NAPSNet Daily Report 06 August, 2002

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 06 August, 2002", NAPSNet Daily Report, August 06, 2002, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-06-august-2002/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. Cross-Straits Relations
2. PRC Military Development
3. Japan Hiroshima Anniversary
4. UN-DPRK-US Naval Clash Discussions
5. DPRK Asian Games Participation
6. Japan Internal Defense Leaks
7. PRC ROK Missionary Deportation
II. Republic of Korea 1. UNC-DPRK Talks
2. DPRK-Mongolia Relations
3. Japan’s policy on Refugees
4. KEDO Project in DPRK
5. Inter-Korean Relations in Sporting Event
III. CanKor E-Clipping Service 1. CanKor # 94 Friday, 2 August 2002
IV. Special Announcement 1. Nautilus Publishes Report on DPRK Scenarios

I. United States

1. Cross-Straits Relations

Agence France-Presse (“CHINA REINFORCES CONDEMNATION OF CHEN’S REFERENDUM REMARKS,” 08/06/02) reported that the PRC reiterated its angry response to Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian’s call for a referendum on the island’s future but failed to outline any concrete response. The People’s Daily, the warned a referendum could put the island on a dangerous path away from the previous status quo. “It would be a futile attempt to change the current situation by separating Taiwan from China and could push Taiwan towards war,” said the editorial, which was aired by China’s prime-time television news. Despite this and other new verbal salvos against Chen, analysts said the PRC appeared keen not to overreact. Taiwanese officials have been keen to play down the significance of the comments, which also strongly suggested Taiwan is a sovereign state, and the US also declined to comment in detail on the row.

Reuters (Brian Rhoads, “CHINA-TAIWAN TENSIONS EXPECTED TO SMOULDER, NOT EXPLODE,” Beijing, 08/06/02) reported that Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian’s support for a referendum on the island’s independence caught the PRC and the US flat footed and scuttled chances for talks on cross-Strait trade ties in the near term. But diplomats and analysts said on Tuesday that barring concrete steps by the island’s leader towards a referendum, prospects for full-blown crisis in the Taiwan Strait were remote. The Taiwan leader said on Saturday that holding a referendum was a “basic human right” and in reality there was “one country on each side” of the Taiwan Strait. Analysts say Chen was angry at the recent loss of Nauru — one of Taiwan’s few allies — to Beijing’s diplomatic camp, frustrated at a lack of progress in cross-Strait ties since he took office in 2000 and eager to start rallying his Democratic Progressive Party ahead of elections in 2004.

2. PRC Military Development

Agence France-Presse (“CHINA MODERNIZING MILITARY, BUT WAR WITH TAIWAN UNLIKELY SOON,” 08/06/02) reported that the PRC is swiftly modernizing its armed forces in case it decides to use force against Taiwan, but fears the island is scrambling to establish independence before its military might is ready, experts said. “Many people say that time is on China’s side, our economic and trade ties with Taiwan are growing and in the future China will be more powerful and capable of dealing with unification,” said Yan Xuetong, director of the Institute of International Studies at Tsinghua University. “But the secessionists in Taiwan also understand this, and that is why Chen Shui-bian is eager to move forward toward independence,” he stated. The notion of hostilities in the Taiwan Straits, while still remote, were pushed into the spotlight after weekend remarks by Chen saying he would push for a referendum for Taiwan’s people to decide their future. However Yan said military action would only be likely if Chen successfully organized a referendum — and that would only be likely if Chen wins re-election in Taiwan’s next presidential elections in 2004. “China will not be embarking on any military action based on what Chen Shui-bian said, and I don’t think that any war is going to break out anytime this year,” Yan said.

3. Japan Hiroshima Anniversary

The Associated Press (Kenji Hall, “HIROSHIMA REMEMBERS BOMBING VICTIMS,” Hiroshima, 08/06/02) and Agence France-Presse (“JAPAN VOWS NO NUCLEAR WEAPONS ON HIROSHIMA ANNIVERSARY,” 08/06/02) reported that Japan Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi reiterated Tuesday that Japan will not allow nuclear arms on its soil, as the country remembered the atomic bombing of Hiroshima 57 years ago. “This position will not change,” Koizumi said at a ceremony here, referring to the policy forbidding the production and possession of nuclear weapons in Japan. He was among some 45,000 people estimated to have gathered in Hiroshima, about 700 kilometers (440 miles) southwest of Tokyo, for the annual ceremony to mark the nuclear bombing of the city at the end of World War II. “As the only nation to suffer nuclear bombing in the human history, we resolve not to repeat the horrors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and to strictly abide by our peace constitution,” Koizumi said. He added the government would continue to urge the international community to ratify the 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty outlawing nuclear tests. The Hiroshima city government puts the total number of people who have died after being exposed to radiation from the bombing at 226,870, including 4,977 in the past year.

