NAPSNet Daily Report 02 February, 2000

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 02 February, 2000", NAPSNet Daily Report, February 02, 2000, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-02-february-2000/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. DPRK High-level US Visit
2. US Legislation on Taiwan
3. PRC Military Planning
4. Missile Proliferation
5. Spratly Islands Dispute
6. US-Philippines Military Exercises
II. Republic of Korea 1. Trilateral Coordination Group
2. DPRK High-Level US Visit
3. DPRK Missile Exports
4. US Soldiers Remains in DPRK
5. DPRK Water Resources
6. DPRK Political Stability
III. People’s Republic of China 1. DPRK-US Dialogue
2. ROK Economy
3. PRC-US Relations
4. PLA General’s Visit to the US
5. PRC-Japanese Relations
6. PRC Position on Taiwan Issue

I. United States

1. DPRK High-level US Visit

US State Department Deputy Spokesman James Foley (“US STATE DEPARTMENT NOON BRIEFING,” 02/01/00) said that the identity of the senior DPRK official who will visit Washington has not been decided. Foley added, “But as you may know, the two sides agreed to meet again toward the end of this month, February, to finalize preparations for the high-level visit, which will occur about a month after that. So we may know as we get closer to the visit who the official will be.” Regarding the removal of the DPRK from the US Department of State’s list of countries that sponsor terrorism, Foley stated, ” the United States is ready to resume the dialogue with the DPRK on the steps it would need to take to be removed from the terrorism list, and this is not a matter that is a precondition for the high-level visit but we are prepared to sit down, as we have in the past, with the DPRK to discuss the issue itself and its particulars and the steps that would need to be taken in order for them to be removed from the list.”

2. US Legislation on Taiwan

The New York Times (Eric Schmitt, “HOUSE VOTES TO STRENGTHEN MILITARY TIES WITH TAIWAN,” Washington, 2/2/00), the Associated Press (“U.S. HOUSE PASSES PRO-TAIWAN BILL OVER VETO THREAT, CHINA COMPLAINTS,” Washington, 2/2/00) reported that, following the US House of Representatives’ approval of the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act, administration officials said that they will be lobbying vigorously against the bill in the Senate. US President Bill Clinton’s national security aides have advised him to veto the measure if Congress approves it, arguing that it goes well beyond the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act. An administration policy statement said, “this bill would mandate a number of new security and military arrangements with Taiwan that could create dangerous, false and inaccurate expectations on both sides of the Taiwan Straits.” However, US Representative Tom DeLay of Texas said, “given the volatility of the situation in the Taiwan Straits, any mixed signals by our government can easily be read by the Communist Chinese as complacency.”

Agence France Presse (“WHITE HOUSE TO VETO TAIWAN SECURITY BILL,” Washington, 2/2/00) reported that US White House spokesman Joe Lockhart said Wednesday that US President Bill Clinton will veto the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act (TSEA). Lockhart said, “we made very clear that we oppose that piece of legislation and we will veto it because we believe that it runs counter to the strategic relationship we’ve had. It would not serve the stability of the region.”

Reuters (“CHINA PROTESTS U.S. HOUSE VOTE ON TAIWAN,” Beijing, 2/2/00) reported that PRC foreign ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao said that PRC Vice Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi summoned US Ambassador Joseph Prueher on Wednesday to protest the passage of the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act (TSEA). Yang told Prueher of the PRC’s “utmost indignation at and firm opposition to” the TSEA. In a statement, Yang said the measure was “a serious encroachment on China’s sovereignty (and) a gross interference in China’s internal affairs.” Yang demanded that the Clinton administration “keep its promise to block the legislation” and promptly curtail sales of advanced weapons to Taiwan.

