Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 06/19/07

DE RUEHKO #2761/01 1700801
P 190801Z JUN 07





E.O. 12958: N/A


(1) Poll on Abe cabinet, pensions fiasco

(2) US to provide North Korea with 2 million dollars in aid in
return for implementation of initial actions

(3) Editorial: Is Kim laughing himself silly over US decision on
money transfer?

(4) Defense technologies: Japan, US agree on intercorporate
technology transfer

(5) Editorial: Diplomatic efforts necessary to prevent other
countries from anticipating a spear as next step in missile defense

(6) 2007 Upper House election (Part 5): LDP puzzled by New Komeito's
eagerness to adjust votes

(7) Total lifting of ban on US beef imports so quickly? - part 2:
"The US has not changed the risk at all," says Food Safety
Commission Chairman Yasuhiro Yoshikawa


(1) Poll on Abe cabinet, pensions fiasco

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
June 19, 2007

Questions & Answers
(Figures shown in % age. Parentheses denote the results of a survey
conducted in May.)

Q: Do you support the Abe cabinet?

Yes 38.3 (49.6)
No 50.6 (36.8)
Other answers (O/A) 2.8 (3.5)
No answer (N/A) 8.3 (10.1)

Q: (Only for those who answered "yes" to the foregoing question)
Give up to two reasons for your approval of the Abe cabinet.

I can appreciate its political stance 30.8 (33.4)
It's stable 11.8 (14.9)
The prime minister is trustworthy 23.2 (23.2)
There's a fresh image of the prime minister 34.8 (40.2)
I can appreciate its economic policy 4.8 (6.2)
I can appreciate its foreign policy 15.2 (15.2)
Because it's a coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and the New
Komeito 14.8 (10.7)
It's better than its predecessors 11.9 (10.1)
O/A+N/A 7.2 (4.8)

Q: (Only for those who answered "no" to the foregoing question) Give
up to two reasons for your disapproval of the Abe cabinet.

I can't appreciate its political stance 45.9 (43.1)
It's unstable 34.4 (24.9)
The prime minister is untrustworthy 25.3 (25.2)
The prime minister lacks political experience 14.4 (16.7)
I can't appreciate its economic policy 22.9 (21.9)

TOKYO 00002761 002 OF 010

I can't appreciate its foreign policy 6.8 (13.9)
Because it's a coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and the New
Komeito 11.3 (14.2)
It's worse than its predecessors 10.0 (7.5)
O/A+N/A 3.9 (3.8)

Q: Which political party do you support now? Pick only one.

Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) 32.9 (38.5)
Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) 14.3 (11.1)
New Komeito (NK) 4.0 (3.3)
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 2.4 (1.8)
Social Democratic Party (SDP or Shaminto) 1.2 (0.9)
People's New Party (PNP or Kokumin Shinto) 0.2 (0.3)
New Party Nippon (NPN or Shinto Nippon) --- (0.1)
Other political parties --- (---)
None 44.4 (42.4)
N/A 0.7 (1.6)

Q: Do you appreciate the job performance of Prime Minister Abe and
his cabinet so far on the whole?

Appreciate very much 6.3
Appreciate somewhat 36.3
Don't appreciate very much 37.2
Don't appreciate at all 16.7
N/A 3.4

Q: If there is anything you can appreciate about what Prime Minister
Abe and his cabinet have actually done, pick as many as you like
from among those listed below.

Relations with the US 9.5
Relations with China 14.7
Relations with South Korea 5.8
Efforts for the North Korea problem 31.1
Efforts for educational reform 15.3
Efforts for social divide 4.4
Efforts for the pension issue 12.7
Efforts for constitutional revision 6.8
Efforts to reform the government's public service personnel system
Response to the problem of politics and money, involving former
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Matsuoka 1.8
Response to cabinet ministers' gaffe, including Health, Labor and
Welfare Minister Yanagisawa 1.7
O/A 0.3
Nothing in particular 38.3
N/A 1.7

Q: If there is anything you cannot appreciate about what Prime
Minister Abe and his cabinet have actually done, pick as many as you
like from among those listed below.

