CARTAGENA, COLOMBIA -- A year after President Bush and Andean leaders made the drug war their top long-term priority, the United States and Latin America are struggling to keep the initiative alive as they face an overall rise in cocaine production, according to U.S. and Colombian officials.

Colombian and U.S. officials say that a combination of the Persian Gulf crisis and a sharp decrease in drug-related terrorism in Colombia have diminished Washington's attention on the drug war.

At the same time, internal conditions in Colombia, Bolivia and Peru have made combating the drug trade, never politically popular, more difficult to sustain.

The killing on Friday by the traffickers of kidnapped journalist Diana Turbay, and the Medellin cocaine cartel's vow to revive the war after several months of relative peace have increased pressure on President Cesar Gaviria to negotiate with the traffickers.

"Public opinion has shifted on us now," said a senior adviser. "That does not mean the president will give in to it, but it will increase the political costs of the policy."

In February 1990, the presidents of the United States, Peru, Bolivia and Colombia signed the Document of Cartagena in this historic fortress city on the Caribbean coast, outlining a strategy for combating the flow of drugs and providing U.S. aid to the Andean region.

The agreement was accompanied by the Andean Initiative, a $2.1 billion, five-year program of U.S. aid for law enforcement, the military, and the economies of the three nations -- all aimed at reducing the supply of cocaine to the United States. Congress has yet to approve the initiative.

But regional U.S. narcotics experts say cocaine production in Colombia is estimated to be as high as it was in August 1989, when the latest crackdown began, and that production has grown dramatically in Bolivia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Brazil.

Colombian officials say they resent the apparent drop in U.S. interest once the drug barons halted their campaign of bombs and assassinations.

Gaviria, in an interview last month, said the United States, in the last year, had not passed any legislation that opened U.S. markets to Colombian products, or taken any of the other steps requested by Colombia to help compensate it for the estimated $1 billion the war had cost the nation.

Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.), chairman of the Select Committee on Narcotics Abuse and Control, who led a five-member congressional delegation to Colombia earlier this month, said one of the main concerns expressed in seven hours of talks with Gaviria and other top officials here at the presidential retreat was the lack of responsiveness of the Bush administration and Congress to Colombia.

"They used to get President Bush or Vice President Quayle down here, now the only thing they get stuck with is me," said Rangel in an interview. "Gaviria wants to get back on the agenda, and I understand that."

"A main concern in the meetings was that this was still a cooperative effort," Rangel said. "The problem is how to get the {Bush} administration to refocus. It seems they can only handle one issue at a time."

A senior Colombian official said the government feared that after bearing the brunt of the battle and losing more than 1,000 lives while combating traffickers, its sacrifice could make little long-term impact should consuming nations abandon the fight.

In an effort to make its case more effectively in the United States, Colombia this month announced that it had hired a lobbying firm, Akin Gump, for $30,000 a month, and that Gaviria may travel to the United States to make his case.

Gaviria was stung by charges that his government was withdrawing from the antidrug effort by promising not to extradite drug traffickers who turn themselves in and confess to a crime. He said the plea-bargain offer is an attempt to end the drug-associated terrorism, which he calls a strictly Colombian problem, and said the international community must now shoulder more, not less, of the responsibility in halting drug trafficking, which he said is a global phenomenon.

Internally, the government has been forced in the last two months to divert resources from the drug war to combat a resurgent Marxist guerrilla movement. Colombia, with rising inflation and unemployment, is also facing its most severe economic crisis since the 1970s.

Bolivia, meanwhile, is bogged down in a constitutitional battle among the three branches of government that has effectively paralyzed the government. It also is mired in an acrimonious debate over what role, if any, the army should play in combating trafficking. This has held up the disbursement of U.S. aid.

Peru is battling corruption, an economic crisis, and the radical Shining Path guerrilla insurgency, lessening the political will to take on drug traffickers and coca growers as well.