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June 2009

June 9, 2009

OP ED - The Importance of Free Trade

OP ED - The Importance of Free Trade

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By Neena Shena - Obama's current protectionist track will harm U.S. national security. President Barack Obama has fashioned his foreign policy persona around "constructive engagement" with the international community. Apparently, however, the only "engagement" he cares for is diplomatic. Free trade, one of the cornerstones of post-World War II U.S. foreign policy, is conspicuously absent. Indeed, the president's anti-trade campaign rhetoric, the "Buy America" provision in the stimulus package, and tepid support for reviving the Doha Round of international trade talks have signaled to the world that America is closed for business.  
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June 11, 2009

4th Annual Youth Clinic Series with Pibe Valderrama

4th Annual Youth Clinic Series with Pibe Valderrama

The 4th annual youth clinic series created by Verizon Wireless in collaboration with Real Maryland F.C. and DC Soccer.  A 3 hour recreational clinic offering youth instruction from celebrity  professional soccer players. All levels of youth players are welcomed. Families are encouraged to attend the event and participate in activities following the clinic.  It will take place June 14th from 9:00am to 1:00pm at Richard Montgomery High School Stadium (250 Richard Montgomery Dr., Rockville).
It's open to kids 5-17 years of age.
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June 12, 2009

AP - Colombian President Receives Key to Rhode Island City

AP - Colombian President Receives Key to Rhode Island City

Colombian President Alvaro Uribe has received an honorary key to the city of Providence following a brief meeting with Mayor David Cicilline. Uribe met privately with Cicilline and shook hands with supporters but did not take questions from reporters during an appearance at Providence City Hall on Thursday. Uribe is scheduled to address the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting in Providence on Friday.

A conservative who is closely allied with Washington, Uribe told Cicilline that his administration had set a "great example of efficiency" in running the city.

Uribe told a business forum last month that it would be "inappropriate" to seek a third consecutive term as president but has not expressly ruled out making a bid. The Senate approved a referendum that would ask voters to permit him to run again.  

June 12, 2009

PROVIDENCE JOURNAL - A president in Central Falls: Colombian community gives a warm welcome to Uribe

PROVIDENCE JOURNAL - A president in Central Falls: Colombian community gives a warm welcome to Uribe

By Tatiana Pina Andres Taborda, 16, and his aunt waited in the long line that snaked down Illinois Street on Thursday to hear Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Velez speak at Central Falls High School.

Andres attends St. Raphael Academy, in Pawtucket, where his family lives. He was born here but his parents emigrated from Colombia, and family conversation over coffee after Sunday Mass often focuses on the president of their homeland.

Uribe has been widely credited with transforming the nation as his security policies have weakened guerillas, made paramilitaries less active and reduced crime. In office since 2002, he enjoys a 70 percent approval rating. He is in Rhode Island this week to address the annual meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, which opens Friday in Providence.

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June 12, 2009

REUTERS - Obama, Uribe to discuss long-delayed trade pact

REUTERS -  Obama, Uribe to discuss long-delayed trade pact

 
By Doug Palmer - U.S. President Barack Obama is eager to discuss a long-delayed free trade agreement with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe when the two leaders meet on June 29, the White House said on Friday.

Colombia is a close U.S. ally and Obama looks forward to discussing a number of issues with Uribe, including how to enhance regional security and development, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said in a statement.

"The president also looks forward to discussing with President Uribe our economic engagement, including the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement," Gibbs said.

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June 12, 2009

THE WHITE HOUSE - Statement by the Press Secretary on the visit of President Uribe of Colombia

THE WHITE HOUSE -  Statement by the Press Secretary on the visit of President Uribe of Colombia

President Obama will meet with President Uribe at the White House on Monday, June 29.  Colombia is a close ally and partner of the United States, and the President looks forward to discussing a broad range of bilateral and hemispheric issues, including ways to enhance our cooperation on security and development challenges in Colombia and throughout the Americas.  The President also looks forward to discussing with President Uribe our economic engagement, including the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement, and the long-term, institutional consolidation of security gains in Colombia through effective governance, as well as other ways to further strengthen the bilateral relationship.

 

June 15, 2009

KGMB9 - Colombian Training Ship Arrives in Hawaii

KGMB9 - Colombian Training Ship Arrives in Hawaii

By Lisa Kubota - A Colombian Navy ship arrived in Honolulu on Monday morning after a month at sea. The training vessel is welcoming visitors, offering a unique opportunity for cultural exchange. The ARC Gloria made quite an impression as it pulled into port. The sailors, dressed in the colors of Colombia's flag, sang their hearts out from the ship's rigging.

"They started singing their national anthem and several other songs, and it made the goose bumps stand out," said David Spearman, a visitor from San Diego. "It's gorgeous. It's amazing. It's breathtaking," said visitor Andrew Bouchard.