Relations with the US 8.4
Relations with China 7.2
Relations with South Korea 4.7
Efforts for the North Korea problem 14.4
Efforts for educational reform 13.5
Efforts for social divide 25.0
Efforts for the pension issue 50.2
Efforts for constitutional revision 10.1
Efforts to reform the government's public service personnel system

TOKYO 00002761 003 OF 010

Response to the problem of politics and money, involving former
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Matsuoka 49.4
Response to cabinet ministers' gaffe, including Health, Labor and
Welfare Minister Yanagisawa 32.1
O/A 0.5
Nothing in particular 13.8
N/A 2.1

Q: Do you trust the government's pension system on the whole?

Yes 7.6
Yes to a certain degree 15.7
No to a certain degree 26.8
No 48.7
N/A 1.3

Q: Concerning the government's pension record-keeping flaws, the
government has worked out a plan to compensate unpaid pensions under
a new law. At the same time, Prime Minister Abe has promised to
check about 50 million pending cases within one year. Do you
appreciate this government plan?

Appreciate very much 12.5
Appreciate somewhat 33.9
Don't appreciate very much 27.7
Don't appreciate at all 24.2
N/A 1.6

Q: Do you think the government's plan this time will resolve the
problem of missing pension records?

Yes 26.6
No 66.8
N/A 6.5

Q: Which political party gave you a bad impression in view of moves
in the Diet over the problem of missing pension records? If any,
pick as many as you like from among those listed below.

Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) 37.6
Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto) 17.5
New Komeito (NK) 9.5
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 5.9
Social Democratic Party (Shaminto) 5.9
People's New Party (PNP or Kokumin Shinto) 2.7
New Party Nippon (NPN or Shinto Nippon) 2.2
Other political parties 0.2
Nothing in particular 46.8
N/A 3.9

Polling methodology
Date of survey: June 16-17.
Subjects of survey: 3,000 persons chosen from among all eligible
voters throughout the country (at 250 locations on a stratified
two-stage random sampling basis).
Method of implementation: Door-to-door visits for face-to-face
Number of valid respondents: 1,837 persons (61.2 % ).

(2) US to provide North Korea with 2 million dollars in aid in
return for implementation of initial actions

TOKYO 00002761 004 OF 010

MAINICHI (Top Play) (Excerpts)
Evening, June 19, 2007

Toshihiko Kasahara, Washington

The United States government has decided to provide North Korea with
emergency humanitarian assistance worth 2 million dollars
(approximately 230 million yen) if Pyongyang implements the initial
steps that were stipulated in the six-party agreement in February,
such as shutting down and sealing its nuclear facilities. Several US
government officials disclosed this information to the Mainichi
Shimbun yesterday. But Japan has taken the stance of not offering
assistance unless negotiations on the abduction issue move forward.
Should no progress be made in the six-party talks, the gap between
Japan and the US, which is now positive about assistance to the
North, will grow even wider.

A joint statement on the February agreement stipulates that North
Korea will receive 50,000 tons of crude oil in reform for
implementing the initial steps. It has been decided that South Korea
alone will offer 50,000 tons of oil independently. The aid planned
by the US will be an additional contribution outside the framework
of the agreement.

(3) Editorial: Is Kim laughing himself silly over US decision on
money transfer?

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
June 19, 2007

The United States has finally started preparations to transfer
approximately 25 million dollars (about 3 billion yen) of North
Korea-related funds frozen at Banco Delta Asia (BDA) in Macao to
North Korea via the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Bank of
Russia. Hearing this news, North Korean leader Kim Jong Il might be
laughing himself silly.

Negotiators adopted a joint statement in the six-party talks that
wrapped up on Feb. 13. The statement stipulated the initial steps
North Korea should take toward nuclear disarmament and specific
conditions for them, specifying that these actions should be taken
within 60 days. Although the statement makes no reference to the BDA
issue, Pyongyang put forth the issue as a condition for it to take
the initial actions. Washington accepted the North's demand by
unprecedentedly getting its central bank involved in it.

The Nikkei has so far posed questions about Washington's
conciliatory policy in its editorials titled: "America should
maintain the basic principles of its policy toward North Korea;" and
"Don't follow North Korea's pace." The US finally fell into the
other side's pace and came up with the decision. It can hardly be
conceivable that the US money-transfer decision will prompt the
North to take actions to resolve the nuclear issue. Even so, we hope
North Korea will return the "goodwill" of the US.

