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New evidence further incriminates the Government of Colombia in illegal wiretapping scandal

April 13, 2011 1 comment

The Department of Administrative Security (DAS) of Colombia was used as a tool for domestic spying on various occasions during the Government of Alvaro Uribe (2002-2010). For example, #09BOGOTA849 states that, “CTI investigators reportedly found evidence that since 2004, the DAS had a unit dedicated to spying on groups and individuals considered a threat to the GOC. Originally known as the “G-3” group, the unit did not officially exist and reported only to the DAS director or the deputies in charge of intelligence and counterintelligence. “Semana” reported that besides numerous leftist groups and politicians, the G-3 also collected information on Supreme and Constitutional Court magistrates, Colombian Army officials, and their relatives. The unit was disbanded in late 2005 after a similar domestic spying scandal, but the article claims DAS continued domestic spying through the “National and International Group for Observation and Verification” (GONI) set up in 2006.”

The biggest scandal came in 2009 after weekly publication Semana broke the news that DAS had spied on Supreme Court Auxiliary Magistrate Ivan Velazquez and other leading magistrates that were working on a case investigating links between top level officials of GOC and paramilitary leaders. According to #09BOGOTA688, Semana stated that Velazquez “was followed by DAS detectives and may have had as many as 1900 of his calls illegally tapped over two years”. This quickly led to accusations by the Court that the Government of Colombia was trying to cover up its high level connections to right wing terrorist organizations. The Government denied its involvement in the scheme and was then placed under serious pressure to control DAS, to which Ex-President Uribe complied by placing them under the jurisdiction of the Colombian National Police (CNP) as well as by creating an investigative commission that vowed to identify the culprits.


Categories: Articles

Freedom and Future in Turkey – a cable analysis series – Part 1, RELIGION

April 13, 2011 1 comment

Turkey is a land of many lands. A checkpoint, a bridge between the East and the West used by many cultures and civilizations across the history of humankind. In many ways, however, the country is not only divided by the classical dichotomy between Europe and Asia, as it is a nation made up of many different groups, clans and tribes.  It is difficult to accept that those living in Bodrum along the Mediterranean beaches are from the same country as those living in the deserted  Diyarbakir; and it would be hard to argue that those living in the orthodox Kayseri are as Turkish as those in modern Istanbul. Colloquially one could say that Turkey suffers from an identity problem. This has been seen as an obstacle for the government, obsessed with standardizing religion so as to moderate extremist clans that have a unfavourable view in Europe. To unite people under the giant Turkish state, the government has spread the same flag over the whole country, trying to make it present in every village, town or major city. But far away from making one single body of Anatolian citizens, the red fabric painted with a star and a moon all abroad the country only denounces the paradox of Turkish society in religious affairs.

We will be publishing a series of reports related to freedom on turkish lands and minds. For more information or if you want to help us continue our work contact us at or on Twitter @wikileaks_world.


Turkey,s reputation as a moderate, tolerant, and secular country is due in large measure to the oppressive and authoritarian manner in which the State monitors and controls religion” (05ANKARA6106).

Allowing rare exceptions, almost everyone in Turkey considers oneself a muslim. According to U.S. diplomacy (2005), around 98% of the Turkish population are muslims.  This , however, is shallow information, as it is necessary to totally review the concept of ‘being a muslim’ to understand specific ‘turkish islamism”’. While Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir are somehow liberal cities, outside these big centers most people  practice Islam in the traditional way. The general conclusion is that although the state tries to gather muslims in Turkey into a single body, there are several differentiated sects and tribes of them in the country.

Religious structure was established in the 1924 Constitution, after the liberal revolution guided by the national hero Ataturk installed an ideological secular state, formally known in Turkey as Kemalism.  The Kemalist doctrine proposes equality regarding the relationship between the state and religious sects. Apart from the possible benefits, it still implies the end of the traditional Muslim society (, where each religious sect  enjoyed a degree of autonomy, with their own leadership, collecting their own taxes and living according to their own system. In an attempt to implement this new social order, the Directorate for Religious Affairs (Diyanet) was created  “to  execute  the works concerning the beliefs, worship, and ethics of  Islam,  enlighten the public about their religion, and administer the  sacred  worshipping places”.

With these actions the Turkish government is essentially trying to reconstruct and portray Turkey as a moderate Islamic society:

Turkey has the reputation of being the home of “moderate Islam” because it combines a “secular” political system with a tolerant strand of Sunni Islam (…) The majority of Turks subscribe to the Hanafi school of Sunni Islam. The Hanafi school is one of the more open-minded and tolerant strands of Sunni Islam.” (05ANKARA6106)

Standardization, however, is never without resistance. In this case, the problem is that Diyanet is always seen as adjacent to the Sunni majority, the religious majority in the country and currently in power. It is obvious that the Sunni Shafi’i and the Alevi sects do not have the same support by the state as the dominant Sunni Hanafi. This works in the same way as the Armenian Greagorians, Roman Catholics, Syriac Orthodox, Chaldean Catholics, Greek Orthodox,  Bulgarian Orthodoxes, Georgian Orthodoxes and Protestants , all of which are also neglected by the government. Cables 05ANKARA1511, 05ANKARA1935 and 05ADANA191 express the Christian persecution in Turkey, especially in the South, performed by the  Directorate for Religious Affairs (Diyanet). To solve this bad reputation Diyanet has been designing “outreach programs”, aimed specifically towards certain religious groups so as to integrate or model them after what they believe will serve the nation.

State funds are used to construct mosques, but the state spends no money on Alevi houses of worship, Jewish synagogues, or Christian churches. All Muslim school age students are required to take classes in the Hanafi-Sunni tradition of Islam, regardless of their personal sectarian beliefs. Non-Muslim students are not required to take these courses, but alternative courses are not offered by the state. Private religious classes are illegal and proselytizing by non-Muslims, while not illegal, is viewed with great suspicion and actively discouraged”. (05ANKARA6106).

For a  more specific example, Cable 07ANKARA747,  describes the attempt made by Diyanet to reach out to the important Alevi group: “Diyanet Foreign Relations Vice Chair Mehmet Gormez recently told us that the Diyanet is increasing its outreach efforts to Alevis to dispel the notion that the Diyanet is an exclusively Sunni organization”.

