NAPSNet Daily Report 10 September, 2002

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

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. September 11 Security in Asia
2. Taiwan Defense Envoy in US
3. Cross-Straits Relations
4. PRC Internet Censorship
5. Japan on US Iraq Attack
6. US-Japan Message to DPRK
7. DPRK-Japan Kidnapping Issue
8. ROK Prime Minister Nomination
9. DPRK-ROK UN Peace Resolution
10. DPRK-ROK Family Reunion Centers
II. Republic of Korea 1. DPRK Defectors in PRC
2. ROK-DPRK Family Reunion Agreement
3. PRC’s Prospect for DPRK-Japan Summit
III. Japan 1. Japan-US Relations
2. Spending Review on SDF
3. Japanese Public View on Attacking Iraq
4. Lawsuit on JCO Incident
5. Japan Nuclear Industry Scandal
6. Japan’s view towards US Attack on Iraq
7. Japan’s ODA
8. Japan-DPRK Relations

I. United States

1. September 11 Security in Asia

Reuters (Joanne Collins, “SECURITY TIGHT AS ASIA BRACES FOR SEPTEMBER 11,” Jakarta, 09/10/02) reported that US embassies in Indonesia and neighboring Malaysia will stay closed on Wednesday because of fears of attack by supporters of Osama bin Laden as the world marks the first anniversary of September 11. US ambassador to Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, said on Tuesday the embassy in the capital Jakarta and the consulate in the second city, Surabaya, had been closed until further notice. “The al Qaeda network is still far from defeated,” Ralph Boyce told foreign correspondents. “And we’ve received another graphic example of that just the past few hours with the news…about a specific threat against our embassy in Jakarta and the consulate-general in Surabaya”. The US embassy in mostly Muslim Malaysia said it would close on Wednesday because of a credible and specific threat. The US embassy in Pakistan will also be closed for security reasons but diplomats in mainly Christian Philippines, another potential flashpoint, said their embassy would remain open. But US facilities there and across the region were on alert for attacks by bin Laden’s al-Qaeda network.

2. Taiwan Defense Envoy in US

Agence France-Presse (“TAIWANESE DEFENSE ENVOY IN WASHINGTON,” 09/10/02) reported that a senior Taiwan envoy has embarked on a program of meetings with US military brass in the latest visit to Washington by officials from Taiwan. A Taiwanese official here said that Deputy Defense Minister Kang Ning-Hsiang planned to hold talks on Monday but declined to go into details, in line with Taiwan’s practice of declining comment on sensitive defense matters. His visit has enraged the PRC, as it marks the first official visit to Washington by such a senior Taiwanese defense envoy since the 1970s. The Pentagon has refused to disclose whom Kang will meet, though there were reports that he was to see Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, who met senior Taiwanese officials during a defense industry summit in Florida earlier this year. Kang is due to fly on to Hawaii later this week, home base of the US Pacific Command, Pentagon officials said last week. The Taipei Times has reported that the purpose of Kang’s trip was “to establish a project management system for the weaponry that the US has agreed to sell to Taiwan.”

3. Cross-Straits Relations

Agence France-Presse (“CHEN DEMANDS CHINA REMOVE MISSILES TARGETING TAIWAN,” 09/10/02) reported that Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian has called on the PRC to withdraw hundreds of ballistic missiles targeting Taiwan, saying the weapons were terrorizing the island’s people. “The terror and threat posed to Taiwan people has virtually exceeded those brought by any terrorist attacks,” Chen said Tuesday in a speech on the eve of the September 11 anniversary. Chen threw his weight behind US efforts to combat international terrorists, but said the world should realize the pressure being placed on Taiwan by the PRC government. “While Taiwan is devoting itself to anti-terrorism, there is no reason to have the 23 million people here being shadowed by protracted military threat,” he said. The PRC has deployed 208 ballistic missiles in its southeastern Fujian province opposite Taiwan and 192 others in Jiangxi province, with the number expected to increase by 50 per year, he said. “This has posed a serious threat to Taiwan’s security and stability in the Asia Pacific region, and has sparked concerns from the international community,” Chen said. It was the second warning about the PRC’s missiles from Chen in the past three days.

