NAPSNet Daily Report 10 July, 2000

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 10 July, 2000", NAPSNet Daily Report, July 10, 2000, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-10-july-2000/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. US-DPRK Missile Talks
2. DPRK Missile Threat at G8
3. DPRK-Canada Relations
4. PRC View of US Troops in ROK
5. PRC-US Arms Control Talks
6. US-PRC Military Relations
7. Cross-Straits Relations
II. Announcement 1. Korean Translation of Nautilus Energy Paper

I. United States

1. US-DPRK Missile Talks

The Los Angeles Times (Bob Drogin, “U.S. SEEKS TO CURB ASIAN MISSILE SALES,” Washington, 7/8/00) and the Associated Press (Dean Visser, “U.S.- N. KOREA MISSILE TALKS START,” Kuala Lumpur, 7/10/00) reported that the US and DPRK resumed talks on Monday about the DPRK’s missile program. Robert Einhorn, assistant secretary of state for nonproliferation, said that the meeting was being held against a “promising backdrop.” He said, “We would be prepared to move step by step toward a fundamentally improved relationship with the DPRK.” He added that relations could improve “as the North Koreans address issues of concern to the United States and its allies, particularly the nuclear missile questions we have.” There was no comment at the end of the day’s talks, but the officials were seen chatting and smiling as they left. They were scheduled to reconvene on July 11 at the US embassy. Andrew Tan, an analyst at Singapore’s Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies, said, “With this rapprochement and with the North Koreans coming out of their shell, it undermines the rationale for the TMD (Theater Missile Defense).” [Ed. note: The Los Angeles Times article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for July 10, 2000.]

2. DPRK Missile Threat at G8

Agence France Presse (“NORTH KOREA RESISTS ANY G8 MOVE TO HIGHLIGHT MISSILE THREAT,” Tokyo, 7/10/00) reported that the DPRK’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) warned Monday against any move by the Group of Eight (G8) leaders to highlight the DPRK missile threat at their summit this month in Japan. KCNA said that Japan had reportedly decided to mention a missile threat from the DPRK in a special statement to be issued at the July 21-23 summit on Okinawa. KCNA said, “This sinister and wicked intention of Japan is intolerable as it is an unbearable insult and mockery of the Korean people and the international community.” The Japanese daily Yomiuri Shimbun reported on July 7 that the G8 leaders, who expressed deep concern about DPRK’s missile program at 1999’s summit in Cologne, will stress their support for inter-Korean dialogue. KCNA said that Japan, with the “fiction” of a missile threat, aimed to “tarnish the international authority and image of the DPRK, mislead the world public opinion … and justify its moves to become a military power.” It instead urged Japan to reflect upon its own militarist past and compensate for its 1910-1945 colonial rule over the Korean peninsula. It continued, “Though more than half a century has passed since then, Japan has neither made any apology or compensation to the Korean people nor honestly reflected on its past crimes.”

3. DPRK-Canada Relations

Reuters (David Ljunggren, “N. KOREA. CANADA DIPLOMATS TO START N. KOREA MISSION SATURDAY,” Ottawa, 7/8/00) reported that Canadian Foreign Minister Lloyd Axworthy and a team of Canadian diplomats arrived in the DPRK on July. A senior Canadian foreign ministry official said, “We have continued our informal, unofficial discussions and we’ve got some people going in tomorrow as part of this continuing dialogue.” Axworthy is due to attend a Bangkok meeting arranged by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations at the end of this month to which a delegation led by DRPK Foreign Minister Paek Nam-sun has been invited. An Ottawa official said, “We think they’re going to be there, they have given indications they are going to be there. Whether Mr. Axworthy meets them formally or not, we’ll have to see. Certainly they’ll be in the same room for a couple of days. I’m not excluding anything.” The official said that one way of recognizing DPRK might be to establish a formal agreement on economic cooperation, but added that this seemed unlikely given the lack of trade between the two countries and the DPRK’s serious economic problems. Last month, the DPRK said that it was still suffering from food shortages and appealed to donors for US$250 million to avoid another crisis. Canada, one of the world’s leading grain exporters, sent its latest shipment of food aid this April. The official said, “I can’t make any commitment at this stage. These appeals have to be weighed against many factors, including the assessment of how real the demand is…and (whether) they need food grain, seed grain or vegetable oil.”