4. UN-DPRK-US Naval Clash Discussions

The Associated Press (J. H. Yun, “U.S.-LED U.N. COMMAND AND NORTH KOREA DISCUSS NAVAL CLASH,” Panmunjom, 08/06/02) reported that the US-led United Nations Command and the DPRK’s military on Tuesday discussed ways to prevent hostilities such as a recent clash between the ROK and the DPRK along a disputed sea border. The two sides agreed on the need for better communication, including regular staff-level meetings, to avoid another naval confrontation, said Lee Ferguson, a command spokeswoman. Details of these measures will be discussed in future talks, the command said in a statement. The UN command’s chief delegate, Maj. General James Soligan, said, “We had a very positive meeting today – a tone of cooperation and common interest in reducing tensions and preventing miscalculations,” Soligan said. “These talks today proved that positive progress can be made only through open dialogue,” he said. The meeting of officials from the U.N. command and the DPRK People’s Army was the first since late 2000 and was part of the DPRK efforts to resume negotiations with the United States, Japan and the ROK.

5. DPRK Asian Games Participation

The Associated Press (“OLYMPIC COUNCIL OF ASIA HAILS NORTH KOREA’S DECISION TO PARTICIPATE IN ASIAN GAMES,” Kuwait, 08/05/02) reported that the Olympic Council of Asia on Monday hailed the DPRK’s decision to participate in this year’s Asian Games in the ROK and expected the competition to be the largest ever. Muttaleb Ahmed, director general of the Kuwait-based OCA, said the council was “overjoyed” at the news. “With North Korea’s participation, an aim of the games – achieving unity and peace between the countries of the continent – would be realized,” he stated. The DPRK’s entry was part of an agreement reached with the ROK on Sunday. The DPRK has long shunned all international sporting events in the ROK, including this year’s soccer World Cup. When the 14th Asian Games open September 29 in the southern port city of Busan, all but one of OCA’s 43 members will be taking part, Ahmed said. Iraq’s membership was suspended after its August 1990 invasion of Kuwait.

6. Japan Internal Defense Leaks

The Associated Press (“POSSIBLE DATA LEAK AT JAPAN’S DEFENSE AGENCY SPURS INVESTIGATION,” Tokyo, 08/06/02) reported that Japan’s Defense Agency said police were investigating a possible data leak from military computers on Tuesday and warned that sensitive information may have fallen into the wrong hands. Agency officials were notified of a possible leak July 1 by computer manufacturer Fujitsu, which had been contracted for work on the agency’s computer network, Defense Agency spokesman Manabu Shimamoto said Tuesday. Shimamoto declined to specify what kind of data may have been leaked. But sensitive information might have been divulged after Fujitsu subcontracted work to an outside company, he said. Police were investigating, Shimamoto said.

7. PRC ROK Missionary Deportation

The Associated Press (Choe Sang-hung, “CHINA FREES SOUTH KOREAN MISSIONARY,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that a key figure in an underground campaign to help DPRK asylum-seekers escape to the ROK via the PRC and elsewhere said Tuesday he has been freed from a PRC prison after eight months and would soon be deported. Chun Ki-won, a 46-year-old ROK Christian missionary, said he had helped 170 DPRK citizens escape to the ROK since 1999, taking them through jungles of Southeast Asia and grasslands of Inner Mongolia, before PRC border guards arrested him in December. In a telephone interview from Hailar City in the PRC’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region, Chun stated that a PRC court released him Monday. It fined him US$6,040 and ordered that he leave the country. He was waiting for his exit papers and hoped to return home later this month.

II. Republic of Korea

1. UNC-DPRK Talks

Joongang Ilbo (“UNC-NK ARMY AGREES TO PREVENT FUTURE NAVAL CLASH,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that the United Nations Command and DPRK held a military generals’ meeting Tuesday and agreed to make joint efforts to prevent a recurrence of an incident such as the June 29 inter-Korean sea battle. “These talks today proved that positive progress can be made only through open dialogue. We also informed the DPRK on our latest salvage project of the sunken ship which also involve search of the missing sailor and suggested means to maintain facility for communications to ease tensions and prevent misunderstanding,” said Major General James Soligan, the UNC’s deputy chief of staff who led the UNC delegation in the talks held at the truce village of Panmunjeom. ROK and US navy is jointly conducting a salvage work on the Yellow Sea where naval clash took place in order to recover one of the ROK corvettes shot down during the gun exchange. Soligan, explaining that he has come to the meeting to notify DPRK about the investigation at the Yellow Sea said DPRK also made several suggestion on the Yellow Sea incidents but will disclose it later.

2. DPRK-Mongolia Relations

Joongang Ilbo (“NK FOREIGN MINISTER TO VISIT MONGOLIA,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that DPRK Foreign Minister Paek Nam-sun will reportedly make a three-day visit to Mongolia starting from Wednesday under the invitation of Mongolian Foreign Minister Luvsangiin Erdenechuluun. Foreign Minister Erdenechuluun, disclosed in his interview with Japan’s Sankei Shimbun last month of his decision to transfer DPRK defectors who reached Mongolian border to their desired destination. Mongolia’s border is one of the most popular routes to the outside world among asylum-seekers in the DPRK eager to find defect. So far there has been no reports on Minister Paek’s return to Pyeongyang since his attendance to Brunei for Asean Regional Forum on the end of last month, making it likely he’d return to Pyeongyang after his visit to Ulaanbataar.

