Oct 232014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/05/06MANILA2111.html#

Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06MANILA2111 2006-05-18 08:27 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Manila
VZCZCXRO9069
OO RUEHCHI RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHML #2111 1380827
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 180827Z MAY 06
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1062
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS IMMEDIATE
RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
C O N F I D E N T I A L MANILA 002111

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/18/2016
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREL PINR RP
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR’S MAY 18 MEETING WITH FORMER PRESIDENT AQUINO

REF: A. MANILA 1275
¶B. 05 MANILA 3946
¶C. 05 MANILA 3154

Classified By: Ambassador Kristie A. Kenney for reasons
1.4 (b) and (d).

¶1. (C) The Ambassador, accompanied by the DCM, paid her
first visit on former president Corazon “Cory” Aquino on May
¶18. Aquino talked warmly and nostalgically about her days in
Malacanang before turning to the current political situation.
She said that she still believes that President Arroyo and
Vice President De Castro should step down for the good of the
country. (Aquino first called on the President to resign in
July 2005, at the height of a scandal over alleged cheating
in the 2004 presidential elections – see ref C.) Such a move
would put Senate President Franklin Drilon temporarily in
charge until snap elections could be held to choose a new
president and vice president to serve out the remainder of
the term until 2010.

¶2. (C) Initially, Aquino insisted that she had no desire to
get involved in politics again, stating she was much more
interested in promoting micro-financing and livelihood
assistance though a foundation she set up in honor of her
late husband, Benigno Aquino, Jr. She asserted that
then-Archbishop Gaudencio Rosales and several former Arroyo
cabinet officials approached her in mid-2005 and convinced
her to go, reluctantly, to the palace to ask Arroyo to step
down. She said that Archbishop Rosales was very firm in
urging Arroyo to resign, but the President said practically
nothing throughout the entire visit, and then abruptly
excused herself to attend another meeting. Aquino expressed
dismay that Rosales has taken a much softer public stance
since then and speculated that his apparent about-face may
have been due to pressure from the Papal Nuncio, who wants
the bishops to keep a low profile on political issues (see
ref B).

¶3. (C) While admitting that President Arroyo has benefited
from the Opposition’s lack of a clear leader, Aquino pointed
out that the anti-Marcos opposition was in the same position
after the death of her husband in 1983. She said she
believed that if Arroyo were to step aside, a new leader
would emerge.

¶4. (C) The Ambassador underscored the need to follow the
democratic process in any effort to change the government.
Aquino insisted that she has no intention to pursue any
extra-constitutional actions or sow rebellion. She claimed
that more and more average Filipinos support her opposition
to the President.

Visit Embassy Manila’s Classified SIPRNET website:
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eap/manila/index. cfm

You can also access this site through the State Department’s
Classified SIPRNET website:
http://www.state.sgov.gov/

Kenney

   

 

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