NAPSNet Daily Report 11 September, 2009
Contents in this Issue:
- I. NAPSNet
- 1. DPRK Nuclear Talks
- 2. US on DPRK Nuclear Talks
- 3. Russia on DPRK Nuclear Program
- 4. PRC on DPRK Leadership
- 5. Inter-Korean Relations
- 6. Inter-Korean Economic Cooperation
- 7. DPRK-Japan Relations
- 8. DPRK Leadership
- 9. DPRK Arms Exports
- 10. DPRK Military
- 11. DPRK Economy
- 12. ROK Cyberdefense
- 13. US-Japan Nuclear Pact
- 14. US-Japan Relations
- 15. Japan SDF Indian Ocean Mission
- 16. Japan Space Progam
- 17. Australian Energy Exports to Japan, ROK
- 18. Sino-Indian Relations
- 19. Sino-Russian Relations
- 20. Cross Strait Relations
- 21. Taiwan Politics
- 22. PRC Ethnic Unrest
- 23. PRC Arms Imports
- 24. PRC Economy
- 25. PRC Energy Supply
- II. PRC Report
1. DPRK Nuclear Talks
Chosun Ilbo (“5 COUNTRIES GIVE NOD TO N.KOREA-U.S. TALKS “, 2009/09/09) reported that the ROK, PRC , Japan, Russia and the United States are reaching consensus to support bilateral talks between the DPRK and the U.S. if that can persuade the DPRK back to six-way denuclearization talks. Until recently, the five countries were in favor of such bilateral talks only after the DPRK proves that it wants to denuclearize. The shift in position among the five countries reflects an assessment that it will be easier to bring the DPRK back to the table by using some incentive as well as pressure by way of international sanctions.
2. US on DPRK Nuclear Talks
Yonhap News (“U.S. TO PURSUE N. KOREAN DENUCLEARIZATION THROUGH 6-WAY TALKS: STATE DEPT.”, 2009/09/09) reported that the United States reiterated that it will pursue the DPRK’s denuclearization through the six-party talks. “I think we’ve been clear all along that whatever we do has to be in very close consultation with our parties, because we believe that’s the best way to solve this conflict, in a six-party context,” State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said in a daily news briefing.
3. Russia on DPRK Nuclear Program
Xinhua News (“NO PROOF OF DPRK’S SO-CLAIMED COMPLETION OF URANIUM ENRICHMENT: RUSSIAN FM”, Moscow, 2009/09/09) reported that Russia has no proof that the uranium enrichment experiment that the DPRK is conducting has entered its final phase. “The Russian Foreign Ministry has no information about the real state of affairs and the truthfulness of Pyongyang’s declarations,” the Inter fax news agency quoted Andrei Nesterenko as saying. The spokesman reiterated that “the Russian attitude to the DPRK’ s experiments is invariable: They do not meet the declared intention of Pyongyang to denuclearize Korea and are fraught with an escalation of tensions.” “We understand the DPRK’ s security concerns but think that the solution must be political and diplomatic, rather than trigger a regional arms race, particularly a nuclear one,” he said.
4. PRC on DPRK Leadership
Open Radio for North Korea (“CHINA CREATES KOREAN-CHINESE SPECIAL FORCE IN ORDER TO COUNTER ANY SUDDEN CHANGES IN NORTH KOREA.”, ) reported that the PRC already seems to have an intervention plan in case of any sudden changes in the DPRK. The radio station run by DPRK defectors claimed that a source within the foreign relations department in the PRC said the PRC military has created a special force a few years ago, and has conducted regular trainings. According to the radio station, Shenyang and Jangchoon districts have special force with a size of a brigade, and there is also a force composed only of Korean-Chinese. These forces were reportedly created in order to respond to any sudden eruption on the Korean peninsula, and have been receiving trainings.
