Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 09/15/06

DE RUEHKO #5325/01 2580735
P 150735Z SEP 06





E.O. 12958: N/A


1) Top headlines

2) Editorials

3) Prime Minister's daily schedule

4) Japanese charge's car shot at in Baghdad but no one hurt

5) Prime Minister Koizumi meets Nigerian president

6) Japan to make new proposal for nuclear-weapons control to IAEA
but US, Europe, Russia may not buy it

7) New sanctions on North Korea could be in place by Sept. 19

8) Net being tightened around North Korea by new sanctions

9) Yomiuri poll gives Prime Minister Koizumi a 56 PERCENT approval
rating for his over 5 years in office

10) Mainichi poll: 64 percent positively evaluate Koizumi's long
tenure as prime minister

11) Long, 81-day extraordinary Diet session planned for the fall,
with ruling camp aiming to pass amended Basic Education Law

12) LDP candidate Abe outlines 10-point plan to make Japanese
education system "the best in the world"

13) Opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) plans to use the
upcoming Diet session to relentlessly attack the ruling camp

14) With Kanzaki announcing retirement, New Komeito ready to install
Ota as party head, Kitagawa as secretary general

15) Abe calls opposition to Yasukuni Shrine "a bit strange"

16) LDP presidential candidate Tanigaki and former LDP Secretary
General Koichi Kato criticize Abe's perception of history


Salmonella detected in 25 percent of egg farms

Poll: 64 percent give Koizumi credit for his five years in office

Health Ministry compiles first draft guidelines on terminal care

Nihon Keizai:
Brazilian state-run oil company to buy Japanese oil refinery firm

National Police Agency to introduce CT scans and drug-detection kits
to rapidly, accurately determine cause of death

Tokyo Shimbun:
Government to invoke financial sanctions against North Korea,

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possibly on Sept. 19

66 percent of principals opposed to revision of Basic Education Law

(1)LDP presidential election: Finances under new administration
(2)Violent children: Schools, parents should jointly tackle the

(1)Quake-resistance measures for power plants: Erase concerns
through full investigations with latest technology
(2)LDP presidential election: Come up with measures to rebuild
collapsing education system

(1)Take harsh measures against violent students
(2)Confused political situation in Taiwan may affect entire regional

Nihon Keizai:
(1)2006 LDP presidential election: Develop a creative diplomacy
toward Asia

(1)Historical views: Japan, China should recognize difference
(2)Mixi's TSE debut: Key lies in whether it can keep quality of

Tokyo Shimbun:
(1)Economic circles should dig "well" to improve strained political
relations between Japan and China
(2)G-7 conference: Remain alert to economic slowdown

(1)LDP presidential election: Abe's ambiguous remarks show his real

3) Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei)

Prime Minister's schedule, September 14

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

Inspected the Patent Agency, accompanied by Minister of Economy,
Trade and Industry Nikai.
11:15Met with Nihon Keizai Shimbun President Sugita at Kantei.
Met with Cabinet Intelligence Director Mitani.
Met with LDP Secretary General Takebe.
Met with Middle East Cooperation Center Chairman Nemoto, and later
Todaiji Temple Steward Morimoto.
Met with Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Saka.

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Met with Nigerian President Obasanjo at his residence and hosted a
dinner party for the president.

4) Shot strikes envoy's vehicle in Baghdad

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Excerpts)
September 15, 2006

A shot fired in Baghdad struck a vehicle carrying Takashi Ashiki,
the charge d'affaires ad interim at the Japanese Embassy at around
1:50 p.m. Sept. 14 (6:50 p.m. the same day, Japan time), the Foreign
Ministry announced. One of the several shots struck the vehicles'
windshield, cracking it. Although the vehicle carried Ashiki, his
driver, and security personnel, no injuries were reported in the

According to the Foreign Ministry and other sources, Ashiki was on
his way back to the embassy from the Iraqi Foreign Ministry. A
four-vehicle convoy driving ahead of Ashiki's car fired warning
shots at a parked vehicle when it tried to cut into the convoy and a
stray bullet from them struck the envoy's vehicle.

A ministry official denied the shot was aimed at the senior Japanese
diplomat. "Judging from the circumstances, it is unlikely that a
terrorist had a hand in the incident," he said.

In November 2003, two Japanese diplomats - Katsuhiko Oku and
Masamori Inoue - were shot dead by unknown attackers.

