US embassy cable - 05LIMA1169

ANDEAN NORTHERN BORDER CONFERENCE

Identifier: 05LIMA1169
Wikileaks: View 05LIMA1169 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Lima
Created: 2005-03-08 21:11:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Tags: SNAR
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 LIMA 001169 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
DEA HQS FOR: OE/OI/OEL/OIL/OIX-BECK/OIAL/NI/NS/NTRC 
DEA BOGOTA FOR: RD/CA GADDIS AND ARD YRIZARRY 
DEA BRASILIA FOR: ACTING CA HALL 
DEA CARACAS FOR: CA ABOSAMRA 
DEA QUITO FOR: CA HUDSON 
DEA PANAMA CITY FOR: CA SNYDER 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: SNAR 
SUBJECT: ANDEAN NORTHERN BORDER CONFERENCE 
 
1.  Peruvian National Police (PNP) successfully sponsored 
with the assistance of the Lima Country Office (LCO) the 
Andean Northern Border Strategy Conference from Feb. 22-24, 
2005.  This conference centered on Counter-narcotics strategy 
on Amazonas Border countries and included National Police 
Director Generals from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, 
Peru and Venezuela. 
 
2.  Presentations and discussions by each country centered on 
counter drug trends, insurgent situations and narcotic 
activities along the Amazonas.  Countries presented the 
structure and efficiency of their anti-drug units in these 
areas as well as the trafficking models concerning major 
narcotics and arms traffickers.  Major topics discussed 
included narco-terrorism, drug trafficking trends and 
methods, and counter-drug strategy. 
 
3.  Narco-terrorism. 
 
A.  All countries reported the presence of the Fuerzas 
Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) outside of 
Colombia.  Due to increased activities of the Colombian 
National Police (CNP) and the Colombian military forces, it 
appears that the FARC is establishing itself in other 
countries to continue their narcotics trafficking related 
activities.  Of particular interest, was the impact of forced 
coca cultivation of Peruvian coca farmers and native groups 
by the FARC.  The PNP provided that several indigenous groups 
in the jungle areas of the Loreto Department in Peru had 
reported they were cultivating sizeable crops as a result of 
threats from the FARC.  Since these groups felt defenseless 
due to the lack of Peruvian law enforcement or military 
presence in their areas, they would concede to these demands. 
 These indigenous groups have also reported missing persons 
and increased violence associated with drug trafficking in 
their areas. 
 
B.  Separately, it was also reported by other countries that 
arms trafficking and drug transportation was also being 
conducted within their boundaries by the FARC and other 
insurgent and/or paramilitary groups. 
 
C.  Due to ease of border crossing and lack of law 
enforcement or military deterrent, it has been reported that 
FARC units would regularly cross Amazonas borders into 
Brazil, Ecuador and Peru to escape detection by Colombia 
military and law enforcement units.  It has been reported 
that other insurgent organizations are also operating in 
these areas with lack of regard for law enforcement. 
 
D.  Although national police agencies from Brazil, Ecuador 
and Peru have affected limited successes against the FARC as 
evidenced by significant arrests of FARC leaders in 2004, the 
danger to law enforcement personnel by insurgent forces along 
the Amazonas border continues. 
 
4.    Drug trafficking trends and methods. 
 
A.  All countries reported continued trafficking through 
maritime ports and airports.  Outside of the common methods 
of smuggling via passenger mules, luggage and cargo, Colombia 
National Police reported finding live animals (chickens, 
dogs, etc.,) fruits and interior structure of cars/technical 
equipment were being packed (internally) with cocaine. 
Brazil reported increased evidence of clandestine airstrips 
and river operations approximate to its borders with Colombia 
and Peru.  Peru reported an increase in bulk seizures all 
destined for Pacific Coastal Maritime Exportation. 
 
B.  Colombia continued to report strong evidence of 
significant loads of heroin and cocaine being transported 
through Ecuador, a major transit country, via maritime and 
air transportation to destinations in U.S., Mexico and 
Europe.  It was reported by Peru that Colombian and Mexican 
drug traffickers were maintaining a strong influence in the 
Amazonas regions.  It was surprisingly reported that major 
cartels did not run or have an overwhelming presence in these 
regions, but that most trafficking operations were run by 
local "clan" or "family-oriented" organizations. 
 
5.  Counter-Drug Strategies. 
All countries concurred that joint transnational cooperation 
along these borders is the key to successful ventures against 
the drug traffickers and narco-terrorism.  Several countries 
reported successful arrests and operations through 
cooperative efforts.  Included in these efforts:  (1) 
Colombia and Ecuador reported that joint efforts between 
their countries had led to the successful arrest and 
detention of FARC Commander, Simon Trinidad.  (2) Colombia 
and Peru also worked together in the successful arrest of 
FARC leader Gonzalo Guerra Siquihba AKA El Gusano.  In 
addition, it was pointed out that Operation Seis Fronteras 
provides an excellent example of regional shared collective 
interdiction efforts against chemical trafficking 
organizations.  Brazil provided a multi-faceted strategy in 
which different cooperative strategies were applied to each 
of its borders including Peru, Colombia and Suriname. 
 
6.  Strategy Discussions and La Acta (The Agreement). 
 
A.  Throughout discussions, each country consistently pointed 
out the major weaknesses that continue to plague them and 
prevent significant operations towards disruption and/or 
dismantlement of drug trafficking organizations and reducing 
the presence of narco-terrorist organizations operating in 
the Amazonas region.  Major weaknesses include: 
 
-  Limited exchange of information and intelligence. 
 
-  No joint/regional operating or agreement against any 
particular criminal organization. 
 
-  Police efforts are considered ineffective without 
political and socio-economic support. 
 
The last weakness was echoed by all participants and simply 
stated that efforts by the police forces of each nation were 
ineffective as drug trafficking, money laundering and other 
related crimes had risen to the rank of transnational crimes 
and weighed serious economic and political consequences. 
Subsequently, the police directors from each participant 
country agreed to commit support for the following major 
initiatives: 
 
-  Encouraging further support by each country,s government 
against illicit drug trafficking and effect policies to 
support police operations and legal actions. 
-  Create a multinational police committee to fight against 
drug trafficking, terrorism and related crimes.  This 
committee will be compromised of representatives from Brazil, 
Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru and Venezuela and responsible 
for initiating a plan of action against these activities in 
the Amazonas: 
-  Development of joint interdiction operations 
-  Asset laundering.  Exchange Police and 
operational/financial intelligence issues concerning assets 
resulting from organized crime 
-  Anti-drug and anti-terrorism intelligence sharing 
 
7.  Participant countries agreed to meet in Brasilia, Brazil 
in May 2005 to discuss the strategic management chart, which 
contains the goals and activities of La Acta. 
 
Respective offices with questions concerning this conference 
are requested to contact Acting ARD Frank S. Franco or S/A 
Don Garrett at 301-985-9329 or 511-618-2475. 
STRUBLE 

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