3. Japan’s policy on Refugees

Joongang Ilbo (“JAPAN TO SEEK NEW POLICY ON REFUGEES,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that Japan plans to finalize new policy that allows DPRK defectors to apply for refugee status in diplomatic establishments overseas reported the Yomiuri Shimbun last Sunday. Under the new refugee policy asylum-seekers would be able to request refugee status once they reach not only Japan but also diplomatic missions abroad. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs would determine the defectors’ situation and come up with specific measures to assist the people. The Japanese government has also decided to extend Japanese language classes and job education to refugees persecuted for racial, religious, and political reasons as defined in UN treaty. Only refugees from Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Indochina regions will be allowed the privilege.

4. KEDO Project in DPRK

Chosun Ilbo (“PRICHARD TRAVELS TO NK FOR KEDO CEREMONY,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that on the eve of a ceremony in DPRK to mark the pouring of concrete for the first of two nuclear reactors being built by the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization, US special envoy, Jack Pritchard embarked on a trip to the Stalinist state, Tuesday. Pritchard is part of the 135-member delegation, including KEDO’s four executive board members, traveling to DPRK to observe the launch of a new construction stage. His trip follows a two-day meeting in Seoul, to assess KEDO’s reactor project.

5. Inter-Korean Relations in Sporting Event

Chosun Ilbo (“SOUTH AND NORTH LIKELY TO MARCH TOGETHER IN BUSAN ASIAN GAMES,” Seoul, 08/06/02) reported that ROK and DPRK may march hand in hand in the opening ceremony of the upcoming Busan Asian Games and if the possibility becomes a reality, this will be the second time around for the two Koreas, following a landmark, joint-opening parade during the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000. This matter and other cross-border sports exchanges will be high on the agenda, at a meeting on August 20 in Monaco between ROK member of the International Olympic Committee, Kim Un-yong and his DPRK counterpart Chang Ung. Meanwhile ROK government has decided to foot the bill for the DPRK delegation in the 14th Asian Games, set to open on September 29 in the ROK port city of Busan. The ROK government is expected to spend at least US$200,000 to cover the accommodation cost for 200 DPRK athletes and staff members during their 16-day stay in ROK.

III. CanKor E-Clipping Service

1. CanKor # 94 Friday, 2 August 2002

Positive developments on the engagement front, as the DPRK apologizes for the recent West Sea naval clash, initiates a resumption of inter-ministerial talks with South Korea, and arranges to have DPRK Foreign Minister Paek Nam Sun meet over coffee with US Secretary of State Colin Powell at the margins of the ASEAN Regional Forum in Brunei. At the same meeting, the foreign ministers of Japan and the DPRK sign a joint press release announcing a consensus on the establishment of diplomatic ties as soon as possible, preceded by action on a number of pending humanitarian issues. What may in the long run be even more significant, DPRK sources confirm recent press rumours that new financial policies have been implemented, in particular up to 20-fold increases in wages and prices based on domestic supply and demand as well as market prices abroad. In order to gain an appreciation of the impact such changes may hold for working families, this week’s FOCUS section takes a look inside the DPRK labour system: how work life is currently structured in terms of salaries, promotions, physical labour for white collar workers, and new types of work emerging from the current crisis.

Back issues of CanKor can be consulted at our new website: http://www.pcaps.iar.ubc.ca/cankor

IV. Special Announcement

1. Nautilus Publishes Report on DPRK Scenarios

The Nautilus Institute published an on-line report on Scenarios for the Future of US-DPRK Relations. The report is based on two workshops held at the Institute in May and June, 2002, which developed four distinct scenarios for the future of North Korea and then used these scenarios to test the viability of cooperative engagement.

The report is available online at: http://www.nautilus.org/security/Korea/index.html

The NAPSNet Daily Report aims to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchange among peace and security specialists. Conventions for readers and a list of acronyms and abbreviations are available to all recipients. For descriptions of the world wide web sites used to gather information for this report, or for more information on web sites with related information, see the collection of other NAPSNet resources.
We invite you to reply to today’s report, and we welcome commentary or papers for distribution to the network.

Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:

Ilmin Internationl Relations Institute
BK21 The Education and Research Corps for East Asian Studies
Department of Political Science, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

International Peace Research Institute (PRIME),
Meiji Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan

Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Brandon Yu: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Young-soo: yskim328@hotmail.com
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hibiki Yamaguchi: hibikiy84@hotmail.com
Tokyo, Japan

Saiko Iwata: saiko@akira.ne.jp
Tokyo, Japan

Hiroya Takagi: hiroya_takagi@hotmail.com
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin: icipu@online.ru
Moscow, Russian Federation

Wu Chunsi: cswu@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen: dlshen@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

John McKay: John.McKay@adm.monash.edu.au
Clayton, Australia

 


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