Cablegate: The Fifth Asian Senior-Talks On Nonproliferation


DE RUEHKO #1373/01 1410731
P 200731Z MAY 08



E.O. 12958: N/A

Sensitive but unclassified; protect accordingly.

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: ISN Deputy Assistant Secretary Mary
Alice Hayward and ISN Counterproliferation Director Tony
Foley represented the U.S. at the fifth Asian Senior-Level
Talks on Nonproliferation (ASTOP V) in Tokyo April 25, 2008.
Recent news on North Korea's proliferation activities
conducted with Syria, and reports of difficulty implementing
the IAEA Additional Protocol (AP) and United Security Council
Resolutions (UNSCRs) concerning North Korea and Iran garnered
the most interest. The agenda also included the
Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI), strengthening export
controls, and regional concerns. Japan introduced its
"Nuclear Power Infrastructure Initiative," for enhancing
nuclear nonproliferation safeguards, safety, and security in
the midst of the nuclear renaissance. Senior-level
government officials in charge of nonproliferation policies
from Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries
(Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia,
Burma, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam), plus
Australia, China, Republic of Korea, the U.S., Canada, New
Zealand, and host country Japan participated in the meeting.


2. (SBU) Senior Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs Hitoshi
Kimura expressed hope states could act in concert and take
swift and firm measures to tackle the issues related to
strengthening nonproliferation in the Asian region, namely
the North Korean and Iranian proliferation threats. In his
opening remarks, Kimura also highlighted nonproliferation as
a main agenda item at the upcoming G8 Summit chaired by the
Government of Japan (GOJ). Therefore, the results of the
ASTOP Talks will not go unnoticed, Kimura stated, but will be
reflected in the G8 process. Japanese Ministry of Foreign
Affairs (MOFA) Disarmament, Non-Proliferation, and Science
Director-General Takeshi Nakane echoed Kimura's sentiment and
emphasized the need for all countries to implement UNSCRs
concerning North Korea and Iran. Nakane strongly believed
the recent discovery of North Korea's secret work on a
nuclear reactor in cooperation with Syria, and Iran's failure
to declare its nuclear activities under IAEA safeguards not
only put peace and stability in jeopardy in Asia, but
threatens the entire world. In Nakane's final remarks, he
urged all states to sign the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban
Treaty (CTBT).

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3. (SBU) After the opening remarks, the conference took up
the first agenda item on promotion of the peaceful uses of
nuclear energy in a manner ensuring the 3Ss (nuclear
nonproliferation/safeguards, safety and security). MOFA
International Nuclear Energy Cooperation Director Yasuyoshi
Komizo gave an extensive presentation on Japan's "Nuclear
Power Infrastructure Initiative," which he said Japan would
like to launch at this year's G8 Summit. Komizo said a
growing number of countries worldwide are considering
embarking on nuclear power programs -- a trend known as the
"Nuclear Renaissance" -- as a means of addressing climate
change and energy security. The Japanese side noted the IAEA
designed 19 important milestones in an effort to deal with
the trend. Due to its dual nature, certain nuclear
technology can be misused for non-peaceful purposes.
Furthermore, should nuclear accidents occur, they would have
serious consequences not only for the country where the
nuclear power plant in question is located, but also
neighboring countries and the international community as a
whole. Considering such concerns, Komizo said primary
emphasis should be given to one IAEA milestone, the 3Ss,
because it constitutes necessary infrastructure for the
proper introduction of nuclear power. Komizo noted the IAEA
was consulted in developing the initiative and will continue
to play a key role in the implementation phase if the
initiative is adopted at the Summit.

4. (SBU) In response to the GOJ presentation, the Republic
of Korea official commented the ROK is the sixth largest
producer of nuclear power in the world and his government
agrees with the GOJ on the effectiveness of ensuring the 3Ss.
The Korean representative pointed out two challenges -- safe
disposal of spent fuel and rising uranium costs -- as
impediments to the initiative and the nuclear renaissance.
The New Zealand representative said her country opposes
nuclear power. However, it strongly supports the 3Ss
initiative because of New Zealand's concern about the
transshipment of nuclear waste materials in the Pacific.
Singapore welcomed the initiative, also recognizing the

growing interest in acquiring nuclear energy. The official
said his government looks forward to sharing information
about the 3Ss initiative with the recently formed ASEAN
Nuclear Energy Safety Sub-Sector Network Working Group. That
group held its first annual meeting late January in


