NAPSNet Daily Report 11 June, 2003

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 11 June, 2003", NAPSNet Daily Report, June 11, 2003, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-11-june-2003/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. DPRK Asia-Pacific Security Summit Snub
2. ROK Military Developments
3. US on DPRK Weapons and Humanitarian Aid
4. Armitage on Multilateral DPRK Talks
5. DPRK on Russian Mediated US-DPRK Talks
6. DPRK Economic Liberalization
7. Iran Nuclear Experts DPRK Visit
8. ROK-Japan DPRK Summit
9. PRC Hu on Foreign Affairs Leading Group
10. PRC Military Reorganization Plans
11. US on ROK Anti-US Activism
12. WHO on PRC SARS Situation
13. PRC-Tibet Relations
14. Japan Domestic Economy
15. Japan Role in Post-war Iraq
16. DPRK Defector US Visit?
17. DPRK Defector on Life in DPRK
18. Japan DPRK Cargo Ship Detainments
19. ROK DPRK Freighter Permission
II. Republic of Korea 1. Only Talk in Dealing with DPRK
2. Japanese Communist Party Welcomed by ROK President
3. 5-Party Talks on DPRK Nuclear
4. Missile Defense Plan of ROK
III. Japan 1. Japan Military Emergency Legislation
2. Japan’s Role in Iraq Reconstruction
3. Japan-US-ROK Relations
4. Japan US Marines Relocation
5. US Bases in Japan
6. Japan Missile Defense
7. Japan Reprocessed Nuclear Waste Transportation
8. Japan Security Measures
9. An LDP Lawmaker on Japan’s Colonial Rule

I. United States

1. DPRK Asia-Pacific Security Summit Snub

Reuters (Phnom Penh, “NORTH KOREA TO SNUB ASIA-PACIFIC SUMMIT -CAMBODIA,” 06/11/03) reported that the DPRK will not show up at an Asia-Pacific security summit due to be attended by Secretary of State Colin Powell next week in the Cambodian capital, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday. The Asean Regional Forum, one of the few international bodies of which the DPRK is a member, has historically been a rare opportunity for top-level talks between Pyongyang and Washington. The nuclear stand-off between the DPRK and the US is expected to be the top item on the agenda. “The latest news we have received from North Korea confirms that the minister of foreign affairs for North Korea will not come to join the ARF meeting,” Cambodian foreign affairs spokesman Chhum Sounry stated. “We don’t know the reason and details for why they won’t turn up,” he added.

2. ROK Military Developments

Agence France-Presse (“SOUTH KOREA’S MILITARY ANNOUNCES NEW ENHANCEMENT PLANS,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that the ROK military announced plans to resume costly enhancement projects, including the acquisition of interceptor missiles postponed over fiscal constraints. The Defense Ministry called for 22.35 trillion won (18.6 billion dollars) in its budget for fiscal 2004, up 28.3 percent from this year’s military expenditures. The 2004 budget includes 8.1 trillion won for the long-term acquisition of new equipment such as missiles, surveillance planes, a military satellite and an Aegis warship. “The increase in our defense spending reflects our plans to acquire new equipment,” a ministry spokesman told AFP, adding the military would relaunch its SAM-X project next year. ROK suspended a 1.9-trillion won plan to buy new US Patriot missiles in February when President Roh Moo-Hyun took office, vowing to step up inter-Korean rapprochement. The SAM-X project is a military effort to bolster the ROK’s defense capabilities against DPRK missiles. “We are not free of threats by North Korea long-range artillery and missiles,” Deputy Defense Minister Cha Young-Koo told a radio program Tuesday, suggesting the ROK could buy Patriot missiles. “Patriot missiles are not the only such missiles in the world but we know they are good ones,” he said. Next year’s defense budget accounts for 3.2 percent of the ROK’s gross domestic product, other military officials said, an increase that reflects the relocation of US forces away from the inter-Korean border.

3. US on DPRK Weapons and Humanitarian Aid

The Washington File (“TRANSCRIPT: ARMITAGE SAYS NORTH KOREA STARVING ITS PEOPLE FOR WEAPONS,” Washington, 06/11/03) reported that the DPRK, in its quest for nuclear weaponry, is starving its people, according to Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage. “[T]heir unrelenting attempt to garner nuclear weapons and … Weapons of Mass Destruction capabilities comes at the expense of starving their nation, and I think that should introduce a sense of urgency into their deliberations,” Armitage said in a June 10 interview in Tokyo with CNN reporter Rebecca McKinnon. According to Armitage, the Pyongyang regime could count on international aid if it verifiably gave up its nuclear weapons program and attempts at proliferation. Were Pyongyang’s rulers to “eschew verifiably” weapons of mass destruction and “eliminate their missile proliferation and other items,” he said, “clearly the US would be willing to assist them.” Beyond US help, he suggested, there would be aid from the international community, as well as from “their fellow countrymen in South Korea, and from “their neighbors in Japan.” There would be “plenty of assistance for North Korea,” Armitage said, “but she’s got to take the first step.”

For the full transcript: http://usinfo.state.gov/cgi-bin/washfile/display.pl?p=/products/washfile/geog/ea&f=03061004.eea&t=/products/washfile/newsitem.shtml

4. Armitage on Multilateral DPRK Talks

The Washington File (“TRANSCRIPT: ARMITAGE SEES POSSIBLE MULTILATERAL TALKS ON NORTH KOREA,” Washington, 06/11/03) reported that Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage says “prospects are fair” that there will be multilateral talks including the ROK and Japan on the DPRK’s quest for nuclear weapons. In remarks to the press June 10 in Tokyo, Armitage said that “those countries, which have the most equities involved, should rightfully sit at the table and be able to listen to the DPRK views, and also put our views on the table to the DPRKs.”

