Japan, which had invited African heads of State, including President Robert Mugabe, for the Tokyo International Conference on African Development, said it was making it clear to Mugabe that he would have a hard time if he came for the conference.
Senior Foreign Policy Coordinator Takehiro Funakoshi said while Japan could not disinvite any of the African Heads of State that it had invited to the TICAD IV meeting in Yokohama, it was “diplomatically” attempting to discourage Mugabe from attending.
Funakoshi told United States officials that Japan was sensitive to US concerns regarding Mugabe’s participation at TICAD, but it could not single him out for exclusion.
Viewing cable 08TOKYO974, JAPAN SEEKING TO DISCOURAGE MUGABE FROM ATTENDING
OO RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN RUEHTRO
DE RUEHKO #0974 1000817
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 090817Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3309
INFO RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
C O N F I D E N T I A L TOKYO 000974
E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/08/2018
SUBJECT: JAPAN SEEKING TO DISCOURAGE MUGABE FROM ATTENDING
Classified By: Ambassador J.T. Schieffer for reasons 1.4(b) and (d)
(C) While Japan cannot disinvite any of the African heads of
state it has invited to the TICAD IV meeting next month in
Yokohama, it has been “diplomatically” attempting to
discourage Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe from attending,
according to MOFA Senior Foreign Policy Coordinator Takehiro
Funakoshi. Funakoshi told visiting EAP/J Office Director
James Zumwalt April 9 that Japan is sensitive to our concerns
regarding Mugabe’s participation at TICAD, but cannot single
him out for exclusion. However, Japan is making clear to the
Mugabe regime that if he comes, he will be given a very hard
time by his hosts about the conditions in his country. Tokyo
hopes these warnings will help to convince him not to attend.
Of course, the better outcome, agreed Funakoshi, would be
for the democratic process in Zimbabwe to take its course and
result in the seating of a new president following the recent