NAPSNet Daily Report 11 November, 2009
Contents in this Issue:
- I. NAPSNet
- 1. US on DPRK Nuclear Program
- 2. US on DPRK Nuclear Talks
- 3. PRC and DPRK Nuclear Talks
- 4. DPRK on Nuclear Program
- 5. DPRK-US Relations
- 6. Inter-Korean Relations
- 7. ROK Aid to the DPRK
- 8. ROK Military
- 9. ROK-US Relations
- 10. ROK Environment
- 11. US-Japan Security Alliance
- 12. Japan Energy Supply
- 13. Japan Climate Change
- 14. PRC-US Relations
- 15. PRC-US Trade
- 16. Sino-US Environmental Cooperation
- 17. US-Taiwan Relations
- 18. PRC-Malaysia Diplomacy
- 19. PRC Arms Sales to Pakistan
- 20. PRC-Africa Relations
- 21. Sino-Indian Issues
- 22. PRC Climate Change
- II. PRC Report
1. US on DPRK Nuclear Program
Yonhap News (“U.S. SHOULD ‘FRONT-LOAD’ FUTURE NUCLEAR DEAL WITH N. KOREA: THINK TANK “, Seoul, 2009/11/10) reported that t he United States should press for a “front-loaded” denuclearization deal with the DPRK when the state returns to negotiations that have centered on incremental approaches, a leading U.S. think tank said this week. “Back-loading makes agreements easier to attain, but harder to maintain through the difficult later stages,” the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) said in a report. The Washington-based group was co-founded by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell. “Negotiate for a front-loaded agreement, which includes significant early actions,” it said, adding the U.S should “strongly consider walking away” if the DPRK refuses to conform.
2. US on DPRK Nuclear Talks
CNN (“U.S. ANNOUNCES ONE-ON-ONE TALKS WITH NORTH KOREA”, Washington, 2009/11/10) reported that U.S. officials will soon meet unilaterally with the DPRK representatives to facilitate the resumption of talks on ending the DPRK’s nuclear program, State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said. The U.S. delegation will be led by the administration’s point man on the DPRK, Stephen Bosworth, who will travel to the DPRK capitol of Pyongyang. A possible Bosworth mission had been widely anticipated, but this is the first formal announcement.
3. PRC and DPRK Nuclear Talks
Yonghap News Agency (“CLINTON THANKS CHINA FOR PRESSING N. KOREA FOR RESUMPTION OF NUKE TALKS”, Washington, 2009/11/10) reported that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has expressed thanks to PRC for its efforts to join in international sanctions on DPRK to pressure the reclusive communist state to come out for talks after months of provocations. “They have been extremely helpful with respect to North Korea,” Clinton said in an interview on the Charlie Rose Show Web site Monday. “They know that they can’t just turn a blind eye to North Korea’s provocative behavior, that it’s very destabilizing, and it isn’t to be left to others. So they’ve been playing a much more involved role in trying to corral the North Koreans.”
4. DPRK on Nuclear Program
KBS News (“‘NK WAS AFRAID OF ENDING UP LIKE IRAQ'”, 2009/11/10) reported that declassified Japanese documents confirm that DPRK leader Kim Jong-il said during September 2002 summit talks with Japan that he was afraid the DPRK would end up like Iraq. NHK also reports that according to summit minutes held by the Tokyo Foreign Ministry, then Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi proposed to Kim that if Pyongyang gives up its nuclear program, the global community would compensate them financially. Kim then reportedly expressed fear of becoming like Iraq but added that Russia and the PRC agreed to the DPRK’s possession of nuclear weapons.
5. DPRK-US Relations
Agence France Press (Laurent Lozano, “US WARNS NORTH KOREA AFTER NAVAL CLASH”, 2009/11/10) reported that the White House on Tuesday warned DPRK against any actions that could be seen as an “escalation” after a fiery maritime clash between the DPRK’s navy and a ROK vessel. “I would say to the North Koreans that we hope that there will be no further actions in the Yellow Sea that could be seen as an escalation,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said as President Barack Obama flew to Texas.
Associated Press (Hyung-jin Kim, “SKOREA TROOPS ON HIGH ALERT AFTER NAVY SKIRMISH”, Seoul, 2009/11/11) reported that the US will not cancel its talks with the DPRK following the naval clash in the Yellow Sea. The naval clash “does not in any way affect our decision” to send envoy Stephen Bosworth to Pyongyang, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in Singapore on Wednesday. “We think it is an important step that stands on its own.”