To read the full transcript: http://usinfo.state.gov/cgi-bin/washfile/display.pl?p=/products/washfile/geog/ea&f=03061002.eea&t=/products/washfile/newsitem.shtml

5. DPRK on Russian Mediated US-DPRK Talks

Japan Economic Newswire (“. KOREA CALLED FOR RUSSIA-BROKERED 3-WAY TALKS,” Washington, 06/11/03) reported that the DPRK proposed that Russia mediate talks between Pyongyang and Washington after three-way talks wrapped up in Beijing in April between the United States, the DPRK and the PRC, but the proposal was turned down by the US, diplomatic sources said Wednesday. Because the PRC showed understanding over Washington’s stance not to accept bilateral talks with Pyongyang during the talks in Beijing, the DPRK tried to find new opportunities to have direct dialogue with the U.S. by seeking to have Russia be a mediator between the two countries, the sources said. The sources said the DPRK was interested in setting up new three-nation talks involving the U.S. and Russia on Pyongyang’s nuclear program. However, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell and Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov agreed not to accept the North’s proposal when they discussed the matter in mid-May in Moscow, the sources said. The rejection of the proposal by the U.S. and Russia has apparently influenced the DPRK to begin taking a more soft-line approach to the nuclear standoff, the sources added.

6. DPRK Economic Liberalization

The Financial Times (Andrew Ward, “NORTH KOREA TO EXPAND PRIVATE SECTOR,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that the DPRK yesterday signaled further reform of its crumbling economy when it announced an expansion of the country’s private sector and asked other nations to help it implement the changes. Pyongyang’s comments raised hopes that the DPRK might be following the PRC’s example by gradually opening its economy to market forces. “Measures have been taken to improve the livelihood of the economy and the people in an epoch-making manner,” said a commentary on North Korea’s state news agency. The reforms come as the DPRK’s economy – crippled by food and fuel shortages – is facing further isolation from the outside world because of the country’s nuclear weapons program. Pyongyang said an expanded range of consumer and industrial goods could now be bought and sold in the so-called “farmers’ markets” that serve as the DPRK’s de facto private sector. The statement marked the first time that the DPRK had expressed approval of the farmers’ markets, which operate in parallel with the country’s socialist distribution system. Pyongyang said it wanted help because its experience of operating markets was limited – a plea that optimists might consider an invitation for greater foreign participation in the closed economy. Tony Michell, president of Europe Asia Business Consultancy, which operates in the DPRK, said rules had recently been changed to make it easier for foreign companies and traders to do business in the country. He said: “A package of reforms were introduced three weeks ago to improve the market system.” Michell said the announcement marked another step towards liberalisation of the DPRK’s economy, nearly a year after Pyongyang sparked hopes of reform by increasing wages and prices to meet market values. Pyongyang had until yesterday tolerated but never endorsed the private sector, which represented 3.6 per cent of the DPRK’s economy in 2000, according to research by the ROK’s central bank.

7. Iran Nuclear Experts DPRK Visit

Agence France Presse (“IRANIAN NUCLEAR EXPERTS VISITED NORTH KOREA,” Tokyo, 06/11/03) reported that Iranian nuclear experts made three secret visits to the DPRK this year even as the DPRKe faced international criticism for its nuclear arms ambitions, a press report said Wednesday. The Sankei Newspaper said the Iranian scientists may have paid for lessons in handling international nuclear inspectors during their visits between March and May. The visits might have been “aimed at receiving know-how from North Korea on ways to deal with international inspection teams,” a source “related to the Korean peninsula” was quoted as saying by the daily, which is known for its intelligence reports on the DPRK. Citing widespread suspicions that Iran used DPRK technology in developing a medium-range ballistic missile test-fired in 1998, the source said the Iranian experts may have also discussed “cooperation toward nuclear development.” Two Iranian nuclear experts stayed in the DPRK for several days in March for talks with DPRK officials in charge of nuclear development, the conservative daily said. Another Iranian expert traveled to the DPRK in April, while two more spent 10 days in the country in May.

8. ROK-Japan DPRK Summit

Financial Times (Andrew Ward, “STORM OVER SEA OF JAPAN CLOUDS SUMMIT,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that as Roh Moo-hyun, ROK president, and Junichiro Koizumi, Japan’s prime minister, were trying to improve strained relations between their countries at a summit in Tokyo over the weekend, Japanese diplomats in Hong Kong were doing their best to undermine the reconciliation. Japan’s consulate in Hong Kong has been sending letters to media outlets in the city this week criticizing the ROK’s “self-centred” campaign to change the name of the Sea of Japan. Seoul argues that Japan imposed its name on the body of water between the two countries as part of its colonial expansion in the early 20th century. The ROK says the water was previously known as the East Sea. However, in a letter to the Financial Times in Hong Kong, Japanese diplomats said the ROK’s argument was historically flawed and called on journalists to continue referring to the Sea of Japan. The letter is a small example of lingering tensions between the neighbors, nearly 58 years after Japan’s colonial rule of South Korea was ended by its defeat in the second world war. Speaking to Japan’s parliament on Monday, Roh called for improvement in relations between Seoul and Tokyo – but said that Japan must first face up to the past by acknowledging the country’s war crimes. Roh’s visit was overshadowed by changes to Japan’s pacifist constitution designed to give the country’s self-defence force more power to respond to foreign aggression. South Koreans were angered by the timing of the parliament’s passing of the self-defence bills on June 6 – the first day of Roh’s visit to Tokyo and the day that South Korea remembers its war dead.

9. PRC Hu on Foreign Affairs Leading Group

CNN News (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, “HU TAKES ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS,” Hong Kong, 06/11/03) reported that PRC President Hu Jintao has recently assumed the helm of the Communist party’s Leading Group on Foreign Affairs (LGFA), the country’s top decision-making organ on diplomacy and national security affairs. Hu has replaced ex-president Jiang Zemin, 73, who was China’s foremost foreign-policymaker for more than a decade. Diplomatic sources in Beijing said given that Hu may remain Head of LGFA for ten years, his way of thinking and new initiatives would have a big impact on the PRC’s relations with the world for a long time to come. Being a high-level party organ, the activities of the LGFA are never reported in the media. Its decisions are implemented on a day-to-day basis by government and party departments such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the International Liaison Department. The sources said Hu and the party’s Politburo Standing Committee had yet to finalize the full membership of the new LGFA. They said, however that its Vice-Head was Premier Wen Jiabao and members also included Vice-Premier Wu Yi, State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan, and Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing. The biggest surprise of the new line-up is that the name of Vice-President and senior Politburo member Zeng Qinghong is missing. A long-time confidant of ex-president Jiang’s, Zeng had until early this year played a big role in advising Jiang on foreign affairs, especially those pertaining to the US, Japan, the Koreas and Taiwan.

