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Cablegate: Santiago February 14-16 Media Report

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FM AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO
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INFO RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
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RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
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UNCLAS SANTIAGO 000212

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STATE FOR R/MR, I/PP, WHA/BSC, WHA/PDA, INR/IAA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON KMDR KPAO PGOV PREL SNAR EFIN CI
SUBJECT: Santiago February 14-16 Media Report

Lead Story

1. President-elect Sebastian Pi????era announced his decision to
support Jose Miguel Insulza's reelection to the OAS (All dailies
2/13).

OAS

2. President-elect Pinera met with OAS Secretary General Insulza
last week in Santiago to inform him that he would endorse his
reelection. Reportedly, Pi????era also talked about the need to
improve the OAS Democratic Charter to make the defense of human
rights and democracy more efficient. Pi????era publicly announced
his
decision to support Insulza's reelection immediately after the
meeting (El Mercurio; conservative, independent La Tercera, 2/13).

3. OAS Secretary General Insulza met with Peruvian President Alan
Garcia and his foreign Minister Garcia Belaunde in Ecuador. The
conversation was about the upcoming OAS General Assembly and at no
time focused on Insulza's reelection, which the GOC has interpreted
as a sign that Peru will not endorse Insulza's candidacy.
High-ranking Peruvian officials said that the endorsement is
directly tied to Chile's decision to freeze political talks with
Lima in response to the claim filed with The Hague (El Mercurio,
2/15).

4. Peruvian Foreign Minister Jose Garcia Belaunde said his country
has not yet decided whether to endorse Insulza's reelection to the
OAS. This was no surprise for Chile's foreign ministry, because
Peru has never voted for a Chilean candidate (La Tercera, 2/15).

5. Paraguay's Deputy Foreign Minister Jorge Lara noted the "good
relations" that his country has had with Insulza and that his
country had voted for Insulza in 2005. Lara, however, did not
confirm that Paraguay would endorse Insulza's candidacy this time
(El Mercurio, 2/16).

6. In an "Open Letter" to Chile's incoming foreign minister,
Alvaro Vargas Llosa wrote: "It was politically impossible for
President Pi????era not to support Insulza. But it is crucial that
he
demand some reforms ... once Insulza is reelected. The OAS has
lost prestige in the United State and Latin America... in party due
to the organization's structure, divisions in Latin America, and
Insulza himself. Something must change and Chile's incoming
administration, which understands this very well, must be the one
to take the first step" (La Tercera, 2/14).

Chile-U.S.

7. Editorial entitled, "Intellectual Property: Chile on the Red
List":

"For a third consecutive year, the USG included Chile on the
list of the ten countries that do not respect or lack respect for
intellectual property rights.... The U.S. has a tough position on
this matter, because the sector that creates intellectual property
has become a source of its wealth.... We can therefore, understand
why it so strongly defends these rights in terms of duration and on
the need to apply them more widely.... The expansion of IPR in the

United States seems excessive. This would explain why countries
that strongly respect other forms of property, such as Chile and
Canada, are not enthusiastic about its application. It is necessary
to protect these rights, but the costs that this entails in the
sense of promoting a kind of 'monopoly of ideas' and the cost of
protecting society from it must be taken into account. Chile
should publicly articulate a position on IPR, taking into account
the costs and benefits, and negotiating an effective application of
these rights. This will probably mean disagreeing with the United
States, but for Washington the ambiguity Chile has today on this
matter ... is perhaps more annoying than what we do today, which is
accept its criteria, but don't apply it (Conservative, influential
El Mercurio, 2/15).

8. Article notes that Assistant Secretary Arturo Valenzuela
tweets in four languages: Mostly English, but also in Portuguese
when referring to Brazil, Spanish, and French when talking about
Haiti (El Mercurio, 2/14).

9. U.S. scientific Melville, of the SCRIPPS research center, will
arrive in Valparaiso on February 17. The ship will travel far
south to research ocean life form along the Nazca, Antarctic, and
South American Continental plates, where high levels of methane gas
are released (El Mercurio, 2/13).

10. Wal-Mart announced the implementation of the "Must Arrive by
Date" system (MABD) to ensure the arrival of products to its
distributions centers nationwide within a timetable. Companies
that fail in complying with the schedule will be fined. The
president of Chile's fruit exporter's federation, Rodrigo
Echeverria, said the system cannot be applied to fruit, because
crops depend on nature. Repeated fines will simply divert the
product to other markets, he said (Financial daily Diario
Financiero, 2/16).

Haiti

11. Brazil has proposed President Bachelet to work in coordination
with President Bill Clinton on the delivery of international aid to
Haiti. Bachelet has not yet responded to the proposal. She will
travel to Haiti on February 20, just before attending the Rio Group
summit in Cancun (El Mercurio, 2/16).

Pi????era Administration

12. Future Mining Minister Laurence Golborne said that state copper
company Codelco will continue to be stated owned during the Pi????era
administration, but would have a more professional corporate
government (La Tercera, 2/13).

13. In the TV program. "Oppenheimer Presents," President-elect
Pi????era said that his government would give more emphasis to the
defense of freedom in the region, especially in countries such as
Cuba and Venezuela. "Cuba is not a democracy and does not respect
human rights," said Pi????era, adding that he hopes to do everything
possible for the OAS to defend democracy and human rights more
efficiently. He did not dismiss visiting Cuba officially, stating
that in that case he would also meet with dissidents. Asked about
the closing of RCTV in Venezuela, Pi????era said that he has an
opinion on this matter, but would not interfere in the internal
affairs of other countries in the region. He said his foreign
policy would focus on strengthening ties with Chile's neighbors:
Peru, Bolivia, and Argentina (El Mercurio, 2/16).

14. Pi????era met with Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim in
Santiago last week. They talked about the possibility of a
bilateral meeting with Brazilian President Lula da Silva in the
upcoming Rio Summit in Cancun, before Pi????era is sworn-in.
Pi????era's
future Foreign Minister Alfredo Moreno underscored the significance
that this was the first foreign government official to meet with
Pi????era (La Tercera, 2/13)

15. After meeting with Pi????era, Brazilian Foreign Minister Amorim
said it was important for Chile to continue to play a role as
"moderator" in the Union of South American Nations, Unasur. He
then said that, "The idea of an alliance continues," continues to
be a goal between the two countries (El Mercurio, 2/13).

Iran

16. Weekly round-up column: "Iran is facing two fronts.... On the
external front there is the conflict with Washington and with a
large part of the West over its nuclear problem .... The talks with
the West are at a standstill and the commercial sanctions imposed
by the Obama administration have clearly not worked. Some analysts
say that Ahmadinejad sees in all this a chance to ... provoke a
more radical response in the international community .... This is a
risky strategy, because western circles are more in favor today of
the military option .... Ahmadinejad is leaving the West no choice;
diplomatic channels remain open, but by not giving favorable
signals Teheran could be pushing for an unfavorable outcome and
discover that it is lonelier than what it believes (El Mercurio,
2/15).
SIMONS

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