US embassy cable - 01HANOI2658

HANOI MUSLIM COMMUNITY RETICENT ON RECENT EVENTS

Identifier: 01HANOI2658
Wikileaks: View 01HANOI2658 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Hanoi
Created: 2001-10-12 11:26:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: PHUM PINS KPAO PTER VM HUMANR CTERR RELFREE
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.

121126Z Oct 01

2001HANOI02658 - UNCLASSIFIED
 
 
 
                           UNCLASSIFIED     PTO8599

PAGE 01        HANOI  02658  121200Z 
ACTION EAP-00   

INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    AID-00   AMAD-00  A-00     ACQ-00   CA-01    
      CCO-00   CG-00    CIAE-00  COME-00  CTME-00  DINT-00  DODE-00  
      DOEE-00  DOTE-00  SRPP-00  DS-00    EB-00    FAAE-00  FBIE-00  
      UTED-00  VC-00    H-01     TEDE-00  INR-00   INSE-00  IO-00    
      L-00     M-00     AC-01    NEA-00   DCP-01   NRCE-00  NSAE-00  
      NSCE-00  OCS-03   OIC-02   OPIC-01  PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00   
      ACE-00   P-00     SCT-00   SP-00    SSO-00   SS-00    STR-00   
      TEST-00  TRSE-00  USIE-00  USSS-00  ASDS-01  R-00     PMB-00   
      DSCC-00  PRM-01   DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00  SAS-00     /014W
                  ------------------2DFAB2  121200Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 4370
INFO AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH CITY 
ASEAN COLLECTIVE
USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI
UNCLAS HANOI 002658 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR EAP/BCLTV AND DRL/RF 
 
E.O. 12958:  N/A 
TAGS: PHUM, PINS, KPAO, PTER, VM, HUMANR, CTERR, RELFREE 
SUBJECT:  HANOI MUSLIM COMMUNITY RETICENT ON RECENT EVENTS 
 
REF:  STATE 175484 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 02        HANOI  02658  121200Z 
1.  (U)  HANOI'S TINY VIETNAMESE MUSLIM COMMUNITY (NO MORE 
THAN A COUPLE OF DOZEN PEOPLE) HAS NOT NOTICEABLY REACTED TO 
THE SEPTEMBER 11 TERRORIST ACTS IN THE US AND SUBSEQUENT 
INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE UNDER OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM, 
ACCORDING TO THE RESIDENT MANAGER OF HANOI'S SOLE MOSQUE. 
THE OFFICIAL NOTED THAT SERVICES AT THE MOSQUE AND 
DISCUSSION BEFORE AND DURING THE SERVICE STEER AWAY FROM 
POLITICAL SUBJECTS AND THUS HAVE NOT ADDRESSED TERRORISM OR 
INTERNATIONAL RESPONSES TO IT.  HE ADDED THAT MUSLIMS HERE 
HAD NONETHELESS THOUGHT ABOUT OFFERING CONDOLENCES TO THE 
VICTIMS OF THE SEPTEMBER 11 ATTACK BUT WERE UNSURE TO WHOM 
THEY SHOULD ADDRESS THEIR SYMPATHIES. 
 
2.  (U)  POL/C AND POLOFF VISITED THE MOSQUE ON OCTOBER 12 
SHORTLY AFTER THE USUAL FRIDAY PRAYERS, WHICH ABOUT 100 
PEOPLE USUALLY ATTEND, THE OFFICIAL SAID.  MOST ARE FOREIGN 
MUSLIMS WHO ARE IN HANOI AS DIPLOMATS OR BUSINESS PEOPLE, 
AND INCLUDE IRANIANS AND IRAQIS.  FOUR OR FIVE AFGHANS ALSO 
ATTEND; THEY ARE IN HANOI TEACHING MUSLIM CHILDREN SUBJECTS 
SUCH AS ARABIC AT A SPECIAL SCHOOL AT THE LIBYAN EMBASSY. 
(NOTE:  WHEN POL/C MET WITH MPS OFFICIALS HANDLING FOREIGN 
EMBASSIES ON OCTOBER 1, THEY WERE UNAWARE OF ANY AFGHANS IN 
COUNTRY. END NOTE)  THE OFFICIAL SAID THAT NONE OF THE 
MUSLIMS HE KNEW IN ANY WAY SUPPORTS OSAMA BIN LADEN OR HIS 
FOLLOWERS.  POL/C LEFT A COPY OF THE EMBASSY PUBLIC AFFAIRS 
SECTION'S MOST RECENT "RESPONSE TO TERRORISM" FOR THE 
MOSQUE'S REFERENCE. 
 
3.  (U)  THE STATE-RUN RELIGIOUS PUBLISHING HOUSE ISSUED THE 
FIRST-EVER KORAN IN VIETNAMESE IN 2000 AND DISTRIBUTED 
COPIES FREE OF CHARGE TO ALL VIETNAMESE MUSLIM FAMILIES, THE 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 03        HANOI  02658  121200Z 
OFFICIAL SAID.  THERE IS SOME TALK ABOUT A SECOND EDITION, 
ALTHOUGH HE WAS NOT CLEAR WHY.  COPIES ARE NOT/NOT AVAILABLE 
FOR PURCHASE.  PREVIOUSLY, HE SAID, VIETNAMESE MUSLIMS WERE 
DEPENDENT ON USING A FEW COPIES OF THE KORAN IN ARABIC, OR 
ON ENGLISH OR FRENCH EDITIONS BROUGHT IN BY FOREIGN MUSLIMS. 
HE NOTED SOME OCCASIONAL INTEREST IN ISLAM BY VIETNAMESE 
FROM NON-MUSLIM FAMILIES; THEY CAN STUDY AT LEAST THE 
RUDIMENTS OF ISLAM AT THE MOSQUE AND SOME HAVE BECOME 
MUSLIM, HE CLAIMED.  NONE OF THE CURRENT VIETNAMESE MUSLIMS 
IN HANOI HAD EVER UNDERTAKEN THE HADJ TO MECCA, HE NOTED 
REGRETFULLY, ALTHOUGH ABOUT ONE HUNDRED GO EACH YEAR FROM 
THE MORE POPULOUS CHAM MUSLIM COMMUNITIES IN SOUTHERN 
VIETNAM.  (NOTE:  PREVIOUS REPORTING SUGGESTED 35 TO 40 
VIETNAMESE MUSLIMS MAKE THE HADJ EACH YEAR.  END NOTE.) 
WHEN ASKED, HE CITED COST, RATHER THAN LACK OF GVN 
PERMISSION, AS THE MAIN BARRIER TO THE HADJ. 
 
4.  (U)  COMMENT:  ALL OF VIETNAM'S OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZED 
RELIGIOUS ENTITIES TEND TO KEEP THEIR SERVICES AS PURELY 
RELIGIOUS AS POSSIBLE AND TO AVOID POLITICAL OR REMOTELY 
CONTROVERSIAL SUBJECTS.  IT IS NOT SURPRISING THAT THERE HAS 
BEEN LITTLE IF ANY OPEN DISCUSSION OF RECENT EVENTS WITHIN 
THIS COMMUNITY. 
PORTER 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 


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