Cablegate: Japanese Morning Press Highlights 09/07/07

DE RUEHKO #4159/01 2500126
P 070126Z SEP 07





E.O. 12958: N/A



War on terror:
1) US House of Representatives passes resolution praising Japan for
its anti-terrorism contributions
2) Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) against new anti-terror law
concept but may consider Japan providing logistical support to ISAF
in Afghanistan
3) DPJ Secretary General Hatoyama says cooperation with NATO in
Afghanistan is one option instead of continued MSDF service in the
Indian Ocean
4) Afghan reporter gets direct interview from DPJ official on
party's anti-terror stand

5) New USFJ commander picked

6) Japan, China in foreign ministers' meeting at APEC conference
agree to cooperate to fight global warming

North Korea problem:
7) Japan's two days of talks with North Korea ends without progress

8) Chief Cabinet Secretary Yosano is forward looking about
humanitarian aid to flood-stricken North Korea

DPJ in action:
9) DPJ focus in upcoming Diet session will be pensions and scandals

10) DPJ policy chief Uejima plans to pursue subsidy misuse, focusing
on farm ministry

Daily scandal sheet:
11) Nikai faction also has missing political-fund issue, as does
former Prime Minister Mori and former Environment Minister Kawasaki

12) Former Prime Minister Mori's political branch is missing 6
million in political donations
13) Former Health Minister Niwa kept double account books for
500,000 yen printing costs
14) Former farm minister Tamazawa, who just quit the LDP over money
scandal, could face charge of violation of public election law
15) Vice Minister of Agriculture Kobayashi to resign for impropriety

16) DPJ also has a scandal involving the party's showcase lawmaker,
as revealed in tabloid weekly

17) APEC: US, Japan vs. China on product safety issue


1) US House thanks Japan for antiterror cooperation

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

WASHINGTON-The US House of Representatives, meeting in a plenary
session on Sept. 5, adopted a resolution thanking Japan for its
security efforts, such as Japan's contribution to the war on terror
in the Indian Ocean, with 405 ayes and no nays. In late July, the
House adopted a resolution on comfort women. However, that
resolution raised concerns about its negative impact on Japan-US
relations. The Congress showed consideration for Japan's

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contributions with the resolution this time.

Touching on the US House resolution, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yosano
stated: "This shows that the US House of Representatives recognizes
the importance of our bilateral alliance. I welcome it on the
Japanese government's part."

2) DPJ likely to oppose new legislation in addition to an extension
of the antiterrorism law; Idea of allowing SDF's "participation in
logistic support" floated in DPJ

YOMIURI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

The main opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) is
intensifying its opposition to extending the Antiterrorism Special
Measures Law, an issue that will take center stage at an upcoming
extraordinary session of the Diet to be convened on Sept. 10. The
government and the ruling parties, which want to continue the
Maritime Self-Defense Force's (MSDF) refueling activities in the
Indian Ocean, are considering creating a new law that will reflect
the DPJ's assertions, but the tide of opinion in the DPJ is that it
will be difficult for the party to accept the new law.

At a press conference yesterday, DPJ Deputy President Kan said
firmly that if there is no request from the United Nations, Japan
should not send the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) abroad, noting: "Our
party's fundamental rule about an overseas dispatch of the
Self-Defense Forces (SDF) is that we allow it within the bounds of
the Constitution if there is a request from the United Nations."

The government uses the UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1368
adopted on the day after the terrorist attacks in the United States
in September 2001 as a basis for the Antiterrorism Special Measures
Law. This resolution is seen as an antiterrorism resolution and it
says "We ask the international community to make even more efforts
to prevent and restrain terrorism." The DPJ contends that this
resolution cannot be used as a basis for that law, noting that "This
resolution is not intended for a specific purpose. It does not
directly specify any operation of war like forming a multinational

DPJ President Ozawa made this critical comment in a speech on Aug.
21: "President Bush declared, 'It's a war of self-defense for the
US. We don't have to have either a UN resolution or approval from
the international community.' Given this, it is really strange for
the US to ask for help at present."