“The new programs include more in-depth training on Alevism for Sunni religious

officials, government sponsored trips to Europe for Alevi religious leaders to support Alevi education and plans to publish a definitive Alevi history.This attempt, however, has been carried out for the wrong reasons, according to Alevi organizations. They have accused Diyanet of being “authoritative” and “insincere” in its actions. For example, Pir Sultan Abdal Alevi Association President Kazim Genc said that  “Diyanet remains an exclusive, discriminatory Sunni organization.  The Diyanet employs only Sunnis, and only meets with Alevi groups that share its views”

Many leaders have also pointed out that these “outreach plans” are merely carried out to please the European Union in their demand for equality towards Alevis, and a general feeling of failure and resentment is present:

“Many of Turkey’s Alevis have long found it offensive that the GOT does not recognize them as a distinct relgious group or allow them to freely practice their religion (…)Alevis want the government to treat Alevism equally in public school religion courses and in the allocation of public funds for the construction and administration of cem houses.”

The headscarf polemic

In April 2007, Military performed an intervention on politics to prevent the election as president of a Abdullah Gul, a person whose wife wore the headscarf. The banning of the headscarf  has always been a strong symbol of the secular state established by Ataturk’s revolution. At the end, Abdulla won the presidential elections and in 2008 AKP, leaded by him, in a joint with MHP- Nationalist Movement Party -, passed a law allowing wearing headscarves in universities. Turkey’s chief prosecutor, Abdurrahman Yalçınkaya, asked the Constitutional Court to close the AKP – Justice and Development Party – with accusations of ‘anti-laicistic activities’. The case was concluded on 30 July 2008 with the judgment that the AKP had been at the centre of activitiesviolating secularism. After deliberating for three months, Constitutional Court decided not to close the party, AKP was deprived of half of the grant provided by the Treasury.

Regarding this matter, a cable from 2008 classified by Ambassor Ross Wilson points out that Endorgan “allowed himself to be  goaded by the National Action Party (MHP) into putting the  headscarf ban at the head of the reform queue.  For this  short-term populist win, he sacrificed a larger  constitutional reform package that would have significantly  strengthened Turkey’s democracy. (…)  These and other missteps exacerbated fears among  many that Erdogan was going too far, too fast; that there  were no effective constraints on the AKP (especially after  the military’s botched intervention last spring); and that  fundamentalists might soon dominate the bureaucracy,  judiciary, universities, etc., to change Turkey in dangerous  and permanent ways”. (08ANKARA691).

Control for political objectives

The crusade for control over religion for political purposes has turned the supposed free, secular turkish state into on that “actively monitors and represses religious expression ( …). The Turkish state hires and trains all religious officials (imams and muftis); appoints them to their posts; and pays their salaries. The state writes the sermons that most of the imams deliver at Friday prayers; picks which imam in each mosque gets to deliver the Friday sermon; and uses undercover intelligence officials to monitor their activities.”. (05ANKARA6106).

These actions are opposed to the ideals of the 1924 revolution of a secular and fair state. The seem to follow the political will to adapt Turkey to western standards as a part of the project of joining the E.U. This has forced the leading party, AKP to adopt insincere behaviors regarding its objectives and legality. Although known as religious oriented party and supporting religion in the ways we exposed above, AKP is officially and publicly a secular party, since Turkish constitution and party law bans parties formed around sectarianism, ethnicity or regionalism. On this subject 05ANKARA6106 states that: “nonetheless, AKP is an Islam-oriented political party. The leaders and grassroots members of AKP largely come from the Refah and Fazilet parties, banned for Islamic extremism in 1998 and 2001 respectively” (…)A variety of Embassy contacts assert that AKP,s senior leadership does not really believe in religious tolerance, but merely pretends to support tolerance in an effort to court Western favor and promote Turkey,s EU membership bid”.

In cable 04ANKARA7211, the crude political ambitions of Turkish politicians is revealed as ambassador Eric Edelman reported that “We have also run into the rarely openly-spoken, but widespread belief among adherents of the Turk-Islam synthesis that Turkey’s role is to spread Islam in Europe, “to take back Andalusia and avenge the defeat at the siege of Vienna in 1683” as one participant in a recent meeting at AKP’s main think tank put it”.

The result is that, “while Turkish law explicitly denies religiously-derived ideas and sentiments any place in the public square, religious institutions are not only under strict state control, but are in fact an integral part of the Turkish State apparatus”. (03ANKARA4767).

Thus, the fake secular political system has problems that require an urgent solution to turn Turkey into a country with reasonable levels of religious freedom. The selective subsidies given to religious infrastructure, the manipulation of religious education and the privileges given to Sunni beliefs and traditions are crippling the bold ideals of the Turkish republic dreamed in Ataturk´s revolution. As of now, “Islam as it is lived in Turkey is stultified, riddled with hypocrisy, ignorant and intolerant of other religions’ presence in Turkey(…)Until Turkey ensures that the humanist strain in Islam prevails here, Islam in Turkey will remain a troubled, defensive force, hypocritical to an extreme degree and unwilling to adapt to the challenges of open society”. (04ANKARA7211).

Categories: Articles, English

25/02/2011 Paramilitary organizations inside Colombian government: human rights violations continue.

February 25, 2011 1 comment

Over the last decade, the Colombian government has tried hard to free itself from the bonds between government officials, congressmen and military leaders and right the wing paramilitary United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia. The group is sponsored by a wide range of people: from high profile corporations and politicians to small landowners looking to protect their interests from opposite guerrilla formations such as FARC (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia) and ELN (Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional). Their actual political and economic power is a matter of concern and in the past even ex-President Alvaro Uribe has been questioned about his and his government’s involvement in illegal activities related to the organization. During these years violence has been widespread and thousands of people –civilians, businessmen and politicians have been killed or kidnapped.

President Juan Manuel Santos and General Mario Montoya

President Juan Manuel Santos and General Mario Montoya

For example a cable from 2006 #06BOGOTA1981 mentions that Uribe named Major General Mario Montoya Commander of the Colombian Army (COLAR), a key strategic security post in the country, adding that “Montoya is reportedly close to President Uribe, whom he met while serving as the Fourth Brigade Commander in Medellin”. The cable then goes on to briefly highlight Montoya’s experience in the field, especially with Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela, after which it adds that the COLAR Counter-Intelligence Center (CECIM)had previously investigated Montoya “for corruption, possible ties to the United Self Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC), and narcotics trafficking, stemming from his time in Antioquia Department and along the north coast. According to DAO reporting, Montoya allegedly was involved in scams with corrupt Colombian National Police officials who allowed him to take credit for drug seizures and anti-terrorist operations, while protecting the narcotrafficking activities of, and providing weapons to, the AUC”. It also states, however, that the “Embassy is not aware of evidence to corroborate these allegations and does not have access to the results of the CECIM investigation”.