10. PRC Military Reorganization Plans

The Washington Post (John Pomfret “BEIJING PLANS TO REORGANIZE ITS ARMED FORCES,” Beijing, 06/11/03) reported that the PRC has decided to eliminate 500,000 members of the People’s Liberation Army — about 20 percent of its force — in an effort to turn the world’s largest standing military into a streamlined, modern organization, PRC and Western sources said today. The plan would cut the size of the army over the next five years to about 1.85 million troops, the sources said on condition of anonymity. The PRC government spends up to $60 billion a year on defense, comparable to Russian military expenditures, according to a report last month by the Council on Foreign Relations. The military modernization is taking place as this country seeks to parlay its emerging economic power into greater geopolitical influence. The PRC now has the sixth-largest economy in the world, according to the World Bank. Once confined to Asia, PRC interests now span the seas. More than 50 percent of imported oil comes from the Middle East, and the PRC’s energy investments range from Sudan to Venezuela and Kazakhstan. While there has been notable economic success here, military modernization has proved elusive. In late April, 70 sailors and officers died on board a submarine in the country’s worst publicly acknowledged military accident. The Council on Foreign Relations report concluded that the PRC is far from becoming a global military power and that it remains at least two decades behind the US in military technology and ability. Western and PRC sources said the troop cuts were approved during the 16th Congress of the Communist Party in November and at a subsequent meeting of the Central Military Commission, the country’s highest military body. In a speech on May 23, President Hu Jintao hinted at the cuts, ordering the military to work on the development of reserve units and to find jobs for demobilized soldiers. In the speech at a meeting of the Communist Party’s Politburo to study the “world’s modern militaries” — a clear reference to the US — Hu urged the army to carry out “developmental leaps in the modernization of national defense and the military.” Citing contacts in the PRC’s armed forces, a Western military officer said the cuts would focus on demobilizing a vast array of nonessential personnel. Analysts liken the People’s Liberation Army to a large state-owned corporation. It has its own hospitals, schools, movie studios, TV production centers, publishing houses, opera troupes, textile factories, farms and hotels. Many of these organizations are “an unnecessary drain on their resources,” the Western military officer said.

11. US on ROK Anti-US Activism

The New York Times (Don Kirk, “US TRIES TO COUNTER ANTI-AMERICAN PROTESTS DUE IN KOREA,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that the US mounted a public relations offensive today in anticipation of some of the biggest expressions of anti-Americanism here in years. The US Ambassador, Thomas Hubbard, and the commander of US forces in the ROK, Gen. Leon LaPorte, opened the campaign with renewed expressions of regret over the deaths of two 13-year-old schoolgirls last June 13. The two were crushed by a 50-ton American armored vehicle during a military exercise on a narrow road about 20 miles north of here. Trying to counter the potential impact of huge demonstrations planned for Friday, on the first anniversary of the deaths, Hubbard and General Laporte searched for the words most likely to convince skeptical Koreans of both their sorrow and their dedication to preventing a similar tragedy. Hubbard, after meeting with the father of one of the girls, said that he had “once again expressed our deepest sense of remorse” and “apologized from the bottom of my heart for this tragic loss.” He made the apology, he said, “on behalf of President Bush and the American people” and promised to attend memorial services on Friday along with General LaPorte and other top American officials at the chapel of the US military garrison here. General LaPorte, proclaiming Friday “a day of remembrance” for US forces in the ROK, again offered the families of the two girls “our heartfelt remorse, heartache and sadness over their loss.” The US command, he said, accepted “full responsibility for this tragic accident” while offering “our deepest apologies during this extremely important and mournful time.” In memory of the tragedy, General LaPorte canceled training exercises for troops in the US Second Infantry Division, one of whose units was on a two-week military exercise when the girls were killed. The division, he said, would conduct memorial services at all 17 of its installations, from its headquarters several miles north of Seoul to a battalion post several miles below the line with the DPRK. Such high-level expressions of grief appeared unlikely, however, to have much effect on the plans of a network of 90 civic groups to persuade tens of thousands of Koreans to take to the streets on Friday night. They will be carrying paper cups containing candles, shouting slogans and singing songs mourning the deaths and deploring the US military presence.

12. WHO on PRC SARS Situation

Reuters (“WHO OFFICIAL IN CHINA SEEKING ANSWERS ON SARS,” Beijing, 06/11/03) reported that the top United Nations expert on infectious diseases arrived in Beijing on Wednesday to investigate the PRC’s SARS outbreak and assess questions that could stall the lifting of a WHO travel warning. Dr. David Heymann, the World Health Organization executive director for communicable diseases, has been a leading skeptic of the PRC’s reported SARS caseload as the numbers have plummeted in recent weeks. He was scheduled to meet Health Ministry officials. Heymann told Reuters Television he had come “to congratulate the government on the excellent work that they’ve done and to get some answers to a few questions that we have.” Beijing, the most infected city in the world, has reported no new SARS on six of the past seven days. But the WHO has expressed concern about the PRC’s failure to record how about half its patients caught the potentially deadly respiratory illness and to diagnose properly some milder cases of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome. Heymann said he did not dispute the accuracy of official figures in a country criticized widely for covering up for months the extent of the outbreak after the disease first appeared in the southern province of Guangdong. “I have not said that. We have come here to look and talk with the government,” he said. He said WHO director-general Gro Harlem Brundtland would make the final decision whether to lift the advisory against travel to Beijing and four surrounding areas, Tianjin, Inner Mongolia, Hebei and Shanxi. “But there are three criteria: the magnitude of the outbreak and the number of new cases occurring each day, the type of transmission occurring in the community and whether or not there are exported cases from the country,” Heymann said. The illness has paralyzed China’s tourism industry — arrivals were down a year-on-year 30 percent in April — and given many foreign investors second thoughts.

