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Cablegate: Peruvians Pragmatic On Castro's Illness

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SUBJECT: PERUVIANS PRAGMATIC ON CASTRO'S ILLNESS


1. (U) Pronouncements by Peru's leaders on the situation in
Cuba have been guarded and pragmatic.

--After lamenting Castro's deteriorating health, Peruvian
Prime Minister and long-time advisor to President Alan Garcia
told Radio Programs of Peru on 8/1 that the international
community should prepare itself to assist in a political
transition in Cuba to avoid "a civil war." Del Castillo
noted that Cubans are divided into "impassioned groups" and
that "it is necessary to form a group that can play a role"
in assuring a peaceful transition in that country.

--In a similar vein, APRA Congressman and former Foreign
Minster Luis Gonzalez Posada told Radio Programs of Peru on
8/2 that he did not expect any change in the Cuban Government
as the immediate result of Castro's illness and that it was
necessary to wait and see how the Cuban leader's health
problems would turn out.

2. (SBU) Comment: In contrast to many other figures in the
region -- some of whom lionized Castro -- the comments so far
by ruling APRA Party leaders and officals have been guarded,
pragmatic, and oriented toward the need to assure a peaceful
succession. President Garcia has yet to offer a public
opinion on Castro's situation. End Comment.
STRUBLE

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