5. (SBU) Moving to regional nonproliferation issues,
China's representative presented a paper on the current
status of the Six-Party Talks on North Korea. He stated with
China's active mediation and the concerted efforts of all
other parties, the Six Party Talks yielded significant fruits
since the 2005 Joint Statement. Two action plans to
denuclearize were released on February 13 and October 3,
2007. China's official reported the Initial-Phase Actions
for the implementation of the 2005 Joint Statement were
complete but the Second-Phase is ongoing. He said the
Second-Phase Actions were delayed because of some differences
between the U.S. and North Korea over the declaration issue.
The representative asserted China has been actively working
with both parties, placing emphasis on promoting useful
consultations and coordination in resolving differences. As
a result, the disablement of nuclear facilities and the
provision of energy assistance to North Korea are well
underway. China is optimistic the Second-Phase Actions will
conclude at an early date.

6. (SBU) In response, DAS Hayward said the Second-Phase
Actions experienced delay because North Korea failed to
submit its declaration due December 31, 2007. Hayward
emphasized the U.S. will continue to urge North Korea to
provide a complete and correct declaration in order to
proceed to the Third Phase. She noted the United States is
overseeing the disablement activities at the three core
facilities at Yongbyon and providing initial funding for the
work at the request of the other Parties. Turning attention
to a related issue, Hayward briefed the participants using
points drawn from the White House press statement that
announced recently released intelligence indicating North
Korea's cooperation with Syria in developing a covert nuclear
reactor. The Chair greatly appreciated the U.S. updates on
the North Korea-Syria nuclear cooperation and took the
opportunity to underscore the importance of North Korea
providing the declaration without further delay. Australia's
representative said such actions are "extremely disturbing"
and completely undermine the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty
(NPT). She further said, the Six Party Talks should continue
vigorously in light of the recent discovery and Syria should
promptly provide access to IAEA inspectors and swiftly ratify
the Additional Protocol. The ROK official added resolution
of nuclear issues is important. The official expressed hope
North Korea would abandon its nuclear program, and during the
negotiation period, Korea would remain flexible in its
approach. Canada, like other countries, attached great
importance to a diplomatic approach, therefore called for
full implementation of UNSCRs concerning North Korea. The
Canadian representative said GOC would continue to lend
support to the Six Party Talks, which is a wise process
because it offers the best process to seek an acceptable
outcome for all parties. The Six Party Talks can effectively
demonstrate to North Korea it has little chance but to
concede to the will of the international community. Canada's
representative, in his final remarks, expressed hope the Six
Party Talks would move forward and not suffer a major
set-back from the recent findings.


7. (SBU) DAS Hayward presented recent developments
regarding Iran's nuclear program, emphasizing Iran has
continued to develop its fissile material production
capabilities despite the strong concerns registered by the
international community, including through sanctions imposed
by the UNSCRs 1737, 1747 and 1803. DAS Hayward, highlighting
Iran's show of defiance, explained Iran had expanded its
centrifuge capacity by installing 3,000 machines at the Fuel
Enrichment Plant at Natanz and announced plans to double the
quantity by the end of the year. Furthermore, Iran is
testing IR-2 centrifuges and continuing to construct the Arak
Heavy Water Research Reactor. In response to Iran's
unconstructive posture, DAS Hayward noted the U.S. and
broader P5 1 are pursuing a dual track strategy to encourage
Iran to suspend its proliferation sensitive nuclear
activities and cooperate with the IAEA. DAS Hayward called
on all states to continue efforts to implement financial
measures because of their effectiveness. As a result of the
UNSCR designations and U.S. designations actions under E.O.

13382, more than 40 banks have reduced or cut off dealings
with Iran as of mid-2007.

8. (SBU) In response, Malaysia's representative noted his
government's most recent efforts in applying UN resolutions
concerning Iran. He said the GOM banned Iran from the April
22 Defense Services Asia show for exhibiting missile
equipment, which violates UN resolutions prohibiting Iranian
arms exports. Japan 's representative circulated the GOJ's
recent press release announcing its implementation of UNSCR
1803 and vowed to take necessary steps to continue to
encourage Iran to suspend its nuclear weapons program.
Canada's representative noted Iran's proliferation activities
are gaining more focused attention as the IAEA submitted 19
reports concerning Iran's nuclear actions. The
representative expressed hope Iran would adopt the Additional
Protocol and conduct a peaceful nuclear program.