13. PRC-Tibet Relations

Reuters (“DALAI LAMA SEEKS MORE CONTACT WITH CHINA,” New Delhi, 06/11/03) reported that the Dalai Lama wants greater contact between his envoys and PRC authorities to boost relations following the success of recent meetings, the exiled spiritual leader’s representative said Wednesday. A four-member team led by special envoy Lodi Gyaltsen Gyari returned to India earlier this week after a two-week visit to China, the second direct contact between the PRC and the Dalai Lama’s representatives since last September. “His Holiness is particularly pleased the PRC leadership has a positive assessment of our recent direct contact,” Gyari, who headed the team, said in a statement. “He is encouraged by the development and reiterated the importance for us to continue to make vigorous efforts to advance this process further.” Analysts say the re-establishment of contacts between the PRC and the Dalai Lama’s representatives reflects a slight softening in Beijing’s position as it tests the waters for some kind of political solution and tries to improve its image overseas. Gyari said more steps were needed to improve relations. “Both sides agreed that our past relationship had many twists and turns and that many areas of disagreement still exist. The need was felt for more efforts to overcome the existing problems and bring about mutual understanding and trust,” he said. Last September, the Tibetan god-king’s envoys visited the PRC in the first direct contact between them since 1993.

14. Japan Domestic Economy

Agence France-Presse (“BANK OF JAPAN LEAVES MONETARY POLICY UNCHANGED,” Tokyo, 06/11/03) reported that the Bank of Japan (BoJ) left its monetary policy unchanged but approved a plan to buy asset-backed securities (ABS) in a bid to stimulate the economy by making it easier for small- and mid-sized companies to raise funds. At the end of a regular two-day meeting, the central bank said it voted unanimously to keep the outstanding balance of its current accounts at about 27-30 trillion yen (229-254 billion dollars), the same level agreed at its last meeting on May 20. “Should there be a risk of financial market instability, such as a surge in liquidity demand, the bank will provide more liquidity irrespective of the above target,” the BoJ said in a statement Wednesday. At its May 20 meeting, the BoJ said it would ease monetary policy because economic activity remained flat, coupled with growing uncertainty arising from the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, and stock and foreign exchange market instability. The ABS purchase scheme followed a decision by the central bank at its April 7-8 policy board meeting to begin considering the purchase of securities backed by private-sector bank loan claims or accounts receivable held by small- and mid-sized companies, the BoJ said. Starting at the end of July, the bank will begin purchasing such assets with the maximum amount set for the time being at 1.0 trillion yen, the BoJ said. The scheme will run until the end of March 2006.

15. Japan Role in Post-war Iraq

The Associated Press (Hans Greimel, “JAPAN WANTS ROLE IN POSTWAR IRAQ,” Tokyo, 06/11/03) reported that Japan Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi wants to send Japanese troops to Iraq to aid reconstruction, assist US peacekeepers and destroy any weapons of mass destruction, a spokesman said Wednesday. The proposed mission, which is drawing criticism in Japan, would make good on Koizumi’s pledge to President Bush at a Texas summit last month to make Japan an “initiative-taking country” in Iraq’s reconstruction. Koizumi intends to bring the plan before Parliament during the session scheduled to end June 18, the prime minister’s spokesman Yu Kameoka said. The announcement comes a day after US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage chided Japan for sitting “in the stands” during the 1991 Gulf War and urged Tokyo to get “onto the playing field” this time. Kameoka said the proposal would allow Japan to send troops to Iraq in a non-combat role to aid reconstruction, assist US peacekeeping troops and help dismantle or destroy any weapons of mass destruction that are found. The timeline to dispatch troops has not been set, he said. Japan is considering the dispatch of two transport planes and 80 personnel to Jordan as early as July to help ferry food, medicine and other supplies into Iraq, a Cabinet official said on condition of anonymity. Ground troops would be sent into Iraq at a later stage, according to the Asahi Shimbun, a leading national daily. The proposed law would expire in four years and allow Japanese troops to use their weapons only in self-defense, the Yomiuri Shimbun added. Japan’s pacifist constitution restricts the use of the Japanese military to a self-defense role.

16. DPRK Defector US Visit?

The Associated Press (Kenji Hall, “DPRK DEFECTOR TRIES FOR US VISIT,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that six years after fleeing the DPRK in search of freedom, Hwang Jang Yop remains confined to the ROK. Hwang, the most senior DPRK citizen ever to defect and a former mentor to leader Kim Jong Il, has had little contact with the outside world since he fled to the ROK in 1997. He rarely appears in public or gives interviews. Under the protective custody of the ROK’s spy agency, the National Intelligence Service, Hwang has had few opportunities to reveal what he knows about the inner workings of the DPRK regime. Now, as a tense standoff over the DPRK’s nuclear programs continues, US officials and public interest groups are encouraging him to speak out. Hwang has been invited by the Washington-based conservative policy group Defense Forum Foundation for a weeklong visit to Capitol Hill, beginning June 16. But with that trip less than a week away, nobody seems to know whether the ROK will allow him to go. “We are awaiting a final decision by the Republic of Korea government,” said Defense Forum Foundation president Suzanne Scholte. Hwang has already told US and ROK intelligence officials what he knows about Pyongyang, said Nicholas Eberstadt, a Korea expert at the American Enterprise Institute. But Washington wants him to repeat his harsh criticism of the DPRK in a public forum. “He would know in his bones things about the DPRK system that outside analysts can only learn after years or decades … and can’t be gleaned from spy satellites,” said Eberstadt. “He’s walking, talking, breathing intelligence.” The 81-year-old Hwang was a member of North Korea’s highest decision-making body, the Central Committee of the Workers Party, when he defected in Beijing in 1997 with an aide, Kim Duk Hong, on his way home from an academic seminar in Japan. Known as the architect of DPRK’s guiding philosophy – juche, or self-reliance – Hwang headed the prestigious Kim Il Sung University; served three times as chairman of the legislature, the Supreme People’s Assembly; and once tutored Kim Jong Il. He reportedly faced a purge at the time he left the DPRK. However, he says he defected because he wanted to warn of the regime’s plan to attack the ROK.