5. Inter-Korean Relations
KBS News (“UM: NK DENUCLEARIZATION PRECONDITION TO UNIFICATION TALKS”, 2009/09/09) reported that Unification Minister Hyun In-taek says the DPRK’s denuclearization is both a precondition to discussing unification of the two Koreas and the basis for achieving national consensus for unification. The minister said that discussions of unification are not possible when the impending threat posed by Pyongyang’s nuclear program persists.
Yonhap (“N. KOREA’S DAM RELEASE VIOLATES INT’L LAW, S. KOREA SAYS”, Seoul, 2009/09/11) reported that the DPRK’s discharge of dam water contravened a principle established by the international customary law stating that a country’s use of its own territory should not infringe on other countries’ rights and interests, according to ROK foreign ministry spokesman Moon Tae-young. “North Korea’s move this time can be viewed as having violated the international customary law,” he said.
6. Inter-Korean Economic Cooperation
Agence France-Presse (“N.KOREA IN NEW PEACE OVERTURE TO SEOUL”, Seoul, 2009/09/11) reported that the DPRK has dropped demands that ROK factory owners pay a huge wage increase at the Kaesong joint industrial estate, officials said Friday. “The North has proposed a maximum five percent wage hike for this year,” said unification ministry spokeswoman Lee Jong-Joo, adding it proposed signing a deal as soon as possible. “Recently, North Korea has shown conciliatory gestures on one hand, while at the same time claiming progress in its uranium enrichment programme,” President Lee Myung-bak told a security meeting. “Such a double-faced attitude indicates the situation concerning North Korea is quite fluid.”
7. DPRK-Japan Relations
Kyodo News (“N. KOREA SHOWING FURTHER SIGNS OF CONCILIATION: KAWAMURA”, 2009/09/09) reported that Japan’s top government spokesman said that the DPRK showed another sign of a conciliatory approach by indicating its eagerness to improve ties with Japan under the new administration to be led by the Democratic Party of Japan. “This is part of North Korea’s conciliatory policy,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said. “There has been a series of signals (that show North Korea’s eagerness for dialogue),” Kawamura told Kyodo News.
Kyodo (“JAPAN, N. KOREA NEED NEW ACCORD TO IMPROVE TIES: NORTH ENVOY “, Pyongyang, 2009/09/11) reported that Song Il Ho, DPRK ambassador for normalization talks with Japan, said Friday Pyongyang is ready to hold talks with the incoming Japanese administration of Yukio Hatoyama. ”Under a Democratic Party of Japan-led administration, we need to get a fresh start (in bilateral talks for a new agreement) based on the spirit of the Pyongyang Declaration,” Song said. On the abduction of Japanese nationals, Song said, ”Both sides have made contradictory claims, with one saying it has been settled but another saying it has not been settled. So (the two sides) are expected to raise the issue of setting a benchmark that shows by what measures (the abduction issue) can be solved.”
8. DPRK Leadership
Yonhap News (“REPORT: KIM JONG IL HEALTHY SAYS NKOREA NO. 2”, 2009/09/09) reported that DPRK leader Kim Jong Il is in good health and has not named his third son as his successor, the country ‘s No. 2 leader said in an interview with a Japanese news agency. Kim Yong Nam , the head of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly , said Kim Jong Il is running the country with “an abundance of energy” and said there has been no talk of succession, Kyodo News reported from the North’s capital of Pyongyang.
9. DPRK Arms Exports
Yonhap News (“CHINESE, AUSTRALIAN SHIPS INVOLVED IN TRANSPORT OF SEIZED N. KOREAN CARGO”, 2009/09/09) reported that DPRK cargo carrying arms exports to Iran left a western port five days after Pyongyang’s nuclear test in May and was transferred aboard PRC and Australian freighters before being seized by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in July, according to an Italian company that handled the delivery. Mario Carniglia, head of the international freight-forwarding firm Otim, said the containers, reportedly loaded with rocket launchers, detonators, and munitions, were shipped via the PRC cities of Dalian and Shanghai and were transferred to an Australian vessel just after the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1874. “All we were responsible for was handling the shipping from China to Iran,” Carniglia said.
