NAPSNet Daily Report 13 August, 1998

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 13 August, 1998", NAPSNet Daily Report, August 13, 1998, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-13-august-1998/

IN TODAY’S REPORT:

I. United States

II. People’s Republic of China

III. Announcements

I. United States

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1. DPRK Nuclear Program

Associated Press (“NORTH KOREA AGAIN THREATENS TO REACTIVATE ITS NUCLEAR PROGRAM,” Seoul, 08/13/98) reported that an unidentified DPRK Foreign Ministry spokesman said Thursday that the DPRK may be forced to take the “undesirable option” of unfreezing its nuclear program unless the US lifts economic sanctions against it. He said that the government’s decision would hinge on a scheduled mid-August meeting in New York between US Ambassador-at-large Charles Kartman and DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Gye-kwan. He accused the US of displaying continued hostility toward the DPRK and of failing to promptly fulfill its part of the 1994 Geneva agreement. He stated, “We hope the two sides will settle the problems smoothly at the upcoming … talks lest we should take an undesirable option.” He added, “In fact, all our nuclear activities have been frozen and the safekeeping of spent fuel rods has reached a final stage. But the U.S. side has not taken substantial steps for lifting sanctions.”

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2. ROK-DPRK Economic Exchanges

The Associated Press (“UNIFICATION CHURCH, NKOREA IN DEAL,” Seoul, 08/13/98) reported that the Tongil Business Group, owned by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church, said Thursday that it has signed a contract to send up to 400 tourists a day to the east coast of the DPRK. Pak Po-hi, a top aide to Moon, said that the DPRK approved Tongil’s project during an eight-day visit that ended Tuesday. He added that Tongil would use high-speed ferries to carry tourists to and from the north on day trips as early as September.

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3. ROK Student Movement

The Associated Press (Sang-Hun Choe, “S. KOREAN STUDENTS PLAN UNITY RALLY,” Seoul, 08/13/98) reported that the ROK government deployed thousands of riot police on Thursday to deal with students planning to march to the Demilitarized Zone for a pro-unification rally with their DPRK counterparts. The DPRK has invited ROK students to the border for the rally, but the ROK has outlawed attendance. About 2,000 students gathered at Seoul National University for a three-day festival that will culminate in the march on Saturday, the 53rd anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule in 1945. The students shouted slogans demanding the abolition of the ROK’s National Security Laws and the withdrawal of US soldiers.

II. People’s Republic of China

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1. ROK-US Military Exercises

China Daily (“MILITARY EXERCISE,” Seoul, 08/13/98, A11) reported that ROK and US troops will launch an annual training exercise this month involving about 13,000 US troops. “The Combined Forces Command’s preparedness is an effective deterrent to external aggression and serves as the foundation for diplomatic efforts to achieve peace and stability on the peninsula through dialogue,” the Combined Military Command said on August 12. The annual exercises, code-named Ulchi Focus Lens, will be held from August 17 to 19.

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2. PRC-US Relations

China Daily (“AMBASSADOR SEEKS TALKS ON EQUAL BASIS,” Washington, 08/07/98, A1) reported that PRC Ambassador Li Zhaoxing is ready to meet US congressmen for face-to-face dialogues on an equal basis. Li would like to talk with US lawmakers about matters of mutual understanding. Capitol Hill, the PRC Embassy, or Li’s residence are possible sites for discussions, Counsellor Zhang Keyuan told a press conference at the PRC Embassy in Washington on August 5. The PRC was responding to the complaints raised by Christopher Smith, chairman of the House Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights, regarding Li’s absence from a scheduled meeting on human rights in the PRC. The PRC ambassador initially agreed to participate in the meeting. However, the meeting notice indicated it was a “hearing,” a term unacceptable to Li as a formal representative from a sovereign country.

