McCaffrey Statement on U.S. Support for Colombia

McCaffrey Statement on U.S. Support for Colombia
Posted by FoM on November 15, 1999 at 14:36:18 PT
ONDCP director responds following car bombing
Source: Department of State
 The Clinton Administration is doing its part to support the rule of law and bolster democratic institutions in Colombia by asking Congress for $78 million to assist the Colombian government, says Barry McCaffrey, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
In a November 12 statement that followed the previous day's car bombing in Bogota, McCaffrey said U.S aid is needed "if we are to gain the upper hand in the fight against drugs and help Colombia on the path to stable democracy." The car bomb in a Bogota neighborhood killed eight passersby and injured 45. The following is the text of McCaffrey's statement: (Begin text) Executive Office of the President Office of National Drug Control Policy Washington, D.C. 20503 Barry R. McCaffrey, Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, released the following statement regarding the recent bombing in Colombia: President Andres Pastrana's election to office and subsequent agenda, Plan Colombia -- the broad national strategy designed to return Colombia to the path of democracy and peaceful civil society -- have offered new hope for prosperity and an end to the country's civil unrest. However, the ever expanding nexus between guerrilla movements, or in some cases, paramilitary groups, and international drug trafficking organizations is creating an unprecedented threat to the rule of law, democratic institutions, and the very fabric of society -- as clearly illustrated by yesterday's bombing. Colombia is a nation of laws, governed by courageous individuals. The government is under attack by unscrupulous drug traffickers with unlimited economic resources. Colombia's ability to respond to the exploding drug threat is hindered by interlocking economic, political, social, and security challenges. In the pay of the traffickers and the illegal drug industry are some 25,000 armed terrorists in the FARC, the ELN, and paramilitary forces. Colombia has proven its courage in confronting the challenges that face it. We in the United States will do our part to support the rule of law in Colombia. The Administration is fully supportive of President Pastrana's desire and has asked Congress for $78 million for programs to assist him this fiscal year. While we will continue to move forward to aid Plan Colombia with currently available funds, more funding is needed if we are to gain the upper hand in the fight against drugs and help Colombia on the path to stable democracy. President Clinton has stated that the Administration will work with Congress, following completion of the current budget process, to enhance our bilateral assistance programs -- for counter-drug efforts and for other programs to help President Pastrana deepen democracy and promote prosperity. November 15, 1999(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State) This site is produced and maintained by the U.S. Department of State. Links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views contained therein.Related Articles:New Colombian Drug Smugglers Hold Tech Advantage - 11/14/99 Drugs Flow Into U.S. Than Estimated - 11/14/99 Steps Up Drug War in Colombia - 11/13/99's Against The Us Drug War? - 11/13/99 
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