Agence France Presse (“TAIWAN WELCOMES US BILL TO BOOST SECURITY TIES,” Taipei, 2/2/00), and the Associated Press (Annie Huang, “TAIWAN GUARDEDLY WELCOMES U.S. HOUSE ACTION TO INCREASE MILITARY TIES,” Taipei, 2/2/00) reported that Taiwan on Wednesday welcomed the US House of Representatives approval of the TSEA. Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Chen Chien-jen said, “we respect the US administration and its Congress. The bill was initiated by the congressional members and Taiwan did not get involved in the process.” Ministry spokesman Henry Chen said, “we appreciate passage of the bill. We welcome any step which helps to maintain peace and stability in the region.” Pao Tseng-ho, a political science professor at National Taiwan University, said, “the act will enhance Taiwan’s deterrence against China because Taipei and Washington military ties would be strengthened. Politically, the law will anger China and lead to changes in US-PRC relations. Negative effects cannot be ruled out.” Joseph Wu, deputy director of the Institute of International Relations at National Cheng Chi University, said the bill was almost equivalent to a military agreement between the US and Taiwan.

3. PRC Military Planning

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “PENTAGON STUDY FINDS CHINA PREPARING FOR WAR WITH U.S.,” 2/2/00) reported that the US Defense Department’s Office of Net Assessment study published a book entitled “China Debates the Future Security Environment.” The book contains some 600 translations of internal PRC writings by 200 authors. The study said that the PRC has developed a strategy to defeat a superior foe using both military and nonmilitary means, such as propaganda, deception and covert action. The study also revealed distrust of the US by PRC military and party leaders. General Li Jijun, described as one of the PRC’s most distinguished military authors, wrote that the US engineered the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait as a “strategic misdirection” or deception. Other PRC authors wrote that the US is working covertly to “dismember” the western PRC, namely Tibet and Xinjiang. The report is a public document, but the US Defense Department is limiting its distribution. One writer, strategist Gao Hen, wrote that a US defense of Taiwan could cause a major war between the PRC and the US of “global and historic implications.” [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for February 2, 2000.]

4. Missile Proliferation

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “CHINA, RUSSIA STILL EXPORT NUCLEAR, MISSILE TECHNOLOGY,” 2/2/00) reported that according to an unclassified US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) report on weapons proliferation, the PRC and Russia are continuing to provide goods and technology for the nuclear and missile programs of several developing nations. According to the report, from January to June of last year “firms in China provided missile-related items, raw materials and/or assistance to several countries of proliferation concern,” including Iran, the DPRK, and Pakistan. The report said that Russia also sold missile-related goods and technology to Iran, Syria and India. The report also said that PRC has provided “extensive” support to Pakistan’s nuclear and missile programs in the past, and that “some ballistic missile assistance continues.” The report said that “for the first half of 1999, entities in Russia and China continued to supply a considerable amount and a wide variety of ballistic missile-related goods and technology to Iran [and during the first half of last year,] North Korea obtained raw materials for its ballistic missile programs from various foreign sources, especially from firms in China.” The report was based on the evaluations of numerous US intelligence agencies, not just the CIA. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for February 2, 2000.]

5. Spratly Islands Dispute

Reuters (“PHILIPPINES REJECTS CHINESE CHARGES OVER DETENTION OF FISHERMEN,” Manila, 2/2/00) reported that the Philippines on Wednesday rejected a protest from the PRC over the treatment of a group of Chinese fishermen taken after a confrontation in the South China Sea. Regarding PRC foreign ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao’s statement on February 1 [Ed. note: See the Daily Report for February 1] Philippine President Joseph Estrada’s spokesman Fernando Barican said in a statement, “if indeed Mr. Zhu Bangzao made such statements, it is regrettable as such statements will not enhance Philippine-China relations.” Barican said Zhu had directly accused Manila of “harassing, forcibly boarding and robbing Chinese fishermen” in the area. Barican said, “it is unimaginable that a Chinese foreign ministry official would impute against the Philippine government acts which are generally regarded as criminal in nature.” Barican stressed that the Scarborough Shoal where the fisherman were taken was only 25 nautical miles from the main Philippine island of Luzon and “is an integral part of Philippine territory over which the Republic of the Philippines has absolute sovereignty and effective territorial jurisdiction. China’s claim over the shoal is bereft of any historical or legal basis.” Barican added that the shoal is more than 600 nautical miles from the PRC offshore province of Hainan and nearly 1,000 nautical miles from the PRC mainland.

