NAPSNet Daily Report 10 April, 2002

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 10 April, 2002", NAPSNet Daily Report, April 10, 2002, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-10-april-2002/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. PRC-Russia Space Militarization Opposition
2. ROK Response to Japanese Textbooks
3. PRC Human Rights
4. DPRK-ROK-US Relations
5. Japan Nuclear Development
6. Russia CIA Accusations
7. Japan Domestic Politics
8. ROK President Hospitalization
9. Taiwan-US Submarine Proposals
10. DPRK Humanitarian Aid
II. Japan 1. Japanese New Security Legislation
2. Japanese Envoy to CD
3. US-Japan Military Cooperation

I. United States

1. PRC-Russia Space Militarization Opposition

Agence France-Presse (“RUSSIA, CHINA VOICE OPPOSITION TO MILITARISATION OF SPACE,” 04/10/02) reported that senior PRC and Russian officials voiced joint opposition Tuesday to the militarization of space. Russia’s deputy foreign minister Georgy Mamedov met his PRC counterpart Wang Guangya in Moscow on Tuesday, and issued a statement afterwards declaring “(the two countries) are going to unite their efforts to reach a multilateral accord banning the deployment of weapons in space.” Both ministers stressed the willpower by Russia and the PRC to put into place “a mechanism for consultation on questions of strategic stability which would involve the five countries — Russia, China, United States, Britain and France — who are permanent members of the United Nations security council.” The statement comes as Russia and the US prepare for a three-day summit from May 23 that could lead to a ground-breaking nuclear arms cuts agreement. Both US President George W. Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin are hoping to formalize an accord that reduces their operational nuclear warhead stocks to between 1,700 and 2,200 by 2012.

2. ROK Response to Japanese Textbooks

Agence France-Presse (“SOUTH KOREA CONDEMNS NEW JAPANESE TEXTBOOKS,” 04/10/02) reported that ROK Foreign Minister Choi Sung-Hong expressed regret over “distorted” Japanese history textbooks reportedly approved this week for use in high schools. The minister vowed to keep pressing Japan to correct the alleged inaccuracies, Yonhap news agency said on Wednesday. The ROK and Japan already clashed last year over Japanese junior high school textbooks which were accused by Asian neighbors of whitewashing wartime atrocities during World War II. But the ROK, which led the protests, had toned down its accusations ahead of the co-hosting of the football World Cup finals with Japan this summer. Japan’s education ministry, however, on Monday approved high school textbooks which contain new inaccuracies, Yonhap said. “Our people are still concerned and still unhappy,” Choi was quoted as telling a breakfast seminar in Seoul. “We will continue our efforts to have Japan remedy the situation.” According to Yonhap, the newly endorsed book “Modern Japanese History” says Tokdo, an islet now under South Korea’s control, is Japanese. The island is called Takeshima in Japan.

3. PRC Human Rights

Reuters (Richard Waddington, “CHINA ESCAPES CENSURE AT U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS MEETING,” 04/11/02) reported that the PRC escaped censure on Wednesday at the United Nations human rights body but Russia, Israel and Cuba were back in the dock for alleged abuses. Unlike in previous years, no country came forward with a resolution critical of the PRC before a deadline passed for presenting motions to the annual meeting of the Human Rights Commission in Geneva. The PRC had been widely expected to avoid official criticism in the absence of the US, which failed to win re-election to the 53-nation Commission. In past years, the US had always sponsored a motion critical of the PRC for its policies towards Tibet and religious minorities, but no other country had been willing to take over the role in the US’ absence. Human rights activists lashed out at the European Union in particular for its reluctance to take the PRC to task. “The EU clearly neither possess the courage or political will to make an objective defence of the Tibetan people’s rights,” said Tsweang Lhadon of the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy.

4. DPRK-ROK-US Relations

The Associated Press (“GREGG SAYS NORTH KOREA WILLING TO IMPROVE RELATIONS WITH WASHINGTON,” Seoul, 04/10/02) and Reuters (Paul Eckert, “ENVOY TELLS SOUTH KOREA NORTH KEEN ON US TIES,” Seoul, 04/10/02) reported that former US envoy to Seoul Donald Gregg told ROK officials Wednesday that the DPRK seeks better relations. Gregg said, “I got the impression that North Korea seeks good relations with the United States,” Gregg told ROK officials. Gregg, who arrived in Seoul Tuesday after a four-day visit to the DPRK, said that the DPRK foreign and defense officials he met also hailed the results of a mission to Pyongyang last week by ROK special envoy Lim Dong-won. After Lim’s visit, the two Koreas published a joint agreement to restart North-South goodwill projects which were launched during their reconciliation in mid-2000 but frozen for much of last year. US special envoy on Korean affairs Charles Pritchard will arrive in Seoul Thursday for consultations on the DPRK, following US meetings with its Asian allies in Tokyo.