An idea of creating a new law is being floated in the government and
the governing coalition. In this regard, a mid-level DPJ lawmaker
said: "I can't vote for new legislation as long as the real aim of a
new law is to continue the MSDF's refueling activities even if the
new law reflects the DPJ's previous assertions like information
disclosure and prior approval for a dispatch of MSDF vessels."

The DPJ intends to use the right to investigate state affairs during
deliberations in the Upper House and put pressure on the government
and the ruling bloc to disclose information involving the actual
state and effects of the MSDF's activities as well as activities of
the US forces that have received refueling services. The DPJ's
tactic is to take time for deliberations and delay a vote until the
antiterrorism law expires on Nov. 1. An idea of submitting a bill

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repealing the antiterrorism law to the Upper House in order to
immediately withdraw MSDF vessels from the Indian Ocean is also
being floated in the DPJ.

The DPJ also intends to form a set of its own assistance measures
for Afghanistan, including humanitarian aid, in preparation for
deliberations on a bill extending the antiterrorism law. In December
2001, the UNSC adopted Resolution 1386 concerning a dispatch of an
International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) to Afghanistan. DPJ
Secretary General Hatoyama said in a speech in Hamamatsu City

yesterday: "I presume a focus of talks in the weeks ahead will be
whether it is possible for Japan to take part in logistic support
for the ISAF."

3) Hatoyama terms cooperation with NATO an "option" for DPJ

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

Yukio Hatoyama, secretary general of the leading opposition
Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto), delivered a speech yesterday
in the city of Hamamatsu. Referring to his party's counterproposal
to the government's plan for extending the Antiterrorism Special
Measures Law, Hatoyama indicated that the DPJ would consider
cooperating with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in Afghanistan as one
of Japan's possible options. "It's extremely important to discuss
whether Japan can back up the International Security Assistance
Force (ISAF, currently deployed to Afghanistan)."

4) Afghan reporter directly asks DPJ's Watanabe for Japan's
continued involvement in assistance

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

"Our country also wants to cooperate in an even more proactive way."
With this, Kozo Watanabe, a supreme advisor to the leading
opposition Democratic Party of Japan (Minshuto), stressed a stance
of extending cooperation to assist Afghanistan when he was
interviewed by a press reporter from Afghanistan in the Diet

DPJ President Ozawa is opposed to extending the Antiterror Special
Measures Law, under which Japan has been backing up the antiterror
campaign going on in Afghanistan. The Afghan reporter asked Watanabe
for Japan's continued involvement in assistance with Afghanistan's
reconstruction. However, Watanabe assumed a wait-and-see attitude,
saying: "The Diet will continue to discuss this matter in an
extraordinary session. I can't say which is what." Watanabe chairs a
parliamentary league for friendship between Japan and Afghanistan.

5) Rice named as 1st black to command USFJ

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

The headquarters of US Forces Japan announced yesterday that
President Bush has nominated US Air Force Maj. Gen. Edward Rice,
currently serving as the vice commander of Pacific Air Forces in
Hawaii, to succeed USAF Lt. Gen. Bruce Wright as USFJ commanding
general. Rice will be the first Afro-American (black) to command

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6) Japan, China to work together to cope with global warming

ASAHI (Page 4) (Full)
September 7, 2007

SYDNEY-Foreign Minister Machimura and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang
Jiechi met yesterday in Sydney and agreed to create an international
scheme for coping with global warming. This is the first time for
Japan and China to set forth proactive cooperation on this issue at
a ministerial level, according to the Foreign Ministry. Machimura
invited Yang to visit Japan, and Yang also invited Machimura to
visit China. They positively responded to each other's invitation.

According to a Japanese briefing, Yang offered to cooperate with
Japan for substantive results on a post-Kyoto Protocol framework
beyond 2013.

