Oct 182014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2001/11/01KUALALUMPUR2464.html#
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
01KUALALUMPUR2464
2001-11-28 09:45
2011-08-30 01:44
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Kuala Lumpur

Appears in these articles:
http://www.malaysia-today.net/mtcolumns/special-reports/40813-wikileaks-manila-feared-misuari-would-flee-once-deported

P 280945Z NOV 01
FM AMEMBASSY KUALA LUMPUR
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1045
INFO ASEAN COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
ISLAMIC CONFERENCE COLLECTIVE
USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 KUALA LUMPUR 002464

CINCPAC FOR FPA

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/28/11
TAGS: PTER PREL PINS MY RP
SUBJECT: MALAYSIA PROBES MISUARI TIES TO ABU SAYYAF GROUP

REF: (A) KUALA LUMPUR 2446 (B) MANILA 6796

CLASSIFIED BY A/DCM JAMES F. ENTWISTLE FOR REASONS 1.5
(B) AND (D).

¶1. (C) SUMMARY: CONCERNED THAT ANY CHARGES FILED
AGAINST NUR MISUARI HERE WOULD PROVOKE A DOMESTIC
BACKLASH, MALAYSIAN OFFICIALS CONTINUE TO INSIST THEY
ARE PREPARED TO DEPORT THE MORO NATIONAL LIBERATION
FRONT (MNLF) LEADER TO THE PHILIPPINES. NEVERTHELESS,
MALAYSIA’A SECURITY APPARATUS IS INCREASINGLY
INTERESTED IN MISUARI’S ALLEGED CONNECTION TO THE ABU
SAYYAF GROUP AND POSSIBLE INVOLVEMENT IN THE
KIDNAPPING OF WESTERN TOURISTS ON THE MALAYSIAN ISLAND
OF SIPADAN IN 2000. ACCORDING TO A FOREIGN MINISTRY
CONTACT, MANILA IS SHARING INTELLIGENCE ON MISUARI’S
POSSIBLE ROLE IN THE SIPADAN KIDNAPPING, WITH THE HOPE
THAT A RESULTING INVESTIGATION WOULD KEEP THE REBEL
LEADER INCARCERATED IN A MALAYSIAN JAIL. THE MFA
MAINTAINED THAT MANILA IS TALKING OUT OF TWO SIDES OF
ITS MOUTH, WITH PRESIDENT ARROYO’S OFFICE INDICATING
THAT MISUARI’S ACTIVITIES MAY REQUIRE A PROLONGED
MALAYSIAN INVESTIGATION, AND THE PHILIPPINE FOREIGN
MINISTRY CLAIMING THAT MANILA IS READY TO ACCEPT
MISUARI IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING ELECTIONS IN THE
AUTONOMOUS REGION OF MINDANAO (ARMM). AN MFA CONTACT
OPINED THAT GOP FOOT-DRAGGING IS ATTRIBUTABLE TO FEARS
THAT A REBELLION TRIAL FOR MISUARI IN THE PHILIPPINES
MAY NOT ULTIMATELY RESULT IN A CONVICTION, AND IN THE
END HE MAY JUST “SLIP AWAY.” END SUMMARY.

¶2. (C) THE LOCAL PRESS REPORTED NOVEMBER 28 THAT
DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER ABDULLAH BADAWI SAID THE GOM IS
READY TO IMMEDIATELY DEPORT MISUARI AT MANILA’S
REQUEST. CHIEF MINISTER OF THE BORNEO STATE OF SABAH,
CHONG KAH KIAT, SAID THAT MALAYSIA “WOULD LOVE TO SEND
HIM BACK AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.” CABINET MINISTER FOR
YOUTH AND SPORT AND UMNO YOUTH CHIEF HISHAMMUDDIN
HUSSEIN, WHO KNOWS MISUARI PERSONALLY AND EVEN
DESCRIBES HIM AS A “FRIEND,” CALLED FOR MISUARI’S
IMMEDIATE DEPORTATION TO THE PHILIPPINES.
HISHAMMUDDIN, WHO IS LIKELY NOW DEFENSIVE ABOUT HIS
RELATIONSHIP WITH MISUARI, TOLD THE PRESS THAT
MISUARI’S ACTIONS “CREATE A NEGATIVE IMAGE OF MUSLIMS
AND TARNISH THE SANCTITY OF ISLAM.” UNMO YOUTH
EXECUTIVE COUNCIL MEMBER SHAMSUL ANWAR SULAIMAN TOLD
US THAT THE PARTY HAD SENT A STRONG RECOMMENDATION TO
THE PRIME MINISTER THAT MISUARI BE RETURNED TO THE
PHILIPPINES AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. SHAMSUL CONFIRMED
THAT HE, HISHAMUDDIN, AND OTHER UMNO FIGURES HAD BEEN
CLOSE TO MISUARI IN THE PAST.

