Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 06/27/08

DE RUEHKO #1774/01 1790818
P 270818Z JUN 08




E.O. 12958: N/A



1) Top headlines
2) Editorials
3) Prime Minister's daily schedule (Nikkei)

North Korea problem:
4) U.S. announces North Korea has turned over nuclear declaration,
starting delisting process (Mainichi)
5) President Bush says that U.S. will continue to pressure North
Korea to resolve the abduction issue (Nikkei)
6) Prime Minister Fukuda: Japan will continue to cooperate closely
with the U.S. on North Korea issues (Mainichi)
7) Despite loss of leverage on abduction issue caused by delisting
decision, Japan will continue to place priority on cooperating with
U.S. on DPRK issues (Asahi)
8) Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura in telephone conversation with
NSC Adviser Hadley calls the U.S. delisting decision a "shock to the
Japanese people" (Yomiuri)
9) U.S. decision to remove DPRK from terror-sponsoring list a big
blow for Fukuda diplomacy (Yomiuri)
10) U.S. delisting decision a shock to the Japanese people: Sankei
11) Abductee families are "dissatisfied" by the U.S.' removal of
DPRK from terror list, say they have "lost confidence" in Japanese
government, too (Nikkei)
12) Japan desperately seeking new "card" to play against North Korea
on abduction issue, hoping to use 45-day window of the delisting
process (Yomiuri)

13) Fierce reactions to U.S. delisting decision coming from the
ruling parties (Mainichi)
14) Assistant Secretary Hill, MOFA Director General Saiki: Six-Party
Talks to resume with focus on the means of verifying North Korea's
nuclear report (Nikkei)
15) Hill in press remark stresses continued U.S. cooperation to
resolve the abduction issue (Mainichi)

16) G-8 foreign ministers meeting dominated by discussion of North
Korea's denuclearization and cooperation to help stabilize
Afghanistan (Nikkei)

17) Foreign Minister Koumura meets his British and Italian
counterparts for bilateral talks at the G-8 foreign ministers confab

18) Naha district court orders central government to pay noise
compensation to residents around Futenma Air Station, but steers
clear of stopping aircraft flights (Sankei)



Asahi: Mainichi: Yomiuri: Nikkei: Sankei: Tokyo Shimbun: Akahata
U.S. to take North Korea off terrorism list: Six-party talks to be
resumed soon


(1) Lead nuclear declaration by North Korea to complete

TOKYO 00001774 002 OF 011

(2) Goodwill pulls out of labor dispatch business: A chance to
change the industry

(1) North Korea hands in nuclear declaration: No suspicions can be
left unsettled; Find breakthrough on abduction issue using North
Korea's pledge to reinvestigate issue

(1) North Korea hands in nuclear declaration: Many challenges still
remain before denuclearization
(2) U.S. leaves interest rates unchanged: U.S. financial policy a
turning point

(1) U.S. should reconsider decision to delist North Korea
(2) Creating a useful test of emissions trading

(1) North Korea's nuclear declaration: Insufficient report
(2) Mislabeling Chinese eels as domestic: There seems to be no end
to false labeling cases

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1) North Korea's nuclear declaration: Immediate and strict
verification needed
(2) IWC plenary meeting: Moves underway to normalize organization

(1) North Korea hands in declaration: Strengthen diplomatic efforts
with aim of realizing denuclearization

3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)

Prime Minister's schedule, June 26

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

Met Mainichi Shimbun President Yutaka Asahina at the Kantei. Later
met Vice Foreign Minister Yabunaka.

Met Waseda University President Katsuhiko Usui and others. Met
Economic and Fiscal Policy Minister Ota, joined by Assistant Deputy
Chief Cabinet Secretary Saka. Saka stayed behind.

Met Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura, joined by Deputy Chief
Cabinet Secretary Futahashi. Attended an award ceremony for
contributors to establishing gender-equality society.

Met Machimura.

Attended a ministerial meeting on soaring oil prices


TOKYO 00001774 003 OF 011

Attended a forum on energy conservation in households sponsored by
METI at the Grand Prince Hotel Akasaka.

