Sep 152014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2008/11/08MANILA2624.html#
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08MANILA2624
2008-11-28 09:07
2011-08-30 01:44
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Manila

VZCZCXRO1363
OO RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHML #2624/01 3330907
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 280907Z NOV 08
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2547
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS IMMEDIATE
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI IMMEDIATE 2402
RUEHCG/AMCONSUL CHENNAI IMMEDIATE 0514
RUEHCI/AMCONSUL KOLKATA IMMEDIATE 0125
RUEHBI/AMCONSUL MUMBAI IMMEDIATE 0895
RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MANILA 002624

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/MTS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/29/2018
TAGS: PGOV PTER RP IN
SUBJECT: MUMBAI ATTACKS DEPLORED, SECURITY LEVELS RAISED

MANILA 00002624 001.2 OF 002

Classified By: Charge d’Affaires Paul W. Jones,
reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).

¶1. (C) SUMMARY: In the wake of the terrorist attacks in
Mumbai, the Ambassador and senior Mission members spoke with
top Philippine national security officials Nov. 27-28 to
apprise them of the current situation in Mumbai, urge them to
remain vigilant for any potential attacks here, and reiterate
the USG’s commitment to stay closely engaged with the
Philippine government in our shared effort to protect against
terrorism. Noting that there were no known Filipino
fatalities thus far from the attacks, the Philippine
secretaries of defense and foreign affairs condemned the
attacks and voiced concern about their impact on the
Philippines, including the possibility Philippine-based
terrorists could take encouragement in staging their own
attacks. Mission will continue its comprehensive efforts to
assist Philippine intelligence, military, and national
security officials with their ongoing operations to thwart
potential terrorist activities. END SUMMARY.

HEIGHTENED CONCERN
——————

¶2. (C) In a Nov. 27 conversation with the Ambassador,
Philippine Secretary of National Defense Gilberto Teodoro
expressed concern about the attacks in Mumbai and said that
he wanted to be sure that Philippine intelligence and
security organizations were as prepared as possible to
disrupt any possible similar terrorist acts. The Ambassador
agreed that the Mumbai attacks were very troubling, and
reassured Teodoro of the Mission’s fundamental commitment to
assist his and other Philippine agencies with information and
resources they needed to disrupt any similar attacks in the
Philippines. Ambassador offered to share analysis as it
became available and to stay in touch with Teodoro as the
situation in Mumbai develops.

¶3. (C) Teodoro said his intelligence chief ordered the
Philippines’ New Delhi-based defense attache to travel
immediately to Mumbai to assess the situation. Concerned
about the attacks’ possible impact in the Philippines,
Teodoro said Philippine terrorists could be encouraged to
take advantage of the approaching holiday season. He
acknowledged that, at present, there were no known Filipino
fatalities in the attacks, which were strongly condemned by a
government spokesperson.

RAPID OUTREACH
————–

¶4. (C) Following the call, the Ambassador instructed
Mission’s RSO, Regional Affairs, and Joint Special Operations
Task Force (JSOTF) chiefs to contact leaders at the
Philippine National Police (PNP), the National Intelligence
Coordinating Agency (NICA), and military intelligence offices
to pass on all available information and underscore our
commitment to prevent any such attacks here. The Ambassador
convened an Emergency Action Committee meeting November 28 to
address the situation’s impact on the Philippines (septel).

COOPERATION LAUDED
——————

¶5. (C) At a November 28 breakfast with the Ambassador,
Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo said he was appalled
at the senseless attacks and expressed relief that there were
no signs of Filipino deaths or massive disruption to
Philippine nationals. He expressed deep appreciation for the
Ambassador’s commitment that all U.S. Mission elements would
continue to work closely with the Philippine government to
disrupt potential terrorist attacks here in the Philippines.

COMMENT
——-

¶6. (C) Recent efforts by security forces to counteract the
terrorist threat have served the Philippines well. PNP Chief
Jesus Verzosa told RSO the PNP was in a heightened state of
alert based on earlier threat information and following the
reported November 21 arrest of two suspected Abu Sayyaf Group
members in the metro Manila area, which allegedly included

MANILA 00002624 002.2 OF 002

the seizure of an improvised explosive device (IED), a gun,
and a hand grenade. The RSO observed that the recent arrests
could send a strong signal to any potential attackers in
Manila, but, given the severity of the attacks in Mumbai, the
PNP needed to remain vigilant. The Regional Affairs chief
noted in conversations with intelligence officials that both
sides should use the Mumbai experience to examine appropriate
courses of action should a similar tragic event arise in the
Philippines. The broader message from the U.S. Mission to
Philippine officials was that they should not let their guard
down after recent law enforcement successes against
terrorists.

JONES

   

 

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