NAPSNet Daily Report 10 November, 1999

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 10 November, 1999", NAPSNet Daily Report, November 10, 1999,


I. United States

II. Republic of Korea

III. People’s Republic of China

I. United States

1. US-ROK-Japan Talk on the DPRK

U.S. Department of State Spokesman James Rubin (“STATEMENT BY JAMES P. RUBIN, SPOKESMAN ON US- ROK-JAPAN TRILATERAL MEETINGS,” 11/09/99) released the following statement. “The delegations of the United States, the Republic of Korea, and Japan, headed respectively by State Department Counselor Ambassador Wendy Sherman, ROK Deputy Foreign Minister Jang Jai-ryong, and Japanese MOFA Deputy Vice Minister for Foreign Policy, Yukio Takeuchi, held a Trilateral Coordination and Oversight Group (TCOG) meeting in Washington, D.C. on November 8-9. The three delegations reviewed the situation on the Korean Peninsula and their respective contacts with the DPRK, and exchanged views on recent U.S.-DPRK talks in Berlin and on the next round of such talks to be held again in Berlin on November 15. The delegations took note of the positive developments since the Trilateral Summit of September 12, in Auckland, including the outcome of the September 7-12 U.S.-DPRK Berlin talks; the U.S. announcement on the easing of sanctions against the DPRK on September 17; and the DPRK statement, reiterated by its Foreign Minister on September 25, expressing its intention to refrain from missile launches as the U.S. and DPRK engage in high-level discussions about improving bilateral relations. The delegations also noted the valuable contributions made to the overall atmosphere by ROK-DPRK expanded exchanges and cooperation in economic, cultural, social, and other fields, and the recent Japanese decision to lift its ban on charter flights to the DPRK. They expressed the shared hope that the DPRK would also continue to take positive steps to improve the atmosphere, and that further improvements would be made in their respective relationships with the DPRK. They agreed that South- North reconciliation, cooperation, and tension reduction on the Korean Peninsula were the keys to stability and peace there. Finally, the delegations renewed their determination to continue close coordination of their policy approaches to the DPRK. They also reaffirmed their commitment to implementation of the 1994 Agreed Framework, which marked its fifth anniversary on October 21. The Framework continues to be essential to the peace and security of the Korean Peninsula.”

2. ROK Missile Purchase

Reuters (Charles Aldinger, “S.KOREA, NETHERLANDS WANT U.S. PATRIOT MISSILES,” Washington, 11/09/99) reported that the US Defense Department said on November 8 that the ROK has asked to buy US$4.2 billion in US Patriot missiles and advanced firing units built by Raytheon Company to defend against possible missile attack from the DPRK. The proposal would include the possible sale of 616 current-model Patriot missiles, 14 Patriot Advance Capability 3 (PAC-3) firing units, 14 engagement radars, and 76 launching stations for the anti-missile missiles built by Raytheon. The US Defense Department released a statement about the ROK request that said, “The proposed sale will enhance the Republic of Korea’s defensive capability against hostile neighbors, lessening the burden on the United States.”

3. Korean War Massacre

The Associated Press (“U.S. TO QUESTION 3 KOREANS FROM ALLEGED MASSACRE,” Washington, 11/10/99) reported that US Defense Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Tuesday that three ROK survivors of the alleged No Gun Ri massacre will meet with Lieutenant-General Michael Ackerman, the US Army’s inspector general, at the Defense Department on Friday. Crowley stated, “We look forward to meeting with them. These are important contacts that could be important to us as we proceed with the investigation. So that could lead to … follow-up interviews that either we will do or the Korean side will do.” Chung Eun-yong, a spokesman for survivors, stated, “We hope the meeting will be an arena for reconciliation.” [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for November 10.]

4. PRC Military Development

The Washington Post (John Pomfret, “CHINA PLANS FOR A STRONGER AIR FORCE,” Beijing, 11/09/99, 17) reported that the PRC’s official New China News Agency said that PRC Air Force Commander Lieutenant General Liu Shunyao said on November 9 that the air force would strive to “realize as soon as possible a change from territorial defense to a combination of defense and offense.” In separate comments on November 9, PRC President Jiang Zemin confirmed Liu’sstatements. The PRC navy has announced plans to transform itself slowly from a coastal force into a blue water navy, which would allow it to use its military power in faraway oceans. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for November 9.]