17. DPRK Defector on Life in DPRK

The Associated Press (George Gedda, “WITNESS DESCRIBES LIFE IN NORTH KOREA,” Washington, 06/11/03) reported that Hae Nam Ji seemed lost in thought. Perhaps it was the long flight from the ROK the day before. Perhaps it was this city’s unfamiliar surroundings. Or possibly it was the deeply etched memories of a past too awful to forget. As she described it, her first 40 years, by the standards of her native DPRK, were relatively normal. A college graduate, she was engaged in exhorting workers in several factories to toe the party line. “What the party decides, we follow!” she would tell them. Then came The Mistake. Accompanied by four friends one evening in December 1992, she taught them a song titled “Don’t Cry Hongo,” a 1970s-era tune, a forbidden import from the ROK. Retaliation came slowly but with a vengeance. Four months later she was detained in her native Hamkyungnam-do and taken to the Security Protection agency. In an interview and in congressional testimony last week, she described what happened next: “The beatings I received were so severe that my entire body was bruised and I was unable to get up for a month.” Later, she was tried, convicted and sentenced to three years in what authorities describe as a correctional center. Her crime: teaching a foreign song. Her companions from that December evening were sentenced to eight months of forced labor. “I was subjected to torture and sexual harassment that cannot be imagined by another human being,” Ji said in her congressional testimony. “The detention center guards were around 22, 24 years old. I was mortified and wanted to die rather than be locked up. I tried swallowing cement cut into four pieces of squares as well as sewage, rubbish and hair, but I didn’t die.” At another point, she said, “I could fill up thousands of pages about my suffering in jails.” Life is better nowadays for Ji, 54. She managed to escape to the ROK, arriving there in January 2002 after harrowing journeys through four Southeast Asian countries. She has her own apartment and receives a monthly stipend of $400, compliments of the ROK government. Her visit here was sponsored by the Virginia-based Defense Forum Foundation, a conservative group that attempts to call attention to human rights abuses in the DPRK.

18. Japan DPRK Cargo Ship Detainments

The New York Times (James Brooke, “JAPAN DETAINS TWO DPRK SHIPS, PART OF PRESSURE STRATEGY,” Tokyo, 06/11/03) reported that Japan detained two DPRK cargo ships in Japanese ports today, moves that North Korea denounced as sanctions and that Japan defended as safety inspections. “We are ready to thoroughly inspect all DPRK vessels at ports across the country,” Chikage Ogi, Japan’s transport minister, said at a news conference, hours before her inspectors scoured the DPRK ships for violations. The detentions were ordered a day after Bush administration officials said they were encouraging allies to put pressure on DPRK shipping by enforcing safety rules and searching for illegal drugs, a major DPRK export. The policy is part of a broader effort to force the DPRK into negotiating an end to its nuclear bomb program. Inspectors worked all day in Maizuru, a western Japan port that last year received about one-quarter of the 1,344 calls to all Japanese ports by 147 DPRK ships. After the inspections, Maizuru transport ministry officials ordered the detention of the Namsan 3, a 298-ton freighter, until its DPRK crew of 16 could fix three major safety violations: lack of charts of surrounding seas, a hole in its bulkhead, and a doorsill to the cabin that was too low to prevent water from flooding in. Farther north, at Otaru port in Hokkaido, northern Japan, local transport officials ordered the detention for safety violations of the 178-ton Daehungrason 2, which was carrying a cargo of crabs. During the last decade, several DPRK freighters have become stranded along Japan’s coast. Invariably, the state company owners have walked away from the shipwrecks, refusing to pay fines or to remove the hulks. The detentions today came after DPRK authorities suspended the country’s lone ferry link with Japan to protest the new safety inspection policy. North Korea’s state-run press denounced the inspections. “If this is part of `sanctions’ against the DPRK, we cannot but regard it as a very serious development,” the official Korean Central News Agency said. It called the policy “part of the Bush administration’s foolish and shameful moves to ostracize the DPRK politically and morally on the international arena and isolate and stifle it by terming it a `rogue state.'”

19. ROK DPRK Freighter Permission

The Associated Press (“JAPAN ALLOWS DPRK FREIGHTER TO LEAVE,” Tokyo, 06/11/03) and the Japan Times (“DPRK FREIGHTER GRANTED PERMISSION TO LEAVE MAIZURU PORT,” Kyoto, 06/11/03) reported that Japanese authorities agreed Wednesday to let a DPRK freighter leave port a day after stopping it for safety violations amid a crackdown on smuggling by the DPRK. The 298-ton Nam Sang was expected to leave the western port of Maizuru by Friday with a cargo including used bicycles and refrigerators, said Hajime Oyama, an official with a regional bureau of the Transport Ministry. The freighter was ordered to remain in Maizuru on Tuesday after transportation officials inspecting it for safety said it lacked maritime charts and needed to repair structural damage. The order was lifted Wednesday after a second on-board inspection showed the violations had been rectified, Oyama said. Japanese customs officials and port authorities have been tightening inspections of DPRK ships following allegations that a DPRK ferry was involved in smuggling missile parts. The ferry, the Mangyongbong 92, suddenly canceled a visit to Japan last week after Japanese authorities promised to search it from stem to stern and citizens’ groups planned protests. The DPRK accused Japan Wednesday of using the threat of inspections as a form of “sanctions” against the vessel’s entry. “The Japanese authorities should ponder over the serious consequences to be entailed by their unreasonable obstruction,” the official Korean Central News Agency said, quoting a spokesman from the Korean Marine Transport Committee. The DPRK has said previously that it would consider economic sanctions an act of war. The Mangyongbong 92 is the only DPRK ship that operates regularly between the two countries, but about 150 freighters from the communist nation also called at Japanese ports last year. The Nam Sang was carrying a small part of the cargo originally intended for the ferry. On Tuesday, senior officials from Japan, the US and Australia agreed to cooperate in cracking down on DPRK ships suspected of smuggling weapons and drugs.

