Vatican Deputy Foreign Minister expressed concern that the Kashmir situation and Afghan military campaign could destabilize the GOP, with repercussions for Pakistan's sizeable catholic minority.

2134 11/2/2001 16:55 01VATICAN5693 Embassy Vatican CONFIDENTIAL 01STATE184178 "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 VATICAN 005693

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR SA/PAB (PASI), EUR/WE (D.MENNUTI), S/P (VAN CLEVE)

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 192/01

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/23/11 TAGS: PREL, AF, PK, IN, AF, PK, IN, VT, VTPREL

SUBJECT: SOUTH ASIA BUREAU AFGHANISTAN COORDINATOR BRIEFS VATICAN.

REF. STATE 184178 CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 VATICA 05693 01 OF 02 021700Z

CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR. REASON 1.5(B,D).

1. (C) SUMMARY: SOUTH ASIA BUREAU AFGHANISTAN COORDINATOR JOINED AMBASSADOR TO BRIEF VATICAN DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER 10/20 ON U.S. EFFORTS IN AFGHANISTAN. DFM NOTED THE VATICAN WAS ARRANGING A 10/28-10/29 INTERFAITH MEETING IN CAIRO OF RELIGIOUS LEADERS THAT WOULD ALSO ADDRESS 9/11 AND ITS AFTERMATH. DFM SKETCHED VARIOUS VATICAN CONTRIBUTIONS OF EMERGENCY HUMANITARIAN AID TO AFGHAN REFUGEES. XXXXXXXXXXXX. DFM EXPRESSED CONCERN THAT THE KASHMIR SITUATION AND AFGHAN MILITARY CAMPAIGN COULD DESTABILIZE THE GOP, WITH REPERCUSSIONS FOR PAKISTAN'S SIZEABLE CATHOLIC MINORITY. END SUMMARY.

2. (C) SOUTH ASIA BUREAU AFGHANISTAN COORDINATOR JEFFREY J. LUNSTEAD AND AMBASSADOR BRIEFED VATICAN FOREIGN MINISTRY OFFICIALS 10/20 ON U.S. EFFORTS IN AFGHANISTAN. THE AMBASSADOR AND LUNSTEAD SAW MONSIGNOR CELESTINO MIGLIORE, DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER-EQUIVALENT, AND EAST ASIA AND AFGHANISTAN DESK OFFICER MONSIGNOR LUIS MARRANO DE MONTEMAYOR; AFGHANISTAN DESK OFFICER GEETA PASI AND EMBOFF ALSO ATTENDED.

3. (C) DFM MIGLIORE SPOKE POSITIVELY OF THE CIRCUMSPECTION EVIDENT IN THE U.S. RESPONSE, THOUGH HE NOTED THAT THE HOLY SEE COULD NEVER APPLAUD WARFARE. WITHIN INTERNATIONAL BODIES, SUCH AS THE U.N., THE HOLY SEE WOULD SUPPORT FURTHER POLITICAL AND FINANCIAL INITIATIVES. WHERE THE HOLY SEE COULD PLAY A DIRECT LEADERSHIP ROLE WAS IN CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 VATICA 05693 01 OF 02 021700Z CULTURAL AFFAIRS, SPECIICALLY THROUGH INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE, MIGLIORE SAID. HE INDICATED THAT THE CONGREGATION FOR RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE, AN INSTITUTIONAL ARM OF THE VATICAN, WAS ORGANIZING A MEETING OF ISLAMIC AND CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS LEADERS AT AL-AZHAR UNIVERSITY IN CAIRO.

4. (C) MIGLIORE SHARED CONCERNS THAT THE MILITARY CAMPAIGN WAS OUTSTRIPPING POLITICAL STRATEGIES. HE OBSERVED THAT NEIGHBORING NATIONS IN FACT SHARED FEW COMMON INTERESTS, AN IMPEDIMENT TO ANY TRUE REGIONAL COALITION. ADDRESSING THE HUMANITARIAN EMERGENCY, MIGLIORE VOLUNTEERED THAT IT PREDATED THE PRESENT MILITARY CAMPAIGN. WINTERTIME, HE ADDED, WOULD SEE A DRAMATIC WORSENING. THE VATICAN IS CONTRIBUTING AND COORDINATING SOME RELIEF ASSISTANCE, THROUGH CARITAS AND COR UNUM (LOOSELY, VATICAN EQUIVALENTS TO USAID). CARITAS,J'E SQD, HAS AN INFORMAL PRESENCE IN TEHERAN. ALSO, THE SOVEREIGN MILITARY ORDER OF THE KNIGHTS OF MALTA (SMOM) IS SET TO INITIATE HUMANITARIAN WORK IN IRAN. SUCH EFFORTS CONSTITUTE EMERGENCY AID ONLY, MIGLIORE SAID; A FINAL POLITICAL SOLUTION IS IMPERATIVE. MOREOVER, HE DREADED GLOBAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE SHOULD THE MILITARY CAMPAIGN EXTEND TO IRAQ.

5. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXX CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 04 VATICA 05693 01 OF 02 021700Z XXXXXXXXXXXX

6. (C) MIGLIORE ASKED LUNSTEAD'S THINKING ON KASHMIR. LUNSTEAD CONCEDED THE PROBLEM WAS GRAVE; CERTAIN TERRORISTS IN KASHMIR HAD RECEIVED TRAINING IN PAKISTAN AND IN AL- QAIDA CAMPS. THE SECRETARY, HE NOTED, HAD CONDEMNED ALL TERRORISM. GENERAL MUSHARRAFF, HE SUGGESTED, NOW HAD A UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO CURB EXTREMIST ELEMENTS IN HIS COUNTRY.

7. (C) MIGLIORE REQUESTED AN ASSESSMENT OF THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE HUMANITARIAN CAMPAIGN. LUNDSTEAD CONCEDED THERE WERE SEVERE PROBLEMS. THE SEPTEMBER DEPARTURE OF NON-AFGHAN AID WORKERS CAPABLE OF MANAGING SUPPLIES AND DISTRIBUTION WAS A COMPLICATING FACTOR. MOREOVER, RECENT TALIBAN ACTIONS -- SEIZING WAREHOUSES AND BEATING AFGHAN AID WORKERS -- WAS DEEPLY DISTURBING. THE TALIBAN'S LONGSTANDING LACK OF CONCERN FOR THE AFGHAN POPULATION WAS SIGNIFICANT, HE ADDED, WITH THE OUTSIDE

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CONFIDENTIAL PTQ7681

PAGE 01 VATICA 05693 02 OF 02 021700Z ACTION SA-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00 INL-00 DODE-00 DS-00 EUR-00 OIGO-00 FBIE-00 VC-00 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 VCE-00 MED-07 AC-01 NEA-00 DCP-01 NSAE-00 ACE-00 SP-00 IRM-00 SSO-00 SS-00 EPAE-00 SNIS-00 NISC-00 DSCC-00 PRM-00 SAS-00 /009W ------------------392832 021704Z /38 O 021655Z NOV 01 FM AMEMBASSY VATICAN TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0000 INFO AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI AMEMBASSY CAIRO EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 VATICAN 005693

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR SA/PAB (PASI), EUR/WE (D.MENNUTI), S/P (VAN CLEVE)

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 192/01

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/23/11 TAGS: PREL, AF, PK, IN, VT SUBJECT: SOUTH ASIA BUREAU AFGHANISTAN COORDINATOR BRIEFS VATICAN.

WORLD STEPPING INTO THE GAP. HE ADMITTED THAT AIRDROPS TO CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 VATICA 05693 02 OF 02 021700Z REMOTE SPOTS WERE NOT AN EFFECTIVE SOLUTION, YET ADDED THESE CONSTITUTED A VALUABLE DEMONSTRATION. CONCERN RUNS HIGH IN IRAN AND PAKISTAN AT A SURGE IN REFUGEES, YET MEASURES WERE BEING TAKEN, INCLUDING UNHCR CONSTRUCTION OF NEW REFUGEE SITES, IF NEEDED, LUNDSTEAD SAID. THUS FAR, THE FLOW OF NEW REFUGEES HAS REMAINED LOW.

