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Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - Cyclone Relief Efforts

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PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNAG RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #1422 1440420
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 230420Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4508
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
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RHMFIUU/HQ PACAF HICKAM AFB HI//CC/PA// PRIORITY
RUHBANB/OKINAWA FLD OFC US FORCES JAPAN CP BUTLER JA PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/USFJ PRIORITY
INFO RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 7981
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 0361
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 6289
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 8573
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 1663
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 3529
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 2314
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 9529
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 9978
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS TOKYO 001422

SIPDIS

STATE FOR I/RF, PA/PR/FPC/W, IIP/G/EA, EAP/PD, R/MR,
EAP/J, EAP/P, PM;
USTR FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE;
TREASURY FOR OASIA/IMI;
SECDEF FOR OASD/PA;
CP BUTLER OKINAWA FOR AREA FIELD OFFICE;
PACOM HONOLULU FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KMDR KPAO JA
SUBJECT: TOKYO MEDIA REACTION - CYCLONE RELIEF EFFORTS
IN BURMA AND SURGING OIL PRICES


1. LEAD STORIES: All Friday morning Japanese national
dailies front-paged a major foreign policy speech given
by Prime Minister Fukuda on Thursday, in which he
called for enhanced economic and disaster relief
cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.

2. "Junta Plays up International Coordination" A
Bangkok correspondent of the top-circulation, moderate
Yomiuri wrote (5/23): "The acceptance by the Burmese
junta of a visit to the country by UN Secretary General
Ban was aimed at playing up its cooperative stance with
the UN and deflecting international criticism of its
slow response to Cyclone Nargis. However, as Burmese
Prime Minister Thein Sein effectively rejected a call
by Ban to accept a larger number of relief personnel,
the junta's position of prioritizing material
assistance over human support from abroad appears to
remain unchanged. By displaying its 'superficial
coordination' with the international community, the
junta apparently hopes to assure substantial aid pledge
in the international disaster relief conference
scheduled for Sunday in Rangoon."

3. "Energy Conservation Needed to Deal with Rising Oil
Prices" The top-circulation, moderate Yomiuri
editorialized (5/23): "In order to prevent a further
surge in petroleum prices, oil consumers need to make
extra efforts for energy conservation and development
of alternative energy sources.... In order to curb the
inflow of speculative money into the oil trading
market, some call for a hike in commissions on selling
and purchasing oil future products. While there may be
technical difficulties involved, such an approach is
worth being studied."

SCHIEFFER

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