II. Republic of Korea

1. Only Talk in Dealing with DPRK

Joongang Ilbo (Kang Min-seok, “TALKS SOLE OPTION, ROH TELLS AIDES,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that ROK President Roh Moo-hyun said Tuesday that he had indicated to Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi that ROK will reject any other course than dialogue in the North Korean nuclear crisis. “During my visit to Japan, I conveyed a strong intention that we exclude use of force and other means that heighten uncertainty, and that we use dialogue to resolve the North Korean nuclear crisis,” Roh told Blue House secretaries and aides, according to Yoon Tai-young, the Blue House spokesman. “His remark was to expand that he explained sufficiently to the Japanese prime minister various problems that would arise,” if other means of resolution were taken, Yoon said. The comment “should be construed as having emphasized dialogue more than pressure.” Foreign affairs experts in the National Assembly asserted that Roh’s recurring shifts of emphasis pose a danger to ROK’s credibility. In his meeting with US President George W. Bush on May 13, the two stressed that they would settle the North Korean nuclear crisis peacefully based on close cooperation between US, Japan and ROK, but warned that “further steps” might be necessary in the event of North Korean intransigence. Ten days later Bush and Koizumi warned of “tougher measures” if the crisis is not resolved through dialogue. Koizumi and Roh agreed Saturday to pressure North Korea while maintaining dialogue, but Roh said he preferred to emphasize talk. Tuesday’s comment was seen as abandoning the possibility of doing anything more than talking to DPRK about its nuclear programs.

2. Japanese Communist Party Welcomed by ROK President

Joongang Ilbo (Choi Hoon, “ROH SAYS HE WOULD MEET JAPAN RED BOSS IN KOREA,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that ROK President Roh Moo-hyun told a Japanese Communist Party leader this week that he would be willing to meet him in ROK, where the Communist Party is outlawed. “If there is a politician in Korea who is open to exchanges with a communist party, the first one will probably be me,” Roh said, according to a Blue House spokesman. Yoon Tai-young, the spokesman, said Roh spoke to Kazuo Shii, chairman of the executive committee of the Japanese Communist Party, Monday. Roh was in Japan, meeting with Japanese lawmakers. “Permitting a communist party will complete democracy in Korea,” Roh said, according to Yoon. The president said he would welcome, not reject or ignore, a visit from Shii. The Japanese Communist leader replied that he hoped to have such an opportunity, Yoon said. Wary that the exchange would spark outrage in ROK, which has a half-century history of fierce anti-communism, Yoon hastened to parse Roh’s words. “What Roh referred to as a communist party is a legitimate entity accepted under the system such as that in Western world and Japan,” he said. “Please take into account the peculiar circumstance that Roh spoke before the leadership of the Japanese Communist Party.”

3. 5-Party Talks on DPRK Nuclear

Joongang Ilbo (Kim Young-sae, “5-PARTY TALKS ON NORTH MULLED FOR JULY,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that DPRK has so far not dropped its insistence on negotiating directly and only with US, but ROK has been inching closer to getting itself invited to the session that will follow up on the three-nation talks in Beijing held in April. Foreign Minister Yoon Young-kwan said Tuesday that ROK is not concerned about the format of the talks, as long as the next meeting takes place soon “in whatever format.” Back from Japan, where he accompanied President Roh Moo-hyun’s visit to Japan, Yoon said, “Japan is in favor of five-party talks.” The greater willingness by ROK to accept the five-party format ? which would bring the two Koreas, US, Japan and PRC to the table ? represents a subtle change over the past month. Officials had said they considered at least one more round of three-nation talks, involving DPRK, US and PRC, as the best way to keep up the momentum of dialogue. But Roh has since met with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and also with US President George W. Bush, who is loath to have US officials sit down with DPRK officials alone, lest it repeat the situation of 1994, when DPRK signed an agreement with the United States to suspend its nuclear development only to break it. In Tokyo, Deputy US Secretary of State Richard Armitage said Tuesday that he believed a multilateral meeting that also includes ROK and Japan would be held soon. Japanese reports quoted another US official as saying that DPRK’s aversion to multilateral talks is weakening and that five-party talks would be held in July or August at the latest.

4. Missile Defense Plan of ROK

Chosun Ilbo (Yoo Yong-won, “SEOUL OWNS UP TO MISSILE DEFENSE PLAN,” Seoul, 06/11/03) reported that ROK urgently needs to secure a missile defense capability, and a mid- to long-term plan is in place to do so, Cha Young-gu, the director of the Defense Ministry’s policy planning bureau, said Tuesday. In a phone interview with a KBS 1 radio program, Cha said that ROK could not go without a missile defense system, because it is threatened by DPRK’s long-range artillery and missiles. This is the first time a high government official has confirmed the existence of the nation’s missile defense plan. Cha said that US had not asked ROK to join its missile defense system. He explained that US bases on the peninsula already have Patriot missiles. Cha also denied reports that the USFK had demanded that ROK purchase Patriot missiles and Apache helicopters.

