served under him in
Madrid. Ponce said he and MOD Oswaldo Jarrin worked together
at the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO),
and that the MFA's document would be coordinated closely with
Jarrin's announced white paper on security issues.

3. (SBU) Ponce's earlier efforts, as head of the MFA's AFSA
equivalent, included a project to encourage greater analysis
in the MFA. He did so by incorporating in the MFA's officer
evaluation process, a requirement for a paper foreign policy
topics, suggesting specific attention to U.S.-Ecuador
Relations, National Security, and Colombia-Ecuador Relations.
The program was a great success, according to Ponce, with 30
of the first 100 papers submitted to academic journals in
Spain and Ecuador.

4. (SBU) Ponce is now planning to inform the 2020 strategy
drafting process, which will culminate in a draft strategic
document, by convoking a series of seminars on topics along
similar lines, and has requested USG assistance in securing
U.S. experts on Latin America to participate in the seminar
on U.S.-Ecuador relations in early January. The seminars
will include a variety of sectors and perspectives,
encouraging open dialogue between them.

5. (SBU) Comment: Ponce told us that the FM's "ulterior
motive" for this series of seminars is to encourage social
and political dialogue on foreign policy issues, and build
consensual support for a long-term vision of Ecuador's
external goals. We find the effort refreshing in the current
difficult political situation, and will consider ways to
support it.

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