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Viewing cable 08SANJOSE63, COSTA RICA FULLY SUPPORTS MERIDA INITIATIVE

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08SANJOSE63 2008-01-28 23:11 2011-03-07 18:06 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY 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
VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSJ #0063 0282308
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 282308Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY SAN JOSE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9383
INFO RUEHZA/WHA CENTRAL AMERICAN COLLECTIVE
RUMIAGH/COMJTF-B SIMS SOTO CANO HO
RUEADAT/BUREAU OF ATF WASHDC
RHMFIUU/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUWDQAC/COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/DIRJIATF SOUTH
RUEABND/DRUG ENFORCEMENT ADMIN HQ WASHINGTON DC
UNCLAS SAN JOSE 000063 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR WHA/CEN, WHA/PPC AND INL/LP 
SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR FPA 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PINR SNAR CS
SUBJECT: COSTA RICA FULLY SUPPORTS MERIDA INITIATIVE 
 
REF: 07 SAN JOSE 2074 AND PREVIOUS (NOTAL) 
 
1. (U) Despite the extremely short notice, the GOCR sent top 
technical and law enforcement officials to El Salvador to 
detail their security requirements at the January 17-18 
SICA-sponsored Merida Initiative Validation Meeting.  The 
professional and business-like delegation, led by 
Vice-Minister of the Presidency for Security Issues, Jose 
Torres, expertly explained their primary security challenges 
to the U.S. interagency-led meeting. 
 
2. (U) The GOCR delegation gave detailed presentations on the 
state of their coast guard, police equipment and 
communications, strength of the rule of law and corruption, 
border/port/aviation security issues, arms trafficking within 
Costa Rica, and criminal information databases.  VM Torres 
also explained in detail the serious security challenges 
facing Costa Rican law enforcement, including: 
 
 -- The rise of organized crime (mostly drug-related); 
 -- increased use of Costa Rica's territory and maritime 
routes for drug smuggling; 
 -- sky-rocketing violent crime, with senior GOCR officials 
themselves being victims; and 
 -- difficulties faced in border and port security issues. 
 
3. (U) Closely echoing Post's security assessment in reftels, 
Coast Guard engineer Adrian Delgado accurately described the 
operational status of their fleet and validated their 
maritime security assistance needs.  Costa Rican Drug 
Institute (ICD) Director Mauricio Boraschi gave a detailed 
status of several security reform bills that were under 
review in the national legislature.  Judicial Police (OIJ) 
Criminal Investigation Chief Gustavo Mata-Vega and Fuerza 
Publica (FP) Subdirector Rigoberto Rodriguez listed police 
equipment and communications needs.  The GOCR delegation as a 
whole highlighted the need for better truck, vehicle, and 
container scanning capabilities at their various ports of 
entry. 
 
4. (U) The GOCR delegation reported to us that they were 
impressed with and encouraged by the Merida Initiative 
proposal and indicated that, if approved, it would 
significantly upgrade Costa Rica's ability to combat 
narcotrafficking and contribute to regional security in 
Central America. 
 
5. (U) GOCR participants: 
 
 -- Vice-Minister Jose Torres 
 -- Costa Rican Drug Institute (ONDCP equivalent) Director 
Mauricio Boraschi 
 -- Costa Rican Coast Guard Engineer Adrian Delgado 
 -- Criminal Investigation Chief for the Judicial Police 
Gustavo Mata-Vega 
 -- Fuerza Publica (regular police) Subdirector Rigoberto 
Rodriguez 
 
6. (SBU) COMMENT: The GOCR's security apparatus, as 
highlighted by their positive role in this conference, is 
under new management.  They are energetic, professional, and 
active participants in our joint CN efforts, and increasingly 
willing to support regional initiatives.  Since the Arias 
administration came to power in May 2006, the GOCR, with some 
USG assistance, has seized over 55 tons of cocaine, a record 
amount.  Now is the time to deepen our security relationship 
with Costa Rica, especially in the critical INL-supported 
portion of our CN program.  The Ticos are willing to play; 
some tangible USG assistance will strengthen our bilateral 
relationship, enhance regional security, and increase drug 
interdiction in this strategic crossroads of narcotrafficking. 
BRENNAN