Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 04/12/07

DE RUEHKO #1615/01 1020830
P 120830Z APR 07





E.O. 12958: N/A


(1) Japanese, Chinese leaders agree on joint development of gas
fields in East China Sea; Gap remains over choosing area; Japan
cannot give in on median line

(2) Key points in Diet speech by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao

(3) Main points from the Japan-China joint statement on
environmental protection cooperation

(4) US CRS's report on "comfort women" issue: "No organized and
coerced recruitment"

(5) Upper House by-election in Okinawa: Candidates prioritizing
livelihood-related matters as campaign issue: Military base issue
too complicated

(6) Editorial: Japan must demonstrate strong leadership in
supporting Iraq

(7) Koyusho column by Ikuo Kabashima, professor of law at University
of Tokyo: My former university professor gave me a future


(1) Japanese, Chinese leaders agree on joint development of gas
fields in East China Sea; Gap remains over choosing area; Japan
cannot give in on median line

ASAHI (Page 10) (Full)
April 12, 2007

Tokyo and Beijing have moved a step forward on the East China Sea
gas field issue, a bottleneck in Japan-China relations, with the
leaders of the two countries during a meeting yesterday reaching
agreement that the two countries come up with specific measures for
joint development by the fall. They also agreed to jointly develop
oil fields in a relatively wide area of waters that are acceptable
to both countries. Since it cannot be said that China has made a
concession, it appears difficult to choose specific areas for

Concerning gas fields, a joint press release noted that: (1)
higher-level talks than before would be held; (2) joint development
would be carried out in a relatively wide area; and (3) the two
sides would aim at submitting a report this fall on specific
measures for the envisaged joint development. This goes beyond the
press release last year, which noted that ways to boost cooperation,
firmly maintain a direction for joint development and settle the
issue be searched out.

Prime Minister Abe during the meeting told Wen, "I would like you to
display special leadership so that the issue will have been settled
by the time when we meet next time." Wen responded, "I would like to
make efforts to settle the issue."

The nitty-gritty of the problem is in which part of the open waters
joint development should be carried out. The views of the two
countries are at odds over this issue. Japan cannot afford to give
in on carrying out joint development in waters straddling the
Japan-China median line. However, the Chinese side did not make a
compromise on this. A senior official of the Ministry of Economy,

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Trade and Industry (METI) complained that the words "wide areas" are

A Japanese government source said: "It would be impossible to reach
a decision if waters for the joint development are specified. The
words are difficult to understand, but they reflect resourcefulness
of the two countries. It is half step forward to a settlement." The
paper was completed two minutes before the summit meeting started,
since both countries were unable to reach agreement on what words to
adopt until the last moment.

Harufumi Mochizuki, director general of the Resources and Energy
Agency, pointed out, "Putting on hold territory or territorial
waters is the most popular way of settling an issue on joint
development of natural resources in the world." Japan and China will
discuss specific areas for the planned joint development at the next
bureau-director-level talks slated for May. However, a final
decision will be left to top leaders to make as usual.

Gas fields in the East China Sea are apparently not promising in
economic terms. However, the same senior METI official insisted, "It
has a significant meaning for natural resource-importing countries,
such as Japan and China, to have gas fields in their own gardens,
even if their reserves are small and it is costly to develop."
Another senior official said, "It is a matter of honor."

However, there is the possibility of a hard-line argument that Japan
should start test-drilling gas fields, if Japan fails to win a
concession as it wishes and joint development straddling the median
line does not realize, gaining ground.

The Lower House on Apr. 3 passed a bill for a basic law of the sea
and a bill on the setting of safe water areas for maritime buildings
(lawmaker-initiated legislation) and sent them to the Upper House.
Those bills stipulate a ban on vessels from entering nearby waters,
in the event where the Japanese side test-drills in the exclusive
economic zone (EEZ).

(2) Key points in Diet speech by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
Evening, April 12, 2007

If Prime Minister Abe's visit to China last October is labeled as a
trip to break the ice, I hope that this visit will be deemed as a
trip to melt the ice.

