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Cablegate: Vietnam Rates Asean Meetings "Fully Successful"

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

130301Z Nov 01

2001HANOI02946 - UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED PTQ9919

PAGE 01 HANOI 02946 130325Z
ACTION EAP-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00 INL-00 DODE-00 DS-00
FBIE-00 UTED-00 VC-00 TEDE-00 INR-00 LAB-01 VCE-00
NEA-00 DCP-01 NSAE-00 PM-00 IRM-00 TEST-00 USIE-00
SA-00 IIP-00 PMB-00 DSCC-00 DRL-02 NFAT-00 SAS-00
/004W
------------------3D4957 130326Z /38
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4642
INFO AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH CITY
ASEAN COLLECTIVE
AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI
USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI

UNCLAS HANOI 002946

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/BCLTV AND EAP/RSP

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL VM ASEAN CTERR
SUBJECT: VIETNAM RATES ASEAN MEETINGS "FULLY SUCCESSFUL"

REF: BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN 00716

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: VIETNAM WAS FULLY SATISFIED WITH THE
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 HANOI 02946 130325Z
RESULTS OF THE ASEAN SUMMIT, ASEAN+3, AND ASEAN+1 MEETINGS
IN BRUNEI NOVEMBER 5-6. MFA OFFICIALS CLAIMED THAT PM PHAN
VAN KHAI TOOK THE INITIATIVE IN GETTING THE STRONG
ENDORSEMENT OF EARLY RATIFICATION BY ALL MEMBERS OF THE 12
CONVENTIONS AGAINST TERRORISM; TERRORISM IN GENERAL WAS ONE
OF THE TWO MAJOR THEMES IDENTIFIED BY MFA AS DOMINATING THE
TALKS. THE OTHER KEY TOPIC FROM VIETNAM'S PERSPECTIVE WAS
HOW TO MINIMIZE THE EFFECT ON ASEAN'S FUTURE OF DIVERGENT
ECONOMIC LEVELS AND GROWTH AMONG THE "OLD" AND "NEW"
MEMBERS. VIETNAM RATED BRUNEI'S ORGANIZATION AND LEADERSHIP
AS GOOD. END SUMMARY.

2. (SBU) MFA ASEAN DEPARTMENT DEPTUTY DIRECTOR-GENERAL
PHAM HUU CHI MET WITH POL/C AND POLOFFS ON NOVEMBER 7
FOLLOWING HIS RETURN FROM THE ASEAN MEETINGS IN BRUNEI. CHI
CONFIRMED THAT MUCH OF THE SUMMIT'S DISCUSSIONS WERE
CENTERED ON INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM AND HOW TO COPE WITH IT.
CHI SAID THAT HE HAD BEEN IMPRESSED THAT ASEAN, AN
ORGANIZATION THAT HAD HISTORICALLY BEEN FAIRLY WED TO A PRE-
DETERMINED AGENDA PLANNED MONTHS IN ADVANCE, HAD BEEN ABLE
SO QUICKLY TO INCORPORATE A FOCUS ON THIS TOPIC AFTER THE
EVENTS OF SEPTEMBER 11. HE CLAIMED THAT PM KHAI MADE A PUSH
TO URGE ALL MEMBERS TO RATIFY ALL 12 CONVENTIONS AGAINST
TERRORISM AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, AND WAS ALSO INSTRUMENTAL IN
PUTTING FORWARD THE SUCCESSFUL PROPOSAL THAT ASEAN CONVENE
MINISTERIAL CONFERENCES AT THE FOREIGN MINISTER AND INTERIOR
MINISTER LEVELS, PROBABLY IN FEBRUARY AND APRIL
RESPECTIVELY, TO DISCUSS THE CURRENT THREAT AND CONCRETE
MEASURES TO COUNTER TERRORISM. HE ADDED THAT PM KHAI ALSO
PROPOSED CREATION OF AN ASEAN COORDINATION CENTER IN ORDER
TO BE ABLE TO IMPROVE LIAISON WITH EACH OTHER AND WITH OTHER
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 HANOI 02946 130325Z
LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES SUCH AS INTERPOL. EVENTUALLY,
MEMBER STATES MIGHT ASSIGN A LIAISON OFFICER TO THEIR
OVERSEAS EMBASSIES IN EACH OTHERS' COUNTRIES, HE DESCRIBED.