At present, Ambassador Hisao Yamaguchi and several other officials
are serving at the Japanese Embassy in Iraq.

5) Koizumi to Nigerian president: I would like to make efforts to
strengthen bilateral ties even after stepping down

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
September 15, 2006

Prime Minister Koizumi met with Nigerian President Obasanjo at the
Kantei last night and told him: "You are the last foreign prominent
figure whom I will meet before the Liberal Democratic Party
presidential election on Sept. 20. Even after stepping down as prime
minister, I would like to do my best to strengthen relations between
Japan and Africa, as well as between Japan and Nigeria." They also
agreed that their two countries would continue to make efforts to
achieve United Nations Security Council reform based on the view
that now is the best time to do so.

6) Japan to propose new nuclear fuel provision plan to counter
monopoly by US, Europe, and Russia

YOMIURI (Page 2)(Abridged slightly)
September 15, 2006

The government has decided to present to the International Atomic
Energy Agency (IAEA) a new vision to create a multinational nuclear
fuel provision guarantee system for countries that have abandoned
developing nuclear weapons with the aim of promoting the peaceful
use of nuclear energy. Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Shunsuke
Kondo will announce the plan at a session after the IAEA meeting,
scheduled to open on Sept. 18.

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Japan has come up with this proposal called the "nuclear fuel supply
registration system" as a counterproposal to the nuclear fuel supply
insurance system, presented by six countries, including the United
States, European nations, and Russia, at the regular IAEA Board of
Governors meeting in June. The plan designed to allow the six
countries that presently monopolize the provision of uranium fuel
for power generation to control the management of nuclear materials
has drawn fire from developing countries. Japan's proposal, on the
other hand, is designed to allow a wide range of countries,
including developing countries, to join the supply side.

Under Japan's plan, every country will be required to register its
ability and technology for supplying nuclear fuel, with the IAEA
serving as a coordinator. The IAEA will assign tasks to each country
in providing nuclear fuel to countries that have abandoned enriching
uranium and reprocessing plutonium.

In registering themselves, countries will be classified into three
groups - those capable of producing fuel domestically, those who
have exported fuel on a commercial basis, and those who have
exportable reserves - in such fields as uranium mining, enrichment,
and fuel processing.

The nuclear fuel market is expected to generate attractive business
opportunities, as many countries are expected to introduce more
nuclear power plants to combat global warming. For Japan, which
already has enrichment technology and is eager to develop overseas
markets, the plan produced by the six countries is difficult to
accept, necessitating the drafting of a counterproposal.

Because of its active cooperation with the NPT framework, Japan has
been the only non-nuclear-weapons state allowed to commercially
enrich and reprocess uranium. Japan's "special privilege," however,
has incurred international envy. Tokyo intends to increase its voice
internationally by demonstrating its eagerness to create a new

7) Japan to impose financial sanctions on North Korea as early as
Sept. 19; remittances effectively banned

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Top play) (Full)
September 15, 2006

The government yesterday began final coordination to get cabinet
approval as early as Sept. 19 for financial sanctions on North Korea
in accordance with the United Nations Security Council (UNSC)
resolution adopted against the North for its recent series of
ballistic missile launches. Lying behind this move is Tokyo's
judgment that additional sanctions will be necessary given that
Pyongyang has refused to return to the six-party talks, an item
mentioned in the resolution. All this was revealed by a few
government officials.

Japan will impose sanctions under the Amendment to the Foreign
Exchange and Foreign Trade Control Law, as the UNSC resolution calls
for measures to prevent the transfer of technology and materials
relating to North Korea's nuclear and missile development.

Specifically, the sanctions will include monitoring the flow of
money through bank accounts of organizations and individuals
suspected of having connections to Pyongyang's WMD development.
Remittances to bank accounts in North Korea, as well as to North

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Korea-related bank accounts in third countries, will effectively be
prohibited with the introduction of an approval system until after
it is proved that those bank accounts have nothing to with weapons
development. Japan is also considering freezing assets held by North
Korean government officials and others in Japan.

Behind the government's move to impose sanctions is its intention to
call on the rest of the world to step up pressure on North Korea by
showing its tough stance on the eve of the United Nations General

On July 5, when North Korea launched ballistic missiles, the
government banned the North's cargo-passenger ship Man Gyong Bong
from entering Japanese ports under a special law. On financial
sanctions, the government established a working-level task force
after the UNSC adopted the resolution and discussed who would be
subject to such sanctions.

