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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
03RANGOON1019 2003-08-22 10:34:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Rangoon
Cable title:  

JAPANESE OFFICIAL VISITS RANGOON, PURSUES SPDC-NLD

Tags:   BM PGOV PREL NLD 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
					  C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 RANGOON 001019 

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/BCLTV
COMMERCE FOR ITA JEAN KELLY
TREASURY FOR OASIA JEFF NEIL
USPACOM FOR FPA

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/30/2013
TAGS: BM PGOV PREL NLD
SUBJECT: JAPANESE OFFICIAL VISITS RANGOON, PURSUES SPDC-NLD
"COMPROMISE"

REF: RANGOON 993

Classified By: COM Carmen Martinez for Reasons 1.5 (B,D)



1. (C) Summary: The Japanese Embassy in Rangoon is quietly
pursuing a proposal, apparently endorsed by a senior GOJ MOFA
official who visited Burma on August 20, that would require
Aung San Suu Kyi's commitment to turn a blind eye to the
violent May 30 attack on her convoy in exchange for her
release and a resumption of political dialogue. We can
appreciate the GOJ's frustration with the political stalemate
in Burma, but we don't believe such a drastic compromise on
the part of ASSK or the NLD is in the cards. End summary.



2. (C) According to Japanese Embassy Political Counselor
Ichiro Maruyama, an unnamed senior official of MOFA's Asia
Pacific Division made a quiet visit to Rangoon on August 20
and met with Brigadier General Kyaw Thein (Chief of Staff for
military intelligence) to discuss the current political
crisis in Burma. The MOFA official stopped off in Rangoon
after a swing through SE Asia, including a meeting in Kuala
Lumpur with U.N. Special Envoy Razali (Note: We believe the
MOFA official may have been Asia Pacific Division Deputy DG
Shinichi or SE Asia Division Director Yamanouchi. End note).



3. (C) Maruyama told the Pol/Econ chief that the Japanese
Embassy has developed a proposal for the SPDC, apparently
endorsed by the visiting MOFA official, which would involve
an agreement between Burma's military regime and detained NLD
leader Aung San Suu Kyi to make respective compromises aimed
at resolving the current stalemate. Under the Japanese
proposal, ASSK would agree not to criticize the May 30 attack
on her convoy in north central Burma, and in turn the SPDC
would agree to release her from detention, resume a political
dialogue, and produce a timeline for a transition to
democracy.



4. (C) Pol/Econ chief opined that ASSK and the NLD were
unlikely to agree to turn a blind eye to a premeditated
attack and subsequent crackdown that had resulted in scores
of NLD members and supporters killed, for which the SPDC has
offered no apology nor admitted any role. Maruyama agreed
and said the proposal was a long shot, but responded that the
GOJ is eager to undertake any effort that can help resolve
the current crisis. Asked if the GOJ had pursued permission
from the SPDC to see ASSK, Maruyama said the MOFA official
had requested a visit, but military intelligence officials
replied with an emphatic "no" and explained that SPDC
Chairman Than Shwe alone made all decisions related to ASSK's
detention.



5. (C) According to Maruyama, the Japanese Embassy will
quietly pursue their proposal with the SPDC and if there is
sufficient interest in the "compromise" scenario, PM Koizumi
will phone SPDC Chairman Than Shwe to discuss details.
Maruyama said that the GOJ believes a credible international
mediator is necessary to carry out the proposal, but that
Special Envoy Razali, the most likely candidate, is
frustrated with the situation in Burma and has been
repeatedly denied a visa for a return visit to Rangoon. The
GOJ is therefore giving consideration to consulting with the
U.S. and ASEAN to identify a special mediator who would
complement, or even replace, Razali and his dialogue efforts.



6. (C) Comment: Maruyama, like his Ambassador (reftel),
favors engaging the Burmese regime and is displeased with his
government's decision to suspend new assistance from Japan to
Burma. He and his colleagues have excellent contacts with
the Burmese military intelligence who report that the SPDC is
looking for a face-saving opportunity to release ASSK.
However, the Japanese Embassy does not have close ties to the
NLD and we suspect that any effort to pursue such a drastic
compromise -- one that would require ASSK to overlook to
worst setback to the democracy movement in over a decade --
will fall flat.
Martinez