U.S. Militarization of Costa Rica – Statement from HSA

 The entry of U.S. troops into Costa Rica is a threat to Latin AmericaWe would like to express our strong rejection of the decision by Laura Chinchilla’s government to allow the entry of 7000 marines and 46 warships into Costa Rica from July 1 to December 31, 2010 under the pretext of fighting drug trafficking. This decision is a violation of the territorial and political sovereignty of the Costa Rican people and a threat to Latin American democracy.Three Costa Rican political parties --Acción Ciudadana (PAC), Frente Amplio (FA) and Unidad Social Cristiana (PUSC)-- denounced the agreement because it will allow the arrival of warships that are capable of transporting 200 helicopters and war planes, frigates, the Freedom class of Littoral combat ships that are capable of attacking submarines, and a hospital ship. This operation continues the militarization of Central America. The size and nature of the weaponry being deployed cannot be justified under the pretext of the war on drugs, and goes against the nonmilitary and pacifist spirit that has characterized Costa Rica for more than 60 years, since Costa Ricans made the decision to abolish the army. The National Outreach Commission of the Popular Movement (Comisión Nacional de Enlace del Movimiento Popular) emphasized that this new phase, military occupation, is a direct consequence of the commitments made in the chapter on security within the framework of the FTA, signed by Oscar Arias. The United States in its strategy of domination is determined to expand its military options in Latin America. The installation of seven bases in Colombia, the intensified militarization of Honduras and Haiti, the announcement of new bases in Panama and the deployment of the Fourth Fleet are a threat to the people of Latin American and their processes of self determination. This is why we express our support for the people of Costa Rica and we reject what constitutes another aggression in the region.Coalición Colombia No Bases Recalca Alianza Social Continental