4. PRC View of US Troops in ROK

Agence France Presse (“TIME FOR US TROOPS TO LEAVE SOUTH KOREA, CHINESE PAPER SAYS,” Beijing, 7/10/00) reported that an editorial in the PRC’s People’s Liberation Army Daily said on Monday that the stationing of US troops in the ROK is the biggest obstacle to the reunification of the Korean Peninsula, and the key to maintaining US hegemony in East Asia. The paper said, “The Korean Peninsula is at the heart of northeast Asia and its strategic importance is obvious, to control the Korean Peninsula is to tightly grasp hold of northeast Asia. With the end of the Cold War, and especially with the cooling down of the tense situation on the Korean Peninsula in recent years, the US military presence in South Korea is out of sync with the times.” It continued that US interests in maintaining troops in the ROK is key to US post-Cold War ambitions of strengthening its position as the world’s only remaining superpower capable “of fighting two major regional wars at once.” It added: “If the United States removes its troops from South Korea as relations between the North and South Korea improve, then it would be even more difficult to find a reason to maintain troops in Japan and the so called ‘Europe- Asia strategy’ would lose one of its wings. Because of this, and even though maintaining troops in South Korea is incompatible with the times, it is certain that the troops will not leave.” The editorial was seen as the first article advocating the removal of US troops from the ROK since the inter-Korean summit in June. Western diplomats in the PRC said that the editorial appeared to represent hopes in the PRC that the ROK and Japan would soon end their security relationship with the US to the benefit of the PRC.

5. PRC-US Arms Control Talks

The Washington Post (John Pomfret, “TAIWAN MAY GET ANTIMISSILE TECHNOLOGY,” Beijing, 7/9/00), the Wall Street Journal (Matt Forney, “COHEN’S CHINA TALKS WILL FEATURE DELICATE ISSUE OF WEAPON EXPORTS,” Beijing, 7/10/00) and the New York Times (Erik Eckholm, “U.S.-CHINA TALKS DON’T RESOLVE ISSUE OF PAKISTAN MISSILE AID,” Beijing, 7/9/00) reported that US Undersecretary of State for Arms Control John Holum said on June 8 that the US has not ruled out giving Taiwan advanced capabilities to defend itself from PRC missile attacks. Holum said, “We don’t rule out the possibility that some time in the future Taiwan may have [theater missile defense] capabilities.” The remarks came as the US and the PRC wrapped up their first arms control talks in more than a year. The two sides failed to reach agreement on continued US concerns that the PRC is exporting missile technology, specifically to Pakistan and Libya. Holum said, “We made progress, but the issue remains unresolved.” Holum said that the US hoped to use the renewed arms control dialogue to reassure the PRC. He said the US is “not designing this system to be deployed against the Chinese [and] we are satisfied with the stable deterrent relationship with China.” Holum added that the US has made no decision on TMD other than to use it to defend US troops based in the region once the technology becomes available in about 2007. Holum continued that the US believed that the PRC had kept its pledge on the delivery of complete missiles, but the two sides differed on whether the PRC’s pledge covered the transfer of missile technology. Holum stressed that the talks were held in a “very positive climate. It’s important for Americans to recognize that China has in a very short time covered an extremely long distance in terms of nonproliferation and arms control.” He also said that the PRC had played a “constructive role” with the DPRK to curb development of missiles and nuclear weapons and had kept a promise to stop aiding Iran’s nuclear program. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for July 10, 2000.]

6. US-PRC Military Relations

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “COHEN OFF TO REPAIR RELATIONS WITH CHINA,” 7/10/00) reported that US Defense Secretary William S. Cohen left Monday for the PRC. US defense officials said privately that the PRC several times turned down offers to conduct joint military exercises with US forces to practice humanitarian relief or search and rescue operations. The officials said that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has also balked at conducting simple indoor military exercises, known as the “Sand Table” seminar program. One official said, “The Chinese said, ‘We don’t conduct exercises with anyone.'” However, a senior US defense official who briefed reporters on Cohen’s Asia trip said that cooperating in military, humanitarian and disaster relief and the tabletop exercises with the PRC are areas that the US Defense Department hopes will be resumed. The official said, “The purpose of the visit to China is threefold: to promote our military-to-military relationship with China, as part of our overall bilateral relationship; to conduct high-level policy dialogue on a broad range of global, regional and bilateral issues; and thirdly, to improve our lines of communication between our two leaderships.” Cohen will meet officials in Beijing on July 11-14 and travel to Shanghai on July 15. He is scheduled to spend the weekend in Sydney, Australia, with defense officials there before returning to the US on July 17. An official PRC Foreign Ministry statement said that Cohen is visiting as a guest of PRC Defense Minister Chi Haotian to “hold talks and exchange views … on issues of mutual interest.” Cohen will hold meetings with Chi and is also expected to meet Zhang Wannian, the head of the PRC Central Military Commission. He is scheduled to meet PRC President Jiang Zemin, and will give a speech before a group of military officials at the PRC’s National Defense University. [Ed. note: Both articles were included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for July 10, 2000.]