6. US-Philippines Military Exercises

Philippine Star (Perseus Echeminada and Ding Cervantes, “WAR GAMES TO TEST RP RESPONSE TO INVASION” 2/2/00) reported that Philippines Armed Forces chief General Angelo Reyes said on February 1 that thirty-nine fighter aircraft, 10 war vessels and about 4,000 US and Filipino soldiers will assault the shores of Ternate, Cavite on February 28 to cap a month-long war preparedness exercise between the Philippines and the US. In a briefing with senators, Reyes said the massive amphibious assault will have a defense and counter-attack scenario, where troops from the two countries will test their skills as well as their readiness to respond to external threat and will include joint special operations, crisis management and civic-military operations. The briefing was called for by the Senate committees on foreign affairs and defense to get assurances from the military that the joint exercises are within the bounds of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA). [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for February 2, 2000.]

II. Republic of Korea

1. Trilateral Coordination Group

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “3-WAY MEET TO DISCUSS S-N TIES IN WAKE OF BERLIN BREAKTHROUGH,” Seoul, 02/01/00) and The Korea Times (Son Key-young, “KOREA, US, JAPAN MULL LIFTING SANCTIONS ON NK,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that an ROK official said that the ROK, the US and Japan will meet in Seoul on Wednesday to fine-tune their DPRK policies and discuss ways to further inter-Korean ties. The officials were busy making preparations for the meeting of the so-called Trilateral Coordination and Oversight Group, or TCOG. Deputy Foreign Minister Jang Jai-ryong, the ROK’s delegate to the meeting, held preliminary sessions with his counterparts, US State Department counselor Wendy Sherman, and Yukio Takeuchi, Japanese director general for foreign policy. Ministry officials said that the DPRK’s responses and other prospects for US-DPRK relations would be discussed in Wednesday’s three-way meeting. The three senior officials were expected to discuss how to use the high- level delegation’s visit to the US as an impetus for future inter-Korean government talks, they added. Another ministry official said that the three representatives would also discuss the resumption of rapprochement talks between the DPRK and Japan. The official said that the normalization talks are expected to coincide with Japan’s resumption of food aid to the DPRK. The three parties will talk about ways of lifting US economic sanctions on the DPRK and of offering humanitarian aid under the framework of the “Perry process” designed to put an end to the DPRK’s programs of developing weapons of mass destruction.

The Korea Times (“S.KOREA’S ALLIES MEET TO COORDINATE N.KOREA POLICY,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that senior US, Japanese and ROK officials talked on February 1 about how they could work together in policy toward the DPRK as it showed signs of reaching out to its adversaries. US State Department Counselor Wendy Sherman led the US delegation to the February 1 talks in Seoul. Japanese Deputy Vice Minister for Foreign Policy Yukio Takeuchi and ROK Deputy Foreign Minister Jang Jai-ryong joined Sherman in the talks to reiterate their agreement to coordinate their dealings with the DPRK.

2. DPRK High-Level US Visit

The Korea Times (“N.KOREAN VISIT TO WASHINGTON A ‘MODEST’ STEP: ALBRIGHT,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said on January 31 that the DPRK’s decision to send a high- level delegation to the US was “an important, modest step that will have useful implications and applications.” Albright told a press conference that she was cautious about what the visit might bring, but “it will be very important to see if there is real progress in lessening the North Korean missile threat.”