North Korea must be savoring the effect of its nuclear test last
year. This experience might have the North believe that if it
continues to play for time by presenting new demands, the US
government will make concessions in the end. In this light, the US
approach might be taken as working only negatively.

We interpreted the agreement stipulated in the Feb. 13 joint

TOKYO 00002761 005 OF 010

statement as only one step toward North Korea's dismantlement of all
its nuclear programs and weapons. On "the list of nuclear plans" in
the joint statement, in particular, it will not be easy to move
negotiations forward. There is leeway for North Korea to buy time,
with so many loopholes in the joint statement, which is designed to
have the North scrap all its nuclear weapons and programs.

North Korea has extended an invitation to the International Atomic
Energy Agency (IAEA), based on the judgment that the fund-transfer
process is now in the final stage. Pyongyang intends to receive IAEA
inspectors once the process is completed. However, it is uncertain
to what extend the inspectors will be allowed to take action.
Japanese harbor doubt and distrust of the US government's policy
toward North Korea. The BDA decision by the US may be amplifying
such feelings on the Japanese side. Unless North Korea makes a
sincere response, the US government will be inevitably pressed to
make a policy switch again.

(4) Defense technologies: Japan, US agree on intercorporate
technology transfer

NIKKEI (NIHON KEIZAI) (Top play) (Full)
June 17, 2007

Japan and the United States will introduce a scheme allowing their
private-sector companies to directly share their technical data with
each other or transfer such data to each other in their joint
research and development of defense technologies. In the first
place, the Japanese and US governments will apply this scheme within
the month to the two countries' joint development of a missile
defense (MD) system. This is aimed at shortening the period of time
for joint development or streamlining joint development in the
advancement of defense technologies. However, this scheme is also
saddled with problems, such as how to handle confidential
information and oversee the behavior of private businesses.

In May this year, the Japanese and US governments held a
two-plus-two foreign and defense ministerial meeting of their
intergovernmental security consultative committee in Washington. In
the two-plus-two ministerial, the two governments reached a basic
agreement on a framework to promote technology transfer between the
two countries' private businesses. The two governments will reach a
formal agreement in their official notes to be exchanged this

The Japanese and US governments are currently to conclude a
memorandum of understanding (MOU) on each project for joint research
and development. In principle, the Japanese and US governments
exchange information just between themselves. Generally, the two
governments take the form of providing their respective contractors
with technical data for joint development. Japan and the United
States therefore need to obtain each other's consent to technology
transfer for each project.

In the past, there were few problems about technology transfer. That
is because basic research has been the mainstay of technology
transfer. However, technical data will be massive in volume with the
advancement of research, according to a senior official of the
Defense Agency notes. The official added, "They will have to
directly provide each other with their data, or they can't respond."
The Japanese government also wants to improve the defense industry's
technological capability through expanded exchanges.

TOKYO 00002761 006 OF 010

For example, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Raytheon, a US major
defense-related company, are expected to conclude a technical
assistance agreement and directly access each other's database.
MD-related research and development between Japan and the United
States do not conflict with Japan's self-imposed three principles on
weapons exports, so companies will be required to abide by
information security regulations incorporated in their MOUs.

For the present, Japan and the United States are working together to
research and develop four components, including a "nosecone," which
is to tip the Standard Missile 3 (SM-3), a next-generation missile
to be launched from Aegis-equipped ships to intercept ballistic
missiles. The two countries will also work together to research a
new high-performance radar system that has a long detectable range.
In addition, the two countries will also research an Aegis combat
command system with its processing capacity enhanced with
commercial-off-the-shelf products. The Japanese and US governments
will consider expanding the scheme to joint research and development
in non-MD areas. If Japan and the United States want to use each
other's research results for other defense-related purposes in the
future, the two countries can use them after notifying each other of
specifics about their projects.

In East Asia, the security environment has been intensifying further
with North Korea's missile launches and other events. As it stands,
the Japanese government wants to improve Japan's defense capability
and streamline its budget through technical exchanges with the
United States. However, there are concerns about the two countries'
military integration. In addition, there are also voices pointing to
the possibility of scrapping Japan's arms embargo policy.

