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Montevideo, December 4th 2022 - 11:36 UTC

 

 

US Congressional team meets with Paraguayan Defense Minister

Friday, August 5th 2022 - 08:13 UTC
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The lawmakers were interested in training facilities for Paraguayan troops carrying out UN peacekeeping operations with US funding The lawmakers were interested in training facilities for Paraguayan troops carrying out UN peacekeeping operations with US funding

Lawmakers from the United States met Thursday in Asunción with Paraguay's Defense Minister Bernardino Soto Estigarribia to discuss matters of mutual interest, one day ahead of their encounter with President Mario Abdo Benítez at the López Palace.

The 4-member Congressional delegation's agenda is focused on “defense and security,” according to the US Embassy in Asunción.

Also present at Thursday's meeting was the Paraguayan Armed Forces Chief of Staff, Air General Eladio González Aguilar.

Congresswomen Stephanie Murphy, Kathleen Rice of the Democratic Party, and Representatives Kurt Schrader (D) and Mark Green (R)participated in the meeting, during which “they discussed issues related to Defense and the historical cooperation between Paraguay and the US in Security and Defense matters,” according to a statement from Paraguayan authorities.

The delegation is unfolding a three-day agenda, which will continue Friday morning with a meeting with President Mario Abdo Benítez at the Government Palace.

According to the US embassy, the lawmakers are also to meet Foreign Minister Julio César Arriola; Interior Minister Federico González; National Intelligence Secretary Esteban Aquino. (Read also: https://en.mercopress.com/2022/08/01/paraguayan-president-pledges-to-up-intelligence-funding )

The bipartisan delegation is led by Congresswoman Murphy of Florida, who serves on the US House Armed Services Committee together with Tennessee's Green, while Oregon's Schrader stems from the Energy and Commerce (E&C) Committee.

The lawmakers are also due to visit the Joint Peace Operations Training Center (Cecopaz) to learn about the combined UN peacekeeping operations that Paraguay is carrying out with US funding. They will also travel to other military facilities nationwide.

“This visit is a symbol of the enduring partnership between the United States and Paraguay,” said US Ambassador Marc Ostfield. “From fighting transnational crime to protecting our borders, the relationship between our countries is strong and will continue to grow,” he added.

The Congressional group first visited Brazil, and from Paraguay, it is due to land in Panama. Its presence further demonstrates “the excellent state of cooperative relations” between the US and Paraguay, the US Embassy in Asunción highlighted.

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