8) Japan to put more pressure on North Korea by imposing financial

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

The government has decided to impose financial sanctions on North
Korea. The aim is to increase pressure from the international
community under the lead of Japan and the US in order to prevent
future missile launches and a possible nuclear test, as well as to
push Pyongyang to return to the six-party talks. By taking even
tougher measures while Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi is in
office, Japan also wants to lay the groundwork for the next
administration to have two options against North Korea: relaxation
of sanctions and further pressure.

Following North Korea's recent ballistic missile launches, the
government has prompted the rest of the world through the United
Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution and statements issued by
such conferences as the Group of Eight summit conference (in St.
Petersburg, Russia) and the Asia-Europe Meeting Summit Conference to
join hands to surround North Korea.

North Korea, however, has not shown any signs of returning to the
six-party talks. So some in the government have loudly insisted on
the need to impose additional sanctions on that country.

China, which has been friendly with North Korea, has begun to voice
its opposition to Pyongyang's missile launches and continuing
nuclear development. Now that there is movement toward resuming
summits between Japan and China, some believe that sanctions would
have more impact if imposed in cooperation with other countries.

The US government in recent weeks has called on UN members to impose
sanctions as quickly as possible, hoping that China and South Korea
will follow Japan in strengthening sanctions. Washington intends to
hold multilateral talks on North Korea without the participation of
Pyongyang in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly
starting on Sept. 19.

The US has asked Vietnam, Russia, and other countries near North
Korea to investigate monetary flows, such as money laundering by
North Korea-related bank accounts. According to English-language
newspapers and other sources, banks in China and several other

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countries have responded to America's request and have now frozen
North Korea-related bank accounts.

9) Poll: Support rate for Koizumi cabinet averages 56 PERCENT
(since April 2001 launching), second highest on record

YOMIURI (Page 2) (Abridged)
September 15, 2006

The Yomiuri Shimbun conducted its last opinion survey on support for
the Koizumi cabinet on Sept. 9-10. In the nationwide face-to-face
survey, the rate of support marked 53.0 percent, up 1.9 points from
last month. The average rate of support (excluding telephone-based
surveys and large-scale polls before national elections) since the
Koizumi administration was launched in April 2001 is 56.0 PERCENT
-- the second highest following the Hosokawa cabinet's 67.2 percent
under the current polling system that started in March 1978 during
the Fukuda cabinet.

The Koizumi cabinet also marked the second highest following
Hosokawa's 55.1 percent in the support rate in the closing days of
the cabinet. Considering the fact that Hosokawa was in power for
less than nine months, Koizumi's rate was unusually high for a
cabinet that lasted over one year.

10) Opinion poll on Koizumi administration's five year record: 64
percent give praise, 51 percent say it was good that abductees were
returned to Japan, and 28 PERCENT call reform of social security
system a mistake

MAINICHI (Top play) (Excerpts)
September 15, 2006

In a nationwide opinion poll (face-to-face interviews) carried out
by the Mainichi Shimbun (Sept. 1-3), 64 percent of the public
"appreciated" the accomplishments of the Koizumi administration over
the last five years and five months, while another 34 percent
expressed a negative evaluation. The fact that approximately
two-thirds of the Japanese public highly evaluate the Koizumi
administration seems likely to have a not-insignificant effect on
the political management of the country by the next prime minister,
centering on whether to continue the Koizumi policy line and other
aspects of his administration. In the policy area, the public gave
high praise to the prime minister's two trips to Pyongyang that
resulted in returning to Japan some of the victims of abductions by
North Korea. However, there was little praise for Koizumi's social
security policy and for his dispatching the Self-Defense Forces to

On the specific policies of the Koizumi administration, the
question involved seven choices with the options being "I think it
was good," or, "I think it was a mistake." In the "good" category,
1) 51 percent lauded the return to Japan of some victims abducted by
North Korea; 2) 18 percent chose postal privatization; and 3) 9
percent selected disposal of the non-performing loans of banks.
Koizumi received the most praise for his two sudden trips to
Pyongyang that resulted in the return of some abductees and their

However, he did not receive much public endorsement of his national
security policy, with only 3 percent approving of his "strengthening
the Japan-US alliance by such means as the agreement to realign US

TOKYO 00005325 007 OF 010

forces in Japan," and 4 percent approving "the dispatch of the SDF
to Iraq."