In 2008, “Montoya stepped down less than a week after President Alvaro Uribe’s dismissal of 27 military officers for their roles in the disappearance and subsequent murders of young men from Soacha and Antioquia. Montoya had been the subject of multiple human rights complaints during his tenure, including alleged abuses committed in Medellin’s poorer neighborhoods during Operation Orion, collusion with paramilitaries, and demanding “body count” as a measure of operational success.” (#08BOGOTA4028).  At the time the Colombian press quoted U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy, who said this was a “long overdue and positive step”.

Interestingly the same cable mentions NGOs complaining that Montoya’s substitute at the head of COLAR was his own protégé Major General Oscar Enrique Gonzalez Pena, criticizing his “close association with Montoya, and voiced concerns regarding 45 alleged extrajudicial killings committed by the 4th Brigade during his command”. Montoya recommended his substitute directly to Uribe and reportedly commented to the media in Colombia that he was the “’best commander in the country’ during his tenure as 4th Brigade commander because his unit reported the most combat kills—857”. At the time, Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos, now President of Colombia, told the U.S. Ambassador he was concerned about Gonzalez Pena’s implications with paramilitary groups. He also put pressure on Uribe not to choose him but was ignored, Santos then “met with Gonzalez who assured him that he was “clean” on all fronts”. Viceministers Pinzon and Jaramillo, however, remained opposed and said that he “could be an obstacle to further improvements on human rights”.

Human Rights Watch, in a letter directed to current Viceminister Angelino Garzon last January, said that President Juan Manuel Santos is on the right track to solve the serious human rights problems in Colombia, however, it firmly states that there is still much to be done and calls for “bold measures by the current government”. They have argued that “in 2010, more massacres were committed in Colombia than in any other year since the beginning of the Justice and Peace process in 2005. The 38 massacres recorded between January and November 2010 represented a 41 percent increase over the same period from the previous year”. The letter also mentions that there are still many trade union leaders and human rights spokespeople being threatened, kidnapped and killed with impunity throughout Colombia. Reporters Without Borders places Colombia in the 145th place (out of 178) in its list regarding free press and safety for journalists.  On the same note, Joel Simon, executive director for Committee to Protect Journalists recently said: “We’ve heard repeated pledges from governments that the killers of journalists will face justice, but until these promises are fulfilled, media will continue to be targeted by those who believe they are above the law and immune from consequence”

Categories: Articles

24/02/2011 Rusia y España: Mafia, conexiones, verdades a medias y secretos públicos

February 25, 2011 1 comment

El Fiscal de la Fiscalía Especial contra la Corrupción y la Criminalidad Organizada Jose “Pepe” Grinda González, que trabajo en el proceso de Zahkar Kalashov, un vor v zakone -el rango más alto en la jerarquía de la mafia rusa-, presentó recientemente un detallado análisis de las operaciones del Gobierno Español en contra del Crimen Organizado ruso (CO) o mafia Eurasiatica en una reunión a puerta cerrada con expertos en el tema, en donde explica que considera a Rusia, Bielorrusia y Chechenia como “estados-mafia”, y señala que Ucrania sigue el mismo camino. Cable:10MADRID154.

Grinda también cita notablemente la tesis mantenida por Alexander Litvinenko, el ex agente de los servicios de inteligencia rusos, que trabajaba en temas relacionados con el CO y que murió envenenado en Londres por polonio-210 radioactivo en 2006. Litvinenko sostenía que “el Servicio de Seguridad Ruso (FSB), el Servicio de Inteligencia Extranjero (SVR) y el GRU (servicio ruso inteligencia militar) – controlan el crimen organizado en Rusia”.

El cable también menciona a Grinda diciendo que “cree que el SSR está “absorbiendo” la mafia Rusa, pero que también puede ‘eliminarla’ de dos maneras: matando a los líderes de la mafia que no hacen lo que los servicios de seguridad les piden, o encerrándolos para eliminarlos de la competición por influencia. Los jefes podrían también ser encarcelados para su propia protección”. Argumenta, además, que el “Partido Democrático Liberal (PDL) fue creado por la KGB – el viejo comité para las seguridad del estado, fuerza a la que pertenecía Vladimir Putin – y que contiene muchos criminales de gran escala. Grinda añade que existen lazos comprobados entre los partidos políticos rusos, el crimen organizado y el tráfico de armas. Sin elaborar demasiado, cita el enigmático caso del “Barco del Océano Ártico” como un “claro ejemplo de tráfico de armas”.

Según el Telegraph, Este barco estuvo desaparecido aproximadamente durante un mes en verano de 2009 y fue recuperado en la costa de África Occidental el 17 de agosto. Todo lo sucedido está envuelto en un aire de misterio, pero parece claro que el barco estaba siendo observado de cerca por el Mossad (el servicio de inteligencia israelita), que declararía luego que el barco no contenía madera, como mantenía Moscú, sino misiles S-300, el arma anti-aérea más avanzada del gobierno Ruso. Su destino final era Irán.

El crimen organizado y el gobierno ruso

En el mismo cable Grinda afirma que “tras investigar el CO durante 10-12 años había llegado a la conclusión que si bien las organizaciones terroristas intentan sustituir la esencia propia del Estado, el CO intenta convertirse en un complemento de sus estructuras”.

También dice que “el CO empieza a acumular poder económico y político cuando consigue contratos civiles legales en proyectos civiles y relacionados con la construcción de infraestructuras”. Al referirse a los altos mandos de la organización (los vor v zakone) dice que estos “no se mezclan en crímenes como el asesinato, extorsión o chantaje, sino que se concentran en actividades de mayor posición jerárquica, como la compra de altos cargos del Gobierno”.

Uno de estos altos mandos, Gennadios Petrov, principal objetivo de la Operación Troika, llevada a cabo en España (para más información sobre la Operación lee más abajo), estaba, según nos cuenta Grinda, “peligrosamente cerca” de las altas esferas del GdR. Petrov fue, de manera curiosa y sorpresiva, puesto en libertad bajo fianza por jueces Españoles, y desde el 31 de enero de 2010 está bajo arresto domiciliario.

