Amigoe; January 25, 2006: ATA and Briesen also disturbed about Cohen
ARUBA Ã¢â‚¬” Also Aruba Tourism Authority (ATA) dissociates herself from the firm statements of Steve Cohen. ATA emphasized in a press release that ATA and Tourism-minister Edison Briesen (MEP) do not agree with the statements of Cohen on the details of the investigation and the guiltiness of the three suspects.
The judgment of Cohen during the Caribbean Marketplace-conference in Puerto Rico last week took the minister and the ATA by surprise. They immediately talked to him afterwards and he was made clear that he is not allowed to speak out like that on behalf of Aruba. They made it clear to him that he is not allowed to give details about the case; he cannot speculate and accuse the three suspects. Unfortunately, Cohen had already made such statements in Dr. Phil’s show that was recorded on January 10th, five days before Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) conference. Cohen’s statements had been on the Task Force’s website for some time. Cohen had also added an elucidation on the same website. Both articles are meanwhile removed from arubatruth.com.
Even though Cohen is officially the spokesperson of the Task Force, he is not being paid by ATA (government) but by Ahata (private).
According to ATA’s press release, the Task Force and the ATA had already drawn up the document with the name Natalee Holloway Talking Points. This document is a guideline for everybody that talks about the case with the international media. The parties have not discussed deviation from this document. ATA emphasises that speaking about the case to others is very inconvenient and the ATA appreciates the fact that Cohen wants to do this. They also say that Cohen’s presence at the conference had a positive effect on the tour operators.