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2004-11-02 18:31:00
Embassy Bogota
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						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 BOGOTA 011586 


E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/01/2014

Classified By: Charge d'Affaires Milton K. Drucker for reasons 1.4 (b)
and (d).

1. (U) The following is an update of Plan Colombia-related
activities reported during October, 2004.




2. (U) In October, DOJ's Justice Sector Reform Program
coordinated 25 training and technical assistance programs for
820 police officers, 145 prosecutors and 110 judges. The
subjects of the programs were: Basic Accusatory System;
Crime Scene and Courtroom Testimony; Investigator as a
Witness; Judicial and Dignitary Protection; Criminal Trial
Advocacy; Judicial Workshop; Specialized Training for
Criminal Behavior Units; Interview Techniques; Police
Discipline, Ethics and Transparency; Financial Analysis and
Data Base Management; and Firearms Inventory and Tracing.
All of the programs emphasized the preparation of police
agencies, prosecutors and judges for the implementation of a
new criminal procedure code and its accusatory style system.
DOJ also sponsored a trip to Arizona for nine Colombian
trainers of prosecutors and judges to observe court
proceedings and reinforce their understanding of an
accusatory system. DOJ also provided key speakers for the
Colombian National Police (CNP) Criminal Symposium, and gave
a briefing on the U.S. Patriot Act to Colombian business,
banking and law enforcement officers. DOJ continues to
provide technical assistance in the development of a
Colombian prosecutors' procedure manual.


3. (U) On October 28, the several agencies of the GOC
(Ministry of Defense, Presidencia, Colombian Army (COLAR),
Colombian National Police (CNP), Fiscalia, National
Directorate of Dangerous Drugs, and the Ministry of Interior
and Justice) and Emboffs met to institutionalize a program of
manual eradication brigades, or "Grupos Mobiles de
Erradicacion" (GMEs). President Uribe recently directed his
Administration to prepare 30 GMEs by January 2005, to achieve
the ambitious goal of eradicating 40,000 hectares of coca for
the same year. The GMEs will be made up of 30 individuals
(either demobilized combatants, or civilians) who will uproot
coca and poppy, mainly by hand. The CNP and COLAR will share
the responsibility for security, providing 6,300 CNP and
COLAR personnel for GME laborer protection.

4. (U) Emboffs reiterated the USG commitment to exploring
manual eradication as a complement to spraying but reminded
the attendees that the safest, most efficient, and cheapest
way to eradicate coca and poppy is aerial spraying. They
also said the USG intends to increase investment in equipment
and training to help protect personnel engaged in manual
eradication. Emboffs recommended that target areas for the
GMEs should be chosen from areas where we cannot spray
(because of cloud cover, winds, small fields, national parks,
etc.), and should be selected based on security rather than
politics. Political considerations have been the dominant
criteria for recent decisions to send manual coca eradication
teams into Narino and Norte de Santander Departments.
Embassy intends to provide logistical and other support for
GME units that use civilian labor, but will have to balance
unanticipated GOC funding requests against programmed
bilateral counter-narcotics initiatives.


5. (U) PRM disbursed US $1,689,060 to the U.S.-based
Cooperative Housing Foundation International (CHF) in
September. CHF works in 14 cities and 38 municipalities,
providing food and non-food aid, temporary housing, community
centers, psycho-social counseling, and emergency employment
for internally displaced persons (IDPs). RefCoord visited
several of CHF's project sites outside of Cartagena -- a
major destination for IDPs.


6. (U) There will be an Anti-Kidnapping training course from
November 8-19. Ten Colombians who have already participated
in the standard six week anti-kidnapping program will
participate in this "train the trainers" course.

7. (U) The VIP personal protection program is conducting
two-day advanced protection training courses for protection
personnel assigned to details of the President, Vice
President, Minister of Defense, and Mayor of Bogota. The
full two-week VIP personal protection course will begin on
December 1. Plans are moving forward to construct a VIP
personal protection training academy in January 2005. RSO is
holding meetings with the VP's office to finalize a national
VIP personal protection policy.