This is the fifth time the ship has stopped in Hawaii. It has 170 crew members and military cadets. The students are learning important lessons out on the open ocean. "Navigation, about the stars, navigation with the moon, with the sun, how to maneuver a ship," explained Captain Luis Tovar.
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June 22, 2009

VIVA COLOMBIA Concert at the National Mall!

VIVA COLOMBIA Concert at the National Mall!

As part of the celebration of the Folklife Festival 2009  the Embassy of Colombia and the Smithsonian Institute are proud to present the VIVA COLOMBIA Concert at the National Mall. Please join us to celebrate Colombia's diversity and listen to some of the best Colombian artists performing live traditional music and dances from Colombia. The music ensembles participating are Cantadoras del Pacífico, Estrellas del Vallenato and Grupo Cimarrón.
The concert details are as follows:
 
When:  Sunday June28th, 2009 at 6:00 pm
Where: National Mall - Folkways Salon Tent
 
See event flyer
 
 
 

June 25, 2009

THE WASHINGTON POST - Many U.S. House Democrats want trade policy revamp

THE WASHINGTON POST - Many U.S. House Democrats want trade policy revamp

Political pressure grew on President Barack Obama to reconsider pending trade deals with Panama, Colombia and South Korea as over 100 lawmakers called on Wednesday for a massive revamp of U.S. trade policy.
The 106 lawmakers, most of them members of Obama's Democratic party, introduced legislation requiring a comprehensive review of the economic impact of existing major trade deals, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Mexico and Canada, before any new ones are considered.
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June 25, 2009

VOA - UN Reports Decline in Heroin, Cocaine Production

VOA - UN Reports Decline in Heroin, Cocaine Production

By Robert Raffaele.  The United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime says global production of heroin and cocaine has decreased during the past year.  But it says production and use of synthetic drugs appears to be rising in developing nations.  The annual report calls for better treatment for addicts and increased cooperation to combat illegal drug trafficking.  The report cites a downward trend in the worldwide cultivation of heroin and cocaine.  Opium cultivation in Afghanistan - the source of 93 percent of the world's opium -  was down 19 percent last year.

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June 29, 2009

Agenda del Presidente lvaro Uribe en Washington

Agenda del Presidente lvaro Uribe en Washington

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

Los Presidentes de Colombia y Estados Unidos, lvaro Uribe Vlez y Barack Obama, sostendrán una reunión de trabajo el lunes 29 de junio, a las 2:15 de la tarde (hora local), en la Casa Blanca. Durante su estadía en Washington, el Jefe de Estado Colombiano tambin sostendrá encuentros con funcionarios de la Administración Obama, representantes de organismos multilaterales y líderes de opinión.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

Bogotá, 26 jun (SP). El Presidente de la Repblica,lvaro Uribe Vlez, estará entre el 28 y el 30 de junio en Washington, dondes ostendrá una reunión de trabajo con su homólogo de Estados Unidos, BarackObama. El encuentro entre los Presidentes de ambos países, para examinar temas de inters comn, se realizará el  lunes 29 de junio, a las 2:15 de la tarde (horalocal), en la Casa Blanca.
Cabe recordar que los Mandatarios sostuvieron su primer encuentro el pasado 18 de abril en Puerto Espaa ( Trinidad y Tobago), durante el almuerzo de trabajo celebrado el segundo día de la Quinta Cumbre de las Amricas, en el que fueron ubicados uno al lado del otro. Durante la conversación que compartieron ese día, el Presidente Barack Obama le expresó a su homólogo lvaro Uribe su intención de visitar Colombia, durante la gira que próximamente realizará por Amrica Latina.
En Washington, el Presidente Uribe tambin sostendrá encuentros con funcionarios de la Administración Obama, entre ellos el Representante Comercial de Estados Unidos, Ron Kirk; el Secretario de Comercio, Gary Locke; el Director del Consejo Económico Nacional de la Casa Blanca, Larry Summers, y el Director de la Oficina de Política Nacional de Control de Drogas ONDCP’, Gil Kerlikowske.
Durante su estadía en la capital estadounidense, el Jefe de Estado colombiano se reunirá además con el Presidente del Banco Mundial, Robert Zoellick. Así mismo, el Presidente entregará la Orden de San Carlos, en el Grado de Gran Cruz, a Tom Shannon, Secretario Asistente de Estado para el Hemisferio Occidental, quien durante su larga carrera diplomática ha sido amigo de Colombia.
La agenda del Jefe de Estado colombiano en la capital estadounidense tambin incluye su participación en una conferencia en el Woodrow Wilson Center’, en la cual expondrá los incentivos que ofrece el Gobierno Nacional a los inversionistas y los avances de la política de Seguridad Democrática. Este evento, programado para el martes 30 de junio, es coordinado por el Diálogo Interamericano, el Consejo de las Amricas y el Centro Woodrow Wilson.
El martes 30 de junio, el Presidente lvaro Uribe viajará de Washington a Panamá, para asistir a la posesión del Mandatario electo de ese país, Ricardo Martinelli Berrocal, que se cumplirá el mircoles primero de julio desde las10:50 de la maana (hora local). El Jefe de Estado colombiano viaja en compaía del Canciller Jaime Bermdez Merizalde; el Ministro de Comercio, Industria y Turismo, Luis Guillermo Plata, y tres de sus Secretarios.
A continuación, la Secretaría de Prensa publica la agenda del Presidente lvaro Uribe en Washington.  
Lunes, 29 de junio de 2009
8:00a.m. (Hora local). Reunión con Gil Kerlikowske, Director de la Oficina dePolítica Nacional de Control de Drogas (Ondcp).
09:45a.m. Reunión con Ron Kirk, Representante Comercial de Estados Unidos.
10:30a.m. Reunión con Gary Locke, Secretario de Comercio de Estados Unidos.
11:40a.m. Reunión con el Presidente del Banco Mundial, Robert Zoellick.
12:00m. Almuerzo con representantes de Think Tanks, analistas políticos.
2:10p.m. Llegada del Presidente lvaro Uribe Vlez y su comitiva a la Casa Blanca.
2:15p.m. Reunión bilateral entre los Presidentes de Colombia, lvaro Uribe Vlez, y de Estados Unidos, Barack Obama.
4:00p.m. Reunión con Larry Summers, Director del Consejo Económico Nacional de laCasa Blanca.
5:30p.m. Recepción y condecoración al seor Tom Shannon, Asistente de Estado para el Hemisferio Occidental.
Martes, 30 de junio de 2009

