Japan to summon Myanmar ambassador over raids

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TOKYO, Sep 27 (Reuters) Japan's government will summon the Myanmar ambassador today to protest after security forces raided monasteries in Yangon and elsewhere following an anti-military uprising, the top government spokesman said.

Japan earlier this week urged the Myanmar government to deal calmly with the demonstrations in Yangon, the biggest in 20 years.

''What Myanmar is doing is wrong,'' Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura told reporters.

''Deputy Foreign Minister (Hitoshi) Kimura will summon the Myanmar Ambassador Hla Myint today to make an official complaint,'' he said, but added that Japan would observe the situation for a while before deciding whether to impose sanctions.

Japan has withheld new aid to Myanmar since democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi was detained in 2003, but still funds emergency requirements including health projects.

There are 615 Japanese nationals and 74 Japanese companies in Myanmar, Machimura said.

Opponents of the Myanmar government demonstrated outside the embassy in Tokyo today.

REUTERS ARB VC1408

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