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3. PRC-Japanese Relations

People’s Daily (“JIANG ZEMIN MEETS WITH JAPANESE FM,” Beidaihe, 08/10/98, A1) reported that PRC President Jiang Zemin met with Japanese Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura on August 9. Jiang said that, as Japan is one of the major developed countries in the world, the PRC hopes to see Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi’s new cabinet make progress in restoring its economy and mitigating economic difficulties in Asia. Jiang said that the PRC and Japan, as important countries in the world, shoulder a major responsibility to maintain peace and promote development. In this way, the two sides should work together to bring a peaceful, prosperous, and stable world to the new century. Jiang said that the invasion of China by the Japanese military in the 1930s and 1940s had brought not only catastrophes to the Chinese people, but also sufferings to Japanese people. It is imperative to summarize both the positive and negative experiences of Sino-Japanese ties, and that on this basis, the two countries will push forward the bilateral relationship. Jiang said that this year marks the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Sino-Japanese Peace and Friendship Treaty, which defined all the principles set out in the Sino-Japan Joint Statement and thus laid a solid political foundation for the comprehensive development of bilateral relations and embodied the common aspiration of both the Chinese and Japanese people to enhance friendship for coming generations. He said that he looks forward to a state visit to Japan this fall and is willing to engage in a wide range of contacts with all walks of life in Japan, including the government and the public, to discuss the direction of development for the bilateral relationship in the long run.

Jie Fang Daily (“JAPAN SHOULD ATTACH MORE IMPORTANCE TO JAPAN-CHINA RELATIONS,” 08/11/98, A3) carried an article written by Lu Zhongwei, deputy director of China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, saying that the re-definition of Japan-US relations promoted the Japan-US relationship, but brought pressure to the Japan-PRC relationship and estranged Japan from Asia. The article said that Japan’s policymakers were aware of the imbalance in its diplomatic structure. Therefore, the Japanese side repeatedly expressed its willingness to explain the redefinition of the defense cooperation guidelines to the PRC. Besides, former Japanese Prime Minister Hashimoto tried to improve the PRC-Japan relationship and to balance the Japan-US relationship with the breakthrough in the Japan-Russia relationship. According to the article, the PRC-Japan relationship has come to an important period to determine its nature. From the viewpoint of the PRC, the construction of a PRC-Japanese relationship into the next century should be done from long-term and strategic perspectives. According to the author, the PRC-Japanese relationship of the future should be a cooperative partnership, which covers comprehensive areas and has large potentials, but still carries some limitations. He urged Japan to respond to the PRC’s aspiration for creating a stable peripheral and international circumstances with a PRC policy that takes a strategic perspective.

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4. Taiwan Politician Killed in PRC

China Daily (“DPP REBUKED FOR ABUSING CASE,” 08/11/98, A4) said that the “pompous” allegation that some members of the Taiwan Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) have voiced concerning the death of Lin Ti-chuan has misled people on Taiwan and sabotaged cross-Straits relations. The article by a Xinhua commentator on August 9 pointed to the DPP’s “irresponsible” remarks on Lin’s case. The DPP has pledged to press Taiwan authorities to suspend cross-Straits exchanges and called on Koo Chen-fu, president of the Straits Exchange Foundation, to cancel his anticipated visit to the PRC in September, according to the commentary. The commentary said that the relevant department in the PRC has taken into full account Lin’s family’s opinions when dealing with the unfortunate incident, and this has won recognition from most Taiwan compatriots. However, some DPP members are still bent on plotting to incite the feeling of Taiwan compatriots against the mainland by taking advantage of the return of Lin’s remains to Taiwan, the article said, adding that their attempt to make trouble in cross-Straits relations will surely end with failure.

III. Announcements

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1. Chinese Development Publication

Chinabrief is a 24-page, quarterly English language publication containing sectoral analyses, project digests, news and features covering social development, rural development, poverty alleviation, and environment protection projects in China. It also produces a four page, Chinese language companion to each English edition, distributed free on request to mainland Chinese organizations, summarizing themes covered in the English version. A website with sample articles and additional information is forthcoming. Chinabrief aims to improve information flows to and between international agencies funding or implementing development projects in China, with particular emphasis on the work of non government organizations. It also aims to share this information with Chinese government agencies and non profit organizations (who may receive the publication free on request), and to advance analysis and discussion of key development challenges in China. Chinabrief is supported by subscription sales and grants from the Ford Foundation, Save the Children (UK), and the World Wide Fund for Nature International–China Programme, and is published by China Development Research Services, an independent company registered in Hong Kong. It is available to international non- profit organizations and individuals for a subscription rate of US$40 and to other institutions, libraries, and corporations for US$60. Sample copies are free on request from: chinabrief, Qing Yun Jie Post Office, Kunming, Yunnan, 650031, PRC. Tel/Fax: 86 (0)871 532 7302.

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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
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Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Wade L. Huntley: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Choi Chung-moon: cily@star.elim.co.kr
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu: akutsu@glocomnet.or.jp
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin: icipu@glas.apc.org
Moscow, Russian Federation

Chunsi Wu: dlshen@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen: dlshen@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China


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