8. (C) LUNSTEAD, AT THE AMBASSADOR'S ENCOURAGEMENT, REMARKED BRIEFLY ON HIS 10/19 ENCOUNTER WITH THE KING. HE DESCRIBED THE KING AS PHYSICALLY FRAIL BUT MENTALLY ACUTE, WITH NO DESIRE TO RETURN TO RULE IN AFGHANISTAN, JUST AN EXILE'S HOPE FOR BURIAL IN HIS HOMELAND. HIS ENTOURAGE WAS HAMPERED BY INTRIGUE, LUNSTEAD ADDED. ASKED BY MIGLIORE IF THE KING WERE WILLING TO ASSUME LEADERSHIP, LUNDSTEAD ANSWERED THAT THE KING KNEW HE WOULD NEVER RULE AGAIN BUT VIEWED HIS ROLE AS THAT OF A CATALYST. HE WAS AN OLD MAN, WHO COMPLAINED ABOUT SECURITY THREATS THAT KEPT HIM FROM HIS DAILY GARDEN STROLL. THE U.S. HARBORED NO ILLUSIONS, LUNSTEAD SAID, ADDING THE KING'S ENTOURAGE HAD BEEF IRRESOLUTE IN THE PAST.

9. (C) ASKED TO EXPAND ON THE AFOREMENTIONED CAIRO ENCOUNTER, MIGLIORE STIPULATED THE 10/28-10/29 AL-AZHAR MEETING WOULD BE AN EXTRAORDINARY SESSION AND WOULD RESPOND TO SEPTEMBER 11 AND ITS AFTERMATH. MIGLIORE EMPHASIZED THAT THE HOLY SEE IS A SPIRITUAL, ETHICAL AND MORAL ENTITY, WHOSE MISSION IS NOT POLITICAL BUT RELIGIOUS. THE MASSES IN ISLAMIC SOCIETIES, HE OBSERVED, DEPEND ON RELIGIOUS LEADERSHIP; IF RELIGIOUS LEADERS WILL NOT DISTANCE THEMSELVES FROM VIOLENCE, THEN NEITHER WILL THE POPULATION AT LARGE. MIGLIORE SUGGESTED THE HOLY SEE CAN PLAY A ROLE CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 VATICA 05693 02 OF 02 021700Z TO CONVINCE RELIGIOUS COUNTERPARTS TO REPUDIATE VIOLENCE. MIGLIORE LEVIED FAINT PRAISE AT A SIMILAR EFFORT HELD BY SANT'EGIDIO 10/3-10/4 IN ROME. (COMMENT: SANT'EGIDIO IS A PROMINENT ROME-BASED CATHOLIC NGO FAMED FOR CONFLICT RESOLUTION, NOTABLY THE PEACEFUL END TO THE MOZAMBIQUE CIVIL WAR BROKERED IN 1993.) MIGLIORE LAUDED SANT'EGIDIO'S ABILITY TO GATHER ISLAMIC LEADERS QUICKLY, YET HE QUESTIONED THE VALUE OF A GET-TOGETHER THAT DID NOT PRODUCE A PUBLIC CONDEMNATION OF VIOLENCE, NOT JUST A DOCUMENT SIGNED IN ENGLISH THAT WOULD NEVER SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY IN PARTICIPANT'S HOME COUNTRIES. MAYBE FUTURE SANT'EGIDIO MEETINGS WOULD BE MORE CONSTRUCTIVE, MIGLIORE MUSED.

10. (C) THE CURRENT MILITARY ACTIVITY IS NOT DIRECTED AGAINST AFGHANS OR ISLAM BUT TERRORISM. WHILE COMMITTED TO THE COALITION, MUSHARRAF FACES DOMESTIC PRESSURE BECAUSE PAKISTANIS OPPOSE THE AIR CAMPAIGN, AND HE HAS CALLED FOR ITS EARLY END. MONTEMAYOR REMARKED CATHOLIC LEADERSHIP LIKQ7I#5=AQ'M. MIGLIORE WORRIED FURTHER AT THE RISK TO PAKISTAN'S STABILITY AND TO ITS ONE MILLION- STRONG CATHOLIC POPULATION. LUNDSTEAD HOWEVER VOICED CONFIDENCE IN GENERAL MUSHARRAFF, PRAISING HIS SWIFT REPUDIATION OF THE TALIBAN, A TURNAROUND THAT RAISES HOPES MUSHARRAFF WILL NOW ALSO FACE DOWN RADICAL ISLAM WITHIN PAKISTAN, THEREBY ALSO BETTERING CONDITIONS FOR PAKISTAN'S RELIGIOUS MINORITIES.

11. (C) THE OFFICE OF THE SOUTH ASIA BUREAU AFGHANISTAN COORDINATOR HAS CLEARED THIS CABLE. NICHOLSON

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