NAPSNet Daily Report 15 September, 1999

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 15 September, 1999", NAPSNet Daily Report, September 15, 1999,


I. United States

II. Republic of Korea

III. People’s Republic of China

I. United States

1. Perry Report

Reuters (“U.S. ENVOY URGES STEPPED-UP N.KOREA POLICY-REPORTS,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that ROK media on Wednesday quoted ROK foreign ministry sources that US presidential adviser William Perry’s report on DPRK policy would be distributed to the US Congress later in the day. The sources said that Perry’s report contained five policy recommendations in its summary: to take a comprehensive approach in implementing DPRK policies; to appoint an ambassador-level official to coordinate DPRK policies among different US government agencies; to maintain the “Trilateral Coordination and Oversight Group” between the ROK, Japan, and the US; to take steps to ensure greater bipartisan support from the Congress on related policies; and to remain prepared for any possible DPRK provocations in the near future. The reports also said that Perry felt there was not a major possibility of such incidents at present.

The New York Times (Philip Shenon, “PANEL URGES STEPPED-UP ATTENTION TO TIES WITH NORTH KOREA,” Washington, 09/15/99), and The Wall Street Journal (Neil King Jr., “WHITE HOUSE TO SHOW CONGRESS A PLAN TO END NORTH KOREA’S NUCLEAR EFFORT,” Washington, 09/15/99) reported that US officials said Tuesday that former Defense Secretary William J. Perry has recommended that the US step up diplomatic and trade relations with the DPRK at a “markedly faster rate.” The officials said that US President Bill Clinton has tentatively accepted Perry’s findings. Perry also recommended that the US maintain its troop strength in the ROK. An unnamed senior US official stated, “Many aspects of North Korea’s behavior will remain reprehensible,” but the goal “is to end the nuclear weapons activities and long-range ballistic missile activities and ultimately to end the Cold War on the Korean Peninsula.” The official added that the US hopes that by intensifying talks with the DPRK, it will create a scenario where whatever is gained as talks can be lost if the DPRK returns to provocative actions. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for September 15.]

US Representative Benjamin A. Gilman (20th-NY), Chairman of the House International Relations Committee, (“GILMAN OPPOSES EASING SANCTIONS ON NORTH KOREA,” House International Relations Committee Press Release, Washington 09/15/99) issued the following statement today following a committee meeting with North Korea policy coordinator William Perry: “This afternoon, members of the House International Relations Committee met with Dr. William Perry, the special coordinator for North Korea policy. In addition, members of the Speaker’s North Korea Advisory Group were present at the meeting. Dr. Perry provided our members with a comprehensive report on his recommendations to the President. We are pleased that he is recommending a strong, bipartisan approach to the overall threat that North Korea poses to American and allied security. We look forward to working closely with Dr. Perry and the administration to advance U.S. interests on the Korean peninsula. Nevertheless, a number of questions still remain about the future of the Administration’s policy toward North Korea. What guarantees do we have that North Korea will abide by its promises? Will the administration be willing to take tough measures in the name of national security if North Korea breaks its promises? I am not comfortable with lifting sanctions against North Korea at this time. No U.S. sanctions on North Korea should be lifted until we fully understand how lifting sanctions might increase North Korea’s ability to threaten American interests. Lifting sanctions will provide a long-term benefit to North Korea in exchange for their short-term concession of halting missile tests. Our North Korea Advisory Group will continue to examine the threat that North Korea poses to the United States, South Korea and Japan. We expect to complete our review at an early date.”

2. US-DPRK Berlin Agreement

The Associated Press (Ginny Parker, “N.KOREA MISSILE LAUNCH SAID PLANNED,” Tokyo, 05/14/99) reported that Japanese Defense Agency chief Hosei Norota said Tuesday that the DPRK has not put off plans to test a long- range missile despite Sunday’s agreement with the US in Berlin. Norota stated, “It is absolutely not true that North Korea has frozen plans for a missile launch.” Norota added, however, that a launch was not imminent. He stated, “If a missile were about to be launched, many people would be gathered at the site, the number of vehicles there would increase, and fuel would be brought in. We’re not at that point right now.” [Ed. note: This article was one of the top stories in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for September 15.]