III. Japan

1. Japan Military Emergency Legislation

Kyodo (“GOV’T SETS LIMITS TO PREMIER’S AUTHORITY IN EMERGENCY BILL,” 06/02/03) reported that the Japanese government plans to stipulate that the prime minister’s authority to enforce measures on behalf of prefectural governors will be limited to three areas in a new bill on protecting nationals during foreign military attacks on Japan, government officials said. The prime minister will have the authority to instruct residents to evacuate, order local governments to accept evacuated residents of other prefectures, and take appropriate measures to provide aid for such residents if governors refuse to do so, the officials said. The clarification is an apparent response by the central government to respond to local governments’ concerns, as it is considered exceptional for the prime minister to override prefectural governors in directly giving instructions to residents. Regarding designated public entities, the government plans to waive the overriding rights and only implement the authority to instruct transportation operators who refuse, without legitimate reasons, to transport residents and deliver aid materials, the officials said. The bill is expected to be submitted to the ordinary Diet session next year. Under a provision in another bill on how the government should respond during military attacks, which is the core of a set of contingency bills to be enacted during the current Diet session, the prime minister will be given the powers to first coordinate policies if prefectural authorities and central ministries are divided over responses in the event of a contingency. The premier can then issue orders if necessary measures still cannot be achieved after mediation, and can exercise the overriding authority as a last resort if the instructions fail to achieve measures necessary to protect the lives of nationals in a foreign military attack.

Kyodo (“ATTACK ON U.S. BASES IN JAPAN QUALIFIES AS CONTINGENCY: ISHIBA,” 06/02/03) reported that Defense Agency chief Shigeru Ishiba said that “an attack on US military bases in Japan will be considered an attack on Japan,” indicating a set of envisioned contingency laws will be applicable in such a situation. An attack on US bases in Japan “cannot be achieved without invading Japanese territory,” Defense Agency Director General Ishiba said in a question-and-answer session in a House of Councillors special committee on the contingency bills. “It is difficult to think that (such an attack) does not fulfill the conditions” for Japan to exercise its right to self-defense, Ishiba said in response to questions from New Komeito party lawmaker Kiyohiko Toyama. Meanwhile, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda said a permanent secretariat headed by an assistant cabinet secretary should be established to coordinate contingency measures under the Security Council of Japan. Fukuda also said that expert research on contingencies should be conducted routinely.

2. Japan’s Role in Iraq Reconstruction

Kyodo (“WOLFOWITZ EXPECTS JAPAN’S DISPATCH OF SDF TO IRAQ,” 06/02/03) reported that visiting US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi in a meeting on June 2 that the US expects Japan to take part in rebuilding Iraq by such means as sending troops, Foreign Ministry officials said. The US would welcome and expects Japan’s contribution, Wolfowitz said in response to Kawaguchi’s comment that Japan will consider steps on top of the currently planned dispatch of a Self-Defense Forces (SDF) C-130 transport aircraft to neighboring countries to help war-torn Iraq. Turning to the issue of the DPRK’s nuclear weapons ambitions, Kawaguchi said, “We need to resolve the issue by peaceful and diplomatic means, although tougher measures would be needed if North Korea further worsens the situation,” according to the officials.

Kyodo (“KOIZUMI SAYS TO DECIDE ON SDF IN IRAQ AFTER RETURNING HOME,” 06/03/03) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi reiterated he will decide whether to create a new law to send the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) to Iraq after he returns to Japan from the just-ended Group of Eight (G-8) summit. Koizumi also said Japan needs to study further what it can do under current legislation, what Iraqi people really need and what sectors Japan can help in before making a decision on a possible SDF dispatch.

3. Japan-US-ROK Relations

Kyodo (“THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCED MONDAY IT WILL MEET WITH THE UNITED STATES,” 06/02/03) reported that the Japanese government announced on June 2 it will meet with the US and the ROK in Hawaii on June 12-13 to discuss North Korean nuclear weapons issues. Discussions at the meeting in Honolulu are to include how to obtain the DPRK’s commitment to cease nuclear weapons development in a verifiable way and measures to achieve a comprehensive resolution to issues including missiles, government officials said. Mitoji Yabunaka, director general of the Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau of the Japanese Foreign Ministry, US Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly, and Lee Su Hyok, South Korean assistant secretary of foreign affairs and trade, are to attend the meeting, the officials said. The countries will also hold discussions on the next round of multilateral talks with the DPRK, such as when it should be held and how Japan and the ROK should participate. The first round was held among the US, the PRC and the DPRK in late April.

4. Japan US Marines Relocation

Mainichi Daily News (“U.S. SAYS PLANS TO MOVE MARINES FROM OKINAWA NOT FINALIZED,” 06/03/03) reported that the US has not yet finalized plans to move several Marines out of Okinawa, but reducing the burden on the island is under consideration as part of an overall military realignment, the US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz said. “The specific suggestion which I said had no foundation was the suggestion that we are going to move our Marines from Okinawa to Australia,” Wolfowitz told reporters at the US Embassy in Tokyo. However, the deputy defense secretary said that the US was ready for adjustments that would reduce the burden of hosting the US military on the people of Okinawa. The major move to realign US military deployment is in response to unpredictable threats after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on the US, he said. Therefore, the Pentagon plans to realign American forces in the ROK and other parts of Asia to cope with the DPRK’s nuclear ambitions. “It is not something that should wait until the nuclear problem is solved,” Wolfowitz added. Top Japanese officials told the Mainichi late last week that moving several Marine units out of Okinawa would be discussed between Japan and the US as part of the US global military realignment.

5. US Bases in Japan

Kyodo (“U.S. NUCLEAR SUB STOPS OFF IN SASEBO,” Sasebo, Nagasaki Pref., 06/02/03) reported that the US nuclear-powered submarine Los Angeles made a brief port call on June 1 at Sasebo port, city officials said. The Los Angeles, with 130 crew members aboard, stopped at the port in the morning and left about four hours later. The city officials earlier quoted Foreign Ministry officials as saying that the 6,082-ton submarine made the port call to give the crew time to rest and resupply. The US government is supposed to notify Japan about such port calls at least 24 hours in advance. But the US decided to stop notifying the public about the port calls due to fears of terrorism after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the US.