7) Japan-DPRK working group talks end without any progress; DPRK
"ready to set stage for talks" with JAL Yodo-go plane hijackers

YOMIURI (Page 1) (Full)
September 7, 2007

Yuichiro Nakamura, Shuhei Kuromi, Ulan Bator

The Japan-North Korea working group yesterday wrapped up the second
day of talks at the Mongolian Guest House in Ulan Bator. On the
issue of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea, one of the
focuses of the talks, the North Korean delegation was negative about
reinvestigating the abductees, with one official arguing, "Given the
currently worsened relations between the two countries, we are not
in a situation to further investigate them." However, both sides
agreed to meet at frequent intervals in the future by holding, for
instance, a working group session.

The Japanese team demanded a reinvestigation of abductees and a
handover of abduction suspects, including three Japanese hijackers
of the JAL "Yodo-go" airliner.

The North Korean team did not make any mention of specific responses
to those requests, but it did not use the expression "the abduction
issue has been already settled" and was slightly softer in its
attitude than at the first round of the working group talks in March
of this year, where it walked out of the conference room in the
middle of the session. After the talks, Kim Chul Ho, deputy
director-general of the North Korean Foreign Ministry's Asian
Affairs Bureau told reporters: "The gaps between Japan and our
country remain wide. We will discuss how to reduce them."

On the question of handing the Yodo-go hijackers over to Japan, Kim
indicated his intention to allow the Japanese government to meet the
hijackers in North Korea, saying, "It is a matter the Japanese
government and the people concerned with the Yodo-go case should
discuss. We are ready to set a stage for both sides to meet."

The fact that the hijackers reside in North Korea has been one of
the grounds for the United States to list North Korea as a state
sponsor of terrorism. Perhaps because the North Koreans want their
country to be removed at an early date from the list of countries
sponsoring terrorism, they would become willing to (hand them over

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to Japan.)

The participants in the talks included Ambassador Yoshiki Mine in
charge of Japan-North Korea diplomatic normalization talks from
Japan and his North Korean counterpart Song Il Ho. The session
lasted for three hours and 15 minutes including a break.

8) Yosano: I did not say that humanitarian aid to North Korea should
be separated from other diplomatic issues

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
September 7, 2007

Chief Cabinet Secretary Kaoru Yosano in a press conference yesterday
said about humanitarian aid to North Korea: "I did not say that it
should be separated from other diplomatic issues."

Yosano noted in a press conference on September 4: "There is a
possibility to overcome political difficulties of any given moment.
Humanitarian aid is an area that deserves independent thinking. I
would like to see the Foreign Ministry study the matter seriously."

In yesterday's press conference, Yosano emphasized that he had
simply referred to slim chances of separating the matter from other
issues, effectively correcting his course. In addition, regarding
General Association of Korean Residents in Japan (Chongryon) Deputy
Chairman Nam Sung U's letter to the Cabinet Office yesterday asking
for a removal of the ban on port calls by North Korean vessels,
Yosano said: "I hear that (the Cabinet Office) will return it by
contents by certified mail."

9) DPJ bills give priority to pensions, political funding;
Farm-family supports to be presented to the regular Diet session

ASAHI (Page 1) (Excerpt)
September 7, 2007

The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ or Minshuto) has set the priority
order for bills to be introduced in the extraordinary session of the
Diet. The opposition camp will present bills in the Upper House,
where it commands a majority of seats, with priority given to a bill
banning the appropriation of pension premiums for any other use than
pension payments, and another bill amending the Political Funds
Control Law to make it obligatory to attach receipts, such as all
office expenses above 1 yen. The bill to freeze privatization of
postal services that the party co-sponsored and presented in August
with the Social Democratic Party and the Peoples New Party will be
withdrawn. The DPJ aims at presenting a bill creating a system of
income supports for farm families, the showcase of the party's
campaign promises in the Upper House race, in the regular Diet
session next year.