The Los Angeles Times carried an opinion article (Jim Mann, “U.S. BLOWS CHANCE TO REIN IN N. KOREA,” Washington, 09/15/99) which said that the US-DPRK agreement reached in Berlin on Sunday makes it very likely that a new crisis over the DPRK’s missiles will emerge in another year or two. The author argued, “What’s wrong is that the Berlin agreement does not cover important aspects of the missile problem and leaves North Korea with several bargaining chips for the future.” He added, “Assuming it honors its promise, Pyongyang thus will be back at the status quo of last May. And the United States will have bargained away a lifting of the trade embargo, one of the benefits Perry was promising in his package.” The article quoted Jonathan Pollack of the Rand Corporation as saying, “This is really what he [Perry] said he wouldn’t do, which is to do different pieces of this [comprehensive package] at different times.” The author concluded, “The administration originally said that it wanted a comprehensive deal to avoid being forced into piecemeal deals. Now it is making a piecemeal deal, ripping out bits of the comprehensive package and leaving others to be negotiated separately.”

3. DPRK Missile Exports

Reuters (“N.KOREA MISSILE CAPABILITY STILL A THREAT-EXPERTS,” Seoul, 09/15/99) and the Associated (“N KOREA EARNS $1 BLN A YEAR FROM MISSILE EXPORTS -REPORT,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that defense experts at a security seminar hosted by the National Defense University said on Wednesday that the DPRK’s ability to produce Scud missiles still constitutes a threat despite Sunday’s agreement with the US. Jeffrey A. Isaacson, senior scientist at the Rand Corporation, said that the DPRK had raised over US$1 billion every year over the past 10 years through the export of Scud missiles. Kim Chol-hwan, a professor at the university, said that the DPRK was now able to produce up to 150 modified Scud C missiles with 550-km (330 mile) range and another 100 modified Scud B missiles with a range of up to 340 kms per year. Kim argued, “(We) should show an interest not only in a test-fire of Taepodong missile, but also in the possibility of mass producing Scud missiles by North Korea.”

4. PRC Missile Sales to Pakistan

US State Department Deputy Spokesman James Foley (“STATE DEPARTMENT NOON BRIEFING SEPTEMBER 14, 1999,” USIA Transcript, 09/15/99) said that the transfer of complete M-11 missiles from the PRC to Pakistan could meet the requirements for triggering sanctions under the US missile sanctions law. Foley stated, “We made … determinations of sanctionability and imposed sanctions against Chinese and Pakistani entities for M-11 related transfers — in other words, parts — in 1991 and 1993 and we will certainly do so again if the facts warrant such a result.” He added, “But an intelligence judgment is not in and of itself necessarily a sufficient basis for a sanctionability determination under U.S. law…. In the M-11 case we have not reached a conclusion that the requirements for a category one finding of sanctionability have been met.”

5. Japanese Atrocities in World War II

The New York Times (Garry Pierre-Pierre, “EX-P.O.W.’S SUE 5 BIG JAPANESE COMPANIES OVER FORCED LABOR,” 09/15/99) and the Los Angeles Times (Teresa Watanabe, “EX-POWS SUE 5 JAPANESE COMPANIES,” 09/15/99) reported that a group of former US prisoners of war from World War II announced Tuesday that they have filed a class-action suit against five major Japanese corporations, contending that the prisoners were beaten and forced to work in Japanese factories, mines and shipyards after they had been captured. The suit, in US District Court in Albuquerque, NM, lists 11 plaintiffs. About 500 others have agreed to be part of the suit. The five firms are Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi International Corp., Mitsui and Company, Nippon Steel. and Showa Denko KK.

6. Alleged Russian Nuclear Test

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “RUSSIANS MAY HAVE TESTED NUCLEAR DEVICE UNDERGROUND,” 09/15/99) reported that US intelligence agencies detected an underground explosion at Russia’s Novaya Zemlya testing site on September 8 that analysts believe was a small nuclear test. An unnamed senior US intelligence official stated, “There was an event, but it is unclear what the event was, and we’re still looking into it.” The official said the event could have been a small nuclear blast or a conventional explosion that did not reach critical mass. An anonymous defense official said the test was a small nuclear blast, but the yield was small enough to avoid detection by most seismic-monitoring equipment around the world.