9:00 a.m. Presentación del Presidente lvaro Uribe Vlez en el WoodrowWilson Center. Invita Woodrow Wilson Center, Council of the Americas yInteramericana Dialogue. 
 
 

June 29, 2009

Director de la Oficina de Control de Drogas de Estados Unidos visitará a Colombia en septiembre

Director de la Oficina de Control de Drogas de Estados Unidos visitará a Colombia en septiembre

Washington, Estados Unidos, 29 de jun (SP). El Presidente lvaro Uribe Vlez indicó este lunes que el Director de la Oficina de Política Nacional de Control de Drogas de Estados Unidos (ONDCP, por sus siglas en ingls), Gil Kerlikowske, visitará a Colombia en septiembre próximo.

Así lo declaró el Mandatario a los medios de comunicación, al concluir un encuentro con el alto directivo, este lunes, en la capital estadounidense. Se hizo un repaso general de la política antidrogas. l va a visitar a Colombia en el mes de septiembre, dijo el Jefe de Estado.

El Presidente destacó el más reciente informe de la Organización de Naciones Unidas (ONU) en el que se reporta que en el país hubo una reducción en los cultivos de drogas ilícitas, y agregó que se incrementarán los esfuerzos para lograr mayor efectividad en la lucha antidrogas.

Si bien, de acuerdo con el informe de las Naciones Unidas, en el ao anterior hubo un decrecimiento de los cultivos de droga en Colombia, nosotros creemos que no es suficiente, dado el esfuerzo que hacemos en Colombia.

No estamos satisfechos y por eso debemos hacer una revisión a ver cómo, con este esfuerzo y con esta determinación que es total, logramos mejores resultados, dijo el Mandatario.

Durante la reunión con el Director de Control de Drogas, el Jefe de Estado reiteró la necesidad de implementar una política que atienda el problema de las drogas de una manera integral, desde la producción hasta el consumo, incluyendo asuntos como el tráfico de armas o de precursores químicos.

Al encuentro tambin asistió el Director Adjunto para la Reducción de la Oferta, Pat Ward.   

June 10, 2009

PROVIDENCE JOURNAL - Colombia's president to address Conference of Mayors

PROVIDENCE JOURNAL - Colombia's president to address Conference of Mayors

By Tatiana Pina.Providence, R.I.- Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Velez will be in Providence this week to address members of the 77th annual U.S. Conference of Mayors, which begins Friday.
The visit marks the first time that a Colombian president serving in office comes to New England, according to Bibiana Gomez, the consul general for the Colombian Consulate in Boston.