4. PRC Internet Censorship

Reuters (Jonathan Ansfield, “CHINESE INTERNET USERS REROUTED AWAY FROM GOOGLE,” Beijing, 09/10/02) reported that PRC Internet users trying to access the blocked search engine Google are being routed to an array of similar sites in the PRC, the latest sign of an escalating media clampdown ahead of November’s Communist Party congress. Hijacked attempts to log on to the immensely popular web tool, already blocked for more than a week, triggered a flurry of criticism in PRC chatrooms and biting disclaimers from beneficiary sites. Some analysts called the move unprecedented and wondered what the next step in the PRC’s Internet crackdown might be. “This is a serious escalation,” said Michael Robinson, chief technical officer of Beijing-based Clarity Data Systems. “They’re not acting as administrators. They’re acting as hackers,” he said. “They’re impersonating authority that they don’t in fact actually have.” The routings — to at least half a dozen different search sites, many virtual no-names and few of them major market players — began over the weekend, analysts said. The move appeared ordered by public security authorities and implemented locally via Internet servers run by the country’s fixed-line phone giant China Telecom, they said.

5. Japan on US Iraq Attack

Agence France-Presse (“JAPAN CALLS FOR WEAPONS INSPECTORS BEFORE US ATTACK ON IRAQ,” 09/09/02) reported that Japan has joined the international chorus calling for weapons inspectors to be allowed back into Iraq before the US launches a pre-emptive military strike. “It is important for the international community to step up its pressure on Iraq to admit nuclear weapons inspectors and stop its development of weapons of mass destruction,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda said Monday. “Japan will also move in that direction,” he said at a regular press conference. He suggested that the US would be unwise to act alone in attacking Iraq. “In the current situation, now is the time to consider many things before a direct US attack on Iraq,” Fukuda said. “It is important to have the international community get together to have Iraq change its behavior.” He was speaking hours before Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi was due to depart for a five-day visit to the US which will include a meeting with President George W. Bush. Koizumi was more vague about the message he would relay to Bush at their meeting set for Thursday. “I will explain Japan’s position and carefully listen to the other side.

6. US-Japan Message to DPRK

Asia Pulse (“KOIZUMI TO DELIVER BUSH’S PERSONAL MESSAGE TO KIM JONG-IL,” Tokyo, 09/09/02) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi Junichiro will deliver a personal message of U.S. President George W. Bush to North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-il when the North Korea-Japan summit talks will be held in Pyongyang on September 17, a local daily reported Sunday. Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbum reported that Koizumi will transfer Kim Jong-il’s response to Bush later through diplomatic channels.

7. DPRK-Japan Kidnapping Issue

Agence France-Presse (“NORTH KOREA MAY COMPROMISE TO JAPAN ON KIDNAP ISSUE: ADVISER,” 09/08/02) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi may expect considerable compromise from the DPRK’s Kim Jong-Il in an unprecedented summit in Pyongyang this month, his adviser said. A compromise could be made on Japan’s demand for the return of 11 Japanese allegedly kidnapped by DPRK agents in the 1970s and 1980s, the biggest sticking point in stalled rapprochement talks, Yukio Okamoto said Sunday. “The abduction issue has been put on the formal agenda this time, making it the first time that negotiations are held in a way Japan has desired,” the foreign affairs consultant to Koizumi’s cabinet said on television. “We can expect North Korea is prepared to convey considerable things to the Japanese side on the abduction issue,” the former senior foreign ministry official stated.

8. ROK Prime Minister Nomination

Agence France-Presse (“S KOREA PRESIDENT NOMINATES NEW PRIME MINISTER,” 09/10/02) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-Jung has nominated former Supreme Court judge Kim Suk-Soo as prime minister-designate after his previous two nominations were rejected by parliament. Kim, 69, a career judge, was head of the National Election Commission (NEC), formerly known as the Central Election Management Committee, tasked with overseeing fair elections. “President Kim Dae-Jung has named former head of the National Election Commission, Kim Suk-Soo, as prime minister-designate,” said Park Jie-Won, head of the secretariat of the presidential Blue House, on Tuesday. While serving as the chairman of the NEC, Kim Suk-Soo “paved the way for fair elections by managing elections in a just manner,” he said. “The new prime minister-designate has led a campaign to enhance the moral integrity of public servants,” Park said. “We hope that he will greatly contribute to ensuring that the cabinet be politically neutral and fairly manage the December presidential election so that it can wrap up its official term successfully,” he said. Elections to replace President Kim Dae-Jung are scheduled for December and he leaves office in February.