3. DPRK Missile Exports

Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “ISRAEL WILLING TO AID N.K.’S FARM INDUSTRY IN RETURN FOR HALTING MISSILE EXPORTS,” 2/2/00) reported that the DPRK has accused Israel of aggravating tensions on the Korean Peninsula by providing modern military equipment to the ROK, while Israel has complained about DPRK missile sales to Middle Eastern nations. However, Israeli Ambassador Arie Azari said on February 1 in an interview with The Korea Herald that there is room for cooperation between Israel and the DPRK. Azari stated, “we are willing to support North Korea’s agricultural industry if Pyongyang requests our aid. We have a globally competitive agricultural sector and have already given help to African and South American countries, as well as some disaster areas in Asia.” Azari made clear however that the DPRK should first stop selling missiles and technology to Arab countries, including Iran, Iraq and Syria, if it wants to improve relations with Israel. Azari said, “we don’t have any diplomatic relations with North Korea. Whether such relations can take shape or not depends mainly on the North’s willingness to stop its missile exports.” Azari also refuted the DPRK’s claims of Israeli missile sales to the ROK, saying, “we are not hiding the export of Harpy missiles to South Korea because the missiles referred to are being provided to Seoul explicitly for its defense system.” [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for February 2, 2000.]

4. US Soldiers Remains in DPRK

The Korea Times (“N.KOREANS TO LET U.S. INSPECT AREA WHERE WAR REMAINS FOUND,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that the DPRK invited the US on January 31 to send forensics experts to an area where the ROK government says it unearthed hundreds of human remains that may be US servicemen killed in the Korean War. The US Defense Department had no immediate reaction. To bolster its claim, the DPRK released the name Charles E. Sizemore from a military identification tag it said was found among the remains. According to US Defense Department records, Sizemore was a US soldier who went missing on November 2, 1950, in the opening months of the Korean War. The DPRK citizens informed US officials last week that it had found approximately 415 sets of human remains during bulldozing operations at a land reclamation project. The DPRK invited the US to retrieve the remains in Pyongyang. The US Defense Department said it needed more details about the discovery. On January 31, Li Gun, deputy DPRK representative at his country’s mission at the UN, said in a telephone interview that the Korean People’s Army had invited the US Defense Department to send a “fact-finding team” to verify that the remains are those of US servicemen.

5. DPRK Water Resources

The Korea Herald (“KOWACO SAYS SOME 40 BIG DAMS CAN BE BUILT IN N. KOREA,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that the Korea Water Resources Corporation (KOWACO) said on January 31 that about 40 large dams over 15 meters high could be built on the basins of rivers in the DPRK. KOWACO conducted an analysis of the DPRK’s water resources based on documents, satellite photographs, and the geographic information system (GIS). The study showed that chronic floods in the northwestern part of Kyonggi Province could be prevented if and when a dam capable of containing 1.5 billion tons of water is constructed on the basin of the Imjin River. The study also found that the water quality of rivers and streams in the DPRK is worsening due to a lack of sewage disposal facilities, with water in the basin of the Tumen River unfit even for industrial purposes.

6. DPRK Political Stability

The Korea Times (Shim Jae-yun, “NK REGIME TO SURVIVE AT LEAST 15 YEARS,” Seoul, 02/01/00) reported that ROK and US intelligence agencies have set up their DPRK policy on the assumption that the DPRK regime will survive for at least the next 15 years. Lee Jong-chan, advisor of the ruling Millennium Democratic Party (MDP), said, “the intelligence authorities of the two countries share a similar view that the North Korean leadership is unlikely to collapse in the near future.” In his autobiography, the former director of the National Intelligence Service (NIS) said, “until 1990, U.S. intelligence agencies formulated North Korea policies in line with their judgment that its collapse is not far off. An increasing number of North Korean people harbor dissatisfaction over the Kim Jong-il regime due to its heavy-handed rule and resulting economic hardship.” Lee said that he sees little indication that organized anti- government forces will emerge in the DPRK to threaten the regime although individual resentment has escalated. Lee predicted that the DPRK will adopt a “piecemeal adjustment” approach as a means to survive the changing situation. He also forecasted that the ROK and the DPRK will have to iron out differences over the status of the DPRK’s Labor Party, realignment of the armed forces and the regional sentiment in the DPRK before seeking reunification.

III. People’s Republic of China

1. DPRK-US Dialogue

China Daily (“DPRK, US SCHEDULE MEETINGS,” Moscow, 2/1/00, P12) reported that US State Department spokesman James Rubin told reporters on January 31 that the DPRK has accepted an invitation to send its first high- level delegation to Washington. The acceptance came during talks in Berlin last week. A senior US official said that a meeting is scheduled between Charles Kartman, the US special envoy to DPRK, and DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Gye-gwan this month in New York to pave the way for the US trip about a month later. Analysts said that the ROK is expected to step up its pursuit of a summit with the DPRK after the US hosts a visit by a high-ranking official from the DPRK. Analysts said that more details were likely on government plans of the ROK after talks with emissaries from the US and Japan in Seoul on February 1.

2. ROK Economy

China Daily (“S. KOREA EXPECTS 1999 GDP TO GROW,” Seoul, 2/1/00, P6) reported that the ROK Ministry of Finance and Economy said on January 31 that the ROK economy is estimated to have grown by between 10.1 percent and 10.2 percent last year following a 5.8 percent contraction in 1998. The ministry said that the higher-than-expected gross domestic product growth in 1999 reflected renewed consumer spending and rising corporate investment in the second half. The dramatic recovery in growth was expected as the country rebounds from its worst economic crisis in decades.

3. PRC-US Relations

China Daily (Meng Yan, “US TOLD TO BACK OFF FROM TAIWAN,” 2/2/00, P.1,3) reported that the PRC strongly opposes the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act (TSEA). PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao told a press conference on February 1 that “the act will seriously harm peace and stability in the Taiwan Straits and the Asia-Pacific region and may set back Sino-US relations.” Zhu added that the essence of the TSEA is to let the US sell advanced weapons to Taiwan and expand direct military communications between the two places. Zhu urged the US Congress to set aside the measure and urged the US Congress to approve permanent normal trade relations for the PRC this year. Zhu said, “the win-win trade agreement between China and the US would help develop trade relations and thus do good for overall bilateral ties.”

China Daily (Hu Qihua, “ANTI-CHINA ATTEMPT WOULD HURT US TIES,” 1/31/00, P.1) reported that PRC Vice- Foreign Minister Wang Guangya warned that Sino-US human rights dialogues will suffer a “serious setback” if the US introduces an anti-PRC resolution to the US Commission in March. On January 11, the US Department of State announced that it would sponsor an anti-PRC resolution at the 56th session of the UN Commission on Human Rights. Wang pointed out that the PRC Government has made great efforts in promoting and protecting human rights. Wang said, “differences between developed and developing countries over human rights should not become an obstacle to the development of their relations, nor a means to interfere in others’ internal affairs.”

China Daily (“WU ASKS US TO MOVE FAST,” Davos, Switzerland, 1/31/00, P3) reported that PRC Vice-Premier Wu Bangguo met US Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky and Secretary of Commerce William Daley on January 29 to suggest that the US Congress grant China early approval of permanent normal trading relations. Wu spoke to the US officials on the sidelines of the 30th annual World Economic Forum. Wu said that the PRC is ready to conclude all talks with concerned parties in the spirit of mutual understanding and flexibility.