President Uribe, 56, who was elected in 2002, is scheduled to deliver a speech at the conference award luncheon Friday at the Rhode Island Convention Center. He will address the Conference of Mayors as part of his efforts to encourage the United States to pass its Free Trade Agreement with Colombia and to promote the progress Colombia has made in terms of economic growth, national security and human rights. Uribe is widely credited with leading Colombia's turnaround, according to Gomez.  
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June 9, 2009

GLOBAL POST- A Colombian experiment in nation building

GLOBAL POST- A Colombian experiment in nation building

 
By John Otis. Vista Hermosa, Colombia The rows of white containers on the edge of this Colombian farm town bring to mind FEMA housing in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
But rather than a botched response to disaster, these trailers signal Colombia’s commitment to an experiment in nation building that is providing insight for American planners in Afghanistan. Located inside an army base on the edge of the Macarena mountain range in southern Colombia, the so-called Fusion Center brings together Colombian government agencies, local politicians, police and army troops as well as U.S. military and development experts. They have been tasked with pushing Marxist rebels out of the zone, eradicating the drug crops that finance the insurgents, and building roads, schools and clinics to win over a hostile local population.

 

 
It’s a formidable task. But after two-and-a-half years, the U.S.-backed pilot program known as the Macarena Consolidation Plan is showing some encouraging signs.
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June 5, 2009

NWA.COM - Expanded selection of Colcaf coffee products announced by Walmart

NWA.COM - Expanded selection of Colcaf coffee products announced by Walmart

In March, Walmart announced an expanded selection of Colcaf coffee products for Walmart's Sam's Choice gourmet coffee program. Besides the 100 percent Colombian coffee Walmart carries, some 3,500 Walmart stores in the United States will also carry Colombian French Roast, House Blend, Espresso Roast and Breakfast Blend varieties.

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June 8, 2009

 

 

The Minister of Interior and Justice Fabio Valencia Cossio,and the Deputy Minister of Justice, Miguel Ceballos, will meet Monday in Washington with Secretary of Justice and Attorney General of the United States,Eric Holder. Minister Valencia highlighted the desire of the Colombian government to have  the highest level dialogue with the Government of United States in all aspects of justice and coordination in the fight against all forms of crime that affect societies both countries. He referred to the importance of the justice issues, which arethe responsibility of the Executive branch, to be directly addressed by the Secretary of Justice of the United States and Minister of Justice of Colombia.T his approach has not been recorded for over 10 years. Read More

The main points to be discussed at the meeting are:

  1. Extradition
    The Government reaffirmed its international cooperation policy of fighting organized crime through the extradition of Colombian nationals linked to crimes such as drug trafficking and money laundering, among others.
  2. Judicial cooperation
    The Government pays special attention to judicial cooperation through virtual audiences to facilitate the prosecution with Colombians extradited to the United States and seek mechanisms to facilitate further collaboration with the Colombian justice system.
  3. Strengthening the Criminal Accusatory
    The Minister of Interior and Justice will discuss the development of the Criminal Accusatory System in Colombia and request technical support for its strengthening.
  4. Fight against drugs
    In developing the policy against drug trafficking, the Interior Minister of Justice will discuss various aspects of Colombia's action against drug trafficking and strengthening mechanisms to combat the whole chain, from cultivation to the consumption.
  5. Protection for union leaders
    The Minister of Interior and Justice will inform the Attorney General and Secretary of Justice of the United States on the actions the Colombian Government has taken  to strengthen the policy of protection of Human Rights.  Special attention will be dedicated to  the protection of social, political and religious leaders in the country.  The Minister highlighted a fact that points to that direction with  the adoption of a bill,presented by the government, which increases the penalties for crimes against trade unionists, civil servants, journalists, human rights defenders, candidate or  aspiring candidates to office, political and religious leaders.

 

 

June 9, 2009
 

Luis Alfonso HoyosColombia's President, Alvaro Uribe Velez, appointed current Presidential Adviser for Social Action, Luis Alfonso Hoyos, as new ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS). Ospina will continue to lead the Colombian diplomats in Washington until June 18.

 

June 9, 2009

 

 

On June 9th, the President of Colombia, lvaro Uribe Vlez, will start a  two-day visit to the cities of Montreal and Ottawa in Canada, and  will continue on June 11 and 12 to the city of Providence, Rhode Island  in the United States. During his visit to Canada, the President will be with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jaime Bermdez Merizalde and the Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism,  Luis Guillermo Plata.

In Montreal, the Head of State will participate in the Economic Forum of the Americas and will hold meetings with Canadian entrepreneurs. He will later meet in Ottawa with the Prime Minister of Canada,  Stephen Harper, members of the Cabinet and the Liberal Party of Canada.

In Providence, the President will participate in the National Conference of Mayors of the United States. He will also hold a meeting with the private sector and the Colombian community in the area. 

 

 

 

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The following is the agenda (local time) of President Uribe during his visit to Canada and the United States:

Canada

Tuesday, June 9

11:00 a.m. Departure of President lvaro Uribe Vlez and his committee from Catam military airport in Bogota, heading to the city of Montreal, Canada.

