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December 20, 2016
Document Release Date: 
July 2, 2007
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PDF icon CIA-RDP84B00049R001403500023-9.pdf83.92 KB
Approved For Release 2007/07/02 : CIA-RDP84B00049R001403500023-9 S E C R E T SUBJECT: Topic for Discussion at DCI Luncheon Meeting with Secretary Shultz on 5 November 1982 Challenge to Leadership of Suriname Army Commander Lt. Colonel Desire Bouterse 6 1. A major confrontation between the powerful democratic labor sector and the head of the military government, Lt. Colonel Desire Bouterse, appears to have been avoided by the direct intervention of the Deputy Army Commander, Major Roy Horb. Bouterse's prestige and popular support base have eroded. A power struggle between Horb and Bouterse appears to be underway. Bouterse's pro-Cuban and leftist advisors are whispering to him that Horb and labor leader Cyril Daal have entered into an alliance. 2. This challenge to Bouterse's leadership has resulted in a formulation which may provide for the return of democracy to Suriname. Daal was arrested on 28 October when he failed to obey Bouterse's demand to order striking air traffic controllers back to work. The strike threatened to disrupt the official visit of Grenadian Prime Minister Maurice Bishop, scheduled to arrive that day. However, spontaneous demonstrations supporting his position resulted in his release from custody. Daal then called a labor rally for 31 October to coincide with a peoples' rally which Bouterse had planned for Prime Minister Bishop. Attendance at the Bouterse/Bishop rally was estimated at 1,500 people; estimates are that 15,000 turned out to support Daal. Daal called for a general strike to be held on 2 November to force the government to reinstate the democratic process in Suriname. 3. At the time of these events in Suriname, Major Horb was in the United States on a personal visit. Approved For Release 2007/07/02 : CIA-RDP84B00049R001403500023-9 Approved For Release 2007/07/02 : CIA-RDP84B00049ROO1403500023-9 4. When he arrived in Suriname, Horb promised his support and the support of the military to labor leader Daal. This is the first known incident in which Bouterse and Horb have had a fundamental difference of opinion. Horb is critical of the pro-Cuban Foreign Minister Harvey Naarendorp, and dislikes Cuban-trained Minister of Health and Environment Sital. Both officials are strong Bouterse supporters. It remains to be seen in this test of wills whether Bouterse will accept the ouster of two of his strongest supporters, or to what extent Horb will insist on such a move. A further irritant to Bouterse is the pledge of support Major Horb received from the Surinamese Army. It appears Bouterse perceives Horb's activism during this delicate period as a sign that Horb wishes to replace him. 5. The situation remains fluid. Major Horb has given Daal assurances that he will be protected. In fact, Horb assigned nine personal bodyguards to Daal. While it is premature to conclude that democracy will return in Suriname, it is clear that the popular Major Horb is no longer walking in step with Bouterse. Approved For Release 2007/07/02 : CIA-RDP84B00049ROO1403500023-9