4. PLA General’s Visit to the US

People’s Daily (Ma Shikun and Zhang Yong, “US DEFENSE SECRETARY MEETS XIONG GUANGKAI,” Washington, 1/29/00, P3) reported that US Secretary of Defense William Cohen met Xiong Guangkai, deputy chief of General Staff of the PRC People’s Liberation Army (PLA), on January 26, marking the resumption of high-level military contact between the two countries since the US-led NATO’s bombing of the PRC embassy in Belgrade last May. Xiong said that he believed that the common interests and approaches are more important for the two countries than the differences that still exist in some areas. During the meeting, Cohen said that he was satisfied with the success of the consultations, stressing that the US administration pays great attention to relations with the PRC and hopes to develop a normal, positive and good relationship with the country. Regarding Taiwan, Cohen reaffirmed the principle of the “one-China” policy, the commitment in the three joint communiques guiding US-PRC relations, and the “three noes” promise. Xiong noted that a stable and sound relationship between the PRC and the US was not only in the common interests of the two, but also conducive to world peace, stability and development. Xiong said that the two countries should view and handle the relationship, particularly the issue of Taiwan, with wisdom and strategic vision. Xiong added that the PRC is willing to seek common interests, expand cooperation and narrow differences based on the principles of mutual respect and equality to bring a sound and stable Sino-US relationship into the new century.

People’s Liberation Army Daily (“CHINA AND US HOLD THIRD DEFENSE CONSULTATION,” Washington, 1/28/00, P4) reported that deputy chief of General Staff of the PRC People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Xiong Guangkai, who arrived in Washington on January 22, held a formal consultation with US Under Secretary of Defense Walter Slocombe on a broad range of subjects, including global, regional, military-to-military and other bilateral issues. Speaking of the international situation, Xiong indicated that “despite the unstoppable trend of multi-polarization of the world order, hegemony and power politics still exist and such policies have developed into forms like new ‘gunship diplomacy,’ ‘new economic colonialism,’ and ‘new interventionism’. The practice of such policies have undermined the sovereignty and independence of many countries and jeopardized the world peace and security. History has proved that the doctrine of protecting security by military buildup and alliance cannot ensure security nor safeguard the world peace. China believes that a new world order with peace, justice, prosperity and stability can be ushered in only if world leaders abandon the ‘Cold War’ logic and strictly abide by the five principles of peaceful co-existence, the United Nations Charter and other international norms.” Slocombe was quoted by the report as telling Xiong that links between countries are strengthened and their security further interwoven as economic globalization deepens. Slocombe said that the role of military power is important in safeguarding US national security and interests and that the US will continue to maintain the power, but cooperation with other countries is also needed to achieve the goal. Xiong told Slocombe that the Taiwan issue remains the most important and sensitive core issue in Sino-US relations. Xiong also said that the PRC was seriously concerned by the recent sales of weapons to Taiwan, the attempt by some congressmen to pass the TSEA, and the attempt to bring Taiwan into the US Theater Missile Defense system. Xiong said that the US should recognize the seriousness and harmfulness of these problems and take effective measures as early as possible to prevent further damage to the Sino-US relationship. Slocombe reaffirmed US engagement with the PRC and said that the US hopes that the PRC will continue to play an important and constructive role in the world. Slocombe said that the US acknowledges the importance and sensitiveness of the Taiwan issue and the US will maintain its “one-China” policy.

5. PRC-Japanese Relations

People’s Daily (Wang Feng, “JAPAN’S ECONOMIC AID TO CHINA,” Beijing, 2/2/00, P4) reported that Long Yongtu, Chief Negotiator of the PRC Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, signed a governmental economic aid agreement with the Japanese ambassador to the PRC on February 1. According to the agreement, the Japanese government will freely provide 1.23 billion Japanese yen of fertilizer, farm chemicals and agricultural machines to help inland areas of the PRC, especially the poor areas in Midwest, to increase grain production. Long said at the signing ceremony that the aid project will play a positive role to the economic development of the PRC’s inland areas.