In order for the two countries to strengthen friendly and
cooperative bilateral relations, they need to summarize the lessons
learned from their unfortunate history and keep such lessons in
their mind. Their friendly ties were once severed in recent times
because their sad, unfortunate events that lasted for 50-odd years.
In the aggressive war waged by Japan against China, Chinese people
suffered a serious calamity and numerous Chinese were killed or
hurt. The positive experiences and negative lessons are both our
valuable assets. We can learn more deeply and effectively through
our past experiences and lessons.

Only a few militarists should take the responsibility for the
aggressive war, and Japanese people at large were also the victims
of the war.

There is an old saying that history serves as a mirror. This saying

TOKYO 00001615 003 OF 009

is intended to tell us that we should not continue to have a grudge
but should try to open the way to a better future while keeping the
lessons from history in mind. Since (China and Japan) normalized
diplomatic ties, the Japanese government and leaders have repeatedly
announced the nation's view about the history issue, officially
recognizing its acts of aggression and expressing its remorse and
apology. I have positively evaluated such a stance of Japan. I hope
from the bottom of my heart that Japan will demonstrate what it
expressed and promised by its actions.

The leaders of the two countries agreed to build bilateral
strategic, mutually beneficial relations. If both sides abide by the
principles in the China-Japan joint statement and other two
political documents, progress will be made in their relations.

The Taiwan issue is sensitive enough to affect China's core
benefits. We are strongly opposed to "legal independence of Taiwan"
and any other independence moves by Taiwanese authorities. I hope
Japan will acknowledge that the Taiwan issue is highly sensitive and
cautiously deal with the issue while observing its promises.

There are differences in both sides' interests and views about
certain problems. Compared with the common interests shared by the
two countries, such differences are minor. With respect to the
dispute over the East China Sea, the two countries should lay aside
the issue and make the East China Sea a sea of peace, friendship and

Bilateral cooperation in the economic area will serve to build
mutually beneficial and win-win relations. Both countries' economic
development will not pose a threat but provide a chance to each

It is necessary for China and Japan to maintain the peace and
stability of East Asia by strengthening bilateral coordination and
cooperation. It is also imperative for them to work together in
dealing with global-scale issues, such as energy security;
environmental protection; climate change; prevention and control of
diseases; antiterrorism; crack down on multinational crimes; and
non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

(3) Main points from the Japan-China joint statement on
environmental protection cooperation

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 4) (Excerpts)
April 12, 2007

Recognizing the regional characteristics of environmental problems
and the urgency of such problems, especially those in East Asia, and
believing it will contribute to building mutually beneficial
strategic ties between the two countries, the governments of Japan
and China have agreed to boost cooperation in the following areas:

1. Enhancing efforts to protect drinking water resources. Preventing
river pollution and cooperating in preventing water pollution,
especially the basins of Bo Hai and Huang Hai.

2. Making every effort for recycling wastes. Cooperating in
collecting wastes and implementing a corporate environmental
protection supervisor system.

3. Implanting Japan-China acid rain and yellow sand monitoring
networks with the aim of preventing air pollutants, especially

TOKYO 00001615 004 OF 009

sulfur dioxide and yellow sand. Transferring technologies, such as
coal power plant denitration.

4. Announcing a political resolve to make efforts to resolve climate
change issues through international cooperation only under the
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto
Protocol. Actively taking part in the process of building effective
frameworks in 2013 and beyond. Enhancing talks and cooperation on
the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate,
promoting working-level cooperation, and continuing cooperation on
the clean development mechanism project under the Kyoto Protocol.

5. Building a cooperative mechanism in controlling and inspecting
exports and imports of electrical and electronic wastes. Joining
efforts for preventing wastes, including drifting wastes, from
illicitly crossing borders with the aim of stopping cross-border
environmental pollution.

6. Giving positive assessments to the important roles played in
afforestation by the Japan-China private-sector greening cooperation
committee and other organizations.

7. Actively promoting cooperation through Japan-China-South Korea
environmental ministerial meetings, the regional environmental
cooperation mechanism, and other means.

8. Joining efforts in increasing public awareness and educating
people about sustainable development and environmental protection.

9. Affirming greater cooperation at the Japan-China joint
environmental conservation committee and on policy dialogue.
Conducting technical exchanges putting high priority on use and
protection of intellectual property rights.

10. Promoting the transfer of advanced environmental technologies
and other matters by allowing the Japan-China Friendship
Environmental Protection Center to play a greater role as the point
of contact for environmental protection cooperation to make it a
platform for transferring environmental protection technologies
between the two countries.

(4) US CRS's report on "comfort women" issue: "No organized and
coerced recruitment"

SANKEI (Page 6) (Full)
April 12, 2007

Yoshihisa Komori, Washington

The US Congressional Research Service (CRS) has just issued a
research report on Japan's "comfort women" issue in connection with
House comfort women resolutions (Resolution 759 and Resolution 121).
The report criticizes a series of statements by Prime Minister
Shinzo Abe as being contradictory, but on the principal question of
whether there was "compulsory recruitment by the former Japanese
Imperial Army," the report sides with the view that neither the
military nor the government adopted a compulsory recruitment policy.
Moreover, the report indicates skepticism about (Resolution 121
introduced on Jan. 31, 2007, in the House of Representatives)
calling on Japan to further apologize for former comfort women and
expresses concern that if Japan is pressured to make compensation,
Japan may claim compensation for victims of the atomic bombs.

TOKYO 00001615 005 OF 009

The report titled "Japanese Military's 'Comfort Women' System"
produced by a specialist at the CSR as of April 3 consists of 23

On a major contention in the so-called "comfort women" issue of "the
Japanese military's coerced recruitment of women," the report says:
"The former Japanese military would not have directly taken part in
recruitments, particularly on the Korean Peninsula," and takes the
view that there was no organized, policy-based forced recruitments
of comfort women that confirms (Resolution 759) which denounces
Japan with this language "200,000 women were sexually enslaved by
the Japanese military."

However, the report criticizes Prime Minister Abe's and other
government officials' statements denying forced recruitments as
minimizing the major role played by the military in establishing and
operating comfort stations and transporting and managing comfort
women by emphasizing a denial of "recruitment" alone under the
comfort women system. The report also points out that some
statements could be taken to mean that there was no coerced
recruitment by the military and that other statements are
contradictory to testimonies by former comfort women, including the
survey conducted by the Japanese government. It cites as a major
ground for "coercion," Tanaka Yuki's English book "Japan's Comfort
Women" published in both the United States and the United Kingdom in

On the other hand, the report details the Japanese government's
efforts to offer apologies and compensation continued since the
first half of the 1990s, for instance, by establishing the "Asian
Women's Fund (AWF)." Portraying the AWF as a manifestation of the
Japanese government's genuine effort to atone for and assist former
comfort women," the report denounces the South Korean government for
virtually threatening women not to receive atonement money from the
AWF. Regarding compensation, the report particularly notes that it
has been already settled by the signing of the peace treaty with
Japan and through the normalization of diplomatic ties between Japan
and South Korea, saying that if other countries urge Japan now to
make an official compensation, "there is the potential for Japanese
to counter by demanding official US compensation for the US napalm
bombings of Japanese cities in 1945 beginning with the massive Tokyo
fire raid, which killed an estimated 80,000 or more Japanese and the
atomic bombings."

The House resolution urges the Japanese prime minister and
government to apologize, but the report emphasizes the importance of
the Kono Statement and apologies made by past prime ministers to
recipients of atonement money from the AWF. Noting, "Critics state
those actions are inadequate, but they have not detailed their
reasons for considering them inadequate," the report makes it clear
it is skeptical about calling for an apology. The resolution also
calls on the Japanese Diet to adopt a resolution on apology, but the
report points to an unrealistic aspect of the request of that kind,
noting, "The possibility is very slim that that such a resolution
would be approved."