6:00 PM  Arrival in Montreal, Canada

Wednesday, June 10

7:30 a.m. Private breakfast in honor of President lvaro Uribe, offered by the World Economic Forum in Montreal and  Frase, Milner &  Casgrain (FMC).

9:00 a.m. Arrival of the Head of State of Colombia to the Economic Forum of the Americas.

9:30 a.m. Statement of President lvaro Uribe Velez at the Economic Forum ofthe Americas' Free Trade in Latin America.

10:00 a.m. Meeting with Prime Minister of the Province of Quebec and Canadian businessmen.

1:00 p.m. Departure of President Uribe from Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport in Montreal, to the city of Ottawa.

1:30 p.m. Arrival of President Uribe to Ottawa International Airport.

3:15 p.m. Private meeting of President lvaro Uribe Velez with Prime Ministerof Canada, Stephen Harper,  at the Canadian Parliament. Later there will be an expanded meeting with members of the Cabinet.

4:00 p.m. Greeting in the Canadian Parliament between President Uribe and the leader of the official opposition party  (Liberal Party of Canada), Michel Ignatieff.

4:45 p.m. Greetings from President lvaro Uribe Vlez to the Liberal Party Caucus of Canada.

Thursday, June 11

9:00 a.m. Private meeting with members of the Committee on International Trade of the Canadian Parliament

11:35 a.m. Departure of the President and his official committee from Ottawa International Airport, bound for the city of Providence, State of Rhode Island in the United States.

Providence, United States
 

Thursday, June 11

1:00 p.m. Arrival of President lvaro Uribe Vlez and his official committee to the city of Providence, United States.

3:00 p.m. Meeting between the  Head of State with the Mayor of Providence, David N. Cicciline, at the City  Hall.

4:00 p.m. Meeting with U.S. private sector.

6:00 PM Meeting with the Colombian community in  CF High School  at Central Falls, Providence.


Friday, June 12

10:00 a.m. Meeting with ONDCP Director, Gil Kerlikowske.

11:30 a.m. Meeting of President Uribe with the mayors of Miami, New York,Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas and Boston at the Providence Convention Center.

12:30 p.m. Statement of President lvaro Uribe Velez at the National Conference of Mayors of the United States.

2:00 p.m. Meeting between the Head of State and  United States Secretary of Commerce, Gary Locke.

3:15 p.m. Private meeting with Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of the Democratic Party from Rhode Island.

5:00 p.m. Departure from Providence city  Airport due to El Dorado Airport in Bogota.

 

 

 

 

June 9, 2009

 

 

 

 

Bogotá, June 9 (Minister of Foreign Affairs). The President of Colombia Alvaro Uribe will meet with the President of the United States Barack Obama, on June 29th at the White House. This will be their first bilateral meeting and issues of common interest for both countries will be discussed.

The meeting follows a series of telephone conversations and a brief meeting between the two Presidents at the Summit of the Americas, in Trinidad and Tobago in April.

During his visit to Washington, President Uribe will meet with policy makers, think tanks, representatives of the business community and other Administration officials.

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Spanish Version

Bogotá, 9 de junio de 2009 (MRE). El Presidente de la Repblica, lvaro Uribe Vlez, se reunirá con su homólogo de los Estados Unidos, Barack Obama, el próximo el próximo 29 de junio en Washington. Esta será la primera reunión bilateral, en la que se trabajarán los diversos temas de inters para ambos países. La reunión se realizará luego de varias conversaciones telefónicas y un  encuentro de ambos mandatarios en la Cumbre de las Amricas en Trinidad yTobago.

Durante su visita a Washington, el Presidente Uribe tambin se reunirá con líderes de opinión, centros de pensamiento, empresarios y funcionarios de la administración Obama.

June 12, 2009

Providence, Estados Unidos, 11 jun (SP). El Presidente lvaro Uribe Vlez propuso este jueves la construcción de una alianza entre Colombia y los Estados Unidos, que permita la eliminación total de la droga.  Así lo manifestó el Jefe de Estado durante un encuentro con la comunidad colombiana en Central Falls High School, de Providence (Rhode Island), como parte de su agenda en Estados Unidos.  El Mandatario afirmó que en la actualidad no se debe hacer una división entre países productores y consumidores, ya que la droga es un solo problema.

Sealó que hay que hacer una gran alianza con el pueblo y con el Gobierno de Estados Unidos: la eliminación total de la droga.

Yo ya no divido al mundo entre productores y consumidores. Cada país corre el riesgo de ser productor, centro de narcotráfico, país de precursores químicos y país de consumidores. Por eso, nuestro Congreso está aprobando una enmienda constitucional para ilegalizar el consumo de drogas, dijo.

