Oct 222014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2005/08/05MANILA3843.html#

Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
05MANILA3843 2005-08-19 09:05 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Manila
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MANILA 003843

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/MTS, INR/EAP, S/CT, USIP – SOLOMON
NSC FOR GREEN

E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/20/2015
TAGS: PTER PREL MOPS PINS KISL MY RP
SUBJECT: GRP-MILF OPTIMISTIC ON TALKS, MALAYSIAN MONITORS,
AND CONTINUED COOPERATION AGAINST ASG/JI

REF: MANILA 3435

Classified By: Political Officer Joseph Saus for
reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).

¶1. (C) Summary. The GRP and Moro Islamic Liberation Front
(MILF) maintain their readiness to resume exploratory talks,
although GRP officials indicate Malaysian facilitators remain
concerned about distractions stemming from the still
unresolved political situation in Manila. Both parties
appreciate the work of the Malaysian-led International
Monitoring Team (IMT), which will be renewed for another year
through October 2006. GRP-MILF cooperation continues against
Jemmah Islamiyah (JI) and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) fugitives in
west-central Maguindanao province. There are indications
that the fugitives remain on the run and distrustful of many
locals, although some individuals in the area may be
assisting them in return for money. End Summary.

GRP and MILF Optimistic, Malaysia Skittish
——————————————

¶2. (C) MILF technical advisor Attorney Musib Buat told
poloff on August 17 that the next round of exploratory talks
will happen “soon.” He noted that the last round in July was
postponed on account of the delicate political situation in
Manila. On August 20, the MILF technical working group will
meet with the MILF peace panel to discuss the remaining
“governance aspect” of the negotiations, according to Buat.
(Note. The parties previously agreed to a final peace
agreement framework centered on the concept of “ancestral
domain,” territory, governance, and allocation of natural
resources. End Note.)

¶3. (C) On August 18, GRP Peace Panel Secretariat Chairman,
Ryan Sullivan, echoed Buat’s optimism regarding the GRP-MILF
peace process, but he blamed Malaysia for the delays, citing
Kuala Lumpur’s lingering reticence due to the delicate
political situation in Manila over the past few months.
Nonetheless, he stressed “both sides are expectant” and ready
to restart the exploratory talks, pending the availability of
the Malaysians.

IMT Set For Renewal
——————-

¶4. (C) Buat was very supportive of the IMT’s ceasefire
monitoring role. The MILF’s website also showcased an
article voicing strong support for the continued mandate of
the IMT, and thanks to departing IMT Chief of Mission Major
General Zulkifeli for his contribution to the ceasefire and
the wider cause of peace in Mindanao. The IMT has a yearly
mandate and both the GRP and MILF peace panels petitioned the
Malaysian government through the Philippine Department of
Foreign Affairs to extend the IMT’s tour of duty for another
year starting in October 2005. According to Sullivan,
another batch of Malaysians will arrive by early September,
and the next contingent will have more civilians to focus on
economic development matters.

Antiterror Operations Continue
——————————

¶5. (C) The Joint Monitoring Assistance Center (reftel)
continues to coordinate effectively AFP and MILF information
and movements. Sullivan reported “renegade” MILF commander
Wahid Tondok and the deputy commander of Ameril Umbra Kato
were “suspended from the MILF” resulting from their disregard
of the Central Committee directive to cease harboring or
cooperating with the JI and ASG. Several lower-level ASG
members have been neutralized in the operation (now in its
second month), Sullivan claimed. He added ASG leader
Khadaffy Janjalani’s “brother-in-law” had been killed, but
provided no further information. Some MILF members, however,
continue to assist ASG in return for money, Sullivan said,
although he emphasized the ASG, because of the current
operations against them, is particularly cautious where they
travel and who they approach for help.

¶6. (C) Buat confirmed to poloff the ongoing heated debate in
the Central Committee regarding recent MILF cooperation with
the AFP, noting the MILF draws the line at joint operations
because they do not want to draw excessive public attention
to the cooperation out of concern that it may weaken their
position in the peace negotiations. Buat said several senior
advisors argue law and order is the responsibility of the GRP
and the police, not the MILF. Poloff suggested communities
also share the burden in self-policing and in helping
authorities to clear out criminal or terrorist elements.

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/
JOHNSON

   

 

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