7. Cross-Straits Relations

Agence France Presse (“TAIWAN MP CLAIMS CHINA SOFTENING ON ‘ONE CHINA,’ ” Beijing, 7/10/00) reported that visiting Taiwan legislator Feng Hu-hsiang said in Beijing on Monday, after a meeting with the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS), that the PRC is prepared to let Taiwan have its own definition of “one China.” Feng said he had been told by the PRC that they had no objection to Taiwan referring to one China as long as it did not hold its version to be the defining status. Feng said, “Even if the leaders of Taiwan claim themselves as the representatives of one China, that’s acceptable to Beijing. But they don’t accept the two countries concept.” Feng also said that ARATS officials told him that Chen’s decision to return to the 1992 compromise was not enough to restart dialogue. He said, “They said they only need Chen to accept the one China principle, with one China principle being a neutral term, not subject to any one interpretation.” However, Feng said that the PRC did not accept the “future one China” which Chen referred to in his May 20 inauguration speech. He said, “They want him to recognize that there is only one China now, even if in his interpretation, that one China is the ROC.”

Agence France Presse (“CLOSE ECONOMIC LINKS MAY PREVENT TAIWAN-CHINA WAR,” Taipei, 7/10/00) reported that Chang Chun-yen, president of National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan and chairman of the Council for Economic Planning and Development, told a seminar on July 8 that a military clash between Taiwan and the PRC is unlikely to occur given their close economic ties. Meanwhile, Taiwan’s economic czar Chen Poh- chih called for the establishment of a free trade area. Chang was quoted by the Commercial Times as saying that, “The world’s microchips would be in short of a third should any war break out in the region.” Chang, who served as a science advisor to Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian, warned that should that happen many of the world’s airplanes would have to be grounded.

The Washington Times published an opinion article by Richard E. Friedman, president of the National Strategy Forum and former chairman of the Committee on Law and National Security of the American Bar Association, and John Allen Williams, who is on the faculty of the Department of Political Science at Loyola University (“CREATIVE AMBIGUITY IN ‘ONE CHINA’ POLICY,” 7/10/00). The article said that Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian ‘s June 28 inauguration statement accepting the “One China” principle (with the precise meaning of this to be determined) is an important step toward strategic stability across the Taiwan Straits. However, whether or not the PRC government will draw back from confrontation and settle, at least for now, for creative ambiguity “will be a harbinger of things to come and should be a litmus test for United States policies in the region.” The authors proposed a middle course solution between independence for Taiwan and a war across the straits. They proposed “a loose confederation between Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China, effective as soon as a document can be agreed to. The preamble of the document would recite the cultural and language ties between them. It would avoid references to statehood, sovereignty and independence, and would renounce the use of military force. The agreement would be reviewed every five years. A ‘Chinese Confederation’ would provide the basis for ongoing discussions and permit both Taiwan and Mainland China to recede gracefully from confrontation. In the best case, it would also serve as a long-term framework for cooperation between the Mainland and Taiwan. Whether the two political systems ever merge completely is not for the United States to determine, but this interim step would remove some poison from the atmosphere and permit a peaceful evolution to new arrangements, if desired.” [Ed. note: This opinion article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for July 10, 2000.]

II. Announcement

1. Korean Translation of Nautilus Energy Paper

The Korea Development Institute (KDI) has published a Korean translation of the paper “Fuel and Famine: Rural Energy Crisis in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,” by Nautilus Senior Associates James H. Williams and David von Hippel and Executive Director Peter Hayes. The paper appears in the May, 2000 edition of the “KDI Review of the North Korean Economy.” . The original paper was published by the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation (IGCC) at the University of California, San Diego, and was funded by grants from the US Department of Energy and the Korea Foundation.

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Timothy L. Savage: napsnet@nautilus.org
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Seoul, Republic of Korea

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Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin: icipu@glas.apc.org
Moscow, Russian Federation

Chunsi Wu: 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

Leanne Payton: lbpat1@smtp.monash.edu.au
Clayton, Australia

 


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