Chile Proposes to Brazil Study for Gradual Withdrawal of Forces in Haiti

By Dialogo
November 01, 2011

Chilean Defense Minister Andrés Allamand, together with the under secretary for defense, Oscar Izurieta, and the head of the Joint General Staff, Lieutenant General Hernán Mardones, met with Allamand’s Brazilian counterpart, Celso Amorim, to review both countries’ bilateral agenda.

One of the chief topics discussed at the bilateral meeting, held in Brasilia, the Brazilian capital, was the Chilean proposal to create a gradual and proportional schedule for the withdrawal of forces in Haiti.

“Chile shares with Brazil a commitment to Haiti and the will to continue collaborating on the stabilization of that country. That entails moving to a phase of greater collaboration on tasks linked to economic development and strengthening institutions. Just as it is unreasonable to press for a hasty and ill-advised withdrawal from Haiti, it is also wrong to extend our presence in that country forever. The idea is to agree on a gradual and proportional departure itinerary, with the aim that this will be the object of talks both with the Haitian authorities and with those of the United Nations,” Defense Minister Andrés Allamand said.

During his official visit to Brazil, Minister Allamand will learn at first hand and on site how that country (Brazil) has set up its border surveillance and protection program, both in its technical aspects (radar systems, sensors, and high-tech equipment) and in its operational aspects, where one of the topics of special interest is the articulation of collaborative efforts between the Armed Forces and the police.

“The increase of drug trafficking in the region and the southward displacement of areas planted with coca require a joint and multilateral approach to the problem. Brazil has had a plan for controlling its borders for years. Argentina recently implemented the Northern Shield plan, and we’re moving forward on the North Border Plan. Nevertheless, the effectiveness of these plans depends on the capacity for cooperation, trustworthy exchange of information, and adoption of joint measures,” Minister Allamand maintained.

In this context, Chile seeks to collaborate actively in this sphere, with the aim of implementing measures that can serve to combat this plague jointly with other countries in the region.