II. Republic of Korea

1. US Sanctions on DPRK

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “U.S. LIFTING OF ECONOMIC SANCTIONS TO COME AS EARLY AS THIS MONTH,” Seoul, 09/15/99), The Korea Times (Son Key-young, “US TO LIFT BLANKET OF SANCTIONS AGAINST NK,” Seoul, 09/14/99), The Korea Times (“US READY TO EASE TRADE, TRANSPORT RESTRICTIONS ON N.KOREA,” Seoul, 09/14/99; “ALBRIGHT TO RECOMMEND LIFTING OF SOME SANCTIONS,” Seoul, 09/14/99) and Chosun Ilbo (Kang Hyo-sang, “CLINTON COMMENTS ON NK AGREEMENT,” Seoul, 09/14/99) reported that ROK officials said on Tuesday that the US is expected to implement partial lifting of economic sanctions on the DPRK as early as this month. “The sanction lifting will probably be focused on trade and finance in an effort to improve bilateral relations,” said an official at the ROK Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He said that the US measures would likely include allowing chartered flights and cargo shipments between the two countries. The US lifting of sanctions on the DPRK is unlikely to include removing the DPRK from the list of countries supporting terrorism, as such a move requires congressional consent. US State Department Spokesman James Rubin said that Albright would “not make any recommendations on easing of terrorism proliferation or statutorily controlled items to President Clinton.”

2. Perry Report

The Korea Herald (“PERRY REPORT EXPECTED TO EASE COLD WAR TENSION,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that US policy coordinator on the DPRK William Perry is reportedly planning to submit his report to the US Congress as early as Wednesday. It is speculated that the report is made up of two parts. “The first part is believed to contain economic and political incentives the United States will offer in case the North addresses international concerns about development of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear bombs and long-range missiles,” an ROK diplomatic source said. The Perry report is also seen to include recommendations that the US and the DPRK observe the 1994 Geneva Agreed Framework, the source said. In addition to the proposals, he said, the report stresses the need for the DPRK to promote government-level dialogue with the ROK in accordance with the 1992 inter-Korean basic agreement on reconciliation, cooperation, and nonaggression. The second part of the report is presumed to contain “stick” policies on the DPRK that will be taken if the DPRK continues promoting a confrontational policy toward the US and the ROK by trying to develop missiles and nuclear weapons.

3. ROK View of US-DPRK Agreement

The Korea Herald (Chon Shi-yong, “KIM SAYS U.S.-N.K. ACCORD RAISES HOPE FOR KOREAN PEACE: PRESIDENT REAFFIRMS PLEDGE TO PKO IN EAST TIMOR,” Auckland, 09/15/99) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung said on Tuesday that the recent talks between the US and the DPRK have raised hopes for a peaceful solution of Korean Peninsula problems. The President, however, stressed that the latest development in DPRK affairs should not lead the ROK government to hastily seek negotiations with the DPRK. Kim also said that his engagement policy, which is based on a “give-and-take approach,” played a role in the successful negotiations between the US and the DPRK. “The outcome of the Berlin talks is the victory of this win-win strategy,” the President said. Turning to East Timor, the President reaffirmed his strong commitment to ROK participation in the peacekeeping operation (PKO) in the former Portuguese colony.

