US embassy cable - 00HANOI2573

CHINESE ASYLUM-SEEKERS IN FRENCH EMBASSY IN HANOI

Identifier: 00HANOI2573
Wikileaks: View 00HANOI2573 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Hanoi
Created: 2000-11-27 10:19:00
Classification: SECRET
Tags: PREF PREL CH FR VM CVR HUMANR
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

271019Z Nov 00

2000HANOI02573 - SECRET
 
 
 
                              SECRET        PTQ2760

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ACTION EAP-00   

INFO  LOG-00   AID-00   AMAD-00  CA-02    CIAE-00  DODE-00  SRPP-00  
      EB-00    EUR-00   VC-00    H-01     TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    
      L-00     VCE-00   AC-01    NSAE-00  NSCE-00  OIC-02   OPIC-01  
      PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    STR-00   TRSE-00  USIE-00  
      VO-03    PRM-02   DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00  SAS-00     /014W
                  ------------------A42C81  271303Z /75    
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1392
AMEMBASSY BEIJING IMMEDIATE 
AMEMBASSY PARIS IMMEDIATE 
USMISSION GENEVA IMMEDIATE 
S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 HANOI 002573 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958:  DECL:  11/27/10 
TAGS: PREF, PREL, CH, FR, VM, CVR, HUMANR 
SUBJECT:  CHINESE ASYLUM-SEEKERS IN FRENCH EMBASSY IN HANOI 
 
REF:  BEIJING 11645 
 
1.   (U) CLASSIFIED BY DCM DOUGLAS G. HARTER, REASON 
1.5(B,D) . 
 
2.   (U) THIS IS AN ACTION CABLE.  SEE PARAS 8-11. 
 
3.   (S)  LATE AFTERNOON NOVEMBER 24 FRENCH AMBASSADOR 
                          SECRET 
 
PAGE 02        HANOI  02573  01 OF 02  271303Z 
INFORMED U.S. AMBASSADOR THAT TWO CHINESE NATIONALS, 
SUN WEIBANG AND JIANG JINGSHI, WERE UNDER PROTECTIVE 
CUSTODY AT THE FRENCH EMBASSY.  ACCORDING TO THE 
FRENCH, THE ULTIMATE INTENTION OF THE TWO INDIVIDUALS 
IS TO SEEK POLITICAL ASYLUM IN THE U.S..  SUN TOLD THE 
FRENCH HE IS A DISSIDENT WHO WAS ARRESTED DURING THE 
TIANANMEN SQUARE TURMOIL IN 1989 AND WAS IMPRISONED 
FOR 10 YEARS.  THE OTHER MAN WAS IDENTIFIED ONLY AS 
SUN'S TRAVELLING COMPANION. 
 
4.   (S) THE FRENCH EMBASSY CONDUCTED INITIAL 
INTERVIEWS WITH SUN AND JIANG NOV 24 AND 25 AND PASSED 
INFORMATION LOCALLY TO U.S. EMBASSY.  SUN REPORTEDLY 
TOLD THE FRENCH HE WAS "APPROVED" FOR ASYLUM IN THE 
U.S. WITHIN THE PAST FEW WEEKS, BUT WHEN HE WENT TO 
THE U.S. EMBASSY IN BEIJING TO RECEIVE THE NECESSARY 
AUTHORIZATIONS AND DOCUMENTATION FOR ENTRY INTO THE 
U.S., CHINESE SECURITY OFFICIALS REMOVED HIM FROM THE 
WAITING LINE (PRESUMABLY THE CONSULAR WAITING LINE) 
AND ESCORTED HIM AWAY.  AUTHORITIES TOLD SUN HE WOULD 
NOT BE ALLOWED TO EXIT CHINA TO TRAVEL TO THE U.S..  A 
FEW DAYS LATER, SUN TRAVELLED BY TRAIN TO THE SINO- 
VIETNAMESE BORDER AND THERE JOINEO A CHINESE TOUR 
GROUP, ALLOWING HIM TO OBTAIN A BORDER PASS VALIO FOR 
FOUR DAYS -- WHICH EXPIRED NOV 26.  SUN SAIO THAT 
JIANG IS SIMPLY AN ACQUAINTANCE WHO TRAVELLED WITH 
HIM.  NEITHER PERSON IS IN POSSESSION OF A PRC 
PASSPORT.  (NOTE:  IT IS SIMPLE ANO FAIRLY COMMON FOR 
CHINESE TO CROSS INTO VIETNAM ON LIMITED BOROER PASSES 
FOR TOURISM OR TRAOE. WHILE SUN'S ACCOUNT IS PLAUSIBLE 
ON THIS SCORE, HIS ASSOCIATION WITH JIANG -- ANO 
                          SECRET 
 
PAGE 03        HANOI  02573  01 OF 02  271303Z 
JIANG'S OSTENSIBLE BASIS FOR AN ASYLUM REQUEST -- IS 
MURKIER.  END NOTE) 
 
5.   (S) SUN REQUESTEO PERMISSION FROM THE FRENCH 
EMBASSY TO TRAVEL TO FRANCE TO ATTEND A LITERARY 
CONFERENCE WHICH IS APPARENTLY SCHEDULED IN PARIS. 
FROM THERE, SUN AND JIANG PLANNED TO APPROACH THE U.S. 
EMBASSY IN PARIS WITH A REQUEST FOR POLITTCAL ASYLUM. 
SUN ALSO CLAIMED THAT A COLLEAGUE, WHOSE NAME THE 
FRENCH RENDERED IN WRITING AS LI YUCON (POSSIBLE 
ALTERNATES LI YUCUN OR LI YUKAN), WAS CURRENTLY 
RESIDING IN THE U.S. EMBASSY IN BEIJING (PRESUMABLY 
WITH A SIMILAR ASYLUM REQUEST). 
 