Varios países colaboraron en la investigación, que sigue abierta, entre ellos Alemania, Suiza, Austria, Bélgica y los EEUU. También sacó a relucir la reciente colaboración del gobierno francés y, más importante aún, la falta de colaboración del Reino Unido, país en que murió el ex espia Litvinenko y que bloqueó las investigaciones pertinentes al caso.

En cuanto a la colaboración del gobierno Ruso, Grinda recuerda los esfuerzos que hizo España para arrestar a Tariel Oniani como parte de la Operación Avispa (más
información abajo). “En junio de 2005, el georgiano Oniani escapó a Rusia horas antes de que fuese arrestado en España y Rusia le hizo ciudadano en abril de 2006, a pesar de su calidad de prófugo de la justicia española. Cita este hecho como “un ejemplo de Rusia poniendo a criminales de alto rango a trabajar para sus intereses”. También alega que el Ministerio de Interior Ruso está protegiendo a Oniani incluso mientras esta encarcelado. Cuando este fue arrestado en Moscu en junio de 2009, Espana solicitó su extradición basándose en los datos recogidos por la Operación Avispa, a lo que Rusia respondió diciendo que la ciudadanía Rusa de Oniani le protege de ser extraditado.

La Operación Troika

Fue llevada a cabo en Mallorca, Málaga, Madrid y Alicante, y su objetivo principal era Gennadios Petrov y sus colaboradores más cercanos, todos de la familia criminal de Tambov-Malyshev.

El cable 09MADRID869 revela: “La Fase I de Op Troika, ejecutada en junio de 2008, resultó en el arresto de veinte líderes de la familia criminal de Tambov-Malyshev, acusados de conspiración criminal, blanqueo de dinero, falsificación de documentos y crímenes contra las finanzas publicas. Muchos de los arrestados eran “vor v zakone” o “Criminales de Ley”, el peldaño mas alto del liderazgo del crimen organizado Ruso. En particular, Gennadios Petrov, el supuesto líder, Alexander Malyshev, su consejero y Vitaly Izquilov, uno de sus tenientes, que gozaba de libertad bajo fianza después de su arresto en la Operación Avispa. Todos ellos formaban uno de los cuatro círculos criminales más grandes del mundo y el más grande de la Mafia Rusa. España sirvió como refugio de las autoridades y grupos rivales. Baltazar Garzón, el juez del Tribunal Supremo que dirigió la investigación, acusó al grupo de lavado de dinero en España proveniente de una gran variedad de actividades ilícitas, que incluían asesinatos a sueldo, ventas de drogas y armas, extorsión, coerción, chantaje y secuestros.

El diario conservador ABC reportó en julio de 2008 que el gobierno de España había grabado miles de conversaciones durante la investigación de dos años. Fuentes anónimas revelaron al diario que 230 de esas grabaciones “te pondrían los pelos de punta” por la gravedad de revelaciones sobre los acusados –especialmente Petrov- y su inmenso poder y conexión políticas, además de la cantidad de actividad criminal en Rusia llevada a cabo desde España. Más de una vez se mencionan altos oficiales del gobierno ruso para asegurar a sus socios que sus actividades criminales seguirían tal y como habían sido planeadas. La prensa sugirió en su momento que esta evidencia, extremadamente delicada, podría afectar las relaciones bilaterales entre ambos países. Además, añadieron que los detalles de la operación Troika están tan bien asegurados que sólo diez de los más altos cargos del gobierno Espanol estarían al tanto de todos.

El ABC proclama que Vladislav Retznik, un colaborador cercano de Petrov, goza de fuertes lazos con el GdR: no sólo actuaba como mano derecha de Petrov, sino que además “lo más significativo es que Retznik no es un diputado más dentro de la Duma, no sólo preside el comité legislativo de mercados financieros y es viceportavoz de su grupo parlamentario-, sino que es alguien muy próximo al primer ministro Putin y que puede presumir de la amistad del presidente del país, Dmitri Medvédev, y de la del presidente del Sberbank (primer banco ruso), German Fref, hasta hace poco titular del Ministerio de Economía y Desarrollo.”
El diario ruso Novaya Gazeta publica que “un hombre de negocios anónimo de San Petersburgo, que trató tanto con la “Malyshevskie” como con la “tambovskie” en los noventa, contó a uno de sus corresponsales que la operación española podría tener consecuencias no deseadas para ciertos miembros de la élite política y económica de Rusia. Esta fuente considera que los citados “Rusos Españoles” podrían haber estado en contacto recientemente con altos mandos de Moscú. En particular, algunos medios nombraron a Igor Sechin en relación a Ilia Traber y Gennady Petrov. Igor Sechin es el antiguo jefe delegado de la Administración del Presidente y es ahora uno de los delegados del primer ministro.”

También en 09MADRID869 se menciona que “múltiples informes alegan que Moscú fue dejado fuera de la investigación Troika –cuya Fase II resultó en la detención de tres abogados en el Sur de España en Abril de 2009- por miedo a filtraciones a criminales objetivo del GdE. Moscú está interesado en conocer las pruebas exactas que tienen los españoles y ha enviado investigadores a reunirse con mandos del GdE en más de media docena de ocasiones desde los arrestos pertenecientes a la Fase I de la operación Troika. El Presidente del Gobierno, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero y el Presidente ruso Dmitri Medvedev se han reunido tres veces desde entonces, incluida la ocasión en Madrid en Marzo de 2009, cuando los dos líderes elevaron las relaciones bilaterales de los dos países a la categoría de asociación estratégica y firmaron un MoU –Memorandum of Understanding, “Memorandum de entendemiento” acerca de la cooperación en temas de CO.”