5. Japan Nuclear Development

Reuters (Teruaki Ueno, “JAPANESE POLITICIAN DEFENDS NUCLEAR REMARKS,” Tokyo, 04/10/02) reported that the leader of Japan’s second-biggest opposition party said on Wednesday he had been trying to encourage stronger ties with the PRC when he commented earlier that Japan could easily make nuclear weapons and surpass the PRC’s military might. Liberal Party chief Ichiro Ozawa told a seminar on Saturday in the southern city of Fukuoka that “China is applying itself to expansion of military power.” But on Wednesday, Ozawa said his statement was meant to encourage mutual trust between the PRC and Japan. “My remarks were dreadfully distorted and conveyed by some mass media. I am terribly annoyed,” Ozawa told reporters. Kyodo news agency had quoted him as telling the seminar: “If (China) gets too inflated, Japanese people will get hysterical. It would be so easy for us to produce nuclear warheads. We have plutonium at nuclear power plants in Japan, enough to make several thousand such warheads,” he was quoted as saying. The PRC has condemned the politician’s statement. Ozawa said he had warned Chinese leaders, including President Jiang Zemin not to forge ahead with a buildup of nuclear weapons when he visited Beijing last year. “It is easy to produce nuclear weapons. Even high school students can understand it,” Ozawa said. “It is easy to produce nuclear weapons technologically and economically if Japan wants to do so politically,” he said. “I told them (Chinese leaders) not to let that happen.”

6. Russia CIA Accusations

The Associated Press (Judith Ingram, “RUSSIAN SECURITY SERVICE ACCUSES CIA OF TRYING TO ACQUIRE MILITARY SECRETS,” Moscow, 04/10/02) reported that Russia’s main security service on Wednesday accused the US Central Intelligence Agency of trying to acquire Russian military secrets, using two agents posing as US diplomats to try to recruit a Russian Defense Ministry employee. The allegations included such traditional spy tradecraft as invisible ink, secret drop points and mind-altering drugs. A spokesperson for the security service said that CIA officers posing as embassy officials in Russia and another, unnamed former Soviet republic had tried to recruit an employee at a secret Russian Defense Ministry installation. The service named two alleged participants in the operation: David Robertson, whose post at an unnamed embassy in the former Soviet Union was not described, and Yunju Kensinger, reportedly a third secretary in the consular department of the US Embassy in Moscow. The Russian Defense Ministry employee, identified only by his first name, Viktor, had gone to a US Embassy in another former Soviet republic last spring to try to find information about a relative who had gone missing abroad. Embassy officers allegedly slipped him psychotropic drugs to get information out of him, because he was found a week later wandering the streets in shock and with amnesia. The ITAR-Tass news agency reported that only after psychiatric treatment had Viktor – whom a security service employee called a “real patriot” – been able to reconstruct the details of his visit. “As a result, the Federal Security Service took the necessary steps to stop the leak of Russian secrets through this channel and unmask the Langley employees who used the most unscrupulous methods,” ITAR-Tass said.

7. Japan Domestic Politics

Reuters (Elaine Lies, “JAPANESE LEADER BACK IN HOT SEAT OVER SCANDALS,” Tokyo, 04/10/02) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi faced withering criticism from opposition lawmakers and the media on Wednesday over a run of scandals that have hit his ratings. Opposition lawmakers accused Koizumi during Wednesday’s question-time session in parliament of letting down the public since his rise to power nearly a year ago. “You have been in office about a year, but your support has fallen by nearly half,” said Yukio Hatoyama, head of the largest opposition group, the Democratic Party. “It is not the Japanese people who have changed. It is you who has changed.” Koizumi countered that has not compromised nearly as much as the opposition, and would carry out his reform pledges, adding: “No matter what happens to my support, my determination on reforms has not changed.” But growing doubts about his commitment to reform and disappointment about his handling of the latest LDP scandals have dragged his public support rates to below 50 percent from the sky-high 90 percent when he took office.

8. ROK President Hospitalization

Agence France-Presse (“SKOREAN PRESIDENT IN HOSPITAL,” 04/10/02) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-Jung has been hospitalized for the treatment of an upset stomach and sprained thigh muscle. It marked the first time since he took office four years earlier that the 76-year-old president had been admitted to hospital. Blue House officials said his work schedule for Thursday had been scrapped and that future duties would have to be eased. “Following the dinner with Finnish President Tarja Halonen on Tuesday, President Kim was admitted to the Armed Forces Hospital for a medical check-up and treatment,” Blue House spokeswoman Park Sun-Sook said on Wednesday. “He will spend a few days in the hospital” near the Blue House, she said. Kim has yet to recover from a sprained thigh muscle suffered 10 days ago, she said. “Doctors say the president requires a medical checkup and intravenous fluid therapy to treat accumulated fatigue, gastrointestinal disorder and malnourishment,” she said. Chang Suk-Il, head of the medical department of the Blue House, put the blame on a combination of the president’s hectic official schedule and medicine taken to ease the pain in his left thigh. “All vital signs, including temperature, breathing, heart beats and blood pressure, are good,” he told journalists. “I expect him to fully recover within two or three days,” he said. His official schedule for Wednesday, including a meeting with former US ambassador to Seoul Donald Gregg, was cancelled, the spokeswoman said.