4. ROK-DPRK Talks

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “BUOYED BY IMPROVED ATMOSPHERE, SEOUL PUSHES FOR RESUMING INTER-KOREAN TALKS,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that ROK officials said on Tuesday that, encouraged by the improved situation surrounding the Korean Peninsula, the ROK government is actively pushing for the resumption of governmental dialogue with the DPRK. A ranking ROK Unification Ministry official said, “One does not necessarily have to continue viewing the inter-Korean relationship in the second half of this year from a negative perspective.” “Given the dominant trends of the past few days, chances (for governmental contacts) are increasing,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We will create an atmosphere for North Korea to respond to governmental talks.” The official said that improved ties between the DPRK and the US should also lead to favorable relations between the two Koreas, stressing that neither of the two sets of relations could advance alone. As the DPRK has no other choice but to pursue realistic benefits, the relationship between the ROK and the DPRK should improve in line with the US-DPRK ties, the official added. The DPRK’s Korean Central Broadcasting Station said Monday, “All kinds of people, not only government officials but politicians, civic activists, businessmen and students as well, should actively seek various channels of dialogue and negotiations.” Another senior ROK official said that the DPRK’s statement is meaningful because of the timing, as it came just days after the DPRK promised further talks with the US. “On the other hand, their broadcasts this time are not much different from the past, in that they are attached with preconditions South Korea cannot agree to, such as the abrogation of the National Security Law and guarantees on the liberty of pro-Communist activists in the South,” he noted.

5. DPRK-Russia Relations

Chosun Ilbo (“RUSSIA TO SIGN NEW TREATY WITH NK,” Seoul, 09/14/99) reported that the DPRK and Russia have agreed to sign a new treaty next month, one that does not include an agreement on automatic military assistance when either nation is attacked, Japanese Defense Minister Hosei Norota said at a press conference on Tuesday. According to Yonhap news, Norota said that the new treaty would replace the “Korea-Soviet Friendly Cooperation and Mutual Assistance Treaty” signed in 1966, which promised the DPRK automatic Russian military involvement if the DPRK were to be attacked.

6. National Security Law Arrests

The Korea Herald (“THREE ACTIVISTS CHARGED FOR CONTACT WITH N.K.,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that the ROK prosecution indicted three political activists on Tuesday for making unauthorized contact with DPRK citizens in violation of the ROK National Security Law. The three include Park Ki-chol, 34, who traveled to Beijing early last month and met DPRK citizens without government approval. The meeting was held during a seminar jointly arranged by a DPRK organization and an ROK dissident group, prosecution officials said.

7. ROK-DPRK Cultural Exchange

Joongang Ilbo (Kang Joo-an, “NK WITHDRAWS SUSPENSION OF CONTACT WITH SOUTH CITIZENS,” Seoul, 09/14/99) reported that a source within the ROK government announced on Tuesday that the DPRK has largely withdrawn the suspension of visits by ROK citizens to the DPRK, implemented after its defeat in the West Sea firefights in June. An official said, “NK again began to issue invitations to South citizens this month. We are expecting developments in South-North exchanges and cooperation, following the conclusion of missile talks between the North and the U.S. in Berlin.” The DPRK, which has already accepted the visit by a reporter from the ROK monthly magazine “Word,” has invited two religious organizations and cultural personnel to Pyongyang next week. Meanwhile, Radio Pyongyang said on September 14, “North and South should exchange and talk to resolve misunderstanding and distrust. We always open the door to South citizens.” The ROK Ministry of Unification said, “After the successful conclusion of the Berlin talks, NK has remarkably emphasized the importance of dialogue.”

8. ROK Participation in East Timor Peacekeeping

The Korea Herald (Lee Sung-yul, “SEOUL TO SEND 500 TROOPS TO TIMOR,” Seoul, 09/15/99), Chosun Ilbo (Yoo Young-won, “PRESIDENT OVERRIDES MND ON TROOPS TO E. TIMOR,” Seoul, 09/14/99), and The Korea Times (Lee Chang-sup, “ROK TO SEND PEACEKEEPERS TO TIMOR: KIM,” Seoul, 09/14/99) reported that ROK officials said on Tuesday that the ROK will send about 500 troops to join the proposed UN peacekeeping force in East Timor. ROK troops sent to East Timor would include roughly 300 elite Special Warfare Command (SWC) soldiers, a military medical team, a company of military engineers, and a transportation unit. “But we have not reached a final decision,” an ROK Defense Ministry official said. ROK military sources said that sending SWC troops to East Timor would be necessary “to protect military medics and engineers” from armed militia, who are reportedly killing pro- independence East Timorese. The well-trained SWC soldiers would also join the UN forces to restore order in the island, the sources said. The government’s plan to dispatch troops requires parliamentary approval.