9. (SBU) Opening the next agenda item, the status of the G8
Global Partnership (GP), MOFA Arms Control and Disarmament
Director Yasunari Morino called for continued commitment and
close coordination to help close the gaps in the security of
weapons of mass destruction (WMD). There are 23 countries
involved in the GP, including the European Commission (EU)
with Ukraine joining as a recipient country in 2005. For its
part, Japan has been assisting Russia in dismantling
decommissioned nuclear submarines. Two submarines have been
dismantled and four more are slated to be dismantled. Japan
is also talking with Russia about a new effort to construct a
long-term storage facility for compartments of the dismantled

10. (SBU) Morino said the partners at the G8 Summit will
discuss further steps to strengthen the GP. One focus will
be on which projects to prioritize for the destruction of
chemical weapons and the dismantlement of nuclear submarines.
Japan underscored the importance of partners strengthening
coordination and overcoming challenges, such as site access,
involved in project implementation. Another key issue will
be possible expansion of the GP to deal with global threats
of proliferation and terrorists acquiring WMD capability
without undercutting ongoing financial and technical
assistance in Russia and Ukraine.

11. (SBU) New Zealand's representative highlighted her
country's contribution to the GP through using the piggyback
method. Because New Zealand is a small economy with limited
resources, the representative expressed great appreciation at
being able to partner with larger countries and help fund
four projects in Russia and Ukraine since 2003. The New
Zealand representative further noted it would be difficult to
justify to its taxpayers the need to strengthen the borders
of another country, therefore channeling money through the
piggybacking process allows it to cut back on its efforts for
public buy-in. The ROK representative noted his country's
involvement in the GP since 2004 and said the Global
Partnership Program may eventually have a role in North


12. (SBU) Turning to the topic of the universalization of a
nonproliferation regime, MOFA Nonproliferation, Science, and
Nuclear Energy Director Tomiko Ichikawa noted the previous
ASTOP meeting had occurred soon after the adoption of UNSCRs
1718 and 1737 and prior to the adoption of UNSCR 1747 and
1803, highlighting the changing situation and anticipating
that many countries were likely experiencing difficulties in
AP and UNSCR implementation. As examples of developments
since the previous ASTOP meetings, Ichikawa noted, Vietnam
signed the AP, Malaysia had ratified the CTBT, and Indonesia
had passed legislation to implement the Chemical Weapons

13. (SBU) The Singapore representative pointed out that her
government signed the AP in 2005. The GOS, she continued,
has taken steps to see the proper administrative and legal
measure are in place and is working with the IAEA to study
control of nuclear materials. In particular, the Health
Authority and the National Environmental Agency have been
consolidated to form the Center for Radiological Protection
and Nuclear Science. Furthermore, the Radiological
Protection Act has been repealed and then re-enacted, in
preparation for Singapore's ratification of the AP.
Singapore's AP was ratified and came into effect March 31,
2008. Thailand's representative stressed that the RTG
considered the AP an effective confidence-building measure

and since signing the AP in September 2005, is finalizing the
domestic processes necessary to ratify the AP. Vietnam's
representative noted that his government is exploring the
possibility of ratifying the AP in "due time" and looks
forward to its legislators considering approval of the
Nuclear Energy Law in the coming year. Vietnam hoping to
develop nuclear energy in the future, welcomes cooperation
from Japan and other countries.

14. (SBU) Burma's representative, noted Burma signed the
NPT in 1992, concluded a Safeguards Agreement in 1995, signed
the CTBT in 1996, and stated Rangoon attaches paramount
importance to the NPT and to nuclear disarmament, believing
the two processes to be inter-related and mutually
reinforcing. Thus both areas deserve equal attention. The
representative said Burma recognizes the importance of the AP
and noted his government started a nuclear research program
in May 2007. (Note: The Burmese representative did not
mention Russian involvement or cooperation in its recently
initiated nuclear research.) He said Burma's Ministry of
Science and Technology is responsible for the peaceful use of
nuclear energy and is preparing to take appropriate measures
to align itself with the "safeguards program of the IAEA."
Burma's representative said technical training and assistance
would be most helpful in order to sign and implement the AP.