Read More

El Presidente Uribe llamó la atención sobre el riesgo que conlleva pensar que el narcotráfico y la violencia que genera se resuelven con la legalización de la droga. Un grave problema en el mundo es darle legalidad al consumo de droga, la permisividad con la dosis personal. El mundo tiene que eliminar eso. Es muy difícil derrotar el narcotráfico si hay esa permisividad con el consumo.  Reiteró que por esta razón el Congreso colombiano estudia una reforma constitucional que permita penalizar la dosis mínima de droga.

Ahora nuestro Congreso -y espero que desde aquí se le pida que lo apruebe totalmente-, está aprobando una enmienda constitucional para que la dosis personal de droga sea ilegal, manifestó.

Advirtió que el negocio ilícito de la droga está enlazado con la violencia en la que se involucra a menores de edad.

La criminalidad infantil está asociada indisolublemente con la permisividad para el tráfico de droga. Si queremos luchar contra la criminalidad infantil hay que eliminar cualquier posibilidad de legalidad del tráfico de droga, por eso nosotros queremos esa enmienda constitucional, expresó Uribe Vlez.

El Jefe de Estado indicó que con esta iniciativa tambin se busca otorgar la posibilidad de rehabilitación y asistencia a las personas drogadictas, sin perder de vista que muchos se vuelven criminales. Alguien me dice: Presidente, pero es que al enfermo drogadicto no lo pueden meter a la cárcel’. Eso está bien, lo aceptamos. Pero es que, además, de los enfermos drogadictos y a los enfermos hay que darles la posibilidad de rehabilitación, de asistencia. Además de ellos hay muchos criminales. Saben ustedes cómo distribuyen droga para que no los metan a la cárcel? Llevan en el bolsillo una dosis personal, la venden y despus regresan por otra. Y de dosis personal en dosis personal envenenan a la comunidad, puntualizó.  

June 12, 2009

President lvaro Uribe Vlez reiterated his call to the United States congressmen for the approval of the FTA between Colombia and the United States. He insisted on the importance of this trade agreement for our country. The approval of the Free Trade Agreement with the United States is necessary for the international community to continue trusting Colombia, President Uribe highlighted during a gathering with Colombian citizens.

A woman from the audience suggested sending a letter to Senator Eduard Kennedy, asking for help with the FTA with Colombia. President Uribe answered to this, by asking Colombian citizens who live in the United States to send e-mails to American congressmen asking them for the approval of the trade agreement.

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That is a vital point and thank you lady. Who of you have internet? Use it every day. Send a message every day supporting the FTA with Colombia. Colombians now how to kindly ask for things." Write to Senator Kennedy, to all Senators, to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, to all Representatives,  to Charles Rangel. Write to all of them, so they can approve the Free Trade Agreement. Do that homework everyday, an internet message. We need that message to get to the Congress of the United States, President Uribe said.

He expressed that if Colombia is fighting to get approval from Congress, is because both nations share common democratic and freedom values, and also because Colombia is an important ally of the United States. President Uribe also said that the agreement is vital because it will be a signal for investment to keep flowing to Colombia.

We are negotiating with several countries, and other countries can ask themselves: Why negotiating with Colombia if the United States has not ratified its agreement? The ratification of this agreement is a gesture that will be received by the international community as a sign that investment must flow to Colombia, the Head of State pointed.

In addition, he reminded the efforts of the country to extradite more than 1000 drug traffickers and the eradication of illegal drugs crops, and he declared that an agreement between both countries will help to end with this scourge. The Free Trade Agreement has to be a step forward so Colombia can get rid of drug trafficking and also terrorism, which is financed by the traffic of drugs he pointed.

He reminded that Colombia is the leader of the continent in seizing illegal capital, but beside these efforts, the country also needs investment to give alternatives to Colombians, and that is why it is important to have a Free Trade Agreement.  

June 29, 2009

Al trmino de la reunión con el Presidente lvaro Uribe en la Casa Blanca, el Presidente de los Estados Unidos, Barack Obama, destacó los logros obtenidos en reducción de muertes de líderes sindicales por parte de Colombia, así como el aumento de las penas a los responsables de estos homicidios.

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Washington, 29 jun (SP). El Presidente de los Estados Unidos, Barack Obama, destacó este lunes los logros del Gobierno del Presidente lvaro Uribe, en materia de respeto a los derechos humanos y protección a los líderes sindicales en Colombia.

En declaraciones a la prensa, luego de la reunión que tuvieron los mandatarios en la Casa Blanca, Obama tambin celebró que en Colombia se hayan incrementado las penas a los asesinos de sindicalistas.