Chosun Ilbo (Yang Sang-hoon, “GNP OPPOSES USE OF COMBAT TROOPS,” Seoul, 09/14/99) reported that the ROK opposition Grand National Party (GNP) announced on Tuesday that it was opposed to sending combat troops to East Timor, saying that it could harm short- and long-term relations with Indonesia. A spokesman added that the ROK would be fulfilling its UN duties by sending medical, logistics and engineering units. He added that the government’s decision to send combat troops was unclear and that the party would question this at committee level meetings. The GNP also added that in 1991 during the Gulf War, Kim Dae-jung opposed the sending of troops to Saudi Arabia at a meeting with then president Roh Tae-woo. It decided to ask Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Seon Joon- young, who visited GNP head offices on Tuesday to explain the government’s position, for more background information.

9. ROK-New Zealand Summit

The Korea Times (Lee Chang-sup, “KIM TO SUGGEST ‘ASIANIZATION’ OF NEW ZEALAND,” Wellington, 09/14/99) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung was scheduled to hold a summit meeting with New Zealand Prime Minister Jenny Shipley Wednesday at the parliament. During the first ROK-New Zealand summit in 31 years here, President Kim is expected to express his deep appreciation to New Zealand for setting aside US$100 million in a second-line contingency fund for the ROK in case it is needed to overcome economic difficulties. Shipley is likely to reiterate her support for the ROK’s engagement policy and comprehensive approach toward the DPRK as an enlightened means to resolve long-standing tensions on the Korean Peninsula and to encourage the DPRK to become a responsible member of the international community, according to ROK Presidential Press Secretary Park Joon-young.

The Korea Herald (Chon Shi-yong, “KIM CALLS FOR ECONOMIC COOPERATION BETWEEN KOREA AND NEW ZEALAND,” Auckland, 09/15/99) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung on Tuesday called for businesspeople in the ROK and New Zealand to expand trade and commercial ties between the two countries. Lunching with a group of business executives from the ROK and New Zealand, Kim particularly emphasized the importance of boosting cooperation in what he called “future-oriented industries” such as bioengineering and knowledge-based industries. “New Zealand is in the forefront of the dairy industry as well as life sciences and bioengineering, which are considered to be major ‘future industries.'” The President expressed support for New Zealand’s plan to join the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in line with the ROK government’s hope to expand cooperation in global trade and other international affairs.

III. People’s Republic of China

1. DPRK-US Talks

China Daily (“PLEDGE TO FREEZE MISSILE TEST HAILED,” Seoul, 9/14/99, A11) reported that the ROK hailed on September 13 a pledge by the DPRK to freeze its long-range missile test program in return for an easing of US sanctions. “North Korea will refrain from testing any long-range missiles,” US National Security Adviser Samuel Berger told journalists on September 13 in New Zealand following a summit of Asia-Pacific leaders. ROK President Kim Dae-jung welcomed the accord, which came in six days of talks in Berlin, while the ROK press branded it a “major breakthrough” which would help ease the world’s last Cold War confrontation.

China Daily (“POSITIVE NOTE ENDS DPRK-US TALKS,” Berlin, 9/13/99, A11) reported that the DPRK and the US said in a joint statement that they ended six days of talks in Berlin on September 12 on a positive note. The DPRK also said they had agreed to hold a new round of talks. Both sides said they had agreed “each would endeavor to preserve a positive atmosphere conducive to improved bilateral relations and to peace and security in Northeast Asian and the Asia-Pacific region.”

2. US-ROK-Japanese Policy toward DPRK

People’s Liberation Army Daily (“US, JAPANESE AND ROK LEADERS COORDINATE STANCE ON DPRK,” 9/14/99, A5) reported that US President Bill Clinton, Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi and ROK President Kim Dae-jung met in Auckland on September 12 to coordinate their policies toward the DPRK. In a joint statement issued after their meeting, the countries’ leaders said that the US, Japan and the ROK are willing to take measures to improve their relations with the DPRK. They hope the DPRK will also take measures to ease tension on the Korean Peninsula. It was reported that President Clinton expressed at the talks that the US will make efforts with the ROK and Japan to maintain the stability on the peninsula and to realize reconciliation between the two sides of the Peninsula. Kim emphasized that the ROK and the US believed that they should try to keep engagement with the DPRK. After the meeting, Obuchi told reporters that the US, Japan and the ROK should keep in close contact with each other.

