Equatorial guinea_ new u. s. secretary of state linked to ‘petro-kleptocrat’ obiang – allafrica. com

Remember the crystal-studded “Bad Tour” glove and the “Thriller” jacket? Both are now stashed in Equatorial Guinea. Pavers boots clearance These goods are the subject of law enforcement investigations, legal indictment, trial and a settlement in several countries, including Spain, Switzerland, France and the United States [download PDF]. Football teams playing today In Spain judges are looking at how millions of dollars deposited by Exxon and other oil companies at the now-defunct Riggs Bank were used to acquire villas, resorts, ships and other items for the benefit of the president of Equatorial Guinea and his cronies.

Corruption is not the only problem in Equatorial Guinea. Football player logo team quiz game answers Human rights violations are widespread. Landscaping costs per square foot Many of my colleagues inside the country have been arbitrarily detained, unlawfully imprisoned and even tortured because of their human rights or pro-democracy work. Softball backgrounds This prolonged brutal repression by the Obiang regime would not be possible without the support of ExxonMobil.

In 1995, just as I left Equatorial Guinea to pursue an education in the United States, three critical events took place. Basketball wives season 5 episode 2 First, the U.S. Football field clipart government closed its embassy, according to Human Rights Watch researchers, due in part to the record of “pervasive human rights abuses and endemic corruption.”

Second, my country came close ousting Obiang, when a coalition of opposition parties achieved an unprecedented victory in the municipal and parliamentary elections.

Third, according Steve Coll’s “Private Empire,” ExxonMobil discovered that the 1.2-billon-barrel Zafiro oil field had production three times greater than Mobil’s entire worldwide output of oil and gas at the time.

The following year, in advance of the presidential election, ExxonMobil’s petrodollars bankrolled the involvement of a U.S. Baseball drills for kids lobbyist who helped legitimize a rigged contest in which Obiang claimed 97.8 percent of the vote from the same constituency that only months earlier had opted overwhelmingly for the opposition coalition. Little league baseball scorekeeping app Nicholas Shaxson’s “Poisoned Wells” recounts the participation of the ExxonMobil-funded Institute for Democratic Strategies, led by Bruce McColm, into the 1996 presidential election in my country.

In 2006, the U.S. Softball field layout government started renting a building from the minister of national security, an uncle of the president. Pitch angle wind turbine Shortly thereafter, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice welcomed Obiang to Washington. Softball rules Although Obiang was one of the world’s most brutal and corrupt dictators, Rice praised him for his welcoming treatment of U.S. Driveway sealer drying time oil companies while passing over his rampant human rights abuses, publicly declaring him a “good friend” of the United States.

For thousands of people in my country who have no access to clean running water, reliable electricity, adequate health clinics, schools for their children, or freedom of speech and assembly, ExxonMobil’s engagement under Tillerson has emboldened a dictator, providing him with an economic lifeline to become the longest-ruling “elected” head of state in the world today.

Exxon’s embrace of Obiang has been mutually beneficial. Fencing olympics The energy company drills and exports oil while a despot consolidates and remains in power for nearly four decades – and, unlike his fellow citizens, is showered by enormous wealth, whose major provider is Exxon. Football teams by state This – a system in which corrupt and repressive government officials and their corporate partners have hijacked the governmental apparatus for the dual purpose of resource extraction and the enrichment and security of the government – is what I call a classic “petro-kleptocracy.”

Yet Tillerson testified under oath that he has “no direct knowledge of that,” and that he would “have to review for my memory the circumstance you’re talking about.”

Kaine asked Tillerson how will he “work with nations” that have suffered under the “resource curse,” and how he intends to “make sure they respect human rights, the rule of law and our long-standing commitment to transparency and anti-corruption.” Equatoguineans are asking ourselves the same questions.

Can we expect him to be the first secretary of state to act upon Presidential Proclamation 7750, which stipulates the denial of visas to people “benefiting from corruption,” including his long-standing business partner, Obiang? Can we expect Tillerson to openly call for democracy and human rights in Equatorial Guinea? I’m inclined to be skeptical.

Tutu Alicante is executive director of EG Justice, an NGO which works to promote human rights, the rule of law, transparency and civic participation to build a just Equatorial Guinea. Garden state park This contribution, a version of which first appeared in the Washington Post, is re-published with the permission of the author.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. Michigan softball coach We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Facebook desktop version android Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. High pitch eric howard stern To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.