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Cablegate: Media Reaction Q Pm Abe's Visit to China And

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P 050515Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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RHMFIUU/COMUSJAPAN YOKOTA AB JA PRIORITY
INFO RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 8306
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RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 4409
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RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2129
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UNCLAS TOKYO 005802

SIPDIS

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: MEDIA REACTION Q PM ABE'S VISIT TO CHINA AND
SOUTH KOREA - TOKYO


LEAD STORIES: Thursday morning's Yomiuri front-paged a
GOJ plan to expand Japan's ban on port calls by North
Korean ships if the North conducts a nuclear test.

1. "Abe's Visit to Beijing and Seoul: First Step in His
Diplomatic Strategy?" Top-circulation, moderate Yomiuri
editorialized (10/5): "PM Abe's planned visits to China
and South Korea suggest that Japan and its Asian
neighbors agree that dialogues between the Japanese
leader and his counterparts in Beijing and Seoul are
indispensable for regional peace and prosperity. The
prime minister will visit Beijing on Sunday and Seoul on
Monday.... The US and ASEAN nations have expressed
concern that strained relations between Japan and China
are having a negative effect on regional stability.

2. "North Korea's announcement that it will conduct a
nuclear test will be high on the agenda at PM Abe's
meetings with his Chinese and South Korean counterparts.
The prime minister intends to cooperate with the US,
South Korea, and China in tightening the noose around
North Korea. Abe's stance is that if Pyongyang goes ahead
with the nuclear test, additional sanctions against the
North will be needed. Although Japan and the US will seek
the adoption of a UNSC statement calling on the North to
exercise restraint, China is reluctant to take such a
step. In fact, China and South Korea have been cautious
about imposing sanctions on the North. In this respect,
PM Abe's diplomatic ability will be tested at the
forthcoming summit meetings."

DONOVAN

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