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Viewing cable 07SANJOSE427, EXCESS DEFENSE ARTICLES WAIVER FOR COSTA RICA

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07SANJOSE427 2007-03-05 20:08 2011-03-07 18:06 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy San Jose
Appears in these articles:
http://www.nacion.com/2011-03-06/Investigacion/NotasDestacadas/Investigacion2702320.aspx
http://www.nacion.com/2011-03-06/Investigacion/NotasSecundarias/Investigacion2702325.aspx
http://www.nacion.com/2011-03-06/Investigacion/NotaPrincipal/Investigacion2702324.aspx
http://www.nacion.com/2011-03-06/Investigacion/NotasSecundarias/Investigacion2702326.aspx
http://www.nacion.com/2011-03-06/Investigacion/NotasSecundarias/Investigacion2702327.aspx
VZCZCXYZ0007
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSJ #0427 0642030
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 052030Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY SAN JOSE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7412
INFO RHMFISS/HQ USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SAN JOSE 000427 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR WHA/CEN, INL/LP, PM/PPA 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/01/2017 
TAGS: PREL MOPS SNAR CS
SUBJECT: EXCESS DEFENSE ARTICLES WAIVER FOR COSTA RICA 
 
Classified By: CHG Laurie Weitzenkorn for reasons 1.4 (B). 
 
1. (U)  SUMMARY:  Embassy San Jose strongly recommends a 
national interest waiver of ASPA restrictions against Excess 
Defense Articles (EDA) for Costa Rica.  The waiver will 
significantly enhance Costa Rica's maritime patrol capability 
and build on record seizures in Costa Rican waters during 
2006.  END SUMMARY. 
 
2. (C) During the February 2007 Central American Chiefs of 
Mission Conference in Miami, Ambassador Langdale and Admiral 
Stavridis discussed the need to enhance Costa Rica's maritime 
patrol capability.  Costa Rica's maritime region saw record 
cocaine seizures in 2006 but the Costa Rican Coast Guard was 
frequently unable to respond to actionable intelligence of 
vessels known to be carrying drugs, even within 20 miles of 
shore, due to a lack of patrol boat readiness. 
 
3. (U) Costa Rica's Exclusive Economic Zone straddles major 
ocean smuggling routes to the U.S. from South America.  In 
1999, Costa Rica was the first Central American nation to 
sign a bilateral maritime agreement with the U.S. to allow 
for joint patrols.  For domestic political reasons, the GOCR 
has found it politically impossible to sign an Article 98 
agreement with the U.S. and, as a result, our ability to 
build on the strategic relationship suffered as ASPA 
restrictions dried up resources.  Nonetheless, the GOCR 
remained a steadfast ally against narcotics and has managed 
to seize increasing amounts of cocaine every year since 2001. 
 Thanks to close cooperation under the terms of the bilateral 
agreement, U.S. and Costa Rican authorities seized a record 
25.5 metric tons of cocaine in 2006.  Nearly 14 tons were 
seized at sea by U.S. assets in Costa Rican waters or aboard 
Costa Rican vessels--highlighting in stark terms the need for 
Costa Rican patrol boats to serve as a force multiplier for 
U.S. maritime law enforcement patrols. 
 
4. (U) In 2007, Costa Rica will begin to benefit from renewed 
access to IMET training after several years under sanctions. 
Before the sanctions, this urgently needed training provided 
the U.S. with access and influence among key Costa Rican 
officials.  Now that access to IMET has been restored, 
addressing the patrol boat readiness issue is the top 
priority and will require access to EDA. 
 
5.  (U) Post strongly recommends an EDA waiver on national 
interest grounds. 
LANGDALE