On the other hand, in choosing the "mistakes" in Koizumi's policy
choices, heading the list with 28 percent of the public was his
"reform of the social security system, including medical care and
pensions." This selection indicates a deep sense of anxiety among
the public toward the future. Next, 18 percent of the public chose
the Iraq dispatch of the SDF as a "mistake," and 17 percent thought
his annual visits to Yasukuni Shrine was a "mistake." Even postal
privatization received 11 percent disapproval. Evaluation of his
policies shows the nation to be divided.

11) Extraordinary session to last 81 days; LDP aims at revising
Basic Education Law

ASAHI (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

The new administration to be launched following the Liberal
Democratic Party presidential election will have its first showdown
with the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ = Minshuto) in an
extraordinary Diet session. Prospects have now become strong that
the session will run as long as 81 days from Sept. 26 through Dec.
15. Chief Cabinet Secretary Abe, who is believed certain to win the
presidential race, wants to get key bills, including one amending
the Basic Education Law, passed into law before year's end, by
securing the longest possible Diet session running until immediately
before the year-end budget compilation. Another aim is to take the
initiative in the Diet so that he can make his leadership felt
quickly with an eye on the Upper House election next summer.

The LDP proposed this schedule at a meeting of chief directors of
the Lower House Diet Steering Committee on Sept. 14. Minshuto has
decided to agree with this schedule. The LDP is determined to secure
Diet passage of a bill upgrading the Defense Agency to ministry
status, as well as a bill amending the Basic Education Law. It will
submit a set of bills reforming the Social Insurance Agency after
modification. Chances are, however, that deliberations on those
bills could be postponed until the regular session, along with an
amendment to the Organized Crime Punishment Law designed to create
the offense of conspiracy and a national referendum bill in relation
to constitutional revision.

In the meantime, Lower House by-elections will take place in the
Kanagawa No. 16 Constituency and the Osaka No. 9 Constituency on
Oct. 22. Minshuto is gearing up to harshly pursue Abe over his view
of wartime history right from the beginning of the session. Debate
on an extension of the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law, which
expires Nov. 1, will likely focus on the right of collective
defense. The upcoming extraordinary Diet session will likely be a
full-fledged session in which the ruling and opposition camps clash

12) Main themes of educational reform council envisaged by Abe: 10
items, including raising academic performance to best in the world;
20 private citizens, including schoolteachers, to be picked as panel

TOKYO SHIMBUN (Page 1) (Almost Full)
September 15, 2006

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Chief Cabinet Secretary Abe, now running in the Liberal Democratic
Party (LDP) presidential race, intends to set up an educational
reform promotion council, once he becomes prime minister. Main
themes for the envisaged panel to tackle and its line-up were
generally decided yesterday. The council will likely tackle at least
10 themes, including strengthening basic academic performance to
bring Japan to the top level in the world, as well as requiring
students to engage in volunteer activities in the period between
high school graduation and the start of university courses, which
would involve changing the start of the school year at national and
public universities (from April) to September.

The envisaged council is being characterized as an educational
equivalent to the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy. It will
likely be launched in October as a private advisory organ reporting
to the prime minister.

Abe will chair the panel, and its membership will include about 20
private citizens, such as college professors, schoolteachers, and
business leaders, as well as the minister of education, culture,
sports, science and technology and a prime ministerial assistant in
charge of education.

Proposals for the main themes to be handled by the panel included:
(1) the introduction of a voucher system, under which students
select schools and pay fees using vouchers distributed by their
local governments; (2) a system by which the central government
evaluates each school's academic level and educational situation;
and (3) a teaching license renewal system. Other ideas included
making full use of authorized facilities for children by combining
kindergartens and day-care centers. Once specific policies are set,
related bills would be submitted to next year's Diet session at the
earliest in order of those that require revisions of related laws.

