The United States said today it has barred former Philippine President Ferdinand E. Marcos from leaving his exile in Hawaii because of concerns that he is trying to destabilize the Aquino government in Manila.
State Department spokesman Charles E. Redman said U.S. laws give the Immigration and Naturalization Service authority to bar an alien from departing from the United States.
"Such an order has been issued for Mr. Marcos," he told reporters.
The travel ban--and a warning against engaging in an apparent plot to topple President Corazon Aquino--was relayed to Marcos at his home in Honolulu this week by Abraham D. Sofaer, the State Department's legal adviser.
The action was based on tapes of a conversation Marcos had with an arms dealer, said one U.S. official who demanded anonymity.
Message From Reagan
Sofaer also delivered a message from President Reagan. Its contents were not divulged.
Sofaer handed Marcos two travel orders. One confines him to the United States, the other to the island of Oahu unless he is given written permission to leave.
"The United States is seriously concerned about indications that Mr. Marcos appeared to be seeking to destabilize the Aquino government and was contemplating a return to the Philippines without the express permission of the Philippine government," Redman said.
Marcos not only was barred from going home but also from leaving Hawaii or going elsewhere in the United States, the unnamed U.S. official said.
Sofaer met with Marcos on Monday and Tuesday. He was accompanied by Gregory S. Walden, associate deputy attorney general; Charles B. Salmon Jr., director of the Philippines desk at the State Department, and William S. Craig, district director for the Immigration and Naturalization Service in Hawaii.
The arms dealer, who was not identified, cooperated with the Justice Department in allowing his conversation with Marcos to be tape-recorded surreptitiously. The tape indicated that Marcos was actively plotting to unseat Aquino, the U.S. official source said.
Marcos is under subpoena from a federal grand jury in Alexandria, Va., investigating charges of corruption in connection with military contracts to the Philippines while Marcos was president.
He was accused last year by the Aquino government of trying from his home in Honolulu to inspire supporters in Manila to destabilize Aquino's presidency.
Marcos fled Manila with some encouragement from the Reagan Administration after evidence mounted that he had tried to rig the presidential election and that bloody riots would ensue if he did not step down.
Later, he sought permission to return but was turned down by the Aquino government. Marcos, meanwhile, has not appeared in court in Alexandria--ostensibly for reasons of poor health.