US Ambassador in Photo with Crime Lord

La Paz, Nov 6 (Prensa Latina)

The Bolivian Foreign Ministry demanded explanations Tuesday from US Ambassador to La Paz Philip Goldberg about a photo in which Goldberg appears together with Colombian-born criminal Jhon Jairo Venegas.

The photo, part of a police investigation against a recently dismantled international crime ring operating in Bolivia, was shot in September at the Expo Cruz Fair in Santa Cruz, Bolivia.

Well-known Bolivian opposition member Gabriel Dabdoub, president of the Bolivian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CAINCO), is also in the photo with Goldberg and Venegas, the latter now in Palmasola Prison.

Goldberg and Dabdoub denied knowing Venegas and said the photo was simply, like many others, taken with unknown people.

Foreign Minister Choquehuanca, who has sent a note to the US Embassy requesting an explanation, stated it was strange that someone unknown had a picture taken with the US ambassador when the Embassy security corps habitually does not allow anyone to get near him.

Bolivian President Evo Morales mentioned the photo in an interview with Italian daily Il Manifesto when discussing right-wing destabilization attempts in his country.

First published at Prensa Latina

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think, We as Bolivia have gone from being stupid to insane. What in the heck is a criminal walking around in the Santa Cruz fair. Police did a POOR job. I usually do not stand up for the USA, but this is not the Ambassador's fault. The MAS seems desperate to blame anything on him, as they well know that Chavez the Venezuelan President is considered undesireable to many in Bolivia. Every one wants to be pictured with Golberg, Chavez, even with Evo, if they had a chance. Even I.