¶3. (C) WHILE THE GOM MAY WISH TO BE RID OF MISUARI,
THERE IS GROWING INTEREST IN HIS ALLEGED CONNECTION
WITH THE ABU SAYYAF GROUP AND HIS POSSIBLE ROLE IN THE
SIPADAN ISLAND KIDNAPPINGS IN 2000. FOLLOWING A
MEETING OF THE MALAYSIA’S NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL
NOVEMBER 24, AN UNNAMED OFFICIAL TOLD THE LOCAL PRESS
THAT MISUARI AND HIS CAPTURED AIDES COULD PROVIDE
INFORMATION ABOUT THE ACTIVITIES OF “MILITANT GROUPS.”
A FOREIGN MINISTRY CONTACT IN THE SOUTHEAST ASIA
DIVISION, ZULKEFLY MD NOOR (STRICTLY PROTECT) SAID
THAT MANILA WAS NOW “ALERTING” THE MALAYSIAN
AUTHORITIES TO MISUARI’S CONNECTIONS TO ABU SAYYAF AND
THE SIPADAN KIDNAPPINGS, PERHAPS AS A CONVENIENT WAY
TO KEEP MISUARI INCARCERATED IN MALAYSIA WHILE THE
MALAYSIAN POLICE CARRY OUT WHAT IS SURE TO BE A
COMPLEX TERRORISM INVESTIGATION. THE INSPECTOR
GENERAL OF THE ROYAL MALAYSIA POLICE, NORIAN MAI,
ACKNOWLEDGED TO THE PRESS THAT MISUARI AND HIS SIX
CAPTURED SUPPORTERS WERE BEING INVESTIGATED FOR LINKS
TO THE ABU SAYYAF GROUP, THOUGH NONE OF THE MEN,
INCLUDING MISUARI, HAVE BEEN FORMALLY CHARGED.

¶4. (C) ZULKEFLY PROVIDED SOME ADDITIONAL INSIGHT INTO
THE GOM’S DEALINGS WITH MANILA, MAINTAINING THAT THE
GOP IS TALKING OUT OF BOTH SIDES OF ITS MOUTH. WHILE
THE PHILIPPINE FOREIGN MINISTRY KEEPS ASSURING THE GOM
THAT MISUARI’S DEPORTATION WILL BE REQUESTED FOLLOWING
THE COMPLETION OF ELECTIONS IN MINDANAO, PRESIDENT
ARROYO’S OFFICE HAS INDICATED THAT THE GOM “SHOULD BE
PREPARED FOR THE LONG-HAUL.” ACCORDING TO ZULKEFLY,
THE GOP FEARS THAT PUTTING MISUARI ON TRIAL FOR
REBELLION WILL NOT ONLY CAUSE A POPULAR BACKLASH, BUT
MAY NOT RESULT IN A CONVICTION. ZULKEFLY SAID THE GOP
WAS NOT CONFIDENT IT COULD SECURE A CONVICTION, AND
WORRIED THAT MISUARI MAY ULTIMATELY “SLIP AWAY.”
ZULKEFLY AGREED WITH THE VIEW THAT PERHAPS THE GOP
HOPES A CONVICTION IN A MALAYSIAN COURT WOULD BE A
SAFER AND MORE EFFECTIVE METHOD OF KEEPING MISUARI
GROUP

BEHIND BARS.

HUHTALA

   

 

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