6.   (C) INFORMATION FROM VARIOUS PRESS AND HUMAN- 
RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS TENOS TO SUBSTANTIATE SUN'S CLAIM 
TO DISSIDENT STATUS, IF HIS IDENTITY CAN BE 
SUBSTANTIATED (OR IF NOT SUGGESTS HE AT LEAST DID HIS 
HOMEWORK).  SUN WEIBANG WAS EDITOR OF A DISSIDENT 
DEMOCRATIC JOURNAL ENTITLED "HAILANG HUA" (SEA-WAVE 
FLOWER) IN 1979 AND POSTED BIG-CHARACTER POSTERS 
DURING THE 1979 DEMOCRACY MOVEMENT.  HE WAS ARRESTED 
AND SENTENCED TO ONE YEAR IN PRISON IN 1981 FOR THESE 
ACTIVITIES.  IN 1989, SUN REPORTEDLY RAN A SMALL 
RESTAURANT THAT PROVIDED FREE MEALS TO STUDENT 
PROTESTORS DURING THE DEMONSTRATIONS THAT CULMINATED 
IN THE TIANANMEN SQUARE MASSACRE.  HE WAS ARRESTED ANO 
SENTENCEO TO 12 YEARS IN PRISON; HE WAS PAROLEO IN 
FEBRUARY 1999.  IN OCTOBER 1999, AFTER ALLEGEDLY 
VISITING THE FAMILY OF DISSIDENT DEMOCRACY PARTY 
FOUNDER XU WENLI, SUN WAS REPORTED TO HAVE BEEN RE- 
                          SECRET 
 
PAGE 04        HANOI  02573  01 OF 02  271303Z 
ARRESTED. 
 
7.  (S) ON THE OTHER HANO, INFORMATION PROVIDED BY THE 
FRENCH THUS FAR STOPS FAR SHORT OF ESTABLISHING SUN'S 
IDENTITY POSITIVELY AND EXPLAINING THE PRESENCE/STATUS 
OF JIANG JINGSHI.  HANOI UNDERSTANDS U.S. EMBASSY 
BEIJING DOES NOT POSSESS ANY INFORMATION TO CONFIRM OR 
EXPLAIN SUN'S CLAIMS THAT HE HAD BEEN IN CONTACT WITH 
THE EMBASSY, AND THAT THE EMBASSY HAS NOT BEEN IN 
TOUCH WITH LI YUCON. 
 
8.   (S) 
 ACTION REQUESTS:  DEPARTMENT:  EMBASSY WILL 
KEEP ALL ADDRESSEES FULLY UP TO DATE ON ANY FURTHER 
DEVELOPMENTS.  AT THIS POINT IT IS UNCLEAR WHETHER THE 
FRENCH WILL DECIDE TO ASSIST SUN ANO JIANG, OR TURN 
THEM OUT IN THE STREET -- IN WHICH CASE THERE IS A 
POSSIBILITY THEY MAY TURN UP HERE.  IN THE LATTER 
EVENTUALITY, EMBASSY WILL NEEO TO CONSIOER OPTIONS FOR 
OEALING WITH AT LEAST SUN.  REQUEST OEPARTMENT VIEWS 
ON THIS CONTINGENCY.  (NOTE:  IN A MEETING WITH THE 
U.S. AMBASSADOR NOV 24, FRENCH AMBASSAOOR IMPLIED HIS 
CURRENT "INSTRUCTIONS" LIKELY INVOLVED TRYING TO GET 
AT LEAST SUN OUT OF THE COUNTRY.  AMBASSAOOR PETERSON 
SUGGESTEO HE CONTACT THE UNHCR OFFICE IN BANGKOK TO 
DETERMINE WHAT IT MIGHT DO TO HELP.  END NOTE) 
 
9.   (S) BEIJING:  REQUEST ANY FURTHER INFORMATION 
EMBASSY MAY BECOME AWARE OF RELEVANT TO SUN, JIANG, 
AND/OR LI. 
                          SECRET 
 
PAGE 02        HANOI  02573  02 OF 02  271303Z 
 
10.  (S) PARIS:  INFORMATION ABOVE MAY BE SHARED WITH 
APPROPRIATE FRENCH OFFICIALS AT EMBASSY'S DISCRETION. 
 
11.  (S) GENEVA:  THERE IS NO LONGER A UNHCR PRESENCE 
IN HANOI.  WE MAY NEEO TO CONTACT UNHCR THROUGH YOU OR 
BANGKOK IF THE USG HAS A MORE DIRECT INVOLVEMENT IN 
THIS CASE.  AFTER MUCH PUSHING ANO PROODING, UNHCR AND 
TAHE SWEOISH EMBASSY FACILITATEO ANOTHER SUCH CASE IN 
HANOI IN 1997-98. 
 
PETERSON 
 
                          SECRET 


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