6. Inter-Korean Relations
The Korea Herald (Lim Chang-won, “N.KOREA BOAT IN FLAMES AFTER NAVAL CLASH: SEOUL OFFICIALS”, Seoul, 2009/11/11) reported that a DPRK patrol boat was set ablaze after exchanging fire with ROK’s navy on Tuesday, Seoul officials said, as the White House warned Pyongyang against an escalation of regional tensions. There was no damage on our side, while a DPRK patrol boat engulfed in flames sailed back (across the border),” Chung told parliament. But some analysts said Pyongyang may be sending President Barack Obama a message before he arrives in the ROK as part of an Asian tour.
Yonghap News Agency (Tony Chang, “S. KOREAN WORKERS IN N. KOREA ADVISED TO USE CAUTION AFTER NAVAL CLASH”, Seoul, 2009/11/10) reported that ROK on Tuesday advised its public and private workers in the DPRK to exercise special discretion, as the outbreak of an inter-Korean naval clash on the countries’ western sea border earlier in the day raised deep concern about their safety.
Yonhap (Byun Duk-kun, “SEOUL HOPES NAVAL CLASH WILL NOT STRAIN INTER-KOREAN RELATIONS”, Seoul, 2009/11/11) reported that the ROK does not want any new complications in its relations with the DPRK from an armed skirmish between their naval forces earlier this week, Cheong Wa Dae spokeswoman Kim Eun-hye said Wednesday. “The government will continue to make full preparations against any possible security developments so the people will not have to fear,” Kim stated.
7. ROK Aid to the DPRK
Yonhap News (“N. KOREA DISMISSES SEOUL’S CORN AID AS ‘NARROW-MINDED'”, Seoul, 2009/11/10) reported that DPRK media scorned the ROK’s offer of 10,000 tons of corn aid as “narrow-minded” on Tuesday, though Pyongyang continued to withhold an official response to the small-scale assistance proposed weeks earlier. The article published by Uriminzokkiri, the DPRK’s official Web site, cited critics in the ROK who have blasted the limited offer worth about US$33 million.
8. ROK Military
The Korea Times (Park Si-soo, “MANPOWER CUT TO COMPROMISE COASTAL SECURITY”, 2009/11/10) reported that the government plans to replace soldiers with maritime police officers to guard coastal areas and, in the process, reduce the number of personnel by 60 percent by 2014, a source who is familiar with the plan told The Korea Times Tuesday. The source, who is involved in the replacement plan, expressed his concern that it may leave coastal areas vulnerable to contingencies such as infiltration by commandos, drug traffickers and illegal immigrants. However, the Army will still be responsible for the coastal areas near the border with the DPRK, from the Northern Limit Line (NLL) to Incheon in the West Sea and to Goseong in Gangwon Province in the East Sea, the source added.
9. ROK-US Relations
The Korea Times (Kang Hyun-kyung, “LEE, OBAMA AGREE ON NK BUT NOT ON FTA”, 2009/11/10) reported that President Lee Myung-bak and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama will primarily discuss ways to end DPRK’s nuclear program during a summit scheduled in Seoul next week.
JoongAng Ilbo (Ser Myo-ja, “NORTH TOPS AGENDA FOR THE LEE-OBAMA SUMMIT”, 2009/11/10) reported that the nuclear impasse with DPRK, a free trade agreement with ROK and Seoul’s contribution to rebuilding Afghanistan are key topics to be addressed during President Lee Myung-bak and U.S. President Barack Obama’s summit next week, senior officials from the two countries’ presidential offices said yesterday.
10. ROK Environment
The Korea Times (Bae Ji-sook, “4-RIVER PROJECT STARTS ON CONTROVERSIAL NOTE”, 2009/11/10) reported that a controversial plan to restore the country’s four major rivers kicked off Tuesday, and, as anticipated, the commencement was met with joy on one side and anger on the other. President Lee Myung-bak’s pet project has a price tag of 22 trillion won, and the governing camp says that it will be a milestone in bringing economic boons and environmental protection to the affected areas, while detractors say that the plan will end up devastating the ecosystem.
11. US-Japan Security Alliance
Kyodo News (“JAPAN, U.S. PLAN TO SET UP NEW FRAMEWORK OVER U.S. BASE ISSUE”, Tokyo , 2009/11/10) reported that Japan and the US are planning to set up a new framework to discuss the relocation of a major US Marines airfield in Japan’s Okinawa Prefecture. From the Japanese side, the framework will be joined by ministers involved in the issue such as Foreign Minister Okada and Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa, according to diplomatic sources. From the U.S. side, members are likely to include U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos and U.S. Forces Japan Commander Lt. Gen. Edward Rice. But it is unknown how frequently the meetings will be held and when a conclusion is to be reached.