15. (SBU) Turning to member's experiences with
proliferation finance (PF), Canada's representative presented
on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recent efforts.
FATF is an inter-governmental body whose purpose is the
development and promotion of policies to combat money
laundering and terrorist financing. Since 2007, the
organization held its first substantive discussion on
proliferation finance at the plenary in Strasbourg. To
advance initial PF discussions, the development of
non-binding guidance on effective UNSCR prohibitions on
proliferation financing began at an intercessional meeting in

16. (SBU) The Canadian representative summarized FATF
guidance on PF in three areas. One area of focus is
assisting jurisdictions in implementing targeted financial
sanctions contained in UNSCRs relating to WMD proliferation.
FATF has also issued guidance on implementing activty-based
prohibitions, such as OP6 of UNSCR 1737. This approach is
risk-based and intelligence led to identify and enhance
scrutiny of high risk customers and their transactions. The
last guidance touched upon addressing broad-based measures to
combat WMD proliferation finance. The official noted such
guidance is a long-term undertaking, and in that regard,
Canada and Denmark will co-host brainstorming exercises.


17. (SBU) The Korean representative said the Republic of
Korea is committed to tightening export controls and is party
to four major international export control regimes, the
Wassenaar Arrangement (1996), Nuclear Suppliers Group (1995),
Australia Group (1996), and the Missile Technology Control
Regime (2001). Besides enhancing expertise on export control
through international cooperative efforts, the government is
also engaging in robust efforts on the domestic front.
Government efforts include streamlining systems and
organizations, raising public awareness with educational
seminars and media advertisements, and lastly, constructing
infrastructure to improve convenience for companies via an
online strategic trade information system. However, the
representative noted the implementation process is not
without hurdles. He pointed out transshipment is a
challenge. Since 2006-2007, the Republic of Korea noticed a
sharp increase in transshipment, especially at Busan Port,
which is the world's third largest transshipment port.
Currently, the government is looking for new ways to control
proliferation activities and perhaps a second line of defense
will be required. As a starting point, in April 2007, Korea
revised its Foreign Trade Act, legislation used to control
transshipment activities. The representative commented the
government would continue to develop ways to improve its
legal framework for domestic implementation.


18. (SBU) The Singapore representative said her
government's rationale for establishing an export control
system stemmed from security and economic interests. On the

security front, Singapore desires to play an important role
in preventing WMD proliferation and constraining illicit
transfer of WMD. Regarding its economic interests, Singapore
would like to ensure its ports and sea lanes remain secure
from WMD because Singapore is heavily dependent on trade and
shipping. To tackle growing WMD threats, Singapore is
continuously reviewing its control system.

19. (SBU) The representative provided updates on
Singapore's control measures. In 2006, Singapore announced
the decision to expand the Control List in the Strategic
Goods Act and the expanded list took effect this year. It
has also updated legislation on the Chemical Weapons
Prohibition Act, finalized ratification procedures for the
AP, and implemented measures for complying with UNSCRs 1540,
1737, 1747, and 1803. The Singapore representative said
although the country is involved in ongoing training and
capacity building programs, challenges remain. Singapore is
small, has limited expertise in controlled items, and lacks
adequate resources. The GOS must sort out how to implement a
robust system without affecting trade and address industry
concerns, such as diversion to less stringent ports.

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20. (SBU) The Australian Embassy representative highlighted
export control efforts made by the Australia Group (AG). The
AG is an informal arrangement among 40 countries and the EU,
which aims at preventing chemical and biological weapon
proliferation through coordinated efforts to strengthen
national export controls systems. All states participating
in the AG are party to the Chemical Weapons Convention and
Biological Weapons Convention and strongly support efforts
under those Conventions to rid the world of chemical and
biological weapons. The Group meets annually to discuss ways
members' national level export licensing measures can
collectively be made more effective. The Embassy
representative noted at the 2008 AG plenary in Paris 14-18
April 2008, the Group recognized rapid international
developments in the field of synthetic biology. The AG
members agreed to form a synthetic biology advisory body as a
means of ensuring the Group is kept abreast of, and can
respond quickly and appropriately to technological
developments in this area.


21. (SBU) A representative from the Center for Information
on Security Trade Control (CISTEC), discussed its experience
in helping Japanese companies comply with export control
regulations. CISTEC, founded in 1989 is the only non-profit,
non-governmental organization in Japan dealing with security
export controls. The CISTEC representative noted a number of
export control challenges companies face. Therefore, CISTEC
offers a myriad of resources to assist companies so
regulations are not unintentionally violated. These steps
include outreach seminars and consultations, educational
videos and books, downloadable information on current topics
of interest, and administering certification exams. The
representative noted, in the context of UNSCR 1540, Japan
imposed new regulations in June 2007 to strengthen the
control of transshipment and brokering of WMD related goods.
Other international cooperative activities include conducting
the Asian Export Control Seminar since 1993, offering
training courses for Asian government officials that began in
1999, and organizing industry outreach seminars throughout
all of Asia from 2004.