Met Cabinet Intelligence Director Mitani.

Met Chairman Funada of the research council on realizing a nation
based on the creativity of science and technology.

Met ASJA International Chairman Tan Jong Lek and others. Followed by

Met at the Grand Prince Hotel Akasaka with LDP Diet Affairs
Committee members, including Chairman Oshima, with Machimura and
Secretary General Ibuki present.

Returned to his official residence.

4) U.S. to delist North Korea as state sponsor of terrorism;
Six-party talks to resume

MAINICHI (Top Play) (Lead paragraph)
June 27, 2008

In return for North Korea's provision of a declaration of its
nuclear programs to China following an agreement at the six-party
talks, U.S. President George W. Bush announced on June 26 at the
White House that his administration has decided to remove North
Korea from its list of state sponsors of terrorism and has notified
the Congress of its decision. The Bush administration also started
procedures to lift some sanctions against Pyongyang under the U.S.
Trading with the Enemy Act. North Korea on the 26th presented the
nuclear declaration to China, the host nation of the Six-Party
Talks, based on the six-party agreement. With Washington taking
action to delist the North as a state sponsor of terrorism, which
the DPRK sees as symbolic of Washington's hostile policy against it,
the North Korean nuclear issue and relations with the U.S. have now
entered a new phase. Japan, which has called on Washington to make a
cautious decision on delisting Pyongyang, will likely find it
increasingly difficult to resolve the issue of abductions of
Japanese nationals by North Korean agents.

5) U.S. to continue pressure: Bush

NIKKEI (Page 1) (Full)
June 27, 2008

WASHINGTON-U.S. President Bush, meeting the press at the White House
in the wake of North Korea's declaration of its nuclear programs,
announced that the United States will delist North Korea as a state
sponsor of terrorism and call off its application of the Trading
with the Enemy Act to North Korea. Touching on the issue of Japanese
nationals abducted to North Korea, Bush said the United States "will
not forget" the abducted Japanese people, adding that the United
States will cooperate closely with Japan and will continue to
pressure North Korea for a solution. Bush noted that the period of
45 days until the delisting becomes effective will be an important
period for North Korea to show a serious cooperative stance. He also

TOKYO 00001774 004 OF 011

indicated that the United States would carefully watch North Korea's

6) Fukuda emphasizes close contact with U.S.

MAINICHI (Page 1) (Full)
June 27, 2008

The government is taking North Korea's declaration of its nuclear
programs and the United States' steps to delist the North as a state
sponsor of terrorism as progress toward a settlement of the nuclear
issue. The government also plans to apply pressure on Pyongyang
during the 45 days before the North is delisted by calling for the
thorough verification of its declaration.

Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda last evening told reporters at his
official residence: "There still remains the abduction issue. We are
going to deal with the matter while keeping close contact (between
Japan and the United States) as before." A reporter pointed out the
possibility that Japan might lose its "card" of talks with the
North. In response Fukuda said, "I don't think that way at all."
Tokyo wants to swiftly determine the timeframe and form of the
North's reinvestigation into the abduction issue, as was agreed upon
in recent Japan-DPRK talks.

7) Japan to prioritize cooperation with U.S.

ASAHI (Page 1) (Abridged)
June 27, 2008

Prime Minister Fukuda, in his reply to a question from reporters,
remarked yesterday that he does not think at all that Japan will
lose leverage for dealing with the issue of Japanese nationals
abducted to North Korea with the United States delisting North Korea
as a state sponsor of terrorism. The government has opposed
delisting North Korea with no progress on the abduction issue.
However, the government judges that it would be better for Japan and
the United States not to get out of step now.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura called White House National
Security Adviser Hadley yesterday evening and told him that the
Japanese people are shocked even though the delisting is in line
with a determined course of action. Machimura asked Hadley to answer
Japan's concern over the abduction issue.

Foreign Minister Koumura, in reply to a question from reporters,
answered yesterday evening that North Korea's declaration of its
nuclear programs was "good in itself." He added: "The question is
what is in it. We will have to verify it sufficiently."

