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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AUGUST 14, 2002
1:31 PM
CONTACT:  Institute for Public Accuracy
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; David Zupan, (541) 484-9167
Interviews Available: Colombia, Mideast
 

WASHINGTON - August 14 -

*Colombia:

ADAM ISACSON, isacson@ciponline.org, http://www.ciponline.org
Director of the Colombia program at the Center for International Policy, Isacson said today: "At a time when a new hardline president is declaring a state of emergency in Colombia, the U.S. government is broadening its military mission from counter-narcotics to counter-terrorism. This could lead just about anyplace. Those two trends are worrying enough on their own, but for them to happen at the same time should make us sit up."

CECILIA ZARATE-LAUN, csn@igc.org, http://www.colombiasupport.net
Co-founder and director of the Colombia Support Network, Zarate-Laun said today: "Colombia's new government has issued a decree that installed a state of emergency. It is instituting detentions without warrants and creating a network of informants, which violates the constitution. Meanwhile, the interior minister is pressuring the constitutional courts... Fighting against terrorism is not only a right; it is a duty of the government. However the government cannot be allowed to solve the Colombia conflict by restricting fundamental freedoms and democratic rights."

* Mideast:

ANDREW COCKBURN, amcockburn@aol.com
Coauthor of "Out Of The Ashes: The Resurrection Of Saddam Hussein," Cockburn is familiar with the various Iraqi groups the administration is working with to oust Saddam Hussein. Cockburn is currently in California.

AS'AD ABUKHALIL, abukhali@toto.csustan.edu
AbuKhalil's recent criticism of the Jordanian monarchy on the Al-Jazeera network prompted a number of actions by the Jordanian government -- including closing down the offices of Al-Jazeera in Jordan. He said today: "The stiff Jordanian reaction to my criticism of the record of the royal family and its double dealings toward the Palestinians indicates a measure of the nervousness and insecurity on the part of the king, who wishes to balance his blind loyalty to the U.S. with the sentiments of his largely Palestinian populace. The role of the intelligence apparatus has been expanded under this king, and dissidents are quickly rounded up.... The U.S. is working toward affecting the succession struggle in Saudi Arabia: The pro-U.S. faction under Prince Sultan, who is the defense minister and father of the Saudi Ambassador in D.C., wants Prince Sultan to be made the Crown Prince, while Crown Prince Abdullah wants the traditional standard of chronological seniority to be observed." Author of "Bin Laden, Islam & America's New 'War on Terrorism'" and professor of political science at California State University at Stanislaus, AbuKhalil has recently returned from the Mideast.

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