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Viewing cable 08LIMA480,

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08LIMA480 2008-03-17 22:10 2011-02-13 12:12 SECRET//NOFORN Embassy Lima
VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHPE #0480/01 0772240
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
P 172240Z MAR 08
FM AMEMBASSY LIMA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8226
INFO RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION PRIORITY 1942
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA PRIORITY 5605
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA PRIORITY 7804
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS PRIORITY 1016
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES PRIORITY 3312
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS PRIORITY 1092
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ MAR 4799
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO PRIORITY 9474
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO PRIORITY 1819
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO PRIORITY 1803
RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUMIAAA/USCINCSO MIAMI FL PRIORITY
S E C R E T LIMA 000480      

SIPDIS      

NOFORN   
SIPDIS      

E.O. 12958:DECL: 03/18/2018   TAGS: PGOV PREL PINR PE

REF: A. LIMA 0389        
B. LIMA 3853        
C. LIMA 0390      

Classified By: POL/C ALEXIS LUDWIG FOR REASONS 1.4 (B)      

1. (C) Summary: European NGOs, Peruvian social movements, and   radical groups have been working since early 2007 to organize   "anti-summit" protests against the European Union-Latin   American Heads of State summit scheduled for mid-May in Lima.    In early 2008, the Venezuelan Embassy allegedly helped craft   a cooperation agreement between protest organizers and   nationalist opposition leader Ollanta Humala.  Bolivian   President Evo Morales is so far the only head of state   confirmed to address anti-summit protestors.  Notwithstanding   the recent arrest of seven terrorist suspects and the   government's public claims, we have not seen evidence backing   the notion that the Venezuela-backed Bolivarian Continental   Coordinator plans to disrupt the summit.  The greatest   concern among our European Union mission colleagues is the   threat that radicals could hijack the protests by   aggressively confronting ill-prepared security forces, as   occurred in Cusco in February.  The GOP is taking these   threats seriously.  End Summary.      

 --------------------------------------------- 
Local Social Movements, European NGOs Planning Protests Since   Early 2007 
----------   

2. (C) A variety of radical Peruvian social movements and   European anti-globalization NGOs have been planning protests   against the May European Union-Latin America summit since at   least early 2007 under the slogan Linking Alternatives 3   ("Enlazando Alternativas 3" --   www.enlazandoalternativas.org), according to internal   planning documents shared with poloffs.  The documents show   that organizers have held a series of workshops and meetings   among dozens of social movement leaders to coordinate roles   and international fundraising efforts.  On the European side,   principal groups include Attac -- an anti-globalization   organization that has led protests against several European   summits -- the leftist solidarity group France Amerique   Latine, the Spanish environmental organization Ecologistas en   Accion, the Amsterdam-based scholar-activist Transnational   Institute, and many others.      

3. (S//NF) On the Peruvian side, leaders and participants   include a variety of anti-systemic social leaders.  The main   organizer, according to an Embassy contact involved in the   preparations, is the indigenous leader Miguel Palacin Quispe,   who rose to prominence as the President of the radical   anti-mining NGO Conacami and now leads the Andean Coordinator   of Indigenous Organizations (CAOI).  Among a variety of   peasant and indigenous groups, prominent organizers include   leaders of the National Agriculture Confederation and  Conveagro agricultural unions, which organized national   strikes in February 2008 that resulted in various roadblocks,   numerous arrests, and four dead protestors.  Individuals who   have attended at least one planning meeting but whose actual   roles are unknown include:     

 -- Hugo Blanco, a long-time radical ideologue who helped   organize protests that shut down Cusco in February (Ref A);      

-- Elsa Malpartida, cocalero leader and Andean Parliament   member;     
 -- Melchor Lima Hancco, Peasant Confederation of Peru member   who, according to sensitive reporting, may be linked to a   Venezuela-sponsored ALBA house in Lima; and      

-- Sandro Vasquez Chavez, a leader of Patria Roja-dominated   peasant defense groups in Cajamarca.  According to our contacts in Cajamarca, Vasquez Chavez is   also a former municipal candidate for Ollanta Humala's   Nationalist Party (PNP) and a close collaborator of the  openly pro-Venezuelan PNP Congressman from Cajamarca Werner Cabrera.      

Ollanta Humala, Venezuela, and Bolivia Step In   --------------------------------------------- -  

 4.  (C) Peruvian Nationalist Party leader Ollanta Humala, who   did not participate in the first year of anti-summit   organization, began talking publicly in early 2008 about   leading protests against the EU summit.  Miguel Palacin, who   has independent political ambitions and was understandably   reluctant to allow his handiwor to be claimed by a rival,  reportedly resisted Humala's transparent desire to take over the movement.  This created the possibility of competing   protests.  According to a contact close to Palacin, however,   Venezuelan diplomat Virly Torres stepped in to resolve the   dispute: Torres convoked the two leaders to a meeting at her   Embassy in February and successfully pressured them to reach   an agreement.  Torres' main goal, says our contact, was to   ensure that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez had a single   alternate forum to address during the summit.  According to   the agreement, Ollanta will organize protestors in Lima,   while Palacin will draw protestors from the regions to the   captital for their main rally on May 18th, the second day   that heads of state will be in Lima.  Tensions between the   leaders reportedly remain alive, however, and Palacin,   without Humala's knowledge, plans to use the summit to launch   a new political party to contest the 2010 regional elections.    (Note: Regional elections are scheduled for 2010, general   elections in 2011.  End Note.)      