Operación Avispa

Llevada a cabo por el Juez Fernando Andreu, colega de Baltasar Garzón, “tenía como objetivo la presencia del CO ruso, georgiano y ucraniano en España, que presuntamente blanqueaba dinero proveniente de casinos ilegales en Rusia mediante la inversión en el mercado inmobiliario español”.
La fase III de la operación, llevada a cabo en 2007, terminó con tres arrestos más, incluido el de Eduard Planells,subdelegado del Gobierno de Cataluña, por ayudar a miembros de la mafia rusa a obtener visados de trabajo para entrar legalmente en el país. Más información en El Mundo.
Del mismo cable, 09MADRID869: “Si bien oficiales del Gobierno de España (GdE) proclamaron públicamente la Operación Avispa como un éxito, informes de prensa posteriores sugieren que las autoridades tuvieron que enfrentarse a filtraciones y desbarajustes burocráticos. Zahkar Kalashov y Tariel Oniani – ciudadanos rusos de origen georgiano, principales objetivos de la Operación Avispa- fueron aparentemente alertados horas antes de la redada ocurrida en 2005 y volaron fuera del país.”
“Los servicios de seguridad rusos o una fuente corrupta en el GdE han sido citados como posibles culpables”.
Kalashov sería posteriormente arrestado en Dubai y rápidamente extraditado a España, que había presentado una orden de arresto mediante la Interpol.
Kalashov “cambió sus abogados en Diciembre de 2008. Días después uno de sus nuevos abogados, Alfonso Díaz Monux, murió por disparos de un sicario desconocido en su garaje de Madrid. De todas formas, Díaz había recibido amenazas de muerte durante casi un año por su trabajo con otro cliente.”
Como ha sido mencionado anteriormente, el GdR protegió a uno de sus ciudadanos. “Informes de prensa españoles sugieren que Madrid ha expresado interés en la extradición de Tariel Oniani, arrestado por autoridades rusas en Moscú en Junio de 2009. España ha buscado a Oniani mediante la interpol desde 2005. Aún así, XXXXXXXXXXXX sugirió a POLOFF el 17 de Agosto que Moscú no va a extraditar a Oniani a España.”
El Mundo, periódico español de centro-derecha, publicó el 6 de Julio de 2009 un reportaje exhaustivo acerca de la absoluta falta de cooperación por parte del gobierno de Gran Bretaña a la hora de detener al criminal ruso Michael Tcherney, acusado de lavar dinero en Alicante.
Tcherney había huído de Rusia en los noventa después de ser implicado en una estafa bancaria por valor de 200 millones de dólares

Como reza el cable 09MADRID1003, “Fernando Bermejo, fiscal delegado de la Fiscalía Anticorrupción de Barcelona, encargado también de casos de blanqueo de dinero, afirmó que hay una operación de lavado de dinero a gran escala afincada en Barcelona, y “muchos, muchos” miembros de la mafia Eurasiática operando en la zona. Él y Gerardo Cavero, fiscal coordinador de la Fiscalía Antidroga del Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Cataluña, sugirieron que las declaraciones públicas de altos mandos Españoles a mediados del 2008 acerca de que las redadas habían “decapitado” la mafia rusa en España se trataban de declaraciones optimistas realizadas en un momento de euforia que no reflejan la realidad.

Para detallar el nivel de involucración en negocios españoles, Grinda menciona uno de los bufetes de abogados líderes en España, Cuatrecasas: “¿Por qué Cuatrecasas defiende constantemente a miembros de la mafia rusa?”. Emilio Cuatrecasas, fundador, ha negado conexión con el CO, declarando que “durante los últimos cinco años y en diferentes momentos y procedimientos, nuestro Departamento de Derecho Penal ha prestado asesoramiento y defensa jurídica a cuatro clientes, sin ninguna relación entre sí, de origen ruso o de otras ex repúblicas soviéticas” También hizo mención a otros dos clientes imputados por blanqueo de dinero, “un empresario alemán de origen ruso, y relevante miembro de la comunidad judía alemana y, el otro, un importante empresario israelí. El primero de estos clientes se encuentra en Alemania a la espera de juicio y el segundo está en Israel, país que ha denegado su extradición a España por falta de pruebas”.
En su página web se informa de la fusión con la firma portuguesa Gonçalves Pereira y de su asesoramiento a Qatar Holding en su acuerdo con Banco Santander para América Latina.
También declaran que han vuelto a la “senda del crecimiento”, con una facturación el pasado año de 241,7 millones de euros.

Categories: Articles, articulos, Espanol

24/02/2011 Russia and Spain: Organized Crime, half truths and public secrets

February 24, 2011 4 comments


Court Prosecutor Jose “Pepe” Grinda Gonzalez was involved in the prosecution of Zahkar Kalashov, a Vory V Zakone (highest echelon in Russian Mafia or Eurasian mafia leadership). He has been addressed by some as the “executing hand of the USG regarding the Russian mafia.”

In 10MADRID154 , he gave a detailed assessment on Spain’s operations against Russian Organized Crime (OC) in a closed door meeting with experts on the subject, where he explained he considers Belarus, Chechnya and Russia to be virtual “mafia states” and Ukraine a soon-to-be-one. Grinda also cites a “thesis” by Alexander Litvinenko that he believes is accurate. Litvinenko, the former Russian intelligence official who worked on OC issues, died in London from poisoning under mysterious circumstances in late 2006. He believed that “the Russian Security Service (FSB), the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), and its military intelligence (GRU) – control OC in Russia”.

The cable also mentions Grinda saying that “he believes the FSB is “absorbing” the Russian mafia but they can also “eliminate” them in two ways: by killing OC leaders who do not do what the security services want them to do or by putting them behind bars to eliminate them as a competitor for influence. The crimelords can also be put in jail for their own protection.”

He argues that “the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) was created by the KGB -Russia’s old Committee for State Security, a force to which Vladimir Putin belonged- and is home to many serious criminals”. Grinda further alleged that there are proven ties between the Russian political parties, organized crime and arms trafficking. He also mentioned, without elaborating, the strange case of the “Arctic Sea” ship in mid-2009 as “a clear example” of arms trafficking. The “Arctic Sea” disappeared for about a month in the summer of 2009 and was later recovered from the coast of West Africa on August 17. A great deal of mystery surrounds the whole case but it is known that the ship was being monitored by the Mossad (Israel’s intelligence service), which would later claimed that the boat didn’t contain timber, as Moscow had declared, but S-300 missiles, Russia’s most advanced anti-aircraft weapon. The final destination was Iran.

Further reading:

Russian mafia and the Russian State

Grinda states that “10-12 years’ worth of investigations on OC has led him to believe that whereas terrorists aim to substitute the essence of the state itself, OC seeks to be a complement to state structures”.

He also notes that “OC begins to accumulate both economic and political power when it begins to bid for contract tenders on civil works and infrastructure projects.”

He then talked a bit about heads of the organization, the Vory V Zakone, saying that they “do not engage in racketeering and murder, preferring to distance themselves from this activity and focus on crimes that are further up in the hierarchy, such as corruption of high-level ministers”.

