DE RUEHBU #1216/01 1731539
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 221539Z JUN 07
FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8480
INFO RHMFISS/CDR USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL//SCJ2//
UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 001216
STATE FOR INR/R/MR, I/GWHA, WHA, WHA/PDA, WHA/BSC,
CDR USSOCOM FOR J-2 IAD/LAMA
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPAO OPRC KMDR PREL MEDIA REACTION
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION; ARGENTINE ANTI-TERRORIST LEGISLATION;
CHAVEZ; DOHA ROUND; 06/22/07
1. SUMMARY STATEMENT
Today's most important international stories cover the questioning
of Argentina's antiterrorist legislation based on some gaps which
could lead to human rights abuses; Venezuelan President Hugo
Chavez's reasons for pushing Nicaragua into Mercosur; and the view
of Latin America and the Caribbean about the Doha Round.
2. OPINION PIECES AND EDITORIALS
- "Passage of anti-terrorist legislation"
Leading "Clarin" editorializes (06/22) "Through the Criminal Code
amendment approved by Argentina's Legislative Branch, the country
implemented the UN Convention to repress terrorist acts. While the
passage of the legislation will avoid the sanctions announced by the
Financial Action Task Force (FATF)... and Argentina needed to
introduce new anti-terrorist legislation in the post September 11
international scenario, the truth is that the Argentine Lower House
hinted that a more thorough analysis should have been made to
prevent distortions and (human rights) abuses.
"... The legislation was drafted based on FATF recommendations but,
according to some experts, some legal gaps could give rise to (human
rights) abuses in implementing the legislation. We all expect the
new legislation to become a useful tool in the global war against
international terrorism through a cautious and reasonable
implementation that will fully honor our national constitution."
- Chavez, on the verge of an abyss"
Business-financial "El Cronista" (06/22) carries an op-ed piece by
Humberto Toledo, former Argentine Ambassador, who writes "Venezuelan
President Hugo Chavez seeks to broaden his political horizon through
the four Mercosur member-countries... However, the Brazilian
Congress is an obstacle for him ...
"If the Brazilian Congress does not pass Chavez' entry into
Mercosur..., the Venezuelan leader will miss the opportunity to
preside over the institution before the end of 2007 and, therefore,
two major political projects of his expansionist policy could fall -
on the one hand, starting a discussion about Cuba's return to the
OAS with the support of Mercosur, and, on the other hand, proposing
the entry of Nicaragua, Iran's brand-new partner, into the bloc in
order to make Iran's presence in the region official.
"... Mercosur by-laws have a democratic clause hindering the entry
or stay of countries with dictatorial regimes in it. In this regard,
Chavez is walking on the verge of an abyss and causing problems for
loyal partners such as the Argentine president, who for now has kept
silent regarding the attack on freedom of expression launched by
Chavez against a TV channel.
"However, President Kirchner will have to make a decision sooner or
later regarding Chavez's reason for pushing Nicaragua into Mercosur,
as a first step to open a trade relationship with Iran and obviously
seeking to broaden the scenario of confrontation with the US."
- "The Doha Round - the view of Latin America and the Caribbean"
Business-financial "BAE" carries an opinion piece by Jose Luis
Machinea, Executive Secretary of CEPAL (Economic Commission for
Latin America and the Caribbean), who opines (06/22) "Last February,
the Doha Round negotiations were resumed following more than six
months of suspension...
"This round, defined as the Development Round, acknowledges that the
multilateral system emerging from the 1993 Uruguay Round was an
insufficient engine for development. In spite of the progress made
from the old GATT, the Uruguay Round was unable to tackle the
challenges posed by its increasing number of members. Many
developing countries are still unable to take advantage of a more
stable and predictable ruling system.
"... A strong multilateral system has proven to benefit developing
countries. The developing countries that are members of the WTO have
learned to build coalitions among themselves and even with developed
countries to defend their interests. The G20 and other groups seek
to ensure that the outcome of the Doha Round will be balanced. This
is a significant change vis-`-vis 20 years ago and reflects the
importance of the WTO as a forum of negotiations for developing
"For Latin America and the Caribbean, market access, particularly
for agricultural products, is a central issue of the Doha agenda...
"... It is in the framework of the WTO that developing countries
have been able to successfully tackle claims against protectionist
policies. There is no other international organization in which
developing countries can efficiently challenge these kinds of
"Current negotiations should be concluded by the end of 2007. The
countries whose policies negatively impact trade with developing
countries should mostly be held responsible for this. If this
objective is not achieved in the next weeks, we could have to wait
several years before negotiations are resumed in the framework of
the WTO - an unfortunate scenario for developing countries."
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