US embassy cable - 03GUATEMALA329

GUATEMALAN OFFICIALS EXPRESS CONDOLENCES FOR SPACE SHUTTLE COLUMBIA

Identifier: 03GUATEMALA329
Wikileaks: View 03GUATEMALA329 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Guatemala
Created: 2003-02-05 22:46:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: OPDC PREL GT
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 GUATEMALA 000329 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR WHA/CEN AND S/ES - CR 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: OPDC, PREL, GT 
SUBJECT: GUATEMALAN OFFICIALS EXPRESS CONDOLENCES FOR SPACE 
SHUTTLE COLUMBIA 
 
1.  Post has received numerous expressions of condolences 
over the tragic loss of the Columbia and her crew.  Phone 
calls, faxes, letters and e-mails expressing sorrow and 
solidarity have come from private citizens as well as 
Guatemalan officials.  Noteworthy are letters from President 
Portillo, Foreign Minister Gutierrez, Supreme Court President 
Ochaita, Human Rights Ombudsman Morales, and UNE Congressman 
Flores. 
 
2.  While most expressions of condolence are addressed to the 
Ambassador, the Embassy or the American people in general, 
President Portillo's letter is addressed to President Bush. 
A signed original in Spanish will be delivered via the 
Guatemalan Embassy in Washington.  In paragraph 3 we provide 
an unofficial translation of the text.  Paragraph 4 is an 
unofficial translation of the text of Foreign Minister 
Gutierrez letter to Ambassador Hamilton. 
 
3. Begin text of Portillo letter. 
Mr. George W. Bush 
President of the United States of America 
 
Mr. President, 
 
Greatly dismayed by the deaths of the crew of the shuttle 
Columbia, in my own name and in the name of the government 
and people of Guatemala, we all declare to you and to the 
people of the United States of America, our deepest regrets. 
 
From the heart, 
 
Alfonso Portillo 
End text of Portillo letter. 
 
4. Begin text of Gutierrez letter. 
Honorable Mr. John Hamilton 
Ambassador of the United States of America 
Accredited in Guatemala 
 
Mr. Ambassador, 
 
It is with deep sorrow that I present my condolences to your 
government, the people of the United States, and especially 
the families of the astronauts: Commander Rick D. Husband, 
Pilot William C. McCool, Crewmembers Michael P. Anderson, 
David M. Brown, Kalpana Chawla, Laurel Clark and Ilan Ramon, 
the first Israeli astronaut, for the great loss to all 
humanity that the Columbia accident represents. 
 
Those of us who have closely and enthusiastically followed 
each milestone in the expansion of scientific knowledge 
through the exploration of space, from the first experiments 
at the beginning of the last century (such as those of 
professor Robert Hutchings Goddard) to the flight of Alan 
Shepard in 1961, feel as if we have suffered a severe blow. 
But we know that progress is irreversible and that we will 
surely overcome this blow. 
 
I take this opportunity to reiterate to the Ambassador 
assurances of my highest consideration. 
 
Edgar Gutierrez 
Foreign Minister 
End text of Gutierrez letter. 
Hamilton 

Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04