9. DPRK-ROK UN Peace Resolution

Asia Pulse (“SEOUL, PYONGYANG MAY JOINTLY PRESENT PEACE RESOLUTION TO U.N.,” Seoul, 09/09/02) reported that the ROK is considering joining forces with the DPRK to jointly present a resolution to the upcoming United Nations general assembly to seek international support to promote peace in the Korena Peninsula, an official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said Sunday. “We will decide on the timing and contents of the resolution in close consultations with North Korea after monitoring development sin inter-Korean relations,” the official said. “We will cooperate with North Korea in international forums because we are witnessing inter-Korean relations improving recently,” he said. The ROK and DPRK agreed in August that they will bring to the United Nations the agenda on peace, stability and reunification of the Korean Peninsula. (Yonhap)

10. DPRK-ROK Family Reunion Centers

Asia Pulse (“TWO KOREAS AGREE TO BUILD CENTERS FOR SEPARATED FAMILY REUNION,” Kumgang Mountain, 09/09/02) reported that the ROK and the DPRK on September 9 agreed in principle to establish two reunion centers for the families separated by the division of the Korean Peninsula over a half century ago, an official of the ROK delegation to the inter-Korean Red Cross talks being held here said. Th agreement was made at the working-level officials’ talks held at the Kumgang Mountain Hotel late into the night Saturday, the official said. The two sides concurred that they will build a family reunion center in Geumgang Mountain and another one near the Gyeongui Railway which connects Seoul and North Korea’s Shinuiju. Until the completion of the construction work for a Kumgang Mountain reunion center, the two sides will continue to use Kumgang Mountain Hotel as the temporary venue for the family reunions.

II. Republic of Korea

1. DPRK Defectors in PRC

Chosun Ilbo (Yeo Shi-dong, “36 DEFECTORS DEPARTING FOR THIRD COUNTRY,” Beijing, 09/10/02) reported that a total of 36 North Korean defectors, 21 sheltering in the South Korean Consulate General in Beijing and 15 who entered the German school complex in Beijing on September 3, will reportedly depart for a third nation according to PRC sources announced Monday. Thirty more defectors are currently sheltering in the consulate and their fate has yet to be decided. Meanwhile, seven DPRK defectors arrested by the PRC police in the middle of an attempt to submit applications for refugee status in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the PRC building on August 26 are expected to be punished for the violation of the PRC domestic law. The PRC government has not yet announced any decision on eight defectors arrested in an attempt to enter the Ecuador Embassy on September

2. ROK-DPRK Family Reunion Agreement

Chosun Ilbo (“SEOUL DENIES ALLEGATIONS NK’S RED CROSS AGREEMENT IS DIFFERENT,” Seoul, 09/10/02) reported that ROK officials are rejecting allegations that the DPRK’s announcement of the weekend agreement between their respective Red Cross chiefs was different from what was reported in the ROK. They say the only difference between the two announcements is the difference in expression. Such claims came after DPRK’s central television and radio stations aired the joint Red Cross statement on Sunday. On the issue of setting up a permanent reunion center for separated family members the ROK media reported that the two sides would “discuss and settle” the matter, while DPRK phrased it as “negotiate.”

3. PRC’s Prospect for DPRK-Japan Summit

Chosun Ilbo (“CHINESE PRESIDENT PREDICTS SUCCESSFUL JAPAN-NK SUMMIT,” Seoul, 09/10/02) reported that ahead of a first-ever Japan-DPRK summit, PRC President Jiang Zemin is upbeat on the outcome of the talks according to a spokesperson at Japan’s Foreign Ministry. At a meeting held in the PRC between President Jiang and Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi, Jiang said he supports Koizumi’s visit to Pyongyang and predicted the historic meeting would produce a fruitful outcome. Jiang added his prediction also comes as such sentiment is being echoed by high-ranking officials in DPRK.

III. Japan

1. Japan-US Relations

The Japan Times (Sayuri Daimon, “U.S. ALLIANCE LEAST SERVED BY GENUFLECTING: EXPERT,” 09/04/02) held an interview with Masahiro Akiyama, a former deputy chief of the Japanese Defense Agency, on US-Japan alliance. Japan needs to think strategically and hold dialogue with the US in that light if it wants to be a true ally, according to Akiyama. “The US merely expects Japan’s support and would never imagine it acting against US policy. For Japan to become a true partner of the US, it should offer harsh advice when necessary,” said Akiyama. To offer strategic opinions, “Political infrastructure must be established, including proper laws and possible revisions to the Constitution” he added. Regarding the possible attack on Iraq, Akiyama claimed Japan should not support the US unless the US presents clear evidence that Iraq is nurturing terrorists, adding that if the reason for invading is Iraq’s alleged production of weapons of mass destruction, this would mean the US merely wants to attack the country, and thus Japan should not support such an action. Concerning China, meanwhile, Akiyama said the Bush administration is taking a realistic approach and now feels the country, which may try to become a hegemonic power in the near future, must be contained by power. China is taking the same approach, and only Japan is living in a dream world, cherishing the notion of “friendship,” he stressed.

2. Spending Review on SDF

The Japan Times (“MINISTRY SPENDING REVIEW CHIDES UNIVERSITIES, SDF,” 09/04/02) reported that taxpayer money can be used more efficiently in university research center construction and military computer systems development, according to a spending review released by the government Wednesday. The Finance Ministry reviewed 12 government-funded projects between fiscal 1995 and fiscal 2002 to see how efficiently budget allocations have been spent. Regarding the SDF, the report says that computer system development costs can be reduced by integrating systems that are being operated separately by the Air, Ground and Maritime Self-Defense Forces.

3. Japanese Public View on Attacking Iraq

The Asahi Shimbun (“MOST JAPANESE OPPOSE ATTACK ON IRAQ,” 09/04/02) reported that the vast majority of Japanese voters oppose a military attack on Iraq by the US, according to a telephone survey by The Asahi Shimbun. Only 14 percent of Japanese voters said they favored an attack, while 77 percent were opposed. Voters were also asked if Japan should cooperate with the US should it begin an assault on Iraq. Sixty-nine percent said Japan should not cooperate, while only 20 percent said it should. Japanese voters were also critical of US moves against terrorism after the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington. Only 23 percent said the actions had a positive effect on global stability, while 50 percent said the campaign had a negative effect. The critical view of Japanese votes toward an attack on Iraq contrasts with past surveys dealing with American military action. In a poll conducted last October, 46 percent of voters supported the attack on Afghanistan, while 43 percent opposed it.

4. Lawsuit on JCO Incident

The Asahi Shimbun (“RADIATION EXPOSURE STILL WORRIES LOCALS,” 09/04/02) reported that two residents who claim ill health as a result of a radiation accident at the Tokaimura facility in September 1999 filed suit Tuesday blaming the Japanese government for their illnesses. The suit was filed a day after prosecutors demanded prison terms for officials of JCO Co. for the fatal accident. While the central government disputes claims of radiation-induced illnesses, the residents petitioned Mito District Court for compensation. A 65-year-old woman who worked 100 meters from the accident site was outside chatting with a friend when the 10:30 a.m. accident occurred. A week later she says she began to feel nausea and a “heavy head.” She was examined at three hospitals and the diagnosis was identical: cause unknown. The central government lists 667 people as nuclear accident victims, including residents near the facility. A government committee on health care reported in January 2000, “There are no short-term physical effects on residents or long-term effects such as the onset of cancer.” However, Hannan Chuo Hospital in Osaka independently studied 220 residents in Tokaimura. According to the hospital, local residents were exposed to more radiation than cited in the central government’s research.

5. Japan Nuclear Industry Scandal

The Asahi Shimbun (“NEW LAW HOPES TO AVERT NUKE DISASTER,” 09/04/02) reported that the Japanese government wants to make it easier to inspect nuclear plants after receiving tips reactor operators are engaged in dangerous practices. According to sources, the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency is taking a look at amending the Electric Utilities Law to allow inspectors immediate access to nuclear plants under suspicion. Under current law, it can take as long as two years for inspectors to gain access to a nuclear reactor, sources said. The Nuclear Reactor Regulation Law also allows on-site inspections based on tips only when it is too late–after an accident has occurred. Agency officials are also considering stricter penalties for violators. As it now stands, these corporations face fines of up to only 300,000 yen for submitting false reports to the government. The government’s move is in reaction to cover-ups by Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) of damage to its nuclear reactors.

The Asahi Shimbun (“CUTTING CORNERS: AT TEPCO, SAVING COSTS TOOK PRIORITY OVER REPAIRING CRACKED EQUIPMENT,” 09/04/02) reported that workers at Tokyo Electric Powers Co. (TEPCO) said Tuesday the corporate atmosphere discouraged any prolonged shutdown of TEPCO’s nuclear reactors for inspections or repairs. “The workers took such action because of the possible negative effects on power supply during the asset-inflated bubble economy,” TEPCO President Nobuya Minami told a news conference, when he announced his resignation. Minami said government requirements in the nuclear power industry fueled this efficiency culture. “We are required not to have even the smallest of scratches. Operations must be stalled to use the newest available technology to make repairs. That put workers under great pressure and they decided not to make such problems known as long as there was no threat to safety,” Minami said.

6. Japan’s view towards US Attack on Iraq

The Asahi Shinbun (“MOST JAPANESE OPPOSE ATTACK ON IRAQ,” 09/04/02) reported that the vast majority of Japanese voters oppose a military attack on Iraq by the United States, according to a telephone survey by the Asahi Shimbun. Only 14 percent of Japanese voters said they favored an attack, while 77 percent were opposed. The administration of US President George W. Bush is considering a military campaign targeting Iraq as part of its effort to root out terrorism. Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has not taken a clear stand on what Japan would do should the US take on Iraq, but the poll seems to indicate the Japanese public has already made up its mind, the article said.

7. Japan’s ODA

The Asahi Shinbun (“JAPAN FACES ODA SUIT FROM SUMATRA,” 09/04/02) reported that The 3,980 plaintiffs want 20 billion yen for being displaced by a government-funded dam project. In an apparent unprecedented move, the government faces a 20-billion-yen compensation lawsuit for forcing thousands of Indonesians off their land to make way for a dam project funded by official development assistance (ODA). Japan’s Foreign Ministry officials said they know of no recent examples of residents filing a suit in Japanese courts in relation to an ODA project. The 3,980 individuals who make up the plaintiffs’ group are former residents of the Kotapanjang region, which straddles the provinces of West Sumatra and Riau on Sumatra Island. They were among 17,000 people who were forced to leave their homes so the dam could be built. Officials of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) did a hydroelectric power development assessment survey for the Kotapanjang region in the 1980s which led the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to sign off on the project with an Indonesian utility. The project was designed by Tokyo Electric Power Services Co., a subsidiary of Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), and cost 23 billion yen. Japan’s Foreign Vice Minister Yukio Takeuchi said Monday that Tokyo had raised the issue with Jakarta. “The issue is primarily the responsibility of the Indonesian government,” Takeuchi said. “We have been lobbying it to resolve the situation properly. An action plan involving West Sumatra province and the Indonesian government was agreed to in July and we hope it is implemented smoothly. We will consider our response after looking at the details of the lawsuit.” Officials of the Foreign Ministry’s Loan Aid Division in Tokyo said they had repeatedly asked Jakarta to go ahead with the project only if agreement had been reached with those who later would be forced to leave. “Those who were moved have begun new lives with the compensation money they received,” a Loan Aid Division official said. “We have also asked the Indonesian government to obtain rubber tree plantations for the other residents.”

8. Japan-DPRK Relations

The Asahi Shinbun (“MUCH AT SAKE FOR KOIZUMI IN N.KOREA”08/31/02) reported that Japan sees a chance to advance bilateral relations, with the abduction issue a priority. In a surprise announcement Friday, Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said he will make an unprecedented visit to Pyongyang September 17 to talk about improving bilateral relations with DPRK leader Kim Jong Il. Koizumi said the visit, the first by a Japanese leader, follows a year of secret diplomatic negotiations to put the two countries on the path to normalized ties. The one-day visit is also a chance to discuss pending topics that have bedeviled relations between the two countries for decades. The DPRK’s media made a simultaneous announcement of the mid-September visit. “My meeting with Kim is intended to see whether we can resume negotiations on normalizing relations,” Koizumi told reporters Friday. “We won’t see any breakthrough unless we two leaders meet to talk directly with a strong political will.”

The Japan Times (“KOIZUMI COY ON ‘SPY’ SHIP INCIDENT,” 09/07/02) reported that Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi remained vague Friday on whether a suspected DPRK spy boat had entered Japan’s exclusive economic zone in the Sea of Japan before its sighting was mad public Wednesday. “We cannot say clearly” whether the boat was in the economic zone before being spotted, Koizumi told reporters at his office. The government said Wednesday the boat was outside Japan’s EEZ when it was outside Japan’s EEZ when it was first sighted.

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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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