Felicit al Presidente Uribe sobre el progreso que se ha logrado en el campo de los derechos humanos en Colombia, con relación a la matanza de los líderes laborales en ese país. Hemos visto una reducción en la muerte de líderes laborales, así como un aumento de las penas a los perpetradores, sealó el Jefe de Estado norteamericano. Resaltó que en la charla, el Presidente Uribe no sólo habló sobre los avances sino tambin sobre las tareas pendientes en cuanto a la protección de los dirigentes sindicales y los trabajadores.

El Presidente Uribe reconoce que todavía hay trabajo por hacer y anticipamos cooperar con l para continuar mejorando tanto los derechos de la fuerza laboral organizada y los esfuerzos para proteger tanto a los líderes laborales como de derechos civiles, indicó el Presidente Obama.

Frente al tema de las investigaciones relacionadas con ejecuciones extrajudiciales, el mandatario estadounidense se declaró confiado en el manejo transparente que le está dando al tema el Gobierno colombiano. Pensamos que las medidas que ya se han tomado en temas relacionados a matanzas extrajudiciales, es importante que Colombia siga un paso de imperio de la ley y de transparencia, y yo s que eso es algo a lo cual está comprometido el Presidente Uribe, afirmó Obama.  

Declaración del Presidente Barack Obama, al trmino de su encuentro con el Mandatario colombiano lvaro Uribe Vlez

Declaración del Presidente Uribe, al trmino de su encuentro con el Mandatario estadounidense Barack Obama 
 

 

June 1, 2009

El Consulado de Colombia en Washington publica el listado de las cdulas que estan listas

El Consulado de Colombia en Washington publica el listado de las cdulas que estan listas

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

Consulte aquí el listado de las cdulas de ciudadanía que están listas para ser recogidas por sus respectivos dueos en la sede del consulado en Washington, D.C. 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 
Para mayor información sobre trámites y servicios que presta el consulado, haga click acá.

June 2, 2009

Donohue’s Bogotá speech calls for continued action on Colombia Trade Agreement

Donohue’s Bogotá speech calls for continued action on Colombia Trade Agreement

 
In a speech before the Colombian-American Chamber of Commerce in Bogotá, U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue applauded Colombia as a vital trading partner and urged its political and business leaders to continue to press the U.S. Congress for action on the U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement.
 
Let me be very clear the burden now rests on the Congress of the United States, on the government of the United States and on the people of the United States to pass this agreement, Donohue said.  Every day of delay hurts American workers, hurts American companies, hurts American farmers and it hurts Colombia too.
 
Referencing the success of previous trade agreements, Donohue urged business leaders in Colombia to press the U.S. Congress for action on the agreement through increased lobbying visits to Washington.  He also warned them to prepare for the baseless verbal attacks that their country will face as the agreement moves forward.
 
Despite many distractions, let’s keep our eyes on the prize, he said.  Do the hard work of getting ready, educating members of Congress about Colombia, and building support for the agreement.
 
While in Colombia, Donohue met with President lvaro Uribe and U.S. Ambassador William Brownfield. Beyond the trade agreement, he highlighted the Chamber’s support for an expedited, global economic recovery by supporting extraordinary action from Congress and the Federal Reserve, fighting protectionism and strengthening intellectual property protection.

 

 

June 4, 2009

Colombia will host the sixth summit of the Organization of American States in 2013

Colombia will host the sixth summit of the Organization of American States in 2013

 
Colombia will host the sixth summit of the Organization of American States, OAS, which will take place in 2013, the American foreign ministers and delegates decided Wednesday. The summit of the OAS is a meeting of all American Presidents and is held every four years. Politicians from 34 countries agreed that Colombia has the capacity, experience and environmental conditions to be a "very good host".
Cartagena and Medellin are the most likely cities to host the summit.  
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June 5, 2009

NYT - Shakira’s Children

NYT - Shakira’s Children

By SCOTT MALCOMSON. Last October, on the plane from Miami to San Salvador, Shakira stared into her MacBook, pondering. The next morning, she was to give a speech on the importance of early-childhood development to an Ibero-American summit meeting that would gather most of the heads of state of Latin America as well as the prime minister and king of Spain, the prime minister of Portugal and a select group of somewhat lesser dignitaries.

 
This was not the usual venue for Shakira Mebarak Ripoll of Barranquilla, Colombia. That would be stadium-size, and could be anywhere in the world, filled with thousands and thousands of fans, the people who have made her among the biggest-selling female vocalists on the planet. But Shakira has this other side she began charitable work right after she had her first big hit, at 18 and two years ago she, her longtime boyfriend, Antonio de la Rua, and some of their friends conceived the idea of a loose union of Ibero-American singers, called ALAS (wings in Spanish), which would use the power of their fame to mobilize fans, and the politicians fans vote for, to advance the cause of early-childhood development. Since then they had rallied most of the biggest pop stars in the Spanish-speaking and Portuguese-speaking worlds; held enormous concerts in Mexico and Argentina; gained the philanthropic support of some of Latin America’s richest families (as well as Warren Buffett’s son Howard); and captured the attention of a good number of heads of state. Now, flying down to El Salvador, staring at her Mac, she was, perhaps, approaching her moment of political breakthrough.