A senior official of the Foreign Ministry explained: "We didn't want
delisting, but if there is the impression that there is a fissure in
the Japan-U.S. alliance, that'll be playing right into the hands of
North Korea." The United States also showed consideration for Japan,
with U.S. President Bush underscoring in his statement yesterday
that the United States will continue to cooperate with Japan on the
abduction issue.

8) Machimura: Delisting decision a shock to Japanese people

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

TOKYO 00001774 005 OF 011

Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura had a telephone conversation with
NSC Advisor for National Security Affairs Stephen Hadley last night
and said regarding the U.S. decision to delist North Korea as a
state sponsor of terrorism:

"Although the decision is in line with a fixed policy course, the
Japanese people have been greatly shocked by it. I hope that the
U.S., keeping this in mind, will deal with the issues of North
Korea's nuclear program and Japanese nationals abducted by North
Korean agents."

Hadley reportedly emphasized:

"The main reason President Bush held the press conference (on the
morning of June 26, local time) was because he wanted to appeal
directly to the Japanese people that Japan and the U.S. will
cooperate (in dealing with North Korea)."

9) U.S. removal of North Korea from list of terrorist-sponsoring
nations deals a heavy blow to Fukuda diplomacy, even though there is
modicum of appreciation for tackling the nuclear issue

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Excerpts)
June 27, 2008

The U.S. government's planned removal of North Korea from the list
of terrorist-sponsoring nations after receiving its nuclear
declaration effectively takes away the diplomatic card being used to
resolve Japan's abduction problem, and for the Fukuda
administration, some see this as a heavy blow. On the other hand,
within the ruling camp, some lawmakers see this development as a
positive step.

Prime Minister Fukuda yesterday met with Vice Foreign Minister
Yabunaka at the official residence and said: "The U.S. (President)
went to the trouble of calling me by phone, and told me that the
U.S. and Japan would continue to tackle the abduction issue
together." He praised the phone call on the 25th from President
Bush. However, even within the Foreign Ministry, there are icy
views, with one official confiding, "The President's telephone call
was nothing but a defense mechanism so that the U.S. would not be
inundated by fierce reactions to the delisting decision."

On the question of the decision by Japan to unilaterally remove or
ease a part of its sanctions have brought out strong voices of
doubt. One source connected to Japan-DRPK relations said: "Since
Japan went first in its plan to ease sanctions, it can no longer
tell the U.S. to stop theirs. What a mess." Even from within the
ruling camp, voices of criticism are emerging, with one junior
lawmaker saying, "This would have been inconceivable under the Abe
administration, which was severe toward North Korea." Although
Komeito's head Ota gave his measured appreciation for the nuclear
declaration, he stressed, "The abduction issue must never be let to

10) Machimura: "Japanese people shocked at U.S. plan to delist North
Korea as terrorism sponsor," voices concern about abduction issue
left behind

SANKEI (Top Play)
June 27, 2008

TOKYO 00001774 006 OF 011

North Korea on June 26 handed over a declaration of its nuclear
programs and activities to China, which chairs the six-party talks.
In return, the U.S. government notified Congress of its decision to
delist the North as a state sponsor of terrorism. On the issue of
North Korea's past abductions of Japanese citizens, President Bush
emphasized: "The United States will never forget the abduction of
Japanese citizen by North Korea." Now that Tokyo has lost an
effective card, i.e., the sanctions, in negotiating with Pyongyang,
it is uncertain to what extent the government will be able to press
the other side to comply with its promises, including the
implementation of a reinvestigation into the abduction issue. The
government will be put to the test in how it responds to this new

The U.S. government's decision to remove North Korea from its list
of terrorist-sponsoring states has deprived Japan of an effective
card in pressing the DRPK for a settlement of the abduction issue,
dealing it a serious blow. Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka
Machimura, conversing by phone last night with NSC Adviser Stephen
Hadley, stressed: "The Japanese people are greatly shocked" by the
U.S. decision to delist the North. Some lawmakers in the Liberal
Democratic Party have begun to take the pessimistic view that Prime
Minister Yasuo Fukuda's stance of giving priority to "dialogue" over
"pressure" might result in undercutting the abduction issue.