(5) Editorial: Diplomatic efforts necessary to prevent other
countries from anticipating a spear as next step in missile defense

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
June 19, 2007

The intensifying row between the United States and Russia over the
deployment of a missile defense (MD) system in Eastern Europe
brought to mind a Chinese researcher's words: "A person, who used a
shield, might use a spear the next time." This is still a moderate
criticism of MD. Having a shield is part of military strength. An
increase in a country's defense capability means a decrease in the
other party's strike capability. An arms race might follow a
disturbance in balance of military strengths.

President George W. Bush described the deployment of MD in Eastern
Europe as a strictly defensive means.

The logic is the same as the Japanese government explaining the
deployed MD system as exclusively for self-defense. Such logic seems
insufficient to contain criticism of MD and countermeasures,
however. Winning support of neighboring countries takes constant
diplomatic efforts and confidence building.

The Antiballistic Missile Treaty concluded by the United States and
the Soviet Union in the 1970s strictly restricted the two countries
deploying antiballistic systems. The treaty came from the judgment
that once intercepting enemy missiles became easier, countries would
be tempted to launch a preemptive strike. Perceiving this treaty as
a Cold War relic, the Bush administration declared in 2001 to
withdraw from the treaty and started to pursue the development of
MD. The decision might not be a total mistake. However, there is no

TOKYO 00002761 007 OF 010

mistake that the full-fledged development of MD that started with a
rejection of the Cold War mentality has amplified the confrontation
between the United States and Russia, which is also referred to as a
new Cold War, drawing strong protests from Moscow and Beijing.

The Bush administration's multiple layered defense initiative has an
aspect of defending US allies with MD while shielding the United
States by using their defense zones. The system is intended to
intercept launched enemy missiles at the boost phase and in
mid-course. Integrating the Clinton administration's National
Missile Defense (NMD) program and the Theater Missile Defense (TMD)
program involving Japan into MD, the new system was born linking air
defense systems of the world, including Japan and the United

Washington could ask Tokyo to intercept a US-bound missile. Japan
would find it difficult to cite the usual lack-of-interceptor
explanation. The Defense Ministry has reportedly decided recently to
study and develop the airborne laser (ABL) system apart from the
interpretation of the right to collective self-defense. Laser
weapons enables to intercept boost-phase missiles.

Japan has been accused by China and other countries as having used a
spear, while keep paying huge MD-related expenses in compliance with
US requests. In the event 10 warheads were released over Japan, we
do not know how many of them Japan and the US can intercept by using
the current system. One nuclear warhead would be enough to deal a
devastating blow to Japan.

Some think that trying to shoot down fired missiles is better than
doing nothing. Like Eastern Europe, there could be "political
deployment" to regard the deployment of MD as proof of being US
allies. Nothing is more fearful than an MD argument sidestepping
limits to the intercept system, for such would prompt people to
harbor illusions about their own security.

(6) 2007 Upper House election (Part 5): LDP puzzled by New Komeito's
eagerness to adjust votes

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Abridged)
June 18, 2007

Incumbent New Komeito Upper House lawmaker Tamotsu Yamamoto,
attending a ceremony to open his campaign office in a central part
of Nagoya on June 14, bowed his head deeply and said: "I am truly
sorry. I should have been prepared to put everyone at ease."

Aichi, which holds three seats, is one of the top priority districts
for the New Komeito, which aims to get all eight proportional
representation candidates elected and win the five electoral
districts. New Komeito Representative Akihiro Ota kicked off his
nationwide stumping tour with a press conference in Aichi on May 19
in which he declared: "Of all the electoral districts, the situation
in Aichi is the most severe. Winning Aichi will result in our
complete victory."