(5) Upper House by-election in Okinawa: Candidates prioritizing
livelihood-related matters as campaign issue: Military base issue
too complicated

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Slightly abridged)
April 11, 2007

TOKYO 00001615 006.2 OF 009

Now that the first half of unified local elections is over, the
focus of the ruling and opposition camps has shifted to two
by-elections for the Upper House on Apr. 22. In particular, the
Okinawa by-election is expected to be a neck-and-neck race. The
result could determine the fate of the US forces' Futenma Air
Station relocation issue. As such, both the ruling and opposition
parties are geared up to win the race mobilizing party-head-level
officials. However, with candidates focusing their campaign pledges
on matters related to the daily lives of people instead of base
issues, the election campaign has yet to heat up.

Yoshimasa Karimata, the choice of the opposition camp, made
street-corner campaign speeches in Henoko, Nago City, the relocation
site for Futenma Air Station.

Although he loudly proclaimed, "I am going to definitely oppose the
construction of a military base in Henoko," the focus of his
speeches so far has been the income disparity issue. He said:
"Income disparity has widened under the Liberal Democratic Party
(LDP)-New Komeito administration. It is said that the economy is
booming, but the lives of residents in Okinawa are increasingly
becoming more difficult. The income disparity issue is the largest
campaign issue in the upcoming by-election." The base issue comes in
ninth among his 10 policy pledges.

Karimata, who is against the relocation of Futenma Air Station, is
adopting such a strategy, based on the reflection that Keiko
Itokazu, former Upper House member who was said to be the ace of
renovationists, was defeated to Hirokazu Nakaima, as she stressed
her opposition to US bases in the gubernatorial election last year.
Given this outcome, the Karimata's camp judged that if he carries
out an election campaign in the form of asking voters to choose
between the economy and the US bases, voters would think that he is
ignoring the importance of economic development, putting him at a

Aiko Shimajiri, a candidate backed by the ruling camp, has already
visited a number of isolated islands on stumping tours, which she
started on Apr. 9. She is characterized as the first conservative
female candidate in elections for national politics in Okinawa.
Stressing that she is a housewife with four children, she is
positively taking up in her campaign speeches issues that touch the
lives of average people, such as assistance for child rearing. She
has hardly touched on the base issue, and she has only slightly
referred to economic development, an issue that is deeply related to
the base issue.

A staff member of her campaign headquarters said, "Unaffiliated
voters are increasing in Okinawa, too. It would be easier for a
female candidate with a weak name recognition to be accepted if she
comes up with soft policies instead of giving difficult speeches."

Both ruling and opposition parties' effort to bring up base issue
proving futile

Both candidates lack name recognition, since this is their first
challenge to an election for national politics. They have yet to
solidify their election bases. The ruling and opposition camps plan
to assist their candidates, mobilizing eminent supporters.

LDP Secretary General Nakagawa and New Komeito Secretary General
Kazuo Kitagawa arrived in Okinawa on Apr. 5, when the election was
officially announced.

TOKYO 00001615 007.2 OF 009

Senior officials of opposition parties, including Naoto Kan, acting
head of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto), attended a
kick-off ceremony for Karimata's election campaign. DPJ head Ozawa
also visited Okinawa and did his utmost to expand Karimata's support
base, asking for cooperation from the mayors of four municipalities,
including Yoichi Iha, mayor of Ginowan City. Ozawa plans to go to
Okinawa again this weekend.

Nakagawa stressed at a kick-off ceremony for Shimajiri on Apr 5, "We
will create jobs in Okinawa, develop the economy, and eventually get
the military bases to pull out." He made this speech, having in mind
the final report on the realignment of US forces in Japan, which
incorporated the transfer of Marines stationed in Okinawa to Guam.
Ruling and opposition party lawmakers who went to Okinawa to give
campaign speeches touched on issues other than US bases, as well.
DPJ Secretary General Hatoyama, who visited Naha on the 8th, for
instance opposed the relocation of Futenma Air Station, saying, "Is
it all right to reclaim such a beautiful sea?"

However, since their speeches on the base issue are on divergent
lines with the strategies of the election headquarters of their
candidates, the issue has not yet become a major campaign issue.