The Associated Press (“ISRAEL SUPPLYING ADVANCED RADAR TO CHINA,” Jerusalem, 11/10/99) reported that an anonymous Israeli official said on November 9 that Israel is outfitting the PRC air force’s Soviet-made Ilyushin- 50 aircraft with the Phalcon radar system, made by Elta, a subsidiary of Israel Aircraft Industries. A US Government official confirmed that Israel was providing such material for a plane for the PRC, and said Israel had assured the US that no US technology was involved. PRC Defense Minister Chi Haotian discussed the possibility that Israel Aircraft Industries might upgrade the PRC MIG-21 fighters, which form the backbone of the PRC Air Force but are antiquated. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for November 10.]

5. PRC-US Relations

Reuters (“CHINA ALLOWS U.S. SHIPS IN HONG KONG, REJECTS AIRPLANE,” Hong Kong, 11/10/99) reported that Robert Laing, spokesman for the US consulate in Hong Kong, said on Wednesday that the PRC government has approved two US ships to visit Hong Kong. Laing stated, “One is a coastguard ship, and a naval ship. The Chinese also denied several requests for permission for a P3 aircraft to land.” He added that the aircraft “was to have a routine over-water navigation training flight.” He said that the PRC gave no explanation for its decisions.

6. PRC Entry into WTO

Agence France Presse (“ZHU REITERATES STANCE ON WTO AS NEGOTIATIONS CONTINUE,” Beijing, 11/10/99) reported that the PRC’s government-run Xinhua news agency quoted PRC Prime Minister Zhu Rongji as saying on Wednesday that the PRC wished to enter the World Trade Organization (WTO) as a developing country. Zhu stated, “China has always maintained a positive attitude towards its entry into the WTO, but China can join the organization only as a developing country, and its rights and obligations should be given equal status,”

7. Spratly Island Dispute

Reuters (“PHILIPPINES ASSURES CHINA IT WILL REMOVE SHIP FROM DISPUTED SHOAL,” Manila, 11/10/99) reported that Philippine diplomats have assured the PRC that “appropriate steps have been undertaken to assess the extent of damage to the vessel” that ran aground on November 3 on Scarborough Shoal and that “efforts will be made to immediately extricate” it. The diplomats, however, did not give a timetable for the pullout of the navy transport ship Benguet.

II. Republic of Korea

1. DPRK-US Talks

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “N.K. MAY DEMAND FURTHER LIFTING OF U.S. SANCTIONS IN BERLIN TALKS,” Seoul, 11/10/99) reported that ROK analysts said that the DPRK is expected to request at the Berlin talks scheduled to begin Monday that the US lift additional economic sanctions against it. “There is a strong possibility that North Korea would suggest the U.S. lift more economic restrictions as a way of reducing mutual threats,” said Paik Hak-soon, a research fellow at the Sejong Institute, a private ROK think tank. Predicting that the forthcoming talks will likely be a businesslike meeting to set the agenda to be discussed at a high-level meeting between the US and the DPRK, Paik expected that the DPRK would demand inclusion of the additional easing of economic sanctions on the agenda. Another DPRK watcher said that the DPRK may call this time for the US to exclude the DPRK from its lists of enemies and terror-supporting countries. Such a prediction is based on the DPRK’s remarks that it would discuss measures aimed at scrapping the US “confrontational” policy toward the DPRK during the upcoming talks, he said.