10) DPJ policy chief: Opposition will pursue subsidies issue in
extra Diet session

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Slightly excerpts)
September 7, 2007

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) Policy Research Committee Chairman
Masayuki Naoshima indicated yesterday in an interview with the
Nikkei that his party would look into whether to invoke the right of
a Diet member to investigate state affairs in the House of

TOKYO 00004159 006 OF 010

Councillors with an eye on shedding light on the issue of politics
and money in the upcoming extraordinary Diet session to be convened
on Sept. 10. The DPJ aims to highlight how tax money has been wasted
in the Upper House, which is now controlled by the opposition camp.

Naoshima revealed that the opposition camp would prioritize the
Upper House over the Lower House regarding deliberations on bills
since the opposition holds a majority in the Upper House.
Specifically, the opposition bloc will submit to the Upper House
three bills: (1) a bill to ban the use of pension premiums for other
purposes than pension benefits; (2) a bill to revise the Political
Funds Control Law requiring politicians to attach to their political
fund reports receipts for expenditures of one yen or more; and (3)
an agriculture policy bill designed to introduce an income security
system for individual farmers. It plans to present the pension bill
as early as next week.

Regarding former farm minister Takehiko Endo, who quit the post to
take responsibility for a subsidies issue, Naoshima pointed out: "It
is no good for a lawmaker to head such organizations enjoying
government subsidies as an agriculture mutual aid association." In
connection with the fact that a person who heads a public-interest
corporation, which receives subsidies, became representative of a
political organization of Environment Minister Masatoshi
Wakabayashi, the DPJ policy chief said: "There will be big problem
if a thorough investigation is carried out." Both chambers of the
Diet have the right to investigate state affairs. By exercising this
right, Diet members can demand that persons be called to testify as
Diet witnesses and that the government present documents. The DPJ
will call on the government to submit documents regarding the
pension record-keeping fiasco and the issue of extending the
Antiterrorism Special Measures Law.

11) Nikai faction's fund management body also failed to declare
sales of party tickets totaling 1.66 million yen

MAINICHI (Top play) (Abridged slightly)
September 7, 2007

Atarashii Nami (New Wave), the Nikai faction's political
organization headed by LDP General Council Chairman Toshihiro Nikai
and for which National Public Safety Commission Chairman Shinya
Izumi is serving as chief accountant, failed to include in its
political fund report 1.66 million yen gained from selling party
tickets to Shin Seijimondai Kenkyu-kai (Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo;
disbanded in late 2006), a political organization established by a
former executive of a large general contractor. The fund management
organizations of former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori and former
Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Jiro Kawasaki have also failed to
declare sales of party tickets to the same political organization.
This has exposed the sloppy political fund reporting practice among
LDP executives.

The organization that bought party tickets was Shin Seijimondai
Kenkyu-kai, a political organization headed by a former business
manager of Nishimatsu Construction Co. (headquartered in Minato
Ward) and for which a former part-time auditor was serving as the
chief accountant. The person who headed the organization retired
from Nishimatsu in 1995 to establish the organization and served
thereafter as a board member of an affiliated company until 2004.
The person who served as the chief accountant worked as Nishimatsu's
auditor until 2003 and died in 2005. Shin Seijimondai Kenkyu-kai was

TOKYO 00004159 007 OF 010

dissolved in late 2006.

According to receipts and transfer slips attached to the
organization's financial reports, the body bought party tickets
worth 960,000 yen and 700,000 yen from Atarashii Nami, the Nikai
faction's political organization, on two occasions in 2005.

The Political Funds Control Law requires political organizations to
declare in their funds reports the names of those who purchased
tickets worth over 200,000 yen and the exact amounts. Reports by
Atarashii Nami did not include such information.

Meanwhile, Shunpu-kai, former Prime Minister Mori's fund management
organization, held a fund-raising party in Tokyo in late 2004.
Atarashii Nami also bought its party tickets worth 1 million yen.
Further, Atarashii Nami bought party tickets totaling 600,000 yen in
the same year from Hakuho-kai, the fund-management organization of
former Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Kawasaki. But Kawasaki's
fund management body failed to declare it.

A Nikai office source said: "It is a true that we had received money
for the tickets, and we are now investigating it thoroughly. We
would like to correct our reports once the investigation is over."

The Mori office indicated through a lawyer that the incident
occurred by clerical mistakes. The Kawasaki office also indicated a
willingness to correct its reports after examining the facts.

12) 6 million yen in donations off books of LDP branch headed by
former Prime Minister Mori: Fund reports already corrected

MAINICHI (Page 31) (Full)
September 7, 2007

It was learned on September 6 that the Liberal Democratic Party
(LDP) branch in Ishikawa Constituency No. 2, headed by former Prime
Minister Yoshiro Mori, corrected its political fund reports for 2004
and 2005 due to the omission of entries of donations made by Mori
totaling approximately 6 million yen. An accountant of the branch
office explained, "The branch donated expenses for the 2003 and 2005
Lower House elections. Mr. Mori returned surpluses. However, since
we did not issue receipts, we were unable to check the flow of the
money. As a result, we failed to report the returned money."

According to the correction report submitted to the prefectural
election board, Mori donated 2,837,861 yen on January 30, 2004 and
2,959,916 yen on Nov. 30, 2005. The branch office accountant
informed the election board of the error on Sept. 4 and corrected it
the same day. Following the correction, the missed-out amounts were
brought forward to the following years. The balance brought forward
as of the end of 2005 came to 36,254,611 yen. The total income after
the correction came to 176,795,l05 yen for 2004 and 208,211,601 yen
for 2005.

According to the explanation given by the accountant, the branch
office in August received an order to check its fund report from the
party headquarters. It realized missing entries in mid-August. This
accountant noted that the office did not issue receipts, because the
recipient was not a third party but the branch head. Though Mori has
already been informed of the correction, he reportedly did not make
any special comment on that.

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13) LDP branch headed by former Welfare Minister Niwa doubly claimed
printing expenses, using copy of same receipt

MAINICHI (Page 31) (Full)
September 7, 2007

It was found that the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) branch of
Ibaraki Constituency No. 6, headed by former Welfare Minister Yuya
Niwa, doubly reported printing expenses worth 510,800 yen, attaching
copies of the same report to its political fund report for 2005.

The receipt used for double entries was issued by a printing firm in
Ishioka City, Ibaraki Prefecture, on May 17, 2005. Two copies made
from this receipt were used as printing expenses for two spending
items -- public relations expenses and expenses for holding a
political fund-raising party.

Niwa's office explained that it wants to correct the error
immediately, noting that it was a simple clerical mistake.

Niwa has shown a cautious toward a proposal for amending the
Political Fund Control Law to mandate the attachment of receipts for
operational expenses topping 1 yen, noting, "It is questionable to
set the amount at 1 yen."

14) Former Agriculture Minister Tamazawa might have violated Public
Office Election Law

ASAHI (Page 38) (Excerpts)
September 7, 2007

It was learned yesterday that the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's
(LDP) Iwate Chapter's No. 4 Constituency Office, which had been
headed by former Agriculture Minister Tokuichiro Tamazawa, who just
recently submitted to the LDP a notice of his leaving the party to
take the responsibility for the use of multiple copies of one
receipt in his political funds reports, had received donations
during the election campaigns or immediately before the campaigns in
2003 and 2005 from several contractors who had received orders for
public works projects from the central government.

The Public Office Election Law bans companies that have concluded
contracts with the government from contributing money to candidates
for national elections and also bans candidates from seeking
donations from those companies. One of the staff for Tamazawa said,
"We received donations for the sake of the elections. We had no idea
about (the Public Office Election Law)."

According to the No. 4 Constituency Office's political funds
reports, this office received a total of 5.3 million yen in
donations in 2005, when the Lower House election was held, from at
least 10 general contractors who had been engaged in public works
projects commissioned by a bureau of the Agriculture Ministry.