(6) Editorial: Japan must demonstrate strong leadership in
supporting Iraq

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
April 11, 2007

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, now visiting Japan, and Prime
Minister Shinzo Abe reached an agreement that the two countries
would aim to build a long-term strategic partnership. Iraq continues
to be in a chaotic situation. All the more because it is in such a
situation, it is important for Japan to cooperate with continued
reconstruction assistance to that country.

Recently prominent Iraqi figures visited Japan in succession. Vice
President Tariq al-Hashimi came to Tokyo in late March, followed by
a group of 13 parliamentarians headed by National Dialogue Minister
Akram al-Hakim. Japan-Iraq relations have gradually expanded.

Abe told Maliki: "The stability of Iraq is indispensable for the
international community and it matches Japan's national interests."
It is true that a chaotic national situation has brought much
suffering to Iraqis, but it also has increasingly destabilized the
entire Middle East and even affected the rest of the world, such as
by spreading terrorism.

Japan relies on the Middle East for about 90% of its crude oil
imports. In the Middle East, Iraq is a major oil producer and Iraq's
crude oil reserves rank third in the world. The country's stability
is directly linked to Japan's energy security.

Japan has supported Iraq by dispatching its Self-Defense Forces
troops, as well as providing the country with economic cooperation.
Japan withdrew its Ground Self-Defense Force personnel from Iraq
last July. Japan's Air Self-Defense Force (ASDF) has continued its
mission in the form of transporting personnel and relief goods.

Abe conveyed to Maliki his cabinet's decision to extend the Iraq
Special Measures Law two year beyond its expiration date in July.

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In a press conference yesterday, Maliki expressed his appreciation
for SDF operations. In order to have the ASDF troops continue their
mission, it is necessary to extend the special measures law.

The government has decided to provide Iraq with official development
assistance (ODA) worth about 5 billion dollars. It has also accepted
Iraq's request for debt reduction of 6 billion dollars. Abe conveyed
to Maliki in the meeting this time around that Japan would extend
yen loans for repairing crude oil export facilities and for other
purposes. At an opportune time, the Japanese government should
increase ODA achievements.

For Iraq, the deterioration of public law and order has been its
biggest problem. The the northern part of Iraq, inhabited by the
Kurds, and southern Iraq are relatively safe. In Baghdad and the
central Iraq, car bombs and suicide terrorist attacks continue

In early May, a cabinet minister-level international conference will
be held in Egypt to discuss measures to stabilize Iraq. Japan will
take part in that international conference. We hope to see
achievements there so that Iraq can be stabilized.

(7) Koyusho column by Ikuo Kabashima, professor of law at University
of Tokyo: My former university professor gave me a future

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 36) (Full)
April 7, 2007

What I am now, I owe to one kind American.

After graduating from high school, I worked at an agricultural
cooperative in Kumamoto Prefecture where I was born.

Dreaming of someday running a ranch, I applied for an agricultural
training session in the United States. I spent all my time taking
care of livestock for 18 months. During the 18-month training
session, I spent three months at the University of Nebraska for
technical training. Thinking that studying would be an easier life
than farming, I decided to return to the university.

Later, with one-way air ticket in my hand, I again visited the US.
While working as an interpreter for my fellow trainees, I took the
entrance exam for the University of Nebraska, but failed. Seeing me
in the depths of despair, one of the teachers, Joe Hudson,
negotiated personally with the college official in charge of the
entrance exam. Hudson was around 40 years of age at that time. He
was working as a lecturer for the training program at the
university, while writing his doctoral thesis. I worked as an
interpreter in his training session.

Hudson negotiated with the exam official, arguing, "You should give
a chance to the student who is willing to study." So I was
unofficially allowed to study at the college. I studied hard and got
good results in all the first semester's exams. Fortunately, I was
able to get a scholarship. I then brought over my fiance to
Nebraska, and we got married there. Hudson walked down the aisle
with my fiance.

I seldom give a failing mark to my students because I want to bet on
their potential, just as Hudson did for me. Hudson worked at an
agricultural cooperative in Kansas City, but I haven't heard from
him for some time. I have yet to keep my promise that if I were to

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succeed, I would invite him to Japan.


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