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Cablegate: Diet Passes Law to Aid Victims of Aum Shinrikyo

VZCZCXRO8481
PP RUEHFK RUEHKSO RUEHNH
DE RUEHKO #1622 1650913
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 130913Z JUN 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5051
INFO RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA PRIORITY 8352
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA PRIORITY 0728
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE PRIORITY 2059
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO PRIORITY 8938
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/USFJ PRIORITY

UNCLAS TOKYO 001622

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PTER KJUS JA
SUBJECT: DIET PASSES LAW TO AID VICTIMS OF AUM SHINRIKYO
ATTACKS


1. The Diet passed a law on June 11 to provide financial
compensation from the government to approximately 4,000
victims of crimes committed by the Aum Shinrikyo cult in the
1990's. The law stipulates that the government has the right
to seek financial compensation from Aum's successor
organization, known as Aleph, for the amount of money it pays
to the victims. Since Aum declared bankruptcy in 1996, it
has only paid about 1.52 billion yen (14.3 million dollars),
or 40 percent, of the full 3.8 billion yen (35.9 million
dollars) owed in compensation to victims of Aum-related acts
of violence. (Note: Creditors ended bankruptcy proceedings
against Aum in March 2008 but the creditors will meet on
November 26 for a final review of Aum financial reports
before the proceedings are officially closed. End Note.)

2. Victims will need to apply for compensation and it will
be allocated on a case-by -case basis. Victims submit their
application for compensation to their prefectural public
safety commission, and the government, in principal, will be
able retrieve any compensation paid out from Aum. Under the
new law, 20 million yen ($188,000) will be paid to the
families of those killed. Victims who do not have
disabilities requiring ongoing care will receive between
100,000 yen ($943) and 20 million yen ($188,000).

3. The crimes covered under the law are considered "heinous
and grave acts of terrorism" and the purpose of the law is to
"provide relief to the victims to demonstrate the nation's
stance of fighting against terrorism." Some of the crimes
covered include the 1995 Tokyo subway attack which killed
twelve people and injured more than 5,500 people, the 1994
sarin attack in Matsumoto, and the murder of anti-Aum
crusader Tsutumi Sakamoto and his family.
SCHIEFFER

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