9. Taiwan-US Submarine Proposals

The Associated Press (“US TEAM TO TAKE SUBMARINE PROPOSALS TO TAIWAN,” 04/11/02) reported that a US military team is to soon travel to Taiwan, bearing proposals for the sale of up to eight diesel electric submarines, to make good on a promise by President George W. Bush, a Pentagon spokesman said. The team, consisting of US Navy officials and members of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, are to deliver a variety of design and construction proposals drawn up by contractors, Lieutenant Commander Jeff Davis said. “The president made a commitment to Taiwan last April to help it procure diesel submarines,” he said. “That commitment was made in earnest and we intend to make good on it.”

10. DPRK Humanitarian Aid

Reuters (Jeremy Page, “U.N. AGENCY SEEKS IMMEDIATE FOOD AID FOR NORTH KOREA,” Beijing, 04/10/02) reported that the DPRK will suffer a severe food crisis by the middle of this year unless donors pledge food aid immediately, a senior World Food Program (WFP) official said on Wednesday. The UN agency hoped an apparent thaw in relations between the DPRK, the ROK, and the US would encourage donors to respond to its repeated appeals to meet an unprecedented shortfall in food aid, WFP Regional Director for Asia John Powell said. “The people we feed, the most vulnerable in the DPRK, will experience a major food crisis from mid-year if we are not promised additional contributions now,” said Powell after a two-week mission to the DPRK. The shortfall is due largely to the withdrawal from the aid program of Japan, which was the biggest donor last year with a contribution of 500,000 tons. “We are still hopeful that the Japanese will contribute to this operation this calendar year,” Powell said. Japan has withheld food aid over public opposition stemming from issues such as the Japanese it says were allegedly abducted by DPRK agents.

II. Japan

1. Japanese New Security Legislation

The Japan Times (“PRIME MINISTER’S POWERS WOULD RISE UNDER PROPOSED CONTINGENCY PLAN,” Tokyo, 04/04/02) reported that the Japanese government on last Wednesday submitted to the ruling coalition an outline of a set of bills that gives the prime minister greater powers to deal with a foreign military attack, including the authority to issue orders to local governments and public organizations. A task force of the ruling bloc approved the outline in principal. A more detailed package will be shown to the coalition next week. The prime minister will be given such powers either when foreign forces attack Japan or when the situation surrounding Japan becomes such that an attack is likely, according to Wednesday’s outline. This effectively expands the definition of a foreign attack as stipulated under the current SDF law. The government is expected to draft a separate package of bills for the next Diet session, which will probably be convened in the fall, to deal with other possible emergency situations, such as terrorist attacks and suspicious vessels in Japanese waters.

2. Japanese Envoy to CD

The Japan Times (“PROFESSOR NAMED AS DISARMAMENT ENVOY,” Tokyo, 04/05/02) reported that Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi on Thursday named Kuniko Inoguchi, a professor of international relations at Sophia University, as ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. The appointment is part of a ministry reform drive in which Kawaguchi hopes to appoint around 10 people from outside the ministry to ambassadorial and other senior posts by the summer, Kawaguchi said. In a meeting with Kawaguchi at the Foreign Ministry, Inoguchi said she wants to apply her academic experience and studies to her new job. She hopes to promote research on disarmament and hold more international disarmament conferences in Japan. “I would also like to look at disarmament from a broader perspective, making connections between the issues of development and democratization,” Inoguchi said. She will replace Seiichiro Noboru, who was just named ambassador to the OECD.

3. US-Japan Military Cooperation

Kyodo (“U.S. PLANS INTERCEPTOR MISSILE FLIGHT TEST WITH JAPAN IN 2005,” Washington, 04/07/02) reported that the US plans to conduct its first flight test for a component for an interceptor missile with Japan in the fiscal year to September 2005, defense sources said Saturday. The plan indicates strong US hopes that Japan will go beyond the research stage and actually get involved in the development of a system to protect Japan– as well as US forces based here — from missile attacks. Japan has yet to agree to conduct nose cone flight tests with the US. The two countries are expected to sign a new memorandum of understanding on the missile research, including the flight tests, as early as this fall. Based on the results of the research, Japan will decide on whether it should advance to the development stage for the eventual deployment of the system. Flight and interception tests for the major components other than the nose cone will be conducted if the two countries shift to the development stage, the sources said.

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

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< /a>
Clayton, Australia

 


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