NAPSNet Daily Report 16 September, 1999

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 16 September, 1999", NAPSNet Daily Report, September 16, 1999,


I. United States

II. Republic of Korea

III. Russian Federation

I. United States

1. DPRK Envoy to Visit US

Reuters (Teruaki Ueno, “AIDE TO N.KOREA LEADER TO VISIT U.S. IN OCT-SOURCE,” Tokyo, 09/16/99) reported that diplomatic sources in Tokyo said Thursday that DPRK First Vice Foreign Minister Kang Sok-ju is scheduled to visit Washington for talks late next month. The sources said that US and DPRK negotiators decided on the timing of the visit during the recent Berlin talks. Kang is expected to hold talks with US officials, including Presidential Envoy William Perry.

2. Perry Report

Reuters (Carol Giacomo, “PERRY BRIEFS CONGRESS ON NORTH KOREA REPORT,” Washington, 09/15/99) and The Washington Times (Ben Barber, “U.S. OFFERS TO NORMALIZE RELATIONS WITH N. KOREA,” 09/16/99, 1) reported that US envoy William Perry briefed Congress on Wednesday on his report on US policy toward the DPRK. Perry briefed Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott and was to meet later with the House of Representatives International Relations Committee. An unnamed administration official stated, “If we find a path of cooperation with North Korea, we should be prepared to move to normalization of diplomatic relations and join with the Republic of Korea in their policy of peaceful coexistence.” Another official stated, “We could win a war, but it would be catastrophic.” One of the officials said that changing, reforming, or undermining the DPRK regime would be impossible, take too long, or risk war. He added, “And buying it off would be bad policy and politically unsupportable.” [Ed. note: This article was one of the top stories in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for September 16.]

US State Department Spokesman James Rubin (“STATE DEPARTMENT NOON BRIEFING, SEPTEMBER 15, 1999,” USIA Transcript, 09/15/99) expressed hope that former US Secretary of Defense William Perry will be in a position to speak more publicly about his report in the next few days. Rubin stated, “we’ll have to see how that develops, but I would expect that to happen in the next day or so. It’s normal procedure for a situation like this, given the nature of the report and the nature of the information involved, for that to begin with discussions with Congress prior to the discussions with the press.” He added, “I’m not aware there is an unclassified summary of the report…. That doesn’t mean that some form of that can’t be created by the fact of such a briefing.”

3. US Sanctions on DPRK

Associated Press (George Gedda, “N.KOREA SANCTIONS MAY BE EASED,” Washington, 09/16/99) and Reuters (Carol Giacomo, “CLINTON MAY EASE NORTH KOREA SANCTIONS WITHIN DAYS,” Washington, 09/16/99) reported that US officials said Wednesday that the easing of US sanctions against the DPRK could come as early as this week. One official said that the action would allow bank transfers between the two countries, open up commerce, and permit port calls by ships, but the US will not support international loans to the DPRK or allow technology transfers or foreign assistance. Senator John Warner, Republica-Virginia, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said that the lessening of some sanctions “would be a prudent first step.” He added that if both countries continue to show a good faith effort, “a peace treaty may eventually evolve.” Congressional sources said that the US President Bill Clinton administration is talking about retaining sanctions on the DPRK related to terrorism, missile sales, and lack of cooperation in anti-drug efforts. One congressional aide, however, said that these sanctions were in many ways “symbolic” and that the “basic trade embargo on North Korea is to be ended.” He stated, “it’s disingenuous to argue that we are leaving meaningful sanctions in place.”

The Chicago Tribune carried an editorial (“FIXING NORTH KOREA’S BAD BEHAVIOR,” 09/15/99) which said that complaints that the US appears to be rewarding the DPRK once again for defusing a crisis of its own making are understandable. It added, “But the critics, whose approach is to take an unremittingly hard line in relations with Pyongyang, offer an alternative that at best would assure no progress in improving relations. At worst, it could make the dangerous, Communist regime even more hostile and unpredictable… So Clinton is justified in trying to influence Pyongyang’s behavior by offering carrots, in the form of economic incentives North Korea desperately needs, rather than sticks.” It concluded that the DPRK’s “desperate economic situation gives Clinton some viable leverage in this approach. If it fails and Pyongyang reverts to its threatening old ways, sanctions can always be reapplied. But not to try it would be a wasted opportunity–and a mistake.” [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for September 16.]