Bloomberg News (“OBAMA PUSHES JAPAN AS BOTH SIDES WORK TO SOLVE BASE DISPUTE”, 2009/11/10) reported that President Barack Obama says he expects Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama to honor an agreement on American troops in Japan as the two countries work to keep the issue from overshadowing this week’s summit. Obama, in an interview yesterday with NHK Television, said Japan should keep to the agreement. The two countries later agreed to create a cabinet-level working group to resolve the dispute, which threatens to delay a $10.3 billion plan to ease Okinawa’s burden by moving 8,000 Marines to Guam.
12. Japan Energy Supply
Agence France-Presse (“JAPAN EYES SOLAR POWER STATION IN SPACE”, 2009/11/10) reported that Japan’s space agency may one day be in the alternative energy business. It may sound like a sci-fi vision, but Japan’s space agency is dead serious: By 2030, it wants to collect solar power in space and zap it down to Earth, using laser beams or microwaves. But Japan’s boldest plan to date is the Space Solar Power System (SSPS), in which arrays of photovoltaic dishes several square kilometers (square miles) in size would hover in geostationary orbit outside the Earth’s atmosphere.
13. Japan Climate Change
Japan for Sustainability (“JAPAN’S ENVIRONMENT MINISTRY RELEASES VISIONS FOR 80% GHG EMISSIONS REDUCTION”, 2009/11/10) reported that the Japanese Ministry of the Environment released on August 14, 2009, two versions of visions for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80 percent from 2005 levels by 2050 while maintaining the current standard of living. The Vision A, or “economic development and technology-oriented vision,” assumes that Japan’s per capita GDP will grow at two percent per year and technology development will accelerate. The Vision B, or “decentralized economy and nature-oriented vision,” assumes a one-percent annual increase in per capita GDP and development of a decentralized economy driven by population dispersion to rural areas. Each vision presents necessary measures to achieve the 80 percent GHG reductions.
14. PRC-US Relations
Associated Press (Cara Anna, “CHINA PROTESTERS PLEAD FOR HELP FROM OBAMA”, Beijing, 2009/11/10) reported that a group of protesters pleaded for help Tuesday from President Barack Obama before his visit to PRC next week, saying anyone seen as a troublemaker is often treated harshly before major events in the capital. “We are here because Obama is the president of a free and democratic country, he is coming to China, therefore the Chinese government will put pressure on us, the same way it happens on special dates,” said Yang Qiuyu, a housing rights activist who was among the 30 people protesting in a central Beijing park.
Agence France Press (“OBAMA TO RAISE HUMAN RIGHTS WITH CHINA’S HU: OFFICIAL”, Washington, 2009/11/10) reported that President Barack Obama will directly raise human rights with Chinese President Hu Jintao next week, after being criticized for not meeting Tibet ‘s spiritual leader Dalai Lama before visiting Beijing . “The president will raise human rights concerns directly with President Hu in his meetings,” Jeffrey Bader, Obama’s senior director for Asian Affairs on the National Security Council. “The kind of issues that are on our minds are issues of freedom of expression, access to information, freedom of religion, rule of law,” Bader said.
15. PRC-US Trade
Agence France Press (“CHINA, US KEEN TO AVOID TRADE WAR: US OFFICIAL”, Beijing, 2009/11/10) reported that the United States and PRC will work to keep their latest tit-for-tat trade spats from escalating into an all-out war, a top US official said Tuesday, just days before a visit by President Barack Obama . Robert Hormats, the US Under Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs, said “tensions, misunderstandings and frictions” were inevitable between major trade partners and could be resolved through talks. “Many of these things can be negotiated out before they get to the WTO stage. I think we will do and China will do everything we can to avoid a trade war.”
16. Sino-US Environmental Cooperation
Financial Times (Edward Luce, “US-CHINA DEAL? ON CLEAN? ENERGY PROJECTS”, Washington, 2009/11/09) reported that Barack Obama and Hu Jintao are set to unveil a deal to boost clean energy co-operation between the two countries in Beijing next week. But the agreement, which will include joint research projects on carbon capture technology and electric cars, is unlikely to include a breakthrough on climate change before the Copenhagen summit in December, say officials. White House officials say that the emerging deal to enhance bilateral clean energy co-operation will top the list of “deliverables” of Mr Obama’s first state visit to the PRC as president.