Chosun Ilbo (“PAKISTAN ‘BOUGHT 200 MISSILES FROM N.KOREA'”, 2009/09/09) reported that Pakistan purchased 200 missiles from the DPRK in 1999, according to Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan. Khan made the remarks in a recent TV interview in Pakistan, saying at the time Pakistan was eager to have missiles capable of shooting down aircraft. According to a translation of his remarks released by the U.S. director of National Intelligence’s Open Source Center, then Pakistani army chief of staff Pervez Musharraf sent Khan and a senior Air Force officer to the DPRK to purchase missiles.
10. DPRK Military
DongA Ilbo (“N. KOREA RELUCTANT TO REDUCE TROOP LEVELS “, 2009/09/09) reported that a reduction of conventional ammunition is a growingly attractive measure in the ROK to cut its massive defense budget and expenses. The DPRK, however, is highly likely not to cut its conventional forces, which are about twice as large as those of the the ROK. If DPRK youngsters are released to society through a cut in troop levels despite a lack of jobs, social instability is expected to intensify. Moreover, Pyongyang is mobilizing troops to conduct large construction projects and farming under the pretext of “politics of an advanced military.”
11. DPRK Economy
Yonhap News (“N. KOREA AIMS FOR $2,500 PER CAPITA INCOME BY 2012: SCHOLAR “, Seoul, 2009/09/09) reported that the DPRK aims to raise its per capita income to US$2,500 through its ongoing campaign to build a “prosperous” nation by 2012, an expert here said Wednesday, citing recent remarks by DPRK scholars at a forum in the PRC. The DPRK’s primary goal is restoring its frail economy to the level seen in 1987, when its wealth reached its peak before trade relations fell apart with the demise of the Soviet Union and the Eastern Europe, said Kim Byeong-ro, who attended an international forum held at Shanghai’s Fudan University from Aug. 26-29.
12. ROK Cyberdefense
Korea Times (“CYBER DEFENSE COMMAND MAY DEBUT THIS YEAR”, 2009/09/09) reported that the ROK could establish a cyber defense command that will defend military networks against computer attacks by the year’s end, officials at the Ministry of National Defense said. The cyber warfare command was originally scheduled to be launched early next year, but military authorities think it should be set up earlier to counter increasing computer hacking attempts, they said. “There is an urgent need to launch a cyber defense command to counter possible cyber attacks from North Korea, China or other countries,” a ministry official said, asking not to be identified. “Details on the timeline and the command structure have yet to be fixed.”
13. US-Japan Nuclear Pact
Kyodo News (“HATOYAMA SAYS GOV’T WILL INVESTIGATE PURPORTED SECRET JAPAN-U.S. PACT”, 2009/09/09) reported that Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama, who is set to become prime minister next week, said Thursday that his administration will look into a purported secret Japan-US pact allowing U.S. military vessels carrying nuclear weapons to stop over in Japan. “We want to reveal the facts to the public” when an investigation has confirmed them, Hatoyama told reporters.
14. US-Japan Relations
Agence France-Presse (“US WILL NOT ‘PREJUDGE’ LEADERSHIP IN JAPAN: PENTAGON”, Washington, 2009/09/09) reported that the Pentagon said it would not “prejudge” Japan’s new political leadership, which has promised to review the US military presence in the country. US defense officials who have met members of the victorious Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) say the new leadership “places a very high value on the US-Japanese alliance,” Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell told a news conference. “So we look forward to working with the new government, and we’re not going to prejudge where they are until we begin to sit down with them,” Morrell said.