Grinda commented that Gennadios Petrov, the chief target of Spain’s Operation Troika (further reading on Operation Troika below), was engaged in a “dangerously  close” level of contact with senior Russian officials. In a surprise move, Spanish judges granted bail to Petrov, who is out on house arrest as of January 31, 2010.

Grinda has noted that Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium and the U.S. have been valuable partners in supplementing information to further flesh out his office’s understanding of the Russian mafia’s activities. He added that Spain is beginning to collaborate with France on these issues, but singled out the United Kingdom for its lack of cooperation. It is worth noting that the ex-spy Litvinenko died in a London hospital, further investigation into the affair was blocked by the UK.

When referring to his government’s collaboration with Russia, Grinda recalled Spain’s efforts to arrest Tariel Oniani as part of Operation Avispa (more information on Operation Avispa below). “In June 2005, Georgian-born Oniani fled to Russia hours before he was to be arrested in Spain and Russia gave him citizenship in April 2006, despite the fact that he had fled Spanish justice. He cites this fact as “an example of Russia putting crimelords to work on behalf of its interests”. Grinda alleged that the Russian Ministry of Interior and the FSB are closely protecting Oniani in Russia (even in prison). Following Oniani’s arrest in Moscow in June 2009, Spain requested his extradition for charges stemming from Operation Avispa, to which Russia replied that Oniani’s Russian citizenship prevented him from being extradited.

Operation Troika

This police operation was conducted in Mallorca, Malaga, Madrid and Alicante and its main target was Gennadios Petrov and some of his closest collaborators, all from Russia’s Tambov-Malyshev crime family.

Cable 09MADRID869 :

“Phase I of Op Troika, which was executed in June 2008 resulted in the arrest of 20 top leaders of Russia’s Tambov-Malyshev crime family for criminal conspiracy, money laundering, document falsification and crimes against public finances. Most of those arrested were “Vory v Zakone” or “Thieves in Law,” the highest echelon of  Russian OC leadership. In particular, Gennadios Petrov, the alleged leader, Alexander Malyshev, Petrov’s deputy, and Vitaly Izguilov, a key lieutenant who was out on bail from his arrest in Operation Avispa, allegedly formed the leadership of one of the four largest OC networks in the  world and the largest Russian OC network. Spain served as the group’s safehaven from authorities and rival OC networks in Russia from which they directed their illicit business. Baltasar Garzon, the National  Court judge who directed the investigation, accused the group of laundering money in Spain that came from a range of illicit activities conducted elsewhere, including contract killings, arms and drug  trafficking, extortion, coercion, threats and kidnapping.”

Conservative daily ABC reported in July 2008 that the Government of Spain’s (GoS) security services “tapped ‘thousands’ of conversations in its two-year investigation. Unnamed sources told the newspaper that 230 of those intercepts “will make your hair stand on end” because of their revelations on the Troika  defendants’ – especially Petrov’s – immense power and political  connections, as well as the range of criminal activity in Russia that  the Troika defendants directed from Spain. According to the article, Troika mafia leaders invoked the names of senior Government of Russia (GoR) officials to assure partners that their illicit deals would proceed as planned. The press suggests this “sensitive” evidence could impact bilateral relations and adds that the “extremely delicate” details of Op Troika are so close-hold that barely ten high level government officials are aware of them all.

ABC also claims that Vladislav Retznik, a very close collaborator to Petrov, has very strong ties to Russia: not only does he work as Petrov’s right hand; he is also chair of Duma‘s (Russian lower House of Parliament) Financial Markets Committee and vicespokesman of its parliamentary group. Retznik happens to be “very close to Russian’s PM Vladimir Putin and is also a close friend of Russian president Dmitri Medvedev and German Fref, president of Sberbank and a key member of the Ministry of Economy and Development”.

The whole article can be found here:

On the other hand, Russian daily Novaya Gazeta states that “an anonymous businessman from St Petersburg, who dealt both with “Malyshevskie” and “Tambovskie” in the 90’s, told one of their correspondents that the Spanish operation might have undesirable consequences for some members of the Russian political and business elite. This source considers that those “Russian Spanish” might have been in contact till recently with some high ranking officials in Moscow. In particular, some media gave the name of Igor Sechin in relation to Ilia Traber and Gennady Petrov. Igor Sechin is the former deputy head of the President’s Administration and now he is one of the deputies prime minister.”

You can read the whole article at:

In 09MADRID869 it is noted that: “Multiple press reports allege that Moscow was left out of the loop on the Troika investigation – whose Phase II raid resulted in the detention of three lawyers in southern Spain in April 2009 – due to Madrid’s fear of leaks to GoS OC targets. Moscow reportedly is interested in learning what exactly the Spanish have as evidence and has sent investigators to Spain for meetings with GoS officials on more than a half a dozen occasions  since the Troika Phase I arrests. Spanish President José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and Russian President Dmitri Medvedev have met three times  since then, including in Madrid in March 2009, when the two leaders upgraded the bilateral relationship to a strategic partnership and signed an MoU -Memorandum of Understanding- on cooperation on OC matters.”

[For MoU see]

Operation Avispa

This Op. was conducted by Judge Garzón‘s colleague, Judge Fernando Andreu, it “targeted the Russian, Georgian and Ukrainian OC presence in Spain, which allegedly laundered money from illegal casinos in Russia by investing in the Spanish real estate market”

Phase III of the operation, conducted in 2007, resulted in three more arrests, including the Spanish national government’s number-two official in the Catalan region, Eduard Planells, for allegedly helping members of the “Russian” mafia secure work visas to  allow them to enter the country legally.

– Further reading:

“Although GoS officials in 2005 publicly proclaimed Avispa a success, subsequent press reports suggest authorities struggled with leaks and bureaucratic snafus. Zahkar Kalashov and Tariel Oniani – Georgian-born Russian citizens who were the primary Avispa targets – apparently were both tipped off hours before the 2005 raid occurred and fled the country […] the Russian security services or a corrupt source within the GoS have been cited as possible culprits”. Kalashov would later be arrested in Dubai and quickly extradited to Spain, which had placed an arrest order via Interpol.

As said before, the Government of Russia decided to protect its citizens: “Spanish press reports suggest that Madrid has expressed interest in the extradition of Tariel Oniani, whom Russian authorities arrested in Moscow in June 2009. Spain has sought Oniani through Interpol since 2005. However,XXXXXXXXXXXX suggested to POLOFF on August 17 that Moscow is unlikely to extradite Oniani to Spain.”