3. PRC-ROK Summit

People’s Daily (Zhao Zhangyun, “PRESIDENT JIANG MEETS WITH PRESIDENT KIM DAE-JUNG,” Auckland, 9/12/99, A1) reported that PRC President Jiang Zemin met his ROK counterpart Kim Dae-jung in Auckland on the evening of September 11. Kim briefed Jiang the current situation on the Korean Peninsula and expressed his appreciation for the PRC government’s efforts on maintaining peace on the peninsula. Jiang said that the PRC sincerely hopes that the Korean Peninsula maintains lasting peace and stability and the PRC government has always made efforts for this goal. According to Jiang, the PRC hopes that the related parties will do more to benefit the peace and stability on the peninsula and refrain from doing harm to the peninsula. In the future, Jiang said, the PRC will continue playing its constructive role on the proper settlement of the problems related to the peninsula.

4. PRC-US Summit

Business Weekly (Liu Weiling, “JIANG, CLINTON TALKS ‘POSITIVE’,” Auckland, 9/12-18/99, A1) said that the summit between PRC President Jiang Zemin and US President Bill Clinton on September 11 in Auckland would “actively” guide ongoing Sino-US negotiations on the PRC’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). Both Jiang and Clinton said they hope the talks will be concluded successfully and as soon as possible, according to a spokesman for PRC Foreign Ministry. Jiang said that a resumption of bilateral talks on the WTO issue is positive and significant. He said he hopes the negotiations will be conducted on a basis of equality and mutual benefit, and that the two sides will strike a deal “at an early date.” Jiang reaffirmed that the PRC, wildly-recognized as a developing country, will not sacrifice national interests for membership in the WTO. “We will not accept conditions beyond our economic capacity,” he said. Clinton said that the US supports the PRC’s desire to join the WTO and hopes both sides will make further efforts to “successfully” complete the negotiations as soon as possible. He also reaffirmed his country’s stance on the “one China” policy, adding that the “two states” remarks made by Taiwan leader Lee Teng-hui “had brought about a lot of troubles” for both the PRC and the US. Jiang called Lee a “troublemaker” and a “stumbling block” to improvement in Sino-US relations. Lee, with his statement, “destroyed the peaceful and stable situation across the Taiwan Straits, sabotaged development of relations across the Straits, hindered the improvement of Sino-US relations and endangered peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.” “The Taiwan problem has always been the most prominent issue in Sino-US relations,” Jiang said. “There have always been some forces in the US who want to handicap the reunification of China; some conduct of the US cannot but arouse serious concerns among the Chinese people.” He added, “we will try any possible means to achieve peaceful reunification … (but) we will by no means commit to abandoning the use of force to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity.” The two sides also vowed to continue to work for the establishment of a 21st-century-oriented constructive strategic partnership in their relations.

China Daily (Shao Zongwei, “PRESIDENTS’ MEETING SIGNIFICANT TO RELATIONS,” 9/15/99, A1) reported that PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Sun Yuxi said on September 14 that the PRC is satisfied with the recent talks between the presidents of the PRC and the US. Describing the talks as “positive and constructive,” Sun told the press during a routine briefing that the meeting bore “significance for the restoration, improvement and development of bilateral relations.” Though Sun attributed the improvement in Sino-US relations partly to the agreement reached on compensation for the victims, he again urged the US to seriously handle the embassy attack issue and give the Chinese a satisfactory answer to restore and improve bilateral relations. “This (the resumption of the talks on China’s accession to WTO) is of great significance,” said Sun. Sun reiterated that the PRC, as a developing country, will not accept conditions beyond its economic ability and will not sacrifice unconditionally its own interests for accession to the WTO.