2. DPRK Public Relations

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “N. KOREA BENT ON ‘CYBER’ PROPAGANDA,” Seoul, 11/10/99) reported that the DPRK has recently made an unexpected move, conducting a public relations drive on a completely new media – the Internet. Chosun Sinbo, a daily published by a pro-DPRK organization in Japan, in its October 27 edition cited the DPRK’s new Internet web site and satellite TV broadcasting, both launched October 10, as aimed at promoting its relationship with foreign countries by making information available about the DPRK. “With the launch of those channels, western countries that have intentionally ignored Chosun by labeling it as an ‘information-isolated nation’ would no longer be able to do so,” Chosun Ilbo reported. The newspaper has repeatedly introduced on its Internet homepage the DPRK’s first official web site, “Infobank of DPR Korea,” which opened October 10, timed with the 51st founding anniversary of the Workers’ Party of Korea. Even though the official operator of the Infobank site ( is the Beijing-based Pan Pacific Economic Development Association of Korean Nationals, the ROK government suspects that the DPRK controls it. “Seen from the style and language used by it, the Infobank must be an official site of the North Korean government,” an ROK Unification Ministry official said. “But, Pyongyang cannot handle it by itself as North Korea has yet to be connected by Internet networks.” “North Korea seems to be putting all of its energy into a renewed propaganda drive, thinking it has fallen far behind the South in overseas state PR, particularly those using advanced media and technology,” said a senior ministry official, speaking on condition of anonymity. “As the North still believes people’s access to international society would lead to the collapse of the reclusive regime, it would not open up to the networks, including the Internet, anytime soon,” he added.

3. ROK-US Arms Deal

The Korea Times (“PENTAGON PROPOSES $4.2 BILLION ARMS DEAL WITH ROK,” Seoul, 11/10/99) reported that the US Defense Department said that it has agreed to sell 14 of the latest Patriot air defense systems to the ROK for US$4.2 billion. The Patriot is produced by Raytheon Corporation of Andover, Massachusetts. The deal, which is subject to review by the US Congress, includes a full package of air-defense missiles, radars, fire control stations, electrical generators, trucks, trailers, maintenance equipment and other supplies. The latest version of the Patriot air defense missile, called PAC-3, is capable of defending ports and bases against not only aircraft but also shorter-range ballistic missiles. It is an improved version of the Patriot used against Iraqi Scud missile attacks in the 1991 Gulf War. “This proposed sale will enhance their defensive capability against hostile neighbors, lessening the burden on the United States,” the US Defense Department said in a statement on Tuesday.

III. People’s Republic of China

1. DPRK-PRC Relations

People’s Daily (Zhao Jiaming, “PAK SONG CHOL MEETS JILIN DELEGATION,” Pyongyang, 11/9/99, A6) reported that Pak Song-chol, a member of the political bureau of the Central Committee of the Labor Party of Korea and Honorary Vice-President of the presidium of the DPRK Supreme People’s Assembly, met a delegation of the Jilin provincial committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) headed by Wang Yunkun, member of the central committee of the CPC and secretary of its Jilin Provincial Committee, at the Mansudae Assembly Hall on November 8. Pak said that recently the Chinese Party and Government took vigorous and resolute measures against the reactionary and evil cult “Falun Gong.” The DPRK party and government completely support what the CPC did to maintain and enhance social stability and unity, Pak said. He expressed that DPRK-Chinese friendship is being developed well. It is the consistent stand of the DPRK party and government to strengthen and develop DPRK-Chinese friendship, he added.

2. PRC Media View on Japan-DPRK Relations

China Daily (Chen Yali, “WHO THREATENS PEACE?” 11/10/99, A4) carried an article saying that, judging from the DPRK’s domestic economic plight and the alarming military disparity between the two, it is difficult to believe that the DPRK constitutes a substantial security threat to Japan. The article pointed out that an external threat is especially necessary for Japan to justify its cooperation with the US in developing and deploying the Theater Missile Defense system. So the DPRK becomes a new source of “threat,” it added.

3. PRC-US Relations

People’s Daily (“NPC OPPOSES US RESOLUTION,” Beijing, 11/6/99, A2) reported that head of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Chinese National People’s Congress (NPC) said on November 5 that the PRC’s legislature holds indignation and strong opposition towards a recent US Senate resolution backing Taiwan’s bid to enter the World Health Organization (WHO). The official said that the resolution approved by the UN Senate Foreign Affairs Committee on November 2 disregards the PRC’s sovereignty and seriously violates basic international norms and the three Sino-US communiques. He hopes the US Senate, proceeding from the overall situation of Sino-US relations in the next century, will not allow this resolution to be passed. He also demanded that the US Government strictly abide by the principles of the three Sino-US joint communiques and relevant commitments of the US side, and explicitly oppose the resolution so as to facilitate the improvement and development of Sino-US relations.

