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05BANGKOK3722 SECRETARY RUMSFELD’S MEETING WITH THAI MINISTER FOR DEFENSE THAMARAK

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“34004”,”6/7/2005 1:00″,”05BANGKOK3722″,

“Embassy Bangkok”,”CONFIDENTIAL”,””,

“This record is a partial extract of the original cable.

The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

“,”C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BANGKOK 003722

 

SIPDIS

 

DEPARTMENT FOR EAP, EAP/BCLTV. PM

DOD FOR OSD/ISA

PACOM FOR FPA HUSO

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/06/2015

TAGS: PGOV, PREL, OVIP, PARM, PTER, MASS, TH,

Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI)

SUBJECT: SECRETARY RUMSFELD\’S MEETING WITH THAI MINISTER

FOR DEFENSE THAMARAK

 

Classified By: Ambassador Ralph L. Boyce. Reason 1.4 (a and d)

 

1. (C) Summary. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld met with

Thai Defense Minister Thamarak Isarangura Na Ayutthaya on

June 6 in Bangkok. SecDef said: 1) the strong history of

U.S.-Thai military cooperation facilitated the impressive

response to the December 26 tsunami; 2) the U.S. hopes that

Thailand will endorse the Proliferation Security Initiative

(PSI) Statement of Principles soon; 3) he hopes Thailand will

be able to make a humanitarian contribution to OIF; 4)

selecting the F-16 would contribute to Thailand\’s

modernization; and, 5) maritime security in the Malacca

Strait is important. Minister Thamarak 1) suggested that the

violence in Southern Thailand is an internal matter; 2) said

that Thailand is considering both the PSI Statement of

Principles and a contribution to Ira; and, 3) indicated that

the F-16 decision will be decided by the Thai Cabinet but

that the military understood the benefits of the F-16 as a

result of their years of training with the United States.

End Summary.

 

2. (C) Tsunami Cooperation. Secretary Rumsfeld and

Minister Thamarak agreed that our joint ability to use Utapao

Thai Naval Air Base as the hub for tsunami relief efforts was

due to decades of bilateral military cooperation. Secretary

Rumsfeld made special mention of our long-standing bilateral

exercise program and the large number of Thai officers who

have studied in the United States.

 

3. (C) PSI. Secretary Rumsfeld urged Thailand to join the

more than 60 countries that have already endorsed the PSI

Statement of Principles. Thamarak said that the Thai

Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the lead on the issue and

that endorsement is being discussed by the Cabinet. Thamarak

suggested that Thailand would eventually endorse PSI.

 

4. (C) Maritime Security and the Malacca Strait. Secretary

Rumsfeld briefed Thamarak on his recent discussions with

Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore about maritime security in

the Malacca Strait. Secretary Rumsfeld mentioned Singapore

Defense Minister Teo Chee Hean\’s three principles to govern

maritime security in the Strait: 1) littoral states have the

primary role; 2) user states have an interest and a role to

play; and, 3) every action should be carried out in

accordance with international law and national sovereignty.

Thamarak acknowledged the growing sophistication of pirates

in the Malacca Strait. He said that Malaysian Defense

Minister Najib had recently told him about U.S. offers to

provide technical assistance by helping to set up a

counterterrorism center in Malaysia. Thamarak welcomed such a

center, saying it could benefit Thailand by providing data

and improving cooperation between Thailand and Malaysia.

 

5. (C) OIF. Noting Thailand\’s early support for OIF and

recent indications that Thailand is considering a future

\”humanitarian\” deployment to Iraq, Secretary Rumsfeld asked

when Thailand plans to answer CJCS General Myers\’ March 2005

letter asking for further assistance in Iraq. Thamarak said

that the Thai Cabinet is discussing this matter and noted

that Thailand\’s previous dispatch of medical personnel to

Iraq had been well received by the Iraqi people.

 

6. (C) F-16. Stressing the importance of interoperability,

Secretary Rumsfeld mentioned Thailand\’s ongoing new fighter

 

SIPDIS

aircraft contract competition and urged Thailand to support

Lockheed Martin\’s bid to provide F-16 Block 52\’s to the Royal

Thai Air Force (RTAF). Thamarak explained that, for the

first time since the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis, the MOD had

funds for new equipment. Without indicating what procurement

decision would likely be made, Thamarak did note the

familiarity RTAF officers have with F-16 due to years of

working with the United States.

 

7. (C) Southern Thailand. Thamarak explained that

countering separatist unrest in southern Thailand is his

Government\’s top priority. He shared his suspicion that some

\”outside terrorist groups\” might be assisting Thai Muslim

radicals but stressed that, thus far, Thai intelligence has

no direct indication of outside involvement. Thamarak

emphasized that the situation in the south is an internal

Thai matter to be solved by the Thai themselves.

 

8. (U) SecDef has not reviewed this cable. Released by ASD

Rodman.

BOYCE

Written by thaicables

July 7, 2011 at 5:31 am

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