Cablegate: Mfa Reshuffles -- Good News for U.S.

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






E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (U) This is an action request -- see para 6.

2. (SBU) Deputy Foreign Minister Le Van Bang informed
Ambassador October 31 that his area of responsibility had
been shifted from the Northeast Asia portfolio to the
Americas, effective that day. He noted that the news would
not be announced until early November and asked that we not
share publicly. He will retain oversight for International
Organization affairs (including human rights), budget and
finance, and international NGOs.

3. (SBU) Senior Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Dinh Bin
will be named Ambassador to France. Comment: Bin has been
an often difficult interlocutor, usually prickly and
aggressive. While he understands English, he prefers to
respond in Vietnamese. End comment

4. (SBU) Bang indicated that he would be "at least" #3 in
the MFA hierarchy. This likely means that Deputy Le Cong
Phung, who will retain responsibility for European affairs
and may assume duties for Middle East and African affairs,
will be the senior Deputy. Bang confirmed that the number
of Deputy Ministers will go down to only three (from the
current five), although there are also two Assistant Foreign
Ministers (one of whom is simultaneously Director General of
the Americas Department).

5. (SBU) Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Phu Binh will take
over the Northeast Asia account. Bang noted that Binh
speaks fluent Korean, having both studied in North Korea and
served as the SRV Ambassador in Seoul.

6. (U) Comment and action request: Bang's oversight of
American affairs is good news for the U.S.-Vietnam bilateral
relationship, to which Bang has devoted most of his
professional career. He remains an enthusiastic promoter of
better ties, and will be seeking to establish a new, more
formal "framework" for comprehensive relations, including a
"roadmap" for more regular activities and high-level visits.
(Vietnam has signed similar framework agreements with the
PRC and other major partners.) Embassy recommends the
following congratulatory message from A/S Kelly to DFM Bang:
Begin text

H.E. Mr. Le Van Bang
Deputy Foreign Minister
Socialist Republic of Vietnam:

Dear Mr. Minister,

I was delighted to hear that you will assume responsibility
for the Americas portfolio in your Ministry. Your personal
contributions to the steady improvement of U.S.-Vietnam
ties, including both the formal establishment of diplomatic
relations and your successful tour in Washington, D.C. as
the first SRV Ambassador, have been notable and much

I wish you the very best of luck in your new and still
challenging responsibilities, and look forward to working
closely with you to promote even better ties between our two
countries, which is clearly in the interests of both our
nations and peoples. I hope to welcome you soon to
Washington, perhaps first during the upcoming visit of
Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan.

Best regards.
James A. Kelly
end text

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Euro Med Monitor: Syria Cross-border Aid Mechanism Extension Is Necessary For The Survival Of Millions

Permanent members of the UN Security Council should extend the cross-border aid to northwestern Syria, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said Tuesday in a statement...

Commonwealth Secretariat: Island Nations Urge Commonwealth Leaders To Bolster Ocean Climate Action
Small island nations are calling for strengthened global support for ocean and climate change action, just days before Commonwealth leaders convene in Kigali, Rwanda... More>>

Climate: ‘Surprise’ Early Heatwave In Europe, Harbinger Of Things To Come

Sweltering conditions in Europe have come earlier than expected this year but the bad news is, they’re the shape of things to come... More>>

World Vision: Deeply Concerned For Thousands Affected By Afghanistan Quake
World Vision is deeply concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan in the wake of a powerful earthquake in the early hours of this morning... More>>

Malaysia: UN Experts Welcome Announcement To Abolish Mandatory Death Penalty

UN human rights experts* today commended an announcement made by the Malaysian government that it will abolish the country’s mandatory death penalty and encouraged Parliament to take concrete steps to pass the agreement into law... More>>

Ukraine: Bachelet Briefs Human Rights Council On Mariupol
Excellencies, Further to Human Rights Council resolution S-34/1 adopted at its 34th Special Session, I present you with an oral update on the grave human rights and humanitarian situation... More>>