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In a message sent to Tokyo on Wednesday, Indonesian President Suharto said Jakarta will seriously consider Japan’s request for the Indonesian government to exercise the maximum restraint in dealing with its political crisis.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Kanezo Muraoka released the message because Indonesian students were planning to hold a massive protest rally the same day. The rally was prevented after thousands of troops closed off a park where the demonstration was due to be staged.

The message was conveyed through the Japanese embassy in Jakarta and is a reply to a request from the Japanese government Tuesday that Indonesia should avoid bloodshed when dealing with the thousands of student protesters demonstrating against President Suharto, Muraoka told a regular press conference.

The Indonesian government was also asked to take all possible measures to protect Japanese nationals in Indonesia, according to Muraoka.

In his message, Suharto said he will continue to implement reforms, and that the names of members chosen for a special reform council that is expected to draft new laws for parliamentary elections and change the structure of Parliament will be announced Thursday.

Hashimoto reportedly told his Cabinet ministers Wednesday that “Tension is heightening further in Indonesia. Government entities will unite to take swift and appropriate measures” to protect Japanese nationals across the country.

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