The office also received a total of 480,000 yen in donations one
week before the Lower House election or during the election campaign
in 2003 from at least four general contractors who was engaged in
public works projects commissioned by the central government.

When interviewed yesterday by the Asahi Shimbun about the reason why
donations were made during certain periods of time, Tamazawa's
secretary said, "That's because of elections." When asked about the


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possibility that receiving donations by companies that had concluded
contracts with the central government might have been a violation of
the Public Office Election Law, the secretary said: "We had no
knowledge about that. We'd like to follow the judgment of voters and

15) Administrative Vice MAFF Minister Kobayashi to resign

ASAHI (Page 1) (Excerpts)
September 7, 2007

The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) decided
to promote Fisheries Agency Director General Toshiro Shirasu, 56, to
the administrative vice minister's post as the successor to Yoshio
Kobayashi, 58. If all goes smoothly, his appointment will be
announced today.

In MAFF, Takehiko Endo quit the minister post on the 3rd to take
responsibility for an agricultural mutual aid association he headed
having improperly received government subsidies. Political observers
expect that the replacement of administrative vice minister at this
time means that Kobayashi will resign to take responsibility for a
series of problems in the ministry.

16) Star DPJ lawmakers hit by scandals

SANKEI (Page 5) (Abridged slightly)
September 7, 2007

A gloomy atmosphere is surrounding the major opposition Democratic
Party of Japan due to weekly magazine reports on scandals involving
Yumiko Himei and Yoshiro Yokomine, the party's star candidates in
the July House of Councillors election.

DPJ President Ichiro Ozawa yesterday called Himei representing the
Okayama electoral district to party headquarters in order to learn
in person about her reported extramarital affair.

According to a person concerned, Ozawa advised Himei to practice
caution so as not to provide juicy stories to the media. The source
quoted Himei as saying in response that she would do her utmost in
implementing policies to meet public expectations and that she would
firmly assist President Ozawa, who aims at a change of government.

Meanwhile, Yoshiro Yokomine, the father of professional golfer
Sakura Yokomine, offered an apology in the wake of Weekly Shincho's
report on his having played golf for money. Secretary General Yukio
Hatoyama warned him severely.

Yokomine has filed a damage lawsuit against publisher Shinchosha
Publishing Co. and others. Despite that, the Weekly Shincho's latest
issue that went on sale yesterday carried a follow-on report on

A mid-level DPJ lawmaker grumbled: "Enough is enough. We must
concentrate on taking the reins of government."

17) APEC ministerial: Japan, US vs. China on product safety:
Confrontation also over patent screening

YOMIURI (Page 11) (Excerpts)
September 7, 2007

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An Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC) ministerial
meeting yesterday ended, adopting a joint statement. Confrontation
between Japan and the US on one side and China on the other was
visible during the meeting over the drafting of a joint statement
concerning a product safety issue and procedures for the screening
of intellectual property rights. Regarding the initiative of APEC
aiming at concluding free trade agreements involving all member
nations, the joint statement characterized it only in equivocal
terms with Japan, the US and China motivated by different desires.

The three countries were at odds over the product safety issue. The
joint statement noted that member nations should tackle the issue in
connection with each country's effort to secure the safety of their
own products. Behind the move is that the detection of harmful
substances from Chinese toys has developed into a social problem in
many countries, especially in the US. The decision was made to
include the issue in the statement, as the US took strong interest
in the problem, as a senior official of the Ministry of Economy,
Trade and Industry put it.

China opposed the inclusion of the issue in the statement, noting
that it is taking strict measures. In response, participants decided
not to single out China. Foreign Minister Downer of host nation
Australia during a press conference after the meeting gave
consideration to China, noting, "The statement does not target

The US and South Korea supported Japan's proposal for speeding up a
patent screening process, staging a skirmish.

Japan and several other countries proposed an action program for
unifying patent application forms within APEC and mutually using
screening results. However, China was reluctant to comply with the
idea, noting that it involves too much work, such as making
application forms available abroad and translating documents into
English. The statement in the end did not include this proposal.


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