In response to a question by reporters at the Kantei last night,
Fukuda brushed off concerns that Japan might lose its leverage in
promoting negotiations with North Korea due to the U.S. plan to
delist North Korea, saying: "That's not my way of seeing it."

11) North Korea to be removed from U.S. list of state sponsors of
terrorism: Association of the Families of Victims Kidnapped by North
Korea disappointed; Distrust building up toward Japanese government,
as well

NIKKEI (Page 43) (Excerpts)
June 27, 2008

The U.S. government on June 26 announced that President Bush had
notified Congress of his intention to delist North Korea from the
U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. The families of abductees,
who have been pinning their hopes on the U.S. using its "power" to
tackle the abduction issue, expressed despair and disappointment
with one member saying, "(President Bush) said that he would never
forget the abduction issue, but we are now disappointed." Although
the families showed a degree of understanding about the difficulty
of this diplomatic issue, they aimed their distrust at the Japanese
government, as well, for having gone along with the U.S. decision to
remove Pyongyang from the blacklist.

Shigeo Iizuka (70), brother of Yaeko Taguchi (22 at the time of the
abduction) and the chairman of the Association of the Families of
Victims Kidnapped by North Korea, told reporters in Tokyo yesterday
evening, "I feel helpless as things are decided far away from us."
He expressed anxiety: "The designation of North Korea as a state
sponsor of terrorism has been our biggest leverage (among the
measures at Japan's disposal to tackle the abduction issue). If the
Japanese government also lifts sanctions, what will it use as a
bargaining chip? (The delisting of North Korea from the list)
represents a backward step in resolving the issue."

TOKYO 00001774 007 OF 011

Members of the association visited the U.S. and sought cooperation
from President Bush and the Congress on resolving the abduction
issue. President Bush said that he would never forget the abduction
issue. However, Iizuka expressed his dissatisfaction, "Looking at
the result, it is inconsistent."

Sakie Yokota (72), the mother of Megumi Yokota (13 at the time of
abduction), who actually met with President Bush about two years
ago, indicated some understanding of the difficulties of
negotiations with North Korea, "I know that diplomacy is delicate."
But she then stressed: "It is too early to remove North Korea from
the list. It is very regrettable."

She added, "The abduction and nuclear issue are equally important."
She said with a painful look: "Our country cannot help its people.
What kind of country is it? I do not want the Japanese government to
disappoint us. We want it to now tackle the issue seriously."

Takeshi Matsumoto (61), elder brother of Kyoko Masumoto (29 at the
time of abduction), yesterday evening expressed his frustration "Why
is it necessary for the U.S. to press ahead with talks with North
Korea by lowering the barriers against North Korea?" Kiyoko Arimoto
(82), the mother of Keiko Arimoto (23 at the time of abduction),
urged the Japanese side regarding its future response, "I do not
want the Japanese government to fall in line with the U.S. delisting
of North Korea and lift its sanctions against that country."

12) Japan loses effective card in negotiating with North Korea on
abduction issue; 45-day delisting process key

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

The U.S. began to take procedures on June 26 to take North Korea off
its list of terrorism sponsors. During the period of 45 days until
the U.S. delisting decision comes into effect, the Japanese
government intends to strictly verify the declaration produced by
Pyongyang on its nuclear programs and step up efforts to bring about
progress on the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korean
agents. But now that the U.S. has implied its willingness to take a
more conciliatory stance toward the North by giving up an effective
diplomatic card, the options Japan can take have been narrowed.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Machimura said in a press conference last
night: "North Korea needs Japanese funds and technologies." He
indicated that economic and energy aid will become more influential
as Japan's diplomatic card.

The joint statement issued in the six-party talks in September 2005
specified that if North Korea complies with the promise it made in
the statement to scrap all its nuclear programs, the countries
concerned will provide the nation with economic and energy aid. But
Japan, which is expected to become the largest financial donor to
the North, has made it clear that it will not extend aid before
progress is made on the abduction issue. This policy stance is
expected to be Japan's major trump card in future negotiations with
the North.

The most critical juncture for Japan in negotiations with North
Korea is August 11, after the delisting process ends. Until then,
Japan wants to bring about specific progress on the abduction issue
in cooperation with the U.S. in the six-party talks and bilateral

TOKYO 00001774 008 OF 011

talks with the North.

Despite Japan's repeated opposition to delisting prior to progress
on the abduction issue, the U.S. easily went ahead with the
decision. Many Japanese are dissatisfied with this. A government
official who once served as prime minister grumbled: "The U.S. gave
priority to relations with North Korea over the Japan-U.S.

What has disappointed Japan further is the lack of inclusion in the
North's declaration of its nuclear weapons despite Japan's demand.

The Japanese government intends to officially remain cool and
maintain and strengthen cooperation with the U.S., as a senior
Foreign Ministry official said: "If we allow North Korea to believe
that a crack has appeared between Japan and the U.S., that will just
benefit North Korea."

13) Some ruling party members taking harsh view; Negative impact on
Japan-U.S. alliance feared

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
June 27, 2008

A harsh view is spreading across the political community, including
the ruling bloc, in reaction to the United States' announcement to
begin steps to delist North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura in a press conference
yesterday emphasized Japan's intention to resolve the abduction
issue in cooperation with the United States, saying: "(The
delisting) was expected. The United States has said that it would
make efforts for the settlement of the abduction issue in its own
position." Taku Yamasaki, chair of the Parliamentary League to
Promote Diplomatic Normalization between Japan and North Korea and a
former LDP vice president, too, positively described the delisting
as a "process necessary for the denuclearization of the Korean

New Komeito Representative Akihiro Ota made requests to the
government, saying to reporters: "Although we can give a positive
assessment to North Korea's declaration of its nuclear programs to a
certain extent, what is in it is more important. Measures to resolve
the abduction issue must not waver."

However, one leading LDP lawmaker in a rare criticism of Washington,
stated: "the United States is repeating the same thing." He implied
the precedent in which the former Clinton administration failed to
stop North Korea's nuclear development despite its "conciliatory
policy" toward that country, as seen in then Secretary of State
Albright's visit to Pyongyang in the closing days of the
administration. The LDP executive expressed his discontent with the
United States, noting, "With the Bush presidency approaching its
end, the U.S. administration has excessively owered the barrier for
North Korea."

The Fukuda administration is trying to keep pace with the United
States, which wants to move the nuclear issue forward despite no
progress having been made on the abduction issue. Tokyo is motivated
by its desire to place high priority on the Japan-U.S. alliance.

But some ruling and opposition party members fear that Washington's

TOKYO 00001774 009 OF 011

decision to delist the North might negatively impact not only on the
abduction issue but also the Japan-U.S. alliance.

Takeo Hiranuma, chair of the parliamentary league on the abduction
issue, commented: "We fear that (the delisting) might cause a the
very foundation of the Japan-U.S. alliance to split." Meanwhile, DPJ
President Ichiro Ozawa in a press conference pointed out the
imbalance in the alliance, saying: "I think (the people) have come
to realize once again that Japan's wishful thinking is not taken
into consideration when (the United States) reaches a decision."

14) Saiki, Hill agree to resume six-party talks as early as possible
to discuss verification of North's nuclear declaration

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

Foreign Ministry Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau Director General
Akitaka Saiki and U.S Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill
met last night in Kyoto. The Japanese and U.S. chief negotiators to
the six-party talks agreed that the verification of North Korea's
declaration of its nuclear programs is important. They confirmed a
policy of resuming the six-party talks as early as possible in order
to discuss how to verify the declaration.