In the election three years ago, two Minshuto (Democratic Party of
Japan) candidates garnered a total of 1.41 million votes. Yamamoto
won less than half a million votes in the race six years ago. If two
Minshuto candidates win about the same number of votes in the
upcoming election, Yamamoto would be no match for them. Setting a
target of 600,000 votes, the Yamamoto camp intends to obtain votes
from the Liberal Democratic Party, the New Komeito's coalition

TOKYO 00002761 008 OF 010


"Receiving rewards natural"

New Komeito Aichi prefectural assemblymen and Soka Gakkai executives
have repeatedly asked LDP lawmakers elected from Aichi to produce
lists of individuals with substance from any part of the prefecture.
They apparently think receiving rewards in return for their votes
for LDP candidates in past Lower House and local elections is only
natural. New Komeito Secretary General Kazuo Kitagawa held a meeting
with his LDP counterpart Hidenao Nakagawa on June 14 in which they
agreed that the New Komeito would cooperate for the LDP in Chiba and
in return the LDP would assist the New Komeito in Aichi and

Many LDP lawmakers are wary of such arrangements. For instance,
incumbent Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Seiji Suzuki garnered
970,000 votes in the election six years ago by riding on the
coattail of popular Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, but he is now
highly alarmed about the impact of the pension fiasco and other

Meanwhile, Minshuto, which will field two candidates, is struggling
to evenly distribute votes to Ikuko Tanioka and Kohei Otsuka. In a
gathering held on June 3 in Nagoya to support Otsuka, one alarmingly
said, "Organizational votes might be absorbed by Tanioka."
Minshuto's strategy is to let Otsuka collect 80 % of the Rengo
(Japanese Trade Union Confederation) Aichi votes and Tanioka, a
university president, to win support from unaffiliated voters. "We
definitely don't want to see the two vie with each other over
organizational votes," a senior Aichi chapter official said.

In Saitama, maneuvering by the ruling and opposition camps is
intensifying. Attending a gathering in Kawaguchi City on the night
of June 10, Kitagawa highlighted the need for the party to win 13
seats in order for the ruling coalition to maintain a majority. The
Minshuto candidates garnered a total of 1.2 million votes in the
previous election. A half of that would be about the same as
incumbent New Komeito lawmaker Hiroshi Takano collected six years
ago when he won 560,000 votes. On June 10, LDP Lower House lawmaker
Yoshitaka Shindo called on Takano at his campaign office in the city
to offer his total support. "We want 30,000 votes from the LDP," a
New Komeito Saitama chapter executive said.

"We cannot afford to give votes to New Komeito candidate"

Toshiharu Furukawa, the LDP's first-time candidate, could not
conceal his shock when 19 incumbents failed to win seats in the
prefectural assembly race in April. Secretary General Nakagawa
visited Saitama on June 10 to brace up the prefectural chapter. "We
cannot afford to donate votes to the (New Komeito) candidate," a
senior LDP prefectural chapter official noted.

Minshuto is endeavoring to evenly distribute party votes to two
candidates -- incumbent Ryuji Yamane and newcomer Kuniko Koda --
based on the bitter lessons from the previous race. At that time,
the party was able to get only one of two candidates elected due to
the large gap in the votes between the two.

(7) Total lifting of ban on US beef imports so quickly? - part 2:
"The US has not changed the risk at all," says Food Safety
Commission Chairman Yasuhiro Yoshikawa

TOKYO 00002761 009 OF 010

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 21) (Full)
June 18, 2007

US beef was once a strong competitor of Australian beef on the
Japanese market. Now, however, Japan imports less than 2,000 tons of
US beef a month. Australian beef now commands nearly 90 % of
Japan's imported beef market.

While Japan sets no conditions on beef imported from Australia,
where there have been no discoveries of BSE-infected cattle, US beef
exported to Japan must be from cattle aged 20 months or younger. To
meet this requirement, the US needs to select cattle for processing
whose age can be identified. Some meat-processing plants set a
specific day of the week to work on products bound for Japan.
Operating plants in such a manner naturally drives costs higher.
Given the trade statistics issued by the Department of the Treasury,
US beef is nearly 30 % more expensive than Australian varieties.
Some meat retailers said, "We cannot do business with such high
prices, though consumers can feel a sense of reassurance about the
product's safety."

In order to solve the situation like this, the US places high
expectations on the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE),
which has classified it as a country with a controlled BSE risk.

This is the intermediate category out of three categories to be
determined, based on such factors as whether BSE-infected cattle
have been discovered in that country and measures that country takes
to prevent BSE. Australia is categorized at one level higher. Though
the OIE has not necessarily rated the US as a "country free of BSE,"
the arrangement is that countries in this category are not subject
to trade restrictions, such as age limits, unless such restrictions
are based on scientific grounds.