The leaks also states that El Mundo, center-right daily from Spain, published on July 6, 2009 an extensive report on Britain’s absolute lack of cooperation to detain russian criminal Michael Tcherney, accused of money laundering in Alicante. Tcherney had fled Russia in the 90s after his alleged implication in a 200 million dollar bank scam: (page 15).

Cable 09MADRID1003 states that, Fernando Bermejo, the city’s prosecutor for anti-mafia, anti-corruption and money laundering issues, claimed that there is large scale money laundering going on in Catalonia and “many, many” members of the Eurasian mafia are active in the region. He and Gerardo Cavero, Barcelona’s chief prosecutor on counter-narcotics and organized crime suggested that public declarations by senior Spanish officials in mid-2008 (see  Ref A) that the raid that nabbed Petrov and others had “decapitated” the  Russian mafia in Spain were optimistic statements made in a moment of euphoria that did not reflect the current reality”.

Other organizations Involved

To grip the level of involvement in Spanish businesses, Grinda mentions one of Spanish leading law firms, Cuatrecasas, saying it “constantly defends Russian mafia members”. Emilio Cuatrecasas, the founder, has denied any factual connection to the Russian mafia, stating that the four clients they counseled and defended, from Russia or other ex-soviet republics were not connected. He also said, however, that he had defended two other clients from money laundering charges: one was Israeli and the other, Russian.

On their website they have reported a merger with a Portuguese firm – Gonçalves Pereira- and they are both counseling Qatar Holding (Qatar Intermediate Industries Holding Company Limited) in the signing of a treaty with Banco Santander for Latin America. They have stated that they are “back to the growth path”, with a revenue of 241.7 millions Euros last year.

Categories: Articles

23/02/2011 – Five major newspapers debate Wikileaks in Madrid

February 24, 2011 Leave a comment

Today the auditorium of the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid hosted a debate between the chief editors of the five major newspapers involved in cablegate: Javier Moreno from El Pais, Alan Rudbridger from The Guardian, Sylvie Kauffmann from Le Monde, Georg Mascolo from Der Spiegel and Bill Keller representing The New York Times. The theme was the future of journalism in the new global context set by Wikileaks.

There was plenty of expectation, and early on in Twitter trends users were wondering if weThe Guardia, NY Times, Der Spiegel, Le Monde and El Pais meeting in Madrid to discuss Wikileaks would see a true discussion and not an orchestrated charade. This was important as most of the audience was made up of young reporters and students on assignment from their Universities: if the debate was to be centered on the future of journalism and its new model then the way it was to be carried out had to be convincing for the future players present. It seemed, however, that the organizers had planned on trying to have a big impact on the future generations, as they lined up students of a journalism Master sponsored by El Pais behind the main participants, though it was still unclear if they would be allowed to join in the debate. As they went in, the viewers were given a piece of paper each, in which they were supposed to write down a question addressed to one of the five editors. It is a shame that even though the scene was perfectly set for an interesting and enriching discussion, full of young people ready to carry the torch when their time comes, it turned out to be sterile: no participation was allowed from and the master students were a little bit more than a stage prop.

Javier Moreno, the host from El Pais opened up with a brief and general reflection about the issue at hand. He asked himself how Wikileaks actions has revolutionized journalism, and how work ethics should change for people associated with the press. Interestingly he also questioned his own role, suggesting that maybe the newspapers present had become the establishment and were outdated compared to new forms of communication such as free social networking. After him Bill Keller from the New York Times came on strong, saying that he was “skeptical that Wikileaks has changed the world as we know it. It only has in a quantitative way, due to the volume of information released”. He went on to say that it was positive for journalism because “everybody can be a publisher” though he also added that “it has not invented a new era in journalism”. When asked about how it would affect diplomacy he eerily quoted U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates saying that “foreign countries don’t do business with America because they love it, they do it out of self-interest”. This hard, skeptical line was followed by Sylvie Kauffmann and Georg Mascolo. However Alan Rudbridger from The Guardian changed the tone by saying that organizations like Wikileaks (referencing other organizations with the same goals) have the highest standard of free speech because they have the “power to deal with repressive governments thanks to technologies that guarantee the anonymity of their sources”.

He then went on to explain the ethos of publishing such highly compromising cables and all five agreed on the fact that it was too risky to expose the lives of certain people who would be in trouble if their activities were known. On this subject, Keller stated that the New York Times decided what to publish based on their “own judgment”: “we consulted with the U.S. government but made our own decision in the end”. At this point the debate lapsed into sterility, as the participants recounted anecdotes about the decision making process at the time or went into detail explaining the structure of the teams that edited the cables for protection. Javier Moreno, trying to be incisive, asked Bill Keller about Bradley Manning and the actions of the U.S. government against him, and as he could not answer he simply described Manning’s situation and shifted towards Julian Assange and the Espionage Act of 1917. He did mention however, that in his own opinion it would be “very hard to go after Assange with the Espionage Act” as it would also mean “going after the New York Times for publishing secret information” and that for some time he and his staff had considered opening a drop-box for leaks to be published in the newspaper, as a way to adapt to new times. He also said, quite shockingly that “the U.S. government reacted in a sober and mature way” towards the publication of the cables.

After they all agreed on this subject, Moreno raised the issue of the revolutions going on in the Arab world, and asked about the role media was playing in the conflict. Most of the answers were redundant or unclear. Moreno himself answered his own question saying that the “Arab revolution has a lot to do with technology and social networking”. Kauffmann added that she believed people were the ones that made the changes, now they only had the right instruments. On the other hand, Keller said that this is a very important tool as it makes the process much faster and wider in a quantitative way, though the same structures are in place: for it to be news there had to be a journalistic effort behind it. To this Rusbridger responded wisely saying that, if the press was to adapt to new times it needed to “put an end to the difference between a professional journalist and a citizen […] the media must find a new middle position between sources and audience to continue being relevant”.