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22. (SBU) Japan opened the next agenda item by asking
countries to discuss candidly difficulties faced regarding
their efforts at implementing the AP and the domestic
implementation of the UNSCRs based on a questionnaire
circulated beforehand. The purpose of the questionnaire was
to address possible ways of cooperation to effectively tackle
implementation challenges.

23. (SBU) In response, Cambodia's representative said his
government actively supports measures preventing WMD by
adhering to UNSCR 1540. The Cambodian representative asked
for assistance in applying financial measures and requested
specific details of Iran's banking system and financial
tactics. Brunei noted intentions to become a transshipment
hub, so it is increasing training on port enforcement while
at the same time remaining committed to implementing the
UNSCRs. Burma's representative noted the Burmese government

had submitted a 1540 report and is preparing an update for
the 1540 matrix. Burma seeks assistance in training capacity
for enforcement activities at ports and capacity for
monitoring the movements of designated individuals. Laos'
representative stressed total elimination of WMD is the only
guarantee to global peace and stability. He noted lack of
technical expertise, financial resources, and proper
equipment for cargo inspections greatly impedes its ability
to fully implement nonproliferation obligations. Vietnam's
representative said the FATF recommendations are not
applicable to its unique law system. Therefore, it may take
months to achieve interagency agreement and requested
immediate technical assistance. Noting difficulties in
translating requests and reports between Vietnamese and
English, the
representative requested that the UN Security Council ask
more simple questions for reporting requirements or provide
model answers. Thailand's representative emphasized his
government's commitment to strengthening the nonproliferation
regime. In doing so, the RTG requests countries provide the
date of birth when attempting to identify targeted
individuals. The Thai senior official asserted it is
unrealistic to inspect cargoes by Iran Air. Finally, Japan,
as G8 President, said it would approach the 1540 Committee to
address reporting problems and expressed hope to find ways to
simplify the process.


24. (SBU) The ASTOP V representative from New Zealand gave
a brief overview of plans for this year,s PSI exercise, to
be held in mid-September near Auckland. New Zealand is
planning a five-day event and will focus on legal issues
surrounding interdiction. The scenarios for the event will
center on dual-use proliferation items transshipped through
New Zealand.

25. (SBU) The Australian official discussed a March 2008
PSI exercise conducted with the Philippines and indicated a
strong desire for similar training with other countries in
the region. The Philippine representative praised the
opportunity to participate in the exercise, but noted
concerns over interdiction legality as related to Philippine
law. The representative added the Philippines expects to ask
for more assistance from Australia and Japan to achieve a
more complete understanding of the capabilities of PSI.

26. (SBU) ISN Director Foley closed the PSI portion of
ASTOP with the U.S. views on the recent history of PSI
successes, highlighting increasing global understanding of
the necessity of the initiative. Foley noted PSI is
successfully adapting to changing proliferation practices and
added that exercises are an excellent way for countries to
gain increased knowledge and build capacity. In response to
the Korean representative's questions about actual
interdiction successes of PSI, Foley said that while most are
not made public due to their sensitive nature, the seizure of
the ship, BBC China, led to discovery of the A.Q. Khan
network was a very visible example of what PSI can do.
Noting the Chinese representative's concern over the legality
of PSI, the Canadian representative rebutted the assertion
emphasizing that PSI activities are conducted in accordance
with international and national laws. Foley seconded the
Canadian representative's intervention and stressed that one
of the key tenets of PSI was that interdictions are done
where the legal basis is strongest.


27. (SBU) The Canadian representative highlighted the
counterproliferation significance of the UN Convention for
the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against Safety of Maritime
Navigation (SUA). The SUA Protocol provides the first
international treaty framework for combating and prosecuting
anyone who uses a ship as a weapon or as a means to carry out
a terrorist attack, or who transports terrorists or cargo
destined to support WMD programs by ship. Japanese
representative Ichikawa, said Japan realizes the Protocol's
importance and is working to promptly conclude it, including
review of the national legal framework for domestic
implementation of SUA's criminal and boarding provisions.

28. (SBU) Please contact TOKYO ESToff Ayanna Hobbs at for full text versions of the presentations
made available.

29. This cable was cleared by DAS Hayward subsequent to her
return to Washington.


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