5. (C) Bolivian government and social sector leaders have   shown interest in the anti-summit, and President Evo Morales   is so far the only head of state confirmed to attend.  Two   Bolivian nationals, indirectly linked to the MAS government,   have appeared at anti-summit organizational meetings.  The   first is Alexandra Flores of the Solon Foundation, an NGO   founded by top Evo Morales advisor and anti-free trade and   globalization guru Pablo Solon.  The second is Pablo   Villegas, a pro-Morales ideologue and author as well as a   member of the anti-FTA umbrella group "Bolivian Movement for   the Sovereignty and Solidarity Integration of the People".   Radical indigenous Aymara leader and convicted terrorist   Felipe Quispe also plans to join the protests, according to   an Embassy contact.  (Quispe is rumored to have recently   given armed training to radical Peruvians in southern Peru --   Ref B.)      

Role of the Bolivarian Continental Coordinator (CCB)   --------------------------------------------- -------   

6.  (C) On February 29th, the GOP arrested seven Peruvians as   suspected terrorists and accused them of planning to disrupt   the May EU-LAC summit as well as the APEC leaders meeting in   November.  The suspects were detained in northern Peru while   returning from Quito, Ecuador, where they had attended the   Second Congress of the Bolivarian Continental Coordinator, an   organization reportedly funded by President Hugo Chavez and   the FARC to bring together radical groups across Latin   America (Ref C).  Roque Felix Gonzalez la Rosa, the leader of   the detainees and President of CCB's Peru Chapter, is a   member of the Peruvian terrorist group MRTA who spent 1996-2004 in jail for the 1995 kidnapping of Bolivian   businessman and politician Samuel Doria Medina.  (Note:   Proceeds from the ransom paid to free Doria Medina reportedly   funded the 1996 MRTA takeover of the Japanese Embassy in   Lima. End Note.)  Gonzalez publicly admitted financing the   travel of 11 Peruvians to Quito with money from the   Venezuelan organization "Casa Mariategui", according to press reports.  The press has also linked Gonzalez to two   individuals arrested (and released) for allegedly plotting to   attack the US Ambassador's residence in early 2007.  Two of   the others detained in Tumbes are also allegedly former-MRTA   militants, according to press reports.      

7. (C) Despite the shady connections of some of the   detainees, the government's public claims and pervasive   rumors, the government has not yet published any clear   evidence linking them to specific plans to disrupt the   summit.  Instead, they were charged with propagandizing for   terrorists -- several were photographed in Quito protesting   with signs praising the FARC, Sendero Luminoso, and MRTA.  We   have not seen any evidence corroborating the government's   accusation, but various government officials, including the  Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, have repeatedly  stated that the government is in possession of such evidence.         

Europeans Worried About Politicization, Confrontations   --------------------------------------------- ---------  

 8. (C) Our colleagues in the European Union mission are more   worried about the prospective politicization of anti-summit   protests than about the likelihood of violence or an actual   terrorist attack, which they believe is low.  Ana Santos, a   political officer at the EU Mission, says they fear that   radical elements could hijack the protests and seek publicity   by provoking confrontations with police, as happened in   recent protests in Cusco (Ref A).  EU mission officials are   particularly concerned by the lack of an established dialogue   mechanism between social movements and the government that   would seek to prevent such occurrences.  Anti-summit leader   Miguel Palacin complained to the EU mission that the GOP   appears intent on criminalizing democratic protests, which   makes dialogue useless; the government in turn argues that   protestors want only to undermine the government and to sully   its international image.  Santos adds that, in early March,   an important and moderate NGO that focuses on sound proposals   rather than confrontation or political publicity decided to   withdraw from the anti-summit protests.  The EU does not yet   know why, but worries that this relatively responsible   mainstream NGO became disillusioned by the radical and   politicized motives of the protest organizers.      

Comment: Genuine Risk That Radicals Will Hijack Protests   --------------------------------------------- -----------   

9. (C) If the recent agricultural strikes and the protests in   Cusco are any indication, there is reason to believe that   radical groups will attempt to hijack the coming anti EU-LAC   summit protests and to seek publicity through confrontation.   At the same time, the Peruvian government is aware of the   protests planned for this summit and the subsequent APEC   leaders meeting, and has decided to take a proactive, even   preemptive, approach to addressing them.   NEALON