Following the release of the OIE report, US Secretary of Agriculture
Johanns released a statement that the US would use this
international recognition in order to seek its trade partners to
reopen their markets for all US beef products. Accordingly, the US
has urged the Japanese government to revise its import conditions at
an early date.

Following the request, the Japanese government has drawn up a
scenario of entering talks with the US possibly at the end of the
month and inquiring the Cabinet Office's Food Safety Commission
(FSC) to consider the propriety of easing import condition that
limits beef eligible for exports to cattle aged 20 months or younger
to cattle aged 30 months or younger, which is virtually a total
lifting of the ban. It will then decide whether to totally remove
the ban, following the panel's recommendation at the end of the year
or early next year.

A senior official of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and
Fisheries (MAFF) noted, "It is a hard job to reopen the market after
a long hiatus, but the situation should be quite different if it is
just to ease restrictions." Some view that procedures to ease the
age restriction will go much more smoothly than the partial lifting
of the ban the year before last.

However, Tokyo University professor Yasuhiro Yoshikawa, chairman of
the Food Safety Commission (FSC), a panel that holds the key to the
issue, categorically said: "If you ask me whether it is all right to
ease Japan's import conditions set on US beef, it is hard to say

TOKYO 00002761 010 OF 010

that it is all right, because the background risk of US beef has not
changed. It is illogical to ask and answer such a question."

He is especially concerned about the fact that the US allows
meat-and-bone meal made of burnt specified risk material (SRM) as
feed for chickens and other animals. He noted: "Unless the feed
restrictions are tightened, the infectious agents that cause BSE in
cattle would continue circulate in the country. It is a major minus
factor for the US that it did not strengthen the regulation due to
opposition from the industry. The OIE has pointed out this concern
in a footnote of its report."

The panel's report that approved the partial lifting of the ban in
Dec. 2005 called for strengthening the feed regulation and
inspection. However, the US has instead reduced the number of cattle
subject to inspection. Yoshikawa revealed the distress he feels,
sandwiched between political moves and science: "Japan carries out
thorough inspection and sets a feed regulation. Its approach to root
out BSE is accurate, but it is not the case for the US. If this
situation continues, Japanese and US scenarios in dealing with BSE
will become wide apart."

Toshinobu Kitabayashi heads the Agricultural Information Research
Center, which has studied the BSE issue since the occurrence of BSE
in Britain in 1986. He pointed out: "Both Japanese and European
people have begun eating beef, trusting the efficacy of BSE
preventive measures - removal of SRM, feed regulation and
inspection." He then made a bitter remark on US beef: "I do not
think the US is a high-risk country, but I do not think that US beef
is safe, either. I cannot be sure about this, because there is no
premise for judgment. A BSE-infected cow was discovered in the US,
and yet, its BSE-preventive measures are less proactive than those
taken by Japan and European countries. Unless it does what it can
do, matters, including a boost to the consumption of its beef, will
not move forward."


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


New IPCC Report: ‘Unprecedented Changes’ Needed To Limit Global Warming

Limiting global warming to 1.5°C will require “far-reaching and unprecedented changes,” such as ditching coal for electricity to slash carbon emissions, says a special report that finds some of the actions needed are already under way, but the world must move faster… More>>


Jamal Khashoggi: UK, France, Germany Join Calls For Credible Investigation

Germany, the United Kingdom and France share the grave concern expressed by others including HRVP Mogherini and UNSG Guterres, and are treating this incident with the utmost seriousness. More>>


MSF Not Wanted: Nauru Government Shows Continued Callousness

The Nauruan Government’s decision to ask Doctors Without Borders to immediately leave shows continued callousness towards asylum seekers desperately seeking a safe place to call home, Green MP Golriz Ghahraman said today. More>>


Sulawesi Quake, Tsunami: Aid Response Begins

Oxfam and its local partners are standing by to deploy emergency staff and resources to the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, as an estimated 1.5 million people are thought to be affected by the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit on Friday. More>>


Decriminalising Same-Sex Relationships: UN Rights Chief Applauds Indian Decision

“This is a great day for India and for all those who believe in the universality of human rights," Bachelet said. "With this landmark decision, the Indian Supreme Court has taken a big step forward for freedom and equality...” More>>


  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC