Oct 272014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2007/10/07MANILA3418.html#
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07MANILA3418
2007-10-15 10:52
2011-08-30 01:44
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Manila

VZCZCXRO9498
OO RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHML #3418 2881052
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 151052Z OCT 07
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8597
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
C O N F I D E N T I A L MANILA 003418

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STATE FOR EAP/MLS AARON COPE
STATE FOR EAP/MTS MICHAEL TAYLOR

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/15/2017
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREL RP BM
SUBJECT: DISCUSSION WITH PRESIDENT ARROYO ON BURMA

REF: A. A. STATE 142628
¶B. B. MANILA 3393
¶C. C. MANILA 3335 AND PREVIOUS

Classified By: Ambassador Kristie A. Kenney, Reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

¶1. (C) SUMMARY: I sat down today for a private meeting with
Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Foreign
Secretary Alberto Romulo. I thanked them for their vocal and

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proactive stance on Burma, and floated the idea of a special
ASEAN envoy for Burma — perhaps even former Philippine
President Fidel Ramos. President Arroyo and Romulo
emphasized the need for a continued tough stance on Burma,
and were very receptive to the idea of an ASEAN envoy,
particularly Ramos. President Arroyo is eager to sign a
letter on Burma as discussed at Secretary Rice’s UNGA event
with women leaders. END SUMMARY.

¶2. (C) Foreign Secretary Romulo and I arrived at the palace
at the same time and discussed Burma as we walked in to see
President Arroyo. Romulo told me that President Arroyo and
he had both raised their strong concerns about Burma during
their recent visit to India (reftel C). Romulo said that he
thought that the Burmese regime looked weaker now than ever
before, but the international community needed to maintain
pressure in order to achieve tangible progress. He
reiterated his view that China — rather than India — was
the key to real reform in Burma, and again suggested that a
joint statement by former Nobel Peace Prize laureates might
be useful in pressuring the junta (reftel B).

¶3. (C) When President Arroyo joined us, I underscored our
appreciation for the continued role she and her government
were playing in urging a forward-leaning stance by ASEAN
regarding Burma, and stressed the importance of concrete
action by ASEAN to press the Burmese regime to end its
coercive tactics and move toward democracy, including through
an active role for UN Special Adviser Gambari. President
Arroyo echoed Foreign Secretary Romulo’s emphasis on the need
for continued pressure on the Burmese junta and strong
leadership on the part of ASEAN. She noted that she had used
the occasion of the death of Burmese Gen. Soe Win to call for
greater commitment to democratization by Burma’s leaders.
While she felt we needed to keep pushing Burma, she confessed
to a lack of optimism regarding our ability to influence the
regime’s behavior.

¶4. (C) President Arroyo liked the idea of having ASEAN name a
senior special envoy to engage more actively on the Burma
issue. I mentioned former Philippine President Ramos as a
possible candidate for such a position and she responded very
positively to the idea of Ramos for the position, noting that
he had visited Burma as Philippine President.

¶5. (C) Recalling the September meeting of the Women Leaders
Working Group hosted by Secretary Rice, President Arroyo
asked about the status of a letter calling for the release of
detained NLD opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, which
President Arroyo understood was being drafted by the State
Department. President Arroyo said she had recently discussed
Burma with New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark, and that
both of them were eager to sign such a letter.
KENNEY

   

 

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