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Cablegate: Chilean Presidential Advisor: Zelaya's Visit "Very

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DE RUEHSG #0782 2262105
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 142105Z AUG 09
FM AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5366
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C O N F I D E N T I A L SANTIAGO 000782

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/14/2010
TAGS: PREL KDEM HO VE BR CI
SUBJECT: CHILEAN PRESIDENTIAL ADVISOR: ZELAYA'S VISIT "VERY
PRODUCTIVE"

Classified By: ADCM Laurie Weitzenkorn for Reasons 1.4 (b/d)

1. (C) Bachelet Presidential Advisor Marcos Robledo told the
Ambassador that Manuel Zelaya's August 13 visit to Santiago
was "very productive." According to Robledo, President
Bachelet and several members of the Chilean Congress
emphasized the Obama Administration's desire to play a
constructive role in Honduras. In particular, they made the
point that Zelaya should not make it more difficult for the
Unites States to have a positive impact. They urged Zelaya
to understand U.S. needs and underscored the difficulty
caused by Zelaya's association with Venezuelan President Hugo
Chavez.

2. (C) Robledo noted that Brazil delivered a similar message
to Zelaya, but that Chile pressed even harder.

3. (C) Zelaya apparently listened. After his meeting with
President Bachelet he publicly stated that Chavez did not
speak for him. In his public statement, he also said that
U.S. actions in response to the coup have been "soft and
half-hearted" and that he hoped the United States will take
stronger measures in the upcoming days.

4. (C) During his meeting with President Bachelet, Zelaya
outlined his concerns about losing valuable time. He stated
the need to do something soon, and said that he will try to
see Secretary Clinton in the next two weeks.

5. (C) Zelaya's visit was quickly arranged following his trip
to Brazil, and Bachelet had to make last minute adjustments
to her schedule to accommodate his brief appearance. The
visit came the day after Chile withdrew the diplomatic status
of the Honduran Ambassador to Chile. The GOC now recognizes
Zelaya's representative in Washington, Eduardo Enrique Reina,
as the Honduran Ambassador to Chile. Rolando Drago, head of
protocol at the Foreign Ministry, told the Ambassador on
August 11 that Chile had received the request from Zelaya to
revoke the former Ambassador's status, but at the time Chile
had not decided how to proceed. (Comment: Since Chile acted
on Zelaya's request on August 12, the same day Chilean
officials learned of his visit, we suspect that the trip
helped precipitate a decision to withdraw the ambassador's
diplomatic status.)
SIMONS

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