6. PRC Position on Taiwan Issue

People’s Daily (Zhao Wei and Zhao Chuandong, “BEIJING MARKS THE FIFTH ANNIVERSARY OF JIANG ZEMIN’S PROPOSITION ON REUNIFICATION,” Beijing, 1/29/00, P1) reported that PRC Vice Premier Qian Qichen made a speech at a forum in Beijing on January 28 to mark the fifth anniversary of the eight-point proposition made by PRC President Jiang Zemin on the reunification of Taiwan. Qian said, “Taiwan independence” absolutely would not mean peace but a war between the two sides of the straits. He called on compatriots across the Taiwan Straits to unite, fight against “Taiwan independence,” and strive for peaceful reunification. Qian said that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the Chinese government will never compromise on safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity and warned that separatists in Taiwan must not “play with fire.” Qian said, “we’ll continue to carry out the basic principle of ‘peaceful reunification, and one country, two systems’ and the eight-point proposition put forward by President Jiang Zemin for an early reunification of the motherland.” He also stressed that to realize peaceful reunification, both sides of the Taiwan Straits must adhere to the one-China principle and seek ways to solve the differences between them through equal consultations. Qian said that policies dealing with the Taiwan issue will be more flexible than those for Hong Kong and Macao to fully meet the aspirations and demands of compatriots in Taiwan, who will finally come to believe that reunification under the “one country, two systems” principle is the best way to safeguard their interests. Qian reiterated the PRC’s intention to continue to promote economic and cultural exchanges, and work for the establishment of direct links in trade, transportation and postal services between the two sides of the straits. He emphasized that no matter what happen, the legitimate rights and interests of Taiwan investors will be protected in the PRC. Qian said that the PRC was willing to see Taiwan join the World Trade Organization (WTO) as a separate customs territory following the PRC’s entry. Qian said that cross-strait talks under the one-China principle are essential for a peaceful reunification. He said the topics of the talks can focus on the “three direct links: economic relations after the WTO entry of the two sides, the international space for economic, cultural and social activities of Taiwan, and the political status of the Taiwan authorities. Qian also reiterated that the Taiwan issue was an internal affair of the PRC, and all foreign countries should respect the feeling and will of the Chinese people including Taiwan compatriots.

People’s Liberation Army Daily (“SEPARATISM IN TAIWAN WILL NOT BEE TOLERATED,” Beijing, 1/30/00, P1) reported that a senior PRC official who handles Taiwan affairs warned on January 28 that if Lee Teng-hui and his supporters continue to advocate “Taiwan Independence” and reject the one-China principle, the PRC will take resolute measures. Chen Yunlin, director of the Taiwan Work Office of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, said that the PRC expects to resume negotiations between the two sides of the Taiwan Straits on the basis of the one China principle and fulfill the plan for Wang Daohan, president of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, to visit Taiwan. Chen, who is also the director of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, made the remarks at a forum held in Beijing on January 28 to mark the fifth anniversary of PRC President Jiang Zemin’s eight-point proposal on reunification of the motherland. Chen said that it was worth noting that Taiwan president Lee Teng-hui and some separatists are trying to divide Taiwan from the motherland by attempting to tamper with its “constitution and laws.” If separatist forces in Taiwan continue to advocate such policies, they will make it impossible to fulfill the goal of peaceful reunification, according to Chen. He said, the mainland is keeping a close eye on separatist activities in Taiwan. Chen said the only way to realizing peaceful reunification is to carry out negotiations between both sides of the Taiwan Straits on the basis of the one China principle. He continued that the PRC has made unremitting efforts in promoting cross-straits dialogue, and that Lee Teng-hui’s “two states” statement has seriously undermined cross-straits dialogue and postponed the scheduled visit to Taiwan by Wang Daohan. He also said that resolving the Taiwan issue accords with the will of the people and the general trend of events, thus it can not been delayed indefinitely. Chen said, “we will continue to implement the basic policy of ‘peaceful reunification and one country, two systems, and the eight- point proposition of Jiang Zemin, and create favorable conditions for resolving the Taiwan issue as early as possible.”

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