Kyodo (“OKADA, U.S. ENVOY ROOS AGREE TO STRENGTHEN BILATERAL TIES”, Tokyo, 2009/09/11) reported that Democratic Party of Japan Secretary General Katsuya Okada, who has been picked for the post of foreign minister, and U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos agreed Friday to deepen the alliance between the two countries over the next 50 years. Okada said, ”I told him that we must work to solve various problems from the viewpoint of what should be done to (deepen the relations).” ”I look forward, and the United States looks forward to working very, very closely with them on continuing to strengthen the strategic and bilateral relationship between the United States and Japan,” Roos said.
15. Japan SDF Indian Ocean Mission
Agence France-Presse (“JAPAN MUST END AFGHAN MISSION: COALITION PARTY”, Tokyo, 2009/09/09) reported that a partner in Japan ‘s incoming coalition government said it would not budge from its demand that the nation end a naval refuelling mission backing US-led military operations in Afghanistan . The Pentagon urged the next government to continue the mission in the Indian Ocean, despite its campaign promise to end it. Yasumasa Shigeno, secretary general of the DPJ’s coalition partner the Social Democratic Party (SDP), said: “Our policy will not change.”
16. Japan Space Progam
Kyodo News (“JAPAN LAUNCHES NEW ROCKET CARRYING 1ST UNMANNED CARGO VEHICLE “, 2009/09/09) reported that Japan launched a newly developed H-2B rocket early Friday carrying its first unmanned transportation vehicle used to supply the International Space Station. The transportation vehicle, called HTV, was separated from the H-2B No. 1 rocket about 15 minutes after the rocket was launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture shortly after 2 a.m., according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA.
17. Australian Energy Exports to Japan, ROK
Agence France-Presse (“AUSTRALIA IN $60 BLN JAPAN, S.KOREA GAS DEALS”, Canberra, 2009/09/09) reported that Australia announced liquefied natural gas (LNG) deals worth up to 60 billion US dollars with Japan and the ROK . Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Chevron Australia would supply three firms from the planned Gorgon field off the country’s west, just weeks after joint venture partner ExxonMobil ‘s record 41 billion US dollar deal with PetroChina . Under the contracts, Rudd said Chevron would supply 1.375 million tonnes of LNG a year to Osaka Gas, 1.1 million tonnes to Tokyo Gas and 0.5 million tonnes to GS Caltex of ROK.
18. Sino-Indian Relations
Press Trust of India (“INDIA TAKES UP WITH MYANMAR REPORTS OF CHINA ‘BASE'”, 2009/09/09) reported thathas taken up with Myanmar reports of the PRC having a maritime ‘base’ in the strategic Coco islands near the Andamans islands, but was told there is no movement of the PRC Navy in the area, a top Naval officer said. The officer also said the Navy had no report of any PRC presence in the Indian waters near the Andaman and Nicobar islands.
19. Sino-Russian Relations
Xinhua News (“CHINA STRESSES RELATIONSHIP WITH RUSSIA: NEW CHINESE AMBASSADOR”, 2009/09/09) reported that the PRC attaches great importance to its relationship with Russia and considers it one of its foreign policy priorities, Li Hui, the new PRC ambassador to Russia, said. Li, who arrived in Moscow on Aug. 28, spoke during a meeting with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Li also conveyed PRC Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi’s greetings to Lavrov during their meeting. The PRC-Russia strategic partnership of cooperation is developing vigorously and is in its best period in history, Li said.
20. Cross Strait Relations
Agence France-Presse (“TAIWAN, CHINA WILL NOT POACH DIPLOMATIC ALLIES: MA”, 2009/09/09) reported that Taiwan and the PRC have a “tacit agreement” not to poach diplomatic allies from each other, the island’s President Ma Ying-jeou was quoted as saying by aides. “(This is) in the hope of maintaining peaceful co-existence and mutual respect in the international community,” he was quoted as telling visiting Haitian Foreign Minister Alrich Nicolas.