It’s already too long! she said, smiling resignedly as she typed out her speech. And I still have more I want to say. Tap tap tap. At the back of the eight-seater plane was the Spanish megastar Alejandro Sanz, scratching out his own speech, his girlfriend next to him, in a leggy bundle, nursing a bad cold. His relaxed focus contrasted with Shakira’s nervousness, and periodically Shakira ribbed him about it, which made him grin. Tap tap tap.

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June 29, 2009

Presidente Uribe sancionó ley que aumenta protección a dirigentes sindicales

Presidente Uribe sancionó ley que aumenta protección a dirigentes sindicales

La norma extiende el periodo para que no prescriba la acción criminal contra los autores de atentados a sindicalistas, y tambin aumenta las posibilidades al juez para imponer una pena más elevada a los asesinos de personas que hacen parte de estos grupos, explicó el Mandatario en Washington, luego de una reunión con el Secretario de Comercio de Estados Unidos, Gary Locke.

 

 
Washington, 29 jun (SP). El Presidente lvaro Uribe Vlez dijo este lunes que ya fue sancionada la nueva Ley por medio de la cual se fortalece la protección y se aumentan las penas por delitos cometidos contra los miembros de las organizaciones sindicales, defensores de derechos humanos y trabajadores en general, ratificando así las disposiciones contenidas en la Ley 599 de 2000.

El anuncio fue hecho por el Mandatario, desde Washington, al trmino de la reunión que tuvo con el Secretario de Comercio de Estados Unidos, Gary Locke, a quien explicó que esta Ley hace parte del esfuerzo del Gobierno Nacional para derrotar la violencia contra los integrantes de los organismos sealados.

Al dirigirse a un grupo de periodistas que lo esperaba a la salida del encuentro con Locke, el Jefe de Estado colombiano explicó en qu consiste el aumento de las penas que contempla la iniciativa aprobada por el Congreso de la Repblica en la legislatura que finalizó hace 10 días.

La aumenta de dos maneras: Extiende el periodo para que no prescriba la acción criminal contra quienes atentan contra este grupo de personas en nuestro país y tambin aumenta las posibilidades al juez para imponer una pena más elevada a los asesinos de personas que correspondan a estos grupos, sealó el Presidente Uribe.

Dijo que en la reunión las autoridades de comercio de Estados Unidos reconocieron los avances de Colombia en este frente, que hace parte de un proceso iniciado desde el inicio del Gobierno, mucho antes de empezar a negociar el Tratado de Libre de Comercio, para practicar lo que se llama el concepto democrático de Seguridad.

En nuestro Manifiesto Democrático de 2002, en el punto 100, en el punto 27, nosotros le propusimos al país que de ganar las elecciones de 2002 iríamos a hacer todos los esfuerzos para la derrota del secuestro, el asesinato contra trabajadores, contra periodistas, contra maestros. Y esta Ley 599 hace parte de los esfuerzos en esa dirección, subrayó el Presidente Uribe.

Cabe recordar que el Proyecto de Ley nmero 218 de Senado y 308 de Cámara, que modifica la Ley 599 de 2000, presentando por el Gobierno Nacional, fue aprobado por el Congreso de la Repblica el pasado 19 de junio.

Prescripción para homicidios

De acuerdo con la nueva ley, ahora se equipara el trmino de prescripción para el homicidio de integrantes de una organización sindical en el mismo trmino que para las conductas punibles de genocidio, desaparición forzada, tortura y desplazamiento forzado, de treinta (30) aos. La prescripción normal es de veinte (20) aos.

De igual forma, este nuevo instrumento legal amplió la calificación para la agravación punitiva a cualquier miembro de una organización sindical, calificación que antes sólo amparaba a los dirigentes sindicales.

Aumento de penas

En el caso del fortalecimiento de penas, la ley fortalece las penas para el caso de desaparición forzada de cualquier miembro de una organización sindical, calificación que antes sólo amparaba a los dirigentes sindicales.

La Ley tambin establece el aumento de la pena contra quien impida o perturbe una reunión lícita o el ejercicio de los derechos que conceden las leyes laborales o tome represalias con motivo de huelga, reunión o asociación legítimas. Para lo anterior la multa será de cien (100) a trescientos (300) salarios mínimos legales mensuales vigentes o arresto.

Se equipara la pena agravándola cuando se cometa una amenaza contra el integrante de un sindicato. Antes sólo estaba para el servidor pblico perteneciente a la Rama Judicial o al Ministerio Pblico o sus familiares.