4. PRC Entry to WTO

China Daily (Xu Yang, “NATION’S STAND FIRM ON CONDITIONS OF WTO ENTRY,” 11/10/99, A1) reported that PRC Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said at a routine press briefing in Beijing on November 9 that the PRC insists its accession to the World Trade Organization should be based on terms relevant to a developing country. The report said that trade representative Charlene Barshefsky of the US, the main country negotiating with the PRC, arrived in Beijing on the night of November 9 with a high-ranking trade delegation for a last-ditch round of talks. According to spokeswoman Zhang, “China hopes the talks will be conducted on the basis of mutual benefit.” The PRC believes that “the US will adopt a pragmatic, realistic and constructive attitude,” she said.

5. Across Taiwan Straits Relations

People’s Daily (Zheng Yao, “SOPHISTRY CANNOT COVER UP SPLITTIST NATURE,” 11/8/99, A4) carried a comment denouncing Taiwan leader Lee Tung-hui’s splittist remarks in his article appearing in the latest issue of Foreign Affairs. The commentary said that Lee’s article further exposes his will to betray the Chinese nation and split the motherland. Lee’s sinister intentions are meant to shape world opinion, internationalize the issue of Taiwan, drag in some anti-China forces, and eventually split the island from China, the paper said. It noted that nothing will alter the fate of the “two states” theory advocated by Lee. “No matter how glib a tongue Lee has, the world will not believe in his lies,” the article said. It has been reported, the article said, that Lee has put his support behind some people in Taiwan who have gotten in line with his “two states” statement, the so-called “basic law” of Taiwan. “This is an extremely dangerous move,” the newspaper warned, adding that the real motives are to split the island from the motherland and make reunification impossible. It warned that so long as Lee does not give up his splittist position of “two states,” the Chinese people will never stop their struggle against the separation and “independence of Taiwan.”

China Daily (Jia Hepeng, “POLL FINDS SUPPORT FOR TAIWAN AID,” 11/10/99, A2) reported that PRC residents polled recently said they want Taiwan’s leaders to accept the PRC’s help in abating the damage and human suffering caused by September’s earthquake. The telephone survey was carried out by Beijing-based Social Survey Institute of China in late October, the report said. Pollsters obtained 2,394 valid samples from questioning in Beijing, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Changsha, Wuhan and Harbin. 97.4 percent of those interviewed thought cooperation on earthquake relief across the Straits should be ascribed to Taiwan’s authorities, and 79.7 percent blamed Taiwanese leaders for distorting facts and stemming mainland relief efforts. 20.3 percent said that earthquake relief had nothing to do with politics. The survey also revealed that 96.6 percent thought that Taiwan leader Lee Tung-hui’s “two states” theory caused the current stalemate in relations on both sides of the Straits. About 33.1 percent of interviewees supported Taiwan Straits Exchange Foundation chairman Koo Chen-fu’s proposal of visiting the mainland to resume talks with Wang Daohan, president of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits.

6. PRC View of ABM Treaty

People’s Daily (“FM SPOKESMAN COMMENTS ON UN RESOLUTION ON ABM TREATY,” Beijing, 11/7/99, A2) reported that when commenting on the adoption of a resolution on the preservation of the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty by the First Committee of the UN General Assembly on November 5, PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao said that this reflected the will and determination of the international community to oppose the deployment of an ABM system and the revision of the ABM Treaty by certain countries. The PRC, as one of the co- sponsors of the resolution, expressed heartfelt gratitude for those countries that voted in favor of the resolution, Zhu said. A certain country has made great efforts to develop the national missile defense plan and worked with other countries in researching and producing an advanced Theater Missile Defense system in recent years, which was an attempt to seek absolute security and strategic advantages, Zhu said, noting that this directly runs counter to the purpose and objective of the ABM Treaty, and is not conducive to international peace and stability. “China urges concerned countries to seriously heed the strong voice of the international community, and abandon the ABM plan, which not only harms others but is not beneficial,” Zhu said.

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Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Gee Gee Wong:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Chunsi Wu:
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
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