NAPSNet Daily Report 15 November, 2010
Contents in this Issue:
1. DPRK Nuclear Program
Agence-Presse-France (“REPORT: NKOREA BEGINS BUILDING LIGHT-WATER REACTOR”, Seoul, 2010/11/13) reported that the DPRK has begun building an experimental light-water reactor at its Yongbyon nuclear complex, a news report said, in what could be an attempt to draw attention and press Washington to resume talks on Pyongyang’s atomic programs. The reactor will be able to generate about 25 to 30 megawatts of electricity, Siegfried Hecker, former director of the U.S. Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory, told reporters in Beijing after a trip to the DPRK, according to Japan’s Kyodo News agency. Hecker said construction of the reactor has just begun and is likely to take several years to complete, according to Kyodo.
2. DPRK Arms Exports
Chosun Ilbo (“REPORT REVEALS N.KOREA’S FLOURISHING ARMS TRADE”, 2010/11/13) reported that the DPRK has exported around US$100 million worth of conventional weapons and nuclear weapons technology a year despite UN sanctions, a panel of experts monitoring the implementations of UN Security Council resolutions revealed. The DPRK dodged the sanctions in ways reminiscent of spy films, switching boats and airplanes, establishing paper companies and forging cargo documents to transport its deadly freight. The 75-page UN report presents evidence directly or indirectly linking the DPRK to the arms exports.
3. Sino-US Relations
Bloomberg News (Stuart Biggs, “OBAMA CALLS ON CHINA TO RESPECT INTERNATIONAL LAW AS POWER IN ASIA GROWS”, 2010/11/15 16:00:00 GMT+0) reported that US President Barack Obama called on PRC to respect “international norms” as it gains power and economic clout in Asia, according to the transcript of an interview with Japan’s Yomiuri newspaper. “The peaceful resolution of outstanding differences and respect for international norms and law are central” to ensuring security and prosperity in Asia, Obama said in the interview published today. “We want to ensure that China’s rise is a source of security and prosperity for all.” Obama also reiterated that the U.S.-Japan alliance is the “cornerstone of American strategic engagement in the Asia Pacific.”
4. Sino-Japanese Relations
China Daily (“BEIJING AND TOKYO GET CLOSER”, 2010/11/15 16:00:00 GMT+0) reported that top Chinese and Japanese diplomats vowed to adopt concrete measures to improve bilateral relations one day after an eye-catching meeting between senior leaders of the two neighbors. Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and his Japanese counterpart Seiji Maehara met on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit. Japan’s Kyodo News Agency said Maehara, in talks with Yang, urged the PRC to reopen talks on developing natural gas field in the East China Sea, while Yang took a cautious stance and said a proper atmosphere should be created first. The two sides also agreed to cooperate on the goal of nuclear non-proliferation on the Korean Peninsula and tackling global warming, striving to further develop their strategic and mutually beneficial partnership, the Kyodo report said.
5. Japan-Turkey Plant Talks
WorldBulletin (“TURKEY TO START TALKS WITH JAPAN FOR NUCLEAR POWER PLANT”, 2010/11/15) reported that Turkish Minister of Energy & Natural Resources Taner Yildiz said on Monday that the talks carried out with the ROK regarding construction of nuclear power plant failed. “Failure of talks with South Korea will not lead to any deficiency in our resolution on nuclear power plants. South Korea put forward difficult conditions. We will assess them but this process will not hinder Turkey from meeting with the other countries. We respected international politics and courtesy and we did not have talks with the other countries till November 11 regarding the construction of nuclear power plant. Now, I have given directives to my friends to have talks with Japan. The preparations will be concluded soon,” Yildiz said.