15) A/S Hill emphasizes cooperation for resolving abduction issue

MAINICHI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

Foreign Ministry Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau Director-General
Akitaka Saiki, Japan's chief delegate to the six-party talks, held a
meeting with his U.S. counterpart, Assistant Secretary of State
Christopher Hill, at a Kyoto hotel yesterday. A/S Hill told Saiki
that in the wake of Pyongyang's declaration of its nuclear
activities, the United States will begin steps to take North Korea
off its list of terrorism-sponsoring nations, while stressing the
U.S. stance to continue extending cooperation for the settlement of
the abduction issue. The two shared the need to hold the next round
of the six-party talks quickly in order to reach an agreement on how
to verify the North's declaration.

The meeting coincided with China's announcement on the North's
declaration, narrowly allowing the United States to inform Japan of
its planned steps to delist the North in advance. Foreign Minister
Masahiko Koumura is scheduled to meet with Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice on June 27.

16) G8 foreign ministerial: Chairman's statement to urge North Korea
to abandon nuclear weapons, calls for cooperation to stabilize

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

The Group of Eight (G8) foreign ministers' two-day meeting opened
yesterday evening in Kyoto. In an evening session last night, the
foreign ministers discussed the situations of Afghanistan and Burma
(Myanmar), as well as the war on terror. After the meeting, they
released a joint statement. A chairman's statement, which will be
adopted this afternoon, is expected to urge North Korea to
completely abandon its nuclear weapons.

TOKYO 00001774 010 OF 011

A joint statement on Afghanistan proposed the creation of a
framework for coordination on aid programs by the G8 countries, and
the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The aim is to eradicate breeding grounds for terrorism in
Afghanistan. The G8 foreign ministers in the joint statement called
on countries neighboring Afghanistan to fulfill constructive roles
to bring about stability to that country.

The G8 foreign ministerial will discuss the North Korean issue this
morning. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will explain
Washington's policy of delisting Pyongyang as a state sponsor of
terrorism. Foreign Minister Masahiko Koumura will then ask G8 other
members for cooperate to resolve the abduction issue.

17) Japanese, British, Italian foreign ministers agree that
attention should be paid to North Korea even after nuclear

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
June 27, 2008

Foreign Minister Masahiko Koumura met yesterday with his British
counterpart David Miliband and his Italian counterpart Franco
Frattini separately at a hotel in Kyoto. In the separate meetings,
the three foreign ministers shared the perception in general that
attention should be paid to North Korea's response after it has
presented a declaration of its nuclear programs.

Miliband pointed out: "It is necessary to pay attention to what
North Korea says." Frattini also expressed a similar view. Koumura
and Frattini agreed that it is important for G8 members to issue a
strong message in order to have Pyongyang abandon its nuclear
weapons. In his meeting with Frattini, Koumura sought international
cooperation, saying: "Resolving not only the nuclear issue but also
the abduction issue is important."

18) Court orders gov't to pay 146 million yen in compensation for
Futenma noise

SANKEI (Page 2) (Abridged)
June 27, 2008

The Naha District Court, in its ruling handed down yesterday at its
Okinawa branch, ordered the government to pay a total of about 146
million yen in compensation to 396 residents living in the
neighborhood of the U.S. military's Futenma airfield in the Okinawa
prefectural city of Ginowan for damage to their health from noise.
The court rejected a demand from the plaintiffs to pay compensation
for future damage and stop helicopter takeoffs and landings in the
early morning and evening. The plaintiffs plan to appeal the

Gist of Futenma lawsuit

? The court orders the state to pay a total of about 146 million yen
in compensation.
? The state is not in a position to be allowed to restrict U.S.
military operations at Futenma airfield, and there is no reason for
demanding flight suspension.
? Futenma airfield has defects in its installation and management

TOKYO 00001774 011 OF 011

stipulated in the Civil Code under the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces
Agreement, and the state is liable for compensation.
? The local residents fear U.S. military aircraft crashes, and their
mental suffering is growing.
? The daily amount of compensation is 100 yen for residents in areas
where the weighted equivalent continuous perceived noise level
(WECPNL) is 75 and 200 yen for those in areas where WECPNL is at
? It is inappropriate to institute a lawsuit for future damages.


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