21. Taiwan Politics
Reuters (Ralph Jennings, “TAIWAN EX-PRESIDENT JAILED FOR LIFE FOR GRAFT”, Taipei, 2009/09/11) reported that former Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian was found guilty of corruption on Friday and sentenced to life in prison. He was also fined T$200 million ($6 million). Several hundred supporters demonstrated near the court and some threw plastic bottles and trash at police in protest after the verdict and sentence were announced.
22. PRC Ethnic Unrest
Associated Press (Tini Tran, “NEW NEEDLE ATTACKS REPORTED IN CHINESE CITIES”, Beijing, 2009/09/11) reported that nine new suspects were recently detained in Hotan, Altay, and Kashgar in connection with alleged attacks involving hypodermic needles , a press officer at the Xinjiang government press center in Urumqi said Friday. A staffer surnamed Li at the propaganda department of the Communist Party in Kashgar confirmed that people had reported cases but said none showed any evidence of a syringe attack. “Most of them only felt some sudden pain when they were walking in the crowd, and some of them felt they’d been tapped on the body. But the doctors and medical examiners did not find any signs of a hypodermic attack on their bodies,” he said.
23. PRC Arms Imports
The Times (“MYSTERY OF UAE PLANE HELD IN CALCUTTA WITH ARMS BOUND FOR CHINA”, 2009/09/09) reported that India is struggling to unravel the mystery surrounding a United Arab Emirates Air Force aircraft detained in Calcutta since Sunday for carrying undeclared weapons — including at least one missile — bound for the PRC. The discovery has raised eyebrows, as the UAE buys most of its weapons from the United States and European Union, which impose strict controls on arms transfers to the PRC. The most controversial theory is that the weapons include high-tech equipment that the PRC would like to examine or copy.
24. PRC Economy
BBC News (“CHINA’S WORKERS RETURN TO CITIES “, 2009/09/09) reported that Chu Ching-Hu is one of an estimated 20 million migrants who gave up on life in the city earlier this year when the PRC was battered by economic storms from the West. But it seems that pattern of migration is reversing as the PRC’s economy begins to pick up. The government in Beijing says 95% of the migrants who made the long journey back to the countryside are now back in the cities, either working or looking for work. But a recent study has suggested that even those who are lucky enough to get a job are being employed for fewer hours and are being paid less.
25. PRC Energy Supply
Agence France-Presse (“SHELL, CHINA SHENHUA CLEAN COAL PLAN: COMPANY”, Shanghai, 2009/09/09) reported that Anglo-Dutch oil group Shell said it has signed an agreement with a unit of the PRC ‘s largest coal company Shenhua Group to jointly develop clean coal technology . Shell China and Shenhua Coal to Liquid and Chemical will develop advanced technology to convert coal into gas, Shell China said in a statement. The two companies will also discuss the possible application of carbon capture and storage, according to an agreement signed on Wednesday.
II. PRC Report
26. PRC Civil Society and the Environment
China Environmental Protection Association website (“5TH ENVIRONMENT AND DEVELOPMENT CHINA FORUM TO BE HELD”, 2009/09/09) reported that the 5 th Environment and Development China Forum is to be held on the morning of September 17 th at Beijing Asian Hotel. Representatives from domestic and foreign institutes, government, media, ENGOs, and so on will participate in the Forum and the theme is “Promoting Ecological Culture Building and Green Economy Development.”
27. PRC Environment
Jinghua Times (“PESTICIDE RESIDUE CAN BE MEASURED ON SITE IN BEIJING COMMUNITY”, 2009/09/09) reported that food safety testing car will enter into community food store of Beijing. If the residents do not assure the quality of vegetables, the testing car can measure the pesticide residue of vegetables at site for residents.
28. PRC Climate Change
China News Net (“CHINA TURNS WARMER”, 2009/09/09) reported that the trend of warming in future China will be further intensified. According to newest data, the average temperature may raise 2.2 ? – 4.2 ? by the end of this century, said Luo Yong, Vice Director of National Climate Center on September 8 th .