U.S. says it will use "available tools" against corruption in Paraguay
On Thursday, it said it will continue to cooperate with the government of the South American country.
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"We will continue our work and our cooperation with the government of President Abdo Benítez and also with Paraguayan institutions with a commitment to democratic principles such as transparency and the rule of law," said U.S. ambassador to Asunción, Marc Ostfield, at a recent press conference in Paraguay.
The diplomat was speaking at a press conference at the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Paraguay alongside Mark Wells, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the U.S. and Brazil and Southern Cone for Andean Region Affairs.
"We will continue to use all available tools in the fight against corruption: visa restrictions, financial sanctions, extraditions, among others," said Otsfield, who clarified that he could not give any details of the ongoing investigations of the country's officials.
Wells, who arrived in the country last night, in a press statement described a "very frank and open" conversation he had with the substitute Minister of Foreign Affairs, Raúl Silvero, and thanked the Government and the Paraguayan people for being an "important strategic ally in this region."
"In Washington we are very grateful for Paraguay's support in matters of democracy, leadership in economic and human rights issues," he added.
Silvero, host of the meeting, described as "very positive" the meeting with the U.S. representatives, as both countries reviewed economic and trade issues, among others established in the bilateral agenda.
For his part, the Minister of the Interior Federico González, also received Wells in his office and discussed cooperation, the fight against transnational organized crime and joint results.
He also confirmed that they discussed the murder of prosecutor Marcelo Pecci, committed by hired assassins in Cartagena, Colombia, which the Minister of the Interior considered an "emblematic case" for his country.
Wells, who plans to conclude his visit to the country on Friday, Aug. 26, expects to meet with representatives of the private sector.