5. PRC-US WTO Talks

People’s Daily (Zhao Zhangyun, “TOP OFFICIALS HOLD TALKS ON WTO ISSUE,” Auckland, 9/14/99, A6) reported that PRC Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation Shi Guangsheng and US trade representative Charlene Barshefsky discussed the WTO issue in Auckland on September 13. During the talks, both sides elaborated their positions on the PRC’s accession to the global trade club, and “furthered mutual-understanding,” the report said. The two sides said they would continue their talks and strive to reach an agreement at an early date. The date and place of next round of negotiations will be decided through diplomatic channel, the report said.

6. PRC Military Exercises

People’s Daily (Tan Daobo, Li Dawei and Li Shiyuan, “PLA HOLDS JOINT LANDING EXERCISES,” South and East China Sea coast, 9/11/99, A1) reported that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) naval, air, and ground forces held large joint landing exercises earlier this month in coastal parts of Zhejiang Province and the southern part of Guangdong Province. The troops participating were from the Nanjing and Guangzhou military area commands and the Second Artillery Corps as well as reserves, the report said. The successful exercise showed how the PLA has improved its joint military combat capacity, the success of its modernization drive, and how it is ready to crack down on any separatist acts and defend the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, the report said. Zhang Wannian, vice- chairman of the Central Military Commission, was present at the exercises and conveyed the greetings of PRC President Jiang Zemin and the Central Military Commission to PLA and militia members participating in the exercises. Following the subsequent inspections of the soldiers, Zhang said that Taiwan’s Lee Teng-hui has broken away from the “one China” principle and has been preaching his “two-state theory,” which has completely exposed his malicious attempts to separate Taiwan from China and destroy the possibility of a peaceful reunification. Lee has been seriously defiant and has provoked the Chinese people, he said, adding that the exercises displayed the PRC military’s strong determination to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity and its strength to maintain national unity. Zhang said “our policy on the Taiwan issue remains one of ‘peaceful reunification’ and the ‘one country, two systems’ and we will never commit ourselves to abandoning the use of force.” The PLA will take the will of the nation as its supreme will, take the interests of the nation as its supreme interests and have the determination, confidence, ability and resources to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity, Zhang said. It will never tolerate any attempts to divide the country and will never idly sit by to watch even an inch of territory being taken from the motherland, he said, and warned that the PLA is keeping a close eye on the developments in cross-Straits relations and is ready to crush any evil attempts to separate the motherland.

7. PLA View on Use of Force

People’s Liberation Army Daily (“WHY NOT TO COMMIT OURSELVES TO ABANDON THE USE OF FORCE,” 9/11/99, A1) carried a commentary saying that not committing to abandon the use of force is a strategic consideration and a reliable guarantee of the accomplishment of the great cause of the reunification of the motherland. The commentary said that there are only two options to resolve the Taiwan issue. One is peace and the other is war. Since the mid-50s, the commentary said, the Chinese Communist Party has always tried to resolve the Taiwan issue peacefully. However, Lee Teng-hui disregards the great cause of national reunification, has refused time and again the propositions advanced by the Chinese Communist Party and the PRC Government, and stubbornly tries to split Taiwan from the motherland. Facing this malicious attempt, the commentary asked, “how can we commit not to use force?” The commentary said that not committing to abandon the use of force is definitely not aimed at our compatriots in Taiwan. It is directed against the attempts of “Taiwan independence” conducted by a handful of splittists in Taiwan, the article said. Another reason for the People’s Liberation Army not to commit to abandon the use of force is the interference of foreign forces, added the commentary. In the final analysis, the commentary said, not committing to abandon the use of force is to try our best to reach peaceful reunification and avoid the use of force. The commentary said that the PLA firmly supports the PRC’s government’s stances on Taiwan issue and hopes the Taiwan issue can be resolved in a peaceful way. However, the commentary pointed out that if Lee Teng-hui persist in splittism, stubbornly tries to split Taiwan from Chinese territory and conducts “Taiwan independence” activities, the PLA will have no options then. Lee Teng-hui will have to take all the consequences caused by his splittist activities, the commentary said.

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Timothy L. Savage:
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Seoul, Republic of Korea

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Tokyo, Japan

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Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

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