Cablegate: Santiago Sept. 23 Media Report
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TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0075
INFO RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
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RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
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TAGS: ECON KMDR KPAO PGOV PREL SNAR EFIN CI
SUBJECT: Santiago Sept. 23 Media Report
1. The rape of a 14-year old girl and the inability of her
parents to find the morning-after pill in local pharmacies prompted
the government to open an investigation. Drug stores claim they
have no stock of the product, but the state Central Distribution
Center says there are 14,000 doses of the pill in stock readily
available (Conservative, independent La Tercera, 9/23).
2. Headline: "Hillary Clinton's praise marks the beginning of
Bachelet's agenda in New York"
President Bachelet's first activity in New York was to launch the
Inter-American Social Protection Network. "It is always a pleasure
to be with President Bachelet in any place. Chile is a clear
example of what we want to achieve in social protection," said
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the event (Financial Diario
3. Headline: "(Hillary) Clinton highlights Bachelet's social
programs in New York". At the launching of the Inter-American
Social Protection Network, Secretary Clinton said that Chile "is a
clear example of what we want to achieve in social programs."
Later, at the annual event of the Clinton Global Initiative, Bill
Clinton praised Chile's policies in the face of the global crisis
(La Tercera, 9/23).
4. In the morning, before President Bachelet met with Bill Clinton
yesterday, Secretary Hillary Clinton praised the Chilean president.
"President Bachelet's leadership on social and economic development
has helped make Chile an example of how democracy can provide
sustainable and important benefits," said Secretary Clinton at the
launching of the Inter-American Social Network (Government-owned La
5. Secretary Hillary Clinton praised Bachelet: "Elections don't
make a democracy.... Leaders must ensure that democracy is
honored," said the Secretary (El Mercurio, 9/23).
6. President Bachelet invited Chile's Communist Party Secretary
General Guillermo Teillier to join her delegation to the U.N.
General Assembly. Yesterday Teillier admitted this was the first
time he had visited the United States (La Tercera, 9/23).
7. The Micheletti government evicted the demonstrators that had
gathered outside the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa after Zelaya
sought refuge on Monday. The embassy's water and electricity were
shut off as soldiers were posted on the roofs of the surrounding
the diplomatic mission. Micheletti then said he would "respect the
embassy" if Brazil turned in Zelaya or gave him asylum in Brazil.
President Lula da Silva responded saying that he would not tolerate
an attack on the embassy and asked for an urgent meeting of the
U.N. Security Council. Following that, Micheletti said he would
respect the embassy and that Zelaya could stay "ten years if he
wanted," in the embassy, but added that "Zelaya would never be
president again." At the same time, the Micheletti government
issued a statement saying that it was willing to talk to Zelaya "if
and when he explicitly agreed to the November 29 election." Rafael
Alegria, a close Zelaya advisor, told this daily that the embassy
is "being threatened and surrounded by soldiers with their M16s in
a kind of blackmail." Zelaya explained that he had asked Brazil
"for protection and not for political asylum. We have asked to
negotiate and were met with repression" (La Tercera 9/23).
8. In private, the Obama administration believes that Zelaya's
return to Honduras introduces an element of internal pressure that
could contribute to resolve the crisis in Honduras. Washington is
alleviated, because Latin American governments were asking the
United States to take a more active role in helping Zelaya return
to his country. For now the United States has coordinated its
stance with the OAS in the sense that it will not recognize the
winner of the November 29 election as long as Zelaya is not allowed
to return to office (Alvaro Vargas Llosa article, La Tercera,
9. OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza said the San Jose
agreement is "a balanced and unifying proposal" that should be the
basis to resolve the situation in Honduras. Insulza also considers
Zelaya's return "positive" (El Mercurio, 9/23).
10. Senator Alejandro Navarro withdrew from the presidential race
and gave his endorsement to Marco Enriquez-Ominami (El Mercurio,
11. Air Force Commander-in-Chief Ricardo Ortega notified the
Chamber of Deputies of the "Salitre" exercise to take place in
Antofagasta from October 18-31, that will include the participation
of U.S., French, Brazilian, and Argentine aircraft (La Tercera,