8. (U) On October 27, Congressman Cass Ballenger and USAID
Director Michael Deal visited the Villagarzon Agro-Industrial
Center in the department of Putumayo. The Agro-Industrial
Center processes Putumayo's various tropical crops including
tropical wood, flowers and foliage, black pepper and other
condiments, tropical medicines, culinary and aromatic plants,
and dried cassava for animal feed. The center was
established to create the foundations for a new licit economy
and transform the economic landscape in Putumayo. The
department's illicit coca-based economy has been dramatically
reduced from 66,000 hectares in 2000 to approximately 7,500
hectares in 2003. In addition, USAID's Alternative
Development Program has made a significant contribution to
transforming the socio-economic situation of Putumayo by
working with 290 indigenous and small farmer communities, and
by providing economic and social benefits to 19,983 families
through the establishment of over 27,840 hectares of licit

9. (U) Under its Anchor Company initiative, USAID's Colombia
Enterprise Development Program (CED) provided US $100,000
worth of technical assistance to C.I. LTC, a large textile
and garment manufacturer located in Cali, Valle del Cauca.
With this assistance the firm trained 260 new operators in
the use of industrial machinery, placing them among satellite
suppliers. As a result of this activity, 27 new jobs have
been created. USAID also provided US $50,000 in technical
assistance to Industrias Integradas, a textile and garment
manufacturer in Cali, to improve productivity. The
assistance has generated an additional 36 new jobs in this
industry. To date, the CED Program has approved 51 SME
project proposals geared toward generating additional
employment and income in secondary cities connected to areas
of illicit crop influence.

10. (U) USAID and the Global Development Alliance (GDA), are
providing funding of roughly US $1.7 million for programs to
be implemented by VallenPaz and US $1.9 million for programs
to be implemented by the Colombian Association of Flower
Exporters (Asocoflores). The USAID contribution will
leverage another US $1.7 million for VallenPaz and US
$850,000 for Asocoflores from local NGOs and the private
sector. The VallenPaz projects on "Restorative Justice" and
"Co-existence and Peace in Colombia" seek to create
restorative justice in Colombia through a series of
activities. The programs include the establishment of peace
restoration centers in 12 municipalities in the departments
of Cauca and Valle del Cauca, and an academic component
regarding "transitional justice" issues. The agreement
signed between USAID and Asocolflores supports the
"Cultivating Peace in the Family" program, a joint project
that will help 21,000 workers by providing conflict
resolution training and social and psychological assistance.



11. (C) On September 25-26, General Reynaldo Castellanos
Trujillo, Commander JTF-Omega (JTF-O), assembled all of the
mobile brigade commanders in Larandia for an operations
review, the first time since the start of Plan Patriota (PP)
IIB that all JTF-O commanders were together in one location.
Each Mobile Brigade Commander gave a presentation on unit
operations since the beginning of PP IIB, and each JTF-O
staff section gave an overview of activities. This was the
first time all subordinate commanders were able to see an
overview of JTF's combat operations. General Carlos Alberto
Ospina Ovalle attended the first four hours of the event and
opened by stressing four points:

-- That JTF-O was viewed as conducting operational and
national campaigns, and civic actions for the COLMIL;

-- The COLMIL must become more proficient on the use of
psychological operations;

-- Operations against the FARC must block/cut the mobility
corridors that give the FARC tactical advantage; and

-- COLMIL operations must be conducted against high value

12. (U) USMILGP, specifically the Air Force Mission, is
working with COLAF to purchase two C-130 aircraft from
Evergreen. FMS case/LOR is being refined by all parties in
Colombia. USG recently learned that Hoover Aviation, a CONUS
company, is attempting to purchase these aircraft before the
COLAF can act, modify them and then re-sell the aircraft to
the COLMIL at a higher price. USMILGP is accelerating the
LOR process here to purchase the C-130s as airlift remains a
critical issue for the COLAF.

13. (U) In meeting with MOD Uribe on October 14, the Minister
and his staff refined his vision for "Plan Shakespeare." The
concept is a long-term plan to create a bilingual office
corps, to make English proficiency a prerequisite for
promotion to field grade, and to establish a tiered language
program that runs concurrently with officer professional
development that offers baseline and sustainable training
opportunities. Conceptually, MILGP will work with the
Ministry, COLMIL, Defense Language Institute and private
language institutes to develop a plan to meet the MOD