INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Tokyo Media Reaction - Unrest in Burma

Published: Fri 28 Sep 2007 01:58 AM
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FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
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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: TOKYO MEDIA REACTION - UNREST IN BURMA
LEAD STORIES: All Friday national dailies led with the
killing by Burmese troops of a Japanese photographer
covering anti-junta demonstrations in Rangoon.
1. "High Time for Burma to Democratize" The
conservative Sankei editorialized (9/28): "The Burmese
junta may be worried that more demonstrations will lead
to its collapse. But if it continues its oppression,
its rule will eventually wither in the face of the
people's opposition and pressure from the international
community. It is high time now for the regime to heed
calls from its people and the international community
to democratize and seek a resolution through
dialogue.... Chinese Ambassador to the UN Wang said on
camera that sanctions will not help the situation in
Burma. If China believes this, it should put forward
specific alternative measures, otherwise it would be
fair to conclude that Beijing is supporting the junta
and opposing democratization out of its own interests.
This is similar to China's sympathy toward the Sudanese
government, which has massacred its own people as well.
The international community will take a harsh view of
China given that it is to host the Olympics in Beijing
next summer."
2. "China Must Join in International Pressure" The
liberal Mainichi argued (9/28): "Further bloodshed must
be avoided. The UN Security Council issued a statement
expressing concern about the situation in Burma.
However, it was not a chairman's statement but a
lukewarm 'informal statement.' Despite rising calls for
sanctions from the US and European countries, China
opposed stronger action because of its ties with the
junta.... China's position may send Burma the wrong
message that it has nothing to worry about from the UN.
Is China fulfilling its responsibility as a permanent
member of the Security Council? It bears partial
responsibility for the actions of the junta in
Rangoon."
SCHIEFFER
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