17. US-Taiwan Relations
Associated Press (“TAIWAN: NO QUID PRO QUO FOR LIFTING US BEEF BAN”, Taipei, 2009/11/11) reported that Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou said Wednesday the island has not received anything in exchange for lifting a long-standing ban on the imports of certain U.S. bone-in beef, minced beef and offal. Ma says the island did not raise the issues during the beef talks because a quid pro quo would “diminish Taiwan’s friendly gesture” on the beef ban.
18. PRC-Malaysia Diplomacy
China Daily (Zhao Huanxin, “HU: DEEPENING STRATEGIC CO-OP BENEFITS COUNTRIES, REGION”, Kuala Lumpur, 2009/11/11) reported that President Hu Jintao flew from the early winter snow in Beijing to the tropical heat of Malaysia Tuesday afternoon to be embraced by even greater warmth from residents and officials in the capital. The visit, the first by a Chinese head of state to Malaysia in 15 years, was “aimed at pushing the cooperative and strategic relations between the two nations to a new level”, Hu said upon arriving at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
19. PRC Arms Sales to Pakistan
Financial Times (Farhan Bokhari, “PAKISTAN IN CHINESE FIGHTER JET DEAL”, Islamabad, 2009/11/10) reported that the PRC has agreed to sell Pakistan at least 36 advanced fighter jets in a deal worth as much as $1.4bn, according to Pakistani and western officials. Beijing will supply two squadrons of the J-10 fighter jet in a preliminary agreement that could lead to more sales, said a Pakistani official. The official said Pakistan might buy “larger numbers” of the multi-role aircraft in the future, but dismissed reports that Islamabad had signed a deal to purchase as many as 150 of the fighter jets.
20. PRC-Africa Relations
Associated Press (“CHINA PLEDGES $10 BIL FUNDS, AID TO AFRICA”, Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt, 2009/11/10) reported that PRC’s premier pledged $10 billion in new low interest loans to African nations over three years, offering the beleaguered continent sorely needed cash while dismissing criticism that Beijing’s motives in Africa are far from altruistic. As part of an eight-point plan, he said the PRC would also forgive government debts of the poorest African nations that have relations with Beijing and would build 100 new clean energy projects for the continent. It would also gradually institute a zero-tariff policy on 95% of goods from some of the poorest countries. All this would take place over three years.
21. Sino-Indian Issues
Agence France Press (“CHINA RENEWS PROTEST OVER DALAI LAMA INDIA VISIT”, Beijing, 2009/11/10) reported that PRC on Tuesday again condemned the visit of the Dalai Lama to an Indian border state near Tibet , saying it was evidence of the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader ‘s “anti-Chinese” stance. “China strongly opposes the Dalai Lama’s visit” to Arunachal Pradesh, foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang told reporters, adding that the trip had “fully exposed the anti-Chinese nature of the Dalai Lama”. The spokesman added that Beijing had “expressed its strong dissatisfaction with India allowing the Dalai Lama’s visit to the disputed area.”
22. PRC Climate Change
The Times (“VANISHING GLACIERS JOLT SMOKESTACK CHINA”, 2009/11/10) reported that as an expedition from PRC state television worked its way across the remote Tibetan plateau earlier this year, the explorers were amazed by what they found. The plateau has been called the world’s third largest ice store after the North and South Poles. Yet according to PRC scientists, the “third pole” is warming up faster than anywhere else on earth. The TV team found bare rock where glaciers had retreated. Lakes had dried up. Lush grassland had turned to desert. The livestock was dead, the farmers impoverished. Their film attracted the attention of the Communist party’s leaders and has put climate change at the centre of a remarkably open debate in the PRC ahead of a summit on the issue in Copenhagen next month.
II. PRC Report
23. PRC Earthquake Reconstruction
Xinhua Net (” 9.73 BILL SPECIAL PARTY DUES BEEN ALLOCATED TO FIVE PROVINCES”, 2009/11/10) reported that according to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee, the 9.73 billion special party dues for Sichuan earthquake disaster relief from party members all around the country have been fully allocated to five provinces hit by disasters. The special party dues will be used on school reconstruction, housing assistance, distance education sites construction and so on.
24. PRC Civil Society and the Environment
Xinhua Net (“HUNAN VOLUNTEERS CLEAN XIANGJIANG RIVER”, 2009/11/10) reported that as the water level of Xiangjiang River in Hunan province this year has set the lowest record, many rubbish deposited on the riverbed saw the daylight again. On November 8, thousands of volunteers from schools and social organizations of Hunan came to the River and made a general cleaning.