Sep 162014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2007/11/07MANILA3693.html#
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07MANILA3693
2007-11-16 08:31
2011-08-30 01:44
SECRET
Embassy Manila

VZCZCXRO8063
OO RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHML #3693/01 3200831
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
O 160831Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8904
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 MANILA 003693

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/16/2017
TAGS: PTER MOPS PINS RP
SUBJECT: SECURITY FORCES TAKE OUT TERRORISTS SUSPECTED IN CONGRESSMAN’S MURDER

REF: MANILA 3649 (DEATH OF A CONGRESSMAN)

Classified By: Deputy Chief of Mission Paul W. Jones, reasons 1.4 (b) a
nd (d).

¶1. (S) Summary: Acting swiftly on information from internal
and external sources, Philippine security forces raided an
Abu Sayyaf terrorist safe house in Metro Manila November 15
and killed or captured six individuals suspected in the bomb
assassination of Congressman and local warlord of the
southern Muslim island of Basilan Wahab Akbar and three
others at the Philippine House of Representatives on November
13 (reftel). The well-coordinated and rapidly planned raid
resulted in the deaths of a senior Abu Sayyaf Group commander
and two associates, with three others arrested. Preliminary
investigation of items recovered from the safe house indicate
a link between the suspected Abu Sayyaf bombers and political
rivals of Congressman Akbar on Basilan island. In the midst
of the turmoil on Basilan surrounding Akbar’s death, his
family has called for restraint, while at the same time
demanding justice. End Summary.

————————————–
Quick Action by Philippine Authorities
————————————–

¶2. (S) Acting swiftly on information from several sources
just 48 hours after controversial Congressman Akbar’s
assassination, the Philippine National Police and Army
Intelligence Services Group raided a safe house in Quezon
City November 15. The uncommon but remarkably successful
joint police-army operation was the culmination of an
intensive manhunt on the part of Philippine authorities. A
five-minute firefight erupted when the suspects resisted
arrest and resulted in the death of three suspects, including
the commander of the Abu Sayyaf Group on Basilan island
Alpaker Said, aka Abu Jandal, and two associates, including
his wife. One Philippine Special Action Force policeman was
wounded, and three other suspects were arrested and are
undergoing interrogation. A Philippine government rewards
program had offered a 500,000 peso reward for information
leading to the capture or killing of Abu Jandal.

——————————————
Suspects Possible Role in Congress Bombing
——————————————

¶3. (C) While Philippine National Police chief Director
General Avelino Razon Jr. said the police still are
investigating whether Jandal’s group was involved in the
bombing at the Congress, evidence at the scene suggested a
clear link between the group and the bombing. Bomb-making
materials were found in the house, and Philippine police are
conducting tests to determine if the chemicals in the
materials match those of the explosive device used in the
bombing. Other items reported recovered from the safe house,
including financial records and identification documents,
indicate involvement of the group in the attack and a
possible connection with one of Akbar’s political rivals on
the island of Basilan.

————
Murky Waters
————

¶4. (C) Among the evidence obtained at the site, police
investigators reportedly recovered an identification card of
one of the arrested suspects, allegedly a former aide of
ex-Basilan congressman Gerry Salapuddin. Salapuddin, who
lost the recently hard-fought gubernatorial election for
Basilan to one of Akbar’s wives, has dismissed any
speculation of his involvement, saying “savagery is never my
way of resolving any issue or problem. I always do it in the
legal or lawful way … there are many people who have an ax
to grind against him (Akbar).” Preliminary debriefing of the
suspects by Philippine authorities indicates that a staff
aide of current Congressman Mujiv Hataman, a Basilan native,
may also be involved.

——————————————— ——
Akbar Clan Ponders Next Move, Appeals for Restraint
——————————————— ——

¶5. (C) The body of slain Congressman Akbar was buried on
Basilan November 14 in accordance with Islamic tradition.
Hundreds of supporters accompanied the Akbar clan to the
burial site to pay their last respects to the controversial
and colorful political warlord. According to press reports,

MANILA 00003693 002 OF 002

the Akbar clan met November 16 to chart its next move. While
appealing for supporters to avoid taking the law into their
own hands, Akbar’s niece — Lantawan mayor Tahira Ismael —
has insisted that appropriate and lawful justice be served.

———————-
Shock and Condemnation
———————-

¶6. (U) Christian and Muslim politicians and religious
leaders throughout the Philippines expressed shock and
condemnation of the November 13 bombing. The Philippine
Council for Islam and Democracy issued an appeal for
“sobriety and restraint” over the incident, noting that “no
political end or belief system can justify such a dastardly
act.”

——-
Comment
——-

¶7. (C) The swift and decisive joint Philippine National
Police/Armed Forces operation was a dramatic success
reflecting a growing maturity in the approach to internal
security. Within 48 hours, military intelligence elements
cooperated with tactical law enforcement units to achieve a
timely response to information that, had it been delayed,
could have resulted in the suspects escaping. Authorities
have promised continued cooperation between the police and
military in the bombing investigation, another sign of a more
sophisticated security apparatus.

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

   

 

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.