3. (SBU) CHI CLAIMED THAT THE LEADERS DID NOT/NOT DISCUSS
THE ISSUE OF COALITION MILITARY ACTION IN AFGHANISTAN, AND
THAT NONE OF THE LEADERS HAD ADVOCATED A STATEMENT OF
SUPPORT FOR ONGOING ACTIONS BY THE US AND THE INTERNATIONAL
COALITION. HE SAID THAT THE LEADERS FOCUSED ON COUNTER-
MEASURES AGAINST TERRORISM IN THE REGION INSTEAD.

4. (SBU) ACCORDING TO CHI, LEADERS DISCUSSED CONCERNS ABOUT
ASEAN'S FUTURE GIVEN DEVELOPMENTAL GAPS BETWEEN THE "OLD"
AND "NEW" MEMBERS. CHI STATED THAT ASEAN COULD NOT "MOVE
FORWARD IF NEIGHBORS ARE TOO POOR." HE CITED THE DISPARITY
BETWEEN THAILAND AND MYANMAR AS A CASE IN POINT. CHI NOTED
PARTICULAR GAPS WITHIN ASEAN REGARDING INFRASTRUCTURE
(INCLUDING INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY) AND HUMAN RESOURCES
DEVELOPMENT. HE SAID THE LEADERS HAD ALSO DISCUSSED THE
NEED TO PROMOTE INTRA-ASIAN TRADE ESPECIALLY GIVEN THE
GLOBAL ECONOMIC SLOWDOWN. HE POINTED TO CAMBODIAN PRIME
MINISTER HUN SEN'S PROPOSAL TO CREATE ANOTHER GROWTH
TRIANGLE FOR THE MEKONG REGION AS AN EXAMPLE. LEADERS ALSO
DISCUSSED THE NEED TO COMPLETE SINGAPORE-KUNMING RAIL LINKS
(VIA CAMBODIA AND VIETNAM).

5. (U) CHI NOTED VIETNAM'S SATISFACTION WITH THE PROPOSAL
TO BRING CHINA INTO THE ASEAN FREE TRADE AREA BUT NOTED THAT
IT COULD TAKE UP TO TEN YEARS TO ACCOMPLISH. MINISTRIES OF
TRADE WILL BE EXPLORING THE MODALITIES OF THIS PROPOSAL, HE
SAID.
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 04 HANOI 02946 130325Z

6. (SBU) CHI EXPLAINED THAT LEADERS HAD DISCUSSED, WITHOUT
CONCLUSION, THE IDEA OF AN ASEAN SUMMIT WITH INDIA, ON AN
ANNUAL OR BIANNUAL BASIS. HE SAID THAT SOUTH KOREA, WITH
SUPPORT FROM JAPAN AND MALAYSIA, HAD SOUGHT TO STRENGTHEN
THE ASEAN+3 PROCESS (MUCH ALONG THE LINES OF THE EARLIER
EAEC CONCEPT), WHILE SINGAPORE REMAINED OPPOSED TO SUCH
ACTION. HE CLAIMED THAT THE ONLY DISCUSSION OF THE
SPRATLEYS DURING THE ASEAN+3 MEETING CAME WHEN CHINA AND THE
PHILIPPINES SEPARATELY EXPRESSED HOPES FOR THE CONCLUSION OF
A CODE OF CONDUCT FOR THE REGION. CHI ALSO SAID THAT IN
ORDER TO EXPAND ASEAN'S EXTERNAL RELATIONS FURTHER, THE
"MYANMAR PROBLEM" WILL HAVE TO BE RESOLVED.

8. (SBU) CHI RATED THE MEETINGS AS "FULLY SUCCESSFUL" AND
NOTED THAT VIETNAM WAS "FULLY SATISFIED." HE GAVE GOOD
MARKS TO BRUNEI'S ORGANIZATION AND LEADERSHIP. THE ONLY
GLITCH CAME DURING THE LAO PRIME MINISTER'S REMARKS, MOST OF
WHICH FOR SOME REASON WERE NOT TRANSLATED SO THE OTHER
LEADERS COULD NOT UNDERSTAND HIM.
PORTER

UNCLASSIFIED

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