|Wikileaks:||View 03GUATEMALA427 at Wikileaks.org|
|Tags:||MCAP PTER ETTC GT PARMS|
|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.
C O N F I D E N T I A L GUATEMALA 000427 SIPDIS E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/11/2013 TAGS: MCAP, PTER, ETTC, GT, PARMS SUBJECT: MANPADS THREAT CONSIDERED MINOR IN GUATEMALA REF: STATE 38880 Classified By: Robert E. Copley for reason 1.5 (d). 1. (C) The information below is keyed by paragraph number to reftel questions. Paragraph 7. General Information: To our knowledge, the Government of Guatemala (GOG) does not possess MANPADS. However, black and gray arms markets exist in Guatemala and exotic weapons systems are said to occasionally move through them. Given the involvement of a Guatemala-based arms dealer in the recent diversion of Nicaraguan assault rifles to Colombian rebels and rumors of surplus MANPADS in the region due to internal conflicts, we cannot rule out the possibility that a very small number of MANPADS may be held or obtained by non-state groups in Guatemala. Paragraph 8. Government Cooperation: The GOG can be expected to cooperate in the effort to control MANPADS, especially if we can provide it with specific information about the existence of such weapons. Guatemala's export control regulations would technically prohibit transfers but enforcement mechanism are inadequate and further limited by rampant corruption at all levels of the GOG. Paragraph 9. Feasible Arguments: The GOG will be receptive to the need for responsible action against the MANPADS threat and will appreciate the magnitude of liability if a successful MANPADS attack were to be traced to its failure to take action. Guatemala does not have a state-sponsored air carrier, but depends heavily on tourism for foreign exchange earnings. Paragraph 10. Financial Incentives: Not applicable since Guatemala does not have an official MANPADS stockpile to be destroyed. Paragraph 11. Other Incentives: The bilateral relationship is currently more fluid than usual. This is an election year and Guatemala was recently decertified for lack of cooperation against narcotics. Some, but not all, parts of the GOG are anxious to cooperate with the USG. The GOG faces large and growing internal dissent which will tend to focus its attention on elections above all else. Paragraph 12. Government Contacts and Engagement Activities: The Ministers of Defense, Interior, and Foreign Relations are the appropriate officials to contact regarding this initiative. Guatemala has appointed an Inter-Institutional Coordinator for Security, roughly equivalent to a Terrorism Czar. The May 2003 Special Conference on Security in Mexico would be an excellent venue for approaching Guatemalan officials on this issue. Hamilton
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