Kyodo (“U.S. MILITARY POLICEMAN WALKS IN CIVILIAN AREA WITH RIFLE,” 06/02/03) reported that a member of the US military police walked through a civilian area of Okinawa Prefecture with a rifle over his shoulder on June 1, scaring passersby, police said. The military policeman walked around the “Michinoeki” facility in Kadena village near the US Kadena Air Base for about half an hour, according to local police. The police said they contacted the US military in Okinawa and were told that the military policeman, who belongs to the Kadena Air Base, was on duty. Officials at the Okinawa prefectural government said they have asked the US military in Okinawa to investigate the facts surrounding the incident. “We’re not sure whether this is in breach of the Japan-US Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), but it is unusual and also undesirable for military police to walk in a civilian area with a rifle,” a prefectural government official said.

Kyodo (“U.S. FORCES PROMISE ‘CONSIDERATION’ ON ARMED MPS,” 06/03/03) reported that Japanese authorities filed an unofficial protest with the US military, a day after a US military police officer was found toting a rifle outside the US Kadena Air Force Base, prompting a promise by the US military to stop the practice. US military police personnel are allowed under the Japan-US status-of-forces agreement (SOFA) to carry firearms outside US bases while on official duties. The Okinawa office of the Foreign Ministry said it has asked the US Air Force to consider the “misgivings” of local residents and the US military promised to give consideration to the local concern. The public affairs office of the Kadena Air Force Base later issued a statement saying while US military police are allowed under the SOFA to carry firearms while on official duties, they would stop the practice in the future.

Kyodo (“PANEL WANTS LESS RESTRICTIONS ON SALES OF EX U.S. SITES,” 06/03/03) reported that an advisory panel to the finance minister approved in principle a plan to ease restrictions on the sales of former US armed forces sites in Japan that have been returned to the country, panel members said. The plan, aimed at promoting the sales of such land from the central government to local governments, was outlined in a draft report approved by a subcommittee of the Ministry of Finance Fiscal System Council on the same day. The report is scheduled to be finalized June 17 after some fine-tuning, and is expected to be submitted to Finance Minister Masajuro Shiokawa on the same day. The draft report covers a total of 397 hectares of nine former US armed forces sites in the Kanto area in eastern Japan. Among the measures mentioned is a drastic cut in the prices of such properties to promote sales of the land to cash-strapped local governments. Although local governments are given priority over other buyers in the sales of such properties, the draft report says that the private sector should also be allowed to purchase the land.

6. Japan Missile Defense

The Japan Times (Nao Shimoyachi, “U.S. COMMANDER COMING TO SPEED UP TALKS ON MISSILE DEFENSE,” 06/04/03) reported that in a move to accelerate Japan’s introduction of a missile defense system, US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz announced on June 3 that the US will soon send its top missile commander to Tokyo. “We will certainly welcome the participation of Japan” in a missile defense project, the Pentagon’s No. 2 official told reporters at the US Embassy in Tokyo. Wolfowitz said the kind of system to adopt and deployment details are matters for Japan to decide. He said US Air Force Lt. Gen. Ronald Kadish, chief of the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency, will visit Japan this month to discuss the “technical aspects” of missile shield systems. In a meeting with Wolfowitz, Defense Agency chief Shigeru Ishiba called on the US to provide Japan with “as much information as possible” on US missile defense projects.

7. Japan Reprocessed Nuclear Waste Transportation

Kyodo (“REPROCESSED NUCLEAR WASTE TO ARRIVE IN JAPAN IN JULY,” 06/02/03) reported that a ship carrying highly radioactive nuclear waste will leave France and is scheduled to arrive in Japan by around July, the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan said. It will be the eighth such shipment to be made for reprocessed spent nuclear fuel removed from Japanese nuclear reactors. The nuclear waste, which has been reprocessed by France’s state-owned nuclear fuel company Compagnie Generale des Matieres Nucleaires, belongs to Kansai, Tokyo, Chubu, Shikoku and Kyushu electric power companies. The 5,000-ton British-flagged Pacific Swan will leave the Cherbourg port in northwestern France carrying the reprocessed nuclear waste in the form of 144 pieces of solidified glass, the industry association said. It will be stored at the Rokkasho nuclear waste storage facility in Aomori Prefecture, northeastern Japan.

8. Japan Security Measures

Kyodo (“NPA TO COMPILE COMPREHENSIVE SECURITY MEASURES,” 06/02/03) reported that the Japanese National Police Agency (NPA) decided to compile comprehensive emergency security measures by around summer, aiming to recover “the safest country in the world.” At a meeting of prefectural police department heads, Hidehiko Sato, the NPA’s commissioner general, said security in Japan has deteriorated due to growing concerns over people’s lives under the prolonged economic slump and increase in illegal immigrants. He also said the global spread of terrorism has affected Japan’s security. The NPA will propose closer ties with local governments and strengthening its information gathering and analyzing capabilities on terrorism to help counter crime more effectively, Sato said.

9. An LDP Lawmaker on Japan’s Colonial Rule

The Japan Times (“ASO SAYS SORRY FOR CLAIMING KOREANS WANTED JAPANESE NAMES DURING WAR,” 06/03/03) reported that Taro Aso, policy chief of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), apologized for infuriating Koreans by claiming they voluntarily adopted Japanese names during World War II. Aso drew protests from the ROK government when he said that the 1939 decree forcing Korean people to adopt Japanese names “stemmed from Korean requests for surnames.” “My words failed to express my true intentions. I regret my remarks and I would like to frankly apologize to the South Korean people,” Aso told a news conference. He also stressed that his recognition of Japan’s colonial rule of Korea is “no different” from that expressed in 1995 by then Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama, who apologized for the considerable damage and pain inflicted on the Korean people by Japan. Meanwhile, the Japanese Communist Party Secretariat head, Tadayoshi Ichida, joined the Korean officials the same day in criticizing Aso’s remarks. The policy was “designed to legally force (Koreans) to identify themselves with Japanese surnames, and the remarks run counter to the truth,” Ichida said. “Even past LDP governments have admitted the policy was wrong. This is a serious issue.”

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:

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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