Japanese Senator Visits Burma
27 December 2009: A member of the Japanese House of Councilors was in the new Burmese administrative capital Naypyidaw this week meeting with high junta officials, state media reports.
Mr Hideo Watanabe, a Japanese Upper House Member, was the latest international dignitary to be officially received in Naypydaw, the new Burmese administrative capital since the Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping on December 19.
Accompanied by My Yasuaki Nogawa, the Japanese Ambassador to Burma, the Senator met with Burmese Prime Minister Gen. Thein Sein. Also present in the meeting was U Soe Thar, Minister for National Planning and Economic Development, according to state-media reports.
A Member of the Democratic Party of Japan, Mr Hideo Watanabe is no strange visitor to Burma. He has visited Burma in 2003 and met with since deposed former PM General Khin Nyunt. The visit then was described by Burmese state-run media as a “Myanmar [Burmese]-Japanese friendly relations and cooperation in economic and health sectors.”
A delegation of Burma’s military regime led by Maj-Gen Htay Oo, Minister for Agriculture and Irrigation was in Japan at the invitation of the Japanese government in August. Mr. Watanabe was one of the Japanese officials who met with the visiting Burmese delegation. A group of angry Burmese protestors in Tokyo greeted the visit of Maj-Gen Htay Oo, who is also the leader of pro-junta civilian proxy Union Solidarity and Development Association.
The meeting between visiting 75 year-old senior Japanese politician and Burmese PM occurred at 2:00 p.m. in the remote capital Naypyidaw, according to a Naypyidaw source.