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Cablegate: Colombia Proposes Its Own Cia

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RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBO #3177 2851852
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 121852Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0299
INFO RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 0081
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0404
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0330
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA 0408
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA 0403

UNCLAS BOGOTA 003177

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PINR KCRM CO
SUBJECT: COLOMBIA PROPOSES ITS OWN CIA

REF: BOGOTA 3035

1. (U) On October 8, the government submitted a bill to Colombian
Congress that would authorize the President to dismantle the
scandal-ridden Administrative Department of Security (DAS) and in
its place create a "truly civilian intelligence agency" nominally
called the "Central Intelligence Agency of Colombia" (ACI). The
bill tasks the ACI with the:

-- collection, processing, analysis, and diffusion of strategic
intelligence and counterintelligence to the GOC;

-- control of immigration; and

-- protection of the President and select senior GOC officials.

Current DAS functions that fall outside this mission would be
reassigned to other entities, specifically:

-- judicial police authorities, INTERPOL liaison, and protection of
high-risk persons under the President's human rights program to the
Colombian National Police; and

-- the issuance of certificates verifying no criminal record to the
Judicial Branch.

2. (U) The bill seeks to construct firewalls between the
intelligence and criminal investigations functions, and would
specifically prohibit the ACI from generating "tactical/military
intelligence" that might blur the line between those functions.
The bill is intended to complement the Intelligence Reform Law (Law
1288) passed in January, especially that law's provision to
establish a Joint Intelligence Council (JIC) for coordinating
civilian and military intelligence with law enforcement efforts.

3. (U) The timeline for passing the bill is uncertain. As an
ordinary law, Congress must hold four debates over a maximum of two
years. The bill will be assigned to the First Commissions of both
chambers. Curiously, the government did not send the bill with a
"message of urgency" that would have given it priority handling in
the Congress.
NICHOLS

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