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Cablegate: Cambodia Likely to Support Japan On Whaling Issue

VZCZCXYZ0004
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHPF #0655 1300935
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 100935Z MAY 07
FM AMEMBASSY PHNOM PENH
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8410
INFO RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA PRIORITY 2281
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 3159

UNCLAS PHNOM PENH 000655

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/MLS, OES/OA--JOHN FIELD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV EFIS KSCA PREL ETRD CB
SUBJECT: CAMBODIA LIKELY TO SUPPORT JAPAN ON WHALING ISSUE

REF: STATE 56397

1. (U) On May 10, Poleconoff delivered reftel demarche to
Mr. Ing Try, Deputy Director General of the Ministry of
Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries. Ing Try asked a few
clarifying questions about the bowhead quota, but gave no
immediate indication as to how Cambodia was likely to vote.

2. (SBU) Poleconoff met with Mr. Suon Phalla of the CITES
Authority at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and
Fisheries to discuss reftel demarche informally on May 3. He
indicated that in the run-up to last year's International
Whaling Commission, the Cambodian government was subject to
conflicting pressure on whaling proposals and that ultimately
the decision about Cambodia's vote went all the way to the
Prime Minister's office. Because Japan is Cambodia's largest
aid donor, Cambodia cannot risk offending Japan on an issue
it sees as critical, and will vote with the pro-Japanese
block again this year, he said.

3. (U) The Australian Embassy has indicated that they will
also be meeting with Ing Try to urge him to leave the
pro-Japan block, but the embassy is not optimistic about the
prospects for success. An Australian diplomat was uncertain
whether they would specifically raise the issue of bowhead
quotas.
MUSSOMELI

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