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Montevideo, December 9th 2022 - 16:07 UTC



US envoy discusses corruption with Paraguayan lawmakers

Thursday, August 25th 2022 - 09:38 UTC
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Paraguayan senators understood the US would take action beyond labeling people as “significantly corrupt” Paraguayan senators understood the US would take action beyond labeling people as “significantly corrupt”

The US Undersecretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Mark Wells Wednesday said in Asunción that his country would undertake further action beyond declaring Paraguayan Vice President Hugo Velázquez and former President Horacio Cartés as “significantly corrupt.”

The US official also discussed with local lawmakers other issues such as the waterway project, the two countries' relationship with Taiwan, meat certification, public works projects, the Public Procurement Law, bilateral trade, the fight against corruption and impunity, and the strengthening of democratic institutions.

Paraguayan Senator Jorge Querey, who took part in the meeting, pointed out that drug trafficking, the organized crime route, as well as the money and smuggling circuit were also addressed. “Basically these issues were put for consideration, there was no conclusion as such,” he explained.

“They have clarified that these expressions of them as significantly corrupt will be accompanied by other measures. They still have a series of measures to implement,” Querey went on. The leftist Frente Guasu lawmaker also pointed out the United States might block the assets abroad of “the people that they single out as significantly corrupt.”

Senator Enrique Salyn Buzarquis, who also participated in the encounter, told Wells Attorney General Sandra Quiñónez should also be investigated for “shelving” cases linked to former Cartés, according to his own statements later in the day on an ABC TV show.

The Parliamentarian also underlined the fact that Wells had not met with any Cartist Colorado Party senator or deputy, which should be read as a sign from the US Government. ”It seems to me that this gentleman wanted to listen to our (opposition) opinion,“ he said.

If Quiñónez is not investigated, ”then you are accomplices of the significantly corrupt [Cartés],“ Buzarquis said he had told Wells. He also hinted the US government would take further action ”against impunity, organized crime, and drug trafficking.”

Categories: Politics, Paraguay.

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