13) LDP unofficially asks Minshuto for 81-day extraordinary Diet
session, with aim of early passage of key bills

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
September 15, 2006

The Liberal Democratic Party has unofficially asked Minshuto
(Democratic Party of Japan) for an 81-day extraordinary Diet session
to open Sept. 26 and last until Dec. 15. By holding a long session,
the LDP aims to enact as many key bills on the agenda as possible.
Behind the LDP request is also speculation in the LDP and New
Komeito that it is undesirable to deal with bills on which the
public or support groups are split in the regular Diet session to be
convened just before the unified local elections and the House of
Councillors elections next year. Minshuto intends to basically
accept the LDP request.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Abe has revealed that he would give priority
to passing these four bills in the extraordinary Diet session: (1) a
bill revising the Fundamental Law of Education; (2) bills related to
upgrading the Defense Agency to ministry status; (3) a bill amending
the Organized Crime Punishment Law to create a new charge of
conspiracy; and (4) a national referendum bill governing procedures
for constitutional revision

To extend the Antiterrorism Special Measures Law beyond its Nov. 1
expiration date, the government and the ruling parties also plan to
revise the law in order to allow the Maritime Self-Defense Force to

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continue providing fuel to US-led coalition forces in the Indian

Minshuto, though, has demanded that all bills be carefully
deliberated, playing up a confrontational stance. Given this, many
in the ruling camp anticipate that it will be difficult to pass all
the key bills during the extraordinary Diet session.

14) New Komeito names Acting Secretary General Ota next chief;
Kitagawa informally selected as secretary general

ASAHI (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

New Komeito informally decided to designate Acting Secretary General
Akihiro Ota to succeed outgoing party chief Kanzaki and replace
Secretary General Tetsuzo Fuyushiba with Minister of Land,

Infrastructure, and Transport Kazuo Kitagawa. It has already asked
the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to have Fuyushiba either replace
Kitagawa as the head of MLIT or the minister or a health, labor, and
welfare in the new administration. The LDP intends to agree to
accept Fuyushiba as a cabinet minister. Ota will declare his
candidacy for the party presidential election at a national meeting
of prefectural representatives as early as Sept. 16.

Kanzaki during yesterday's meeting of the permanent board of
directors stated, "I will announce my decision to step down at the
national meeting of prefectural representatives on Sept. 16." The
party will accept candidacies for the presidential election on Sept.
26. However, since no other candidate will run in the election, Ota
will be picked as the new leader of the New Komeito at the party
convention on Sept. 30.

Regarding who should succeed Kanzaki, some have called for the
appointment of Toshiko Hamayotsu, acting head of Soka Gakkai, who is
popular in the lay Buddhist group that serves as New Komeito's
support base. In the end, however, Ota was chosen given the view
that the party head will likely face difficult coordination with the
LDP over constitutional revision. Final coordination is now underway
to replace Policy Research Council Chairman Yoshihisa Inoue with his
deputy Tetsuo Saito and have Acting Secretary General Yoshio
Urushibara succeed Diet Policy Committee Chairman Junji Higashi.

15) Abe calls anti-Yasukuni group "a little strange"

TOKYO (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe participating in a debate among
candidates for the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election
held at party headquarters sharply criticized those who oppose prime
ministerial visits to Yasukuni Shrine, saying, "Those people who
oppose (the prime minister's paying homage at Yasukuni Shrine) are a
little strange." Regarding his reason for not making it clear
whether he would visit the shrine or not should he be selected prime
minister, he repeatedly stressed, "(It is because) it would be used
as a diplomatic and political issue." "For some reason, those people
who oppose the visits are asking me to clearly state my position,"
he said, adding, "That is the same as asking me to say something
that will irritate China and South Korea." He stressed the
contradiction in the position of those opposing Yasukuni visits.

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16) Tanigaki, Kato see Abe's view of history as "problematic"

NIHON KEIZAI (Page 2) (Full)
September 15, 2006

Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki yesterday met with Koichi Kato in
the Diet, and both termed "problematic" Chief Cabinet Secretary
Shinzo Abe's recent remark on the process of normalization of
diplomatic ties between Japan and China, as he said that "there was
no document" indicating that the Chinese distinguished between
Japan's war leaders and the general public. Tanigaki emphasized:
"Historical perceptions are important in dealing with other
countries. We must keep in mind the process through which Japan was
allowed to return to the international community." Kato pointed out
that if Abe assumes the post of prime minister, "His (historical
awareness) will be made an issue in the extraordinary Diet session."
Kato told Tanigaki: "You are the best in terms of policy ideas and
composure. You're already a leader."


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