All this talk about the future led inevitably to business models, a theme that was not present in the program of the debate but which crept out from underneath as a matter of common interest of the participants. At this point the age difference between the five editors and their audience was palpable, as they debated about the battle between open and closed information while free data was being offered on the twitter trends worldwide being projected behind them. Then the debate ended and the questions from the audience were dropped because of “lack of time”. People left the auditorium abruptly and in a hurry. The feeling was that the debate turned out to be a friendly chat between colleagues, who seemed to be complimenting each other for their good work and doing a superficial analysis for all the young journalists they had brought there: no real issues were raised and the lack of participation made the debate shallow. Issues like the persecution of Julian Assange in the media; the lack of pressure against the war criminals still in charge of the U.S. government or the arbitrary transparency of the New York Times would have come up for sure if the people present would have been given the chance to ask.

Categories: Articles

22/02/2011 Pakistan: war and corruption (cable analysis)

February 22, 2011 1 comment

Aside from its own political and ideological conflicts, in 2004 Pakistan saw itself obligated to join a taskforce with the U.S. to fight Taliban and Al-Qaeda groups in its northern region. This created a relationship of mutual interests between the pakistani political elite and U.S. military interests on the region – generally characterized by the hunt for Osama bin Laden and other terrorist leaders. This agreement seemed to complicate problems that already existed in Pakistan, mostly corruption in every sense, and a reliance on U.S. support also was originated. Based on leaked cables of U.S. Diplomacy, we selected some cases where this co-dependence shows its weaknesses and incapabilities to establish an honest and democratic Pakistan.


Since 2004, the U.S. has been using drones (no tripulation aerial vehicles) to attack areas in Northern Pakistan with the official purpose of a War on Terrorism, aimed to defeat Taliban and Al-Qaeda groups. The drones have become a weapon of choice for the United States in the fight in Pakistan. Although it begun during the Bush administration, the “drone war” is still active inObama´s government. Despite officially condemning the this kind of tactics, the cables reveal that in a meeting in 2009, the Prime Minister of Pakistan Gilani “thanked the U.S. Senate for its support of his country’s democracy”, however, in the same document, Gilani added that “drone strikes not only violated Pakistani sovereignty, but also fed anti-U.S. sentiment, making harder his own public case that the struggle against extremists was “Pakistan’s war.” Instead, there was popular pressure on elected officials like himself to forcefully respond to alleged U.S. border incursions, which were “an embarrassment” for the GOP”. But this public ‘embarrassment’ has its solution, since “he believed he could effectively convince the public that those targeted were responsible for Benazir Bhutto’s assassination and the killing of innocents at schools, shopping centers and police stations” – facts which are impossible to confirm, as Benazir´s (a female political leader, ex-Prime Minister of Pakistan) murder and the death of innocent people in are still very murky. (08ISLAMABAD3586).
In a meeting also held in 2009, Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik asked U.S. Ambassador to hold off the drone attacks till the Bajaur operation got finished. But Prime Minister Gilano “brushed aside Rehman’s remark” and said “I don´t care if they do it as long as they get the right people. We,ll protest in the National Assembly and then ignore it”. In the same cable we have a remark about how these attacks were portrayed in the media: “(Note: The strike has been front page news, but the media is reporting that the targets were nests of Arab fighters.)”. (08ISLAMABAD2802).
On February 25, 2009, Pakistan’s Supreme Court sentenced the brother Nawaz and Shahbaz Sharif, political leaders of the opposition Pakistan Muslim League, to be ineligible to work in public affairs. President Zardari, in the period, appointed Salmaan Taseer, member of situation Pakistan Peoples Party – which was led by Benazir Bhutto until her death and has President Asif Ali Zardari as chairman.
“Nawaz and Shahbaz Sharif told Principal Officer Lahore [Ms. Carmela Conroy assumed charge as Principal Officer of the U.S. Consulate in Lahore, Pakistan, on August 27, 2009] that the decision, which they claimed was entirely Zardari’s, was a declaration of war; they would not seek legal appeals and instead would take their battle to the streets. In a press conference, Nawaz revealed that Zardari had offered to drop the case in exchange for PML-N agreement to extend the tenure of the current Chief Justice of the Supreme Court; he called on Pakistanis to come out into the streets to protest”.
According to Charge d’Affaires Gerald Feierstein to Pakistan, “The decision [came] as no surprise; Zardari has been telling us for weeks that it was coming and that he felt he could control the reaction. Before making this move, he coaxed the Muttahida Quami Movement party into the coalition to renew Gilani’s majority in the National Assembly (Ref B). He also successfully sealed a power sharing deal in three of the four provinces over seats in the upcoming Senate elections (Ref A) to ensure the PPP will have a majority in the Senate.” (09ISLAMABAD415).

The relationship between Zardari and U.S. Ambassy was expresed 21 days before the sentence. On February 4, Feierstein had already cleared out on his scenesetter for Special Envoy Holbrooke [ In January 2009, Richard Holbrooke was appointed as a special adviser on Pakistan and Afghanistan]: “(…) you will find Zardari is pro-American and anti-extremist; we believe he is our best ally in the government. Clearly, Zardari runs the show, and Gilani has at times chafed at public acknowledgment of this fact. We believe, however, that reports of Zardari-Gilani tensions are exaggerated; Gilani knows his place and will tow Zardari’s line”. (09ISLAMABAD236).


In September 2009 the Pakistani Embassy reported a “growing body of evidence is lending credence to allegations of human rights abuses by Pakistan security forces during domestic operations against terrorists in Malakand Division and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas”. The abuses were being committed in the same areas U.S. developed massive missile attacks since 2004, the battleground of “Drone War”, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas along the Afghan border in Northwest Pakistan. It is not possible to entirely guilt Pakistani Army of those crimes in the same way we can not forget U.S. participation on the same conflict.

In the same report Anne Woods Patterson- then Ambassor to Pakistan said “The allegations of extra-judicial killings generally do not/not extend to what are locally referred to as “the disappeared” .Although her advice to U.S. diplomatic corps was to”Continue to privately raise this issue repeatedly and at the highest levels of the Pakistan government and military”, on a worldwide level there was no register of communication on those issues with international community. (09ISLAMABAD2185).

“Pakistan hedges its bets on cooperation because it fears the U.S. will again desert Islamabad after we get Osama Bin Laden; Washington sees this hesitancy as duplicity that requires we take unilateral action to protect U.S. interests. (…) The relationship [between U.S. and Pakistan] is one of co-dependency we grudgingly admit–Pakistan knows the U.S. cannot afford to walk away; the U.S. knows Pakistan cannot survive without our support”, resumed the Ambassador on 21 February, 2009. (09ISLAMABAD385)

Categories: Articles, English