4. PRC Military Exercises

The Associated Press (“TAIWAN SAYS CHINA ‘ENTRANCED’ WITH FORCE, NOTES THREATENING EXERCISES,” Taipei, 09/15/99) reported that Taiwan’s United Daily News on Wednesday quoted Defense Minister Tang Fei as saying that recent PRC amphibious military exercises on the Zhoushan island group were a cause for concern. Tang said that although most of the exercises have been generally routine, those on Zhoushan were “quite dangerous” because they seemed to be practicing for an attack on Taiwan. Su Chi, chairman of the Mainland Affairs Council, warned that Taiwanese must remain vigilant because the PRC is “entranced” by the idea of using force against the island.

5. Taiwan Membership in UN

The Associated Press (“U.N. GENERAL ASSEMBLY DECLINES TO CONSIDER TAIWAN MEMBERSHIP,” United Nations, 09/16/99) reported that the UN General Assembly on Wednesday refused for a seventh time to consider membership for Taiwan. After a debate in which opponents of UN membership for Taiwan outnumbered supporters by two to one, the General Assembly’s steering committee decided without a vote not to include the issue on the assembly’s agenda.

Reuters (“TAIWAN SAYS US OPPOSITION TO UN SEAT ‘NO SETBACK’,” Taipei, 09/16/99) reported that Taiwan Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs David Lee said Thursday that the public opposition by the US to Taiwan’s admission to the UN was not a setback. Lee stated, “As we have argued for the past seven years, to us this is a long-term uphill fight.”

6. PRC Missile Development

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “CHINA DEVELOPS WARHEAD DECOYS TO DEFEAT U.S. DEFENSES,” 09/16/99, 1) reported that, according to an Air Force intelligence report, the warhead on the PRC’s recently tested DF- 31 ballistic missile carries multiple decoys designed to defeat missile defenses. The report said that the dummy warheads tracked during the August 2 DF-31 test “decoupled” from the primary warhead and spread out in different directions when the payload reached space. [Ed. note: This article was one of the top stories in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for September 16.]

7. US Missile Defense

Lockheed Martin issued a Press Release (“THE PAC-3 MISSILE ONCE AGAIN HITS ITS TARGET,” Dallas, 09/16/99) which said that the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization and the US Army conducted a test flight Thursday of a Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missile at White Sands Missile Range. The press release stated, “The PAC- 3 Missile intercepted and destroyed the incoming tactical ballistic missile (TBM) target. Preliminary test data indicate all test objectives were successfully achieved.” Mike Trotsky, vice president of air defense programs for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control stated, “Now that we have two intercepts in a row under our belt in the PAC-3 EMD phase, we’re ready to move forward with a low- rate initial production program.”

8. Russian Ship Visit to Japan

The Associated Press (“RUSSIAN DESTROYER VISITS JAPAN,” Tokyo, 09/16/99) reported that the Russian navy destroyer Admiral Panteleyev visited in Yokosuka on Thursday on a five-day visit for friendly exchanges and a joint exercise with the Japanese destroyer Murasame. Kimio Kumagai, a spokesman for Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force, said that other Russian military vessels have made goodwill visits to civilian Japanese ports, but this was apparently the first at a military port in at least 100 years.

II. Republic of Korea

1. Perry Report

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “PERRY REPORT CALLS FOR DIPLOMATIC TIES BETWEEN U.S. AND N. KOREA,” Seoul, 09/16/99), Chosun Ilbo (Park Doo-shik, ” PERRY DELIVERS NK REPORT TO CONGRESS,” Washington, 09/15/99), and The Korea Times (Son Key-young, “PERRY SUBMITS REPORT TO US CONGRESS,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that William Perry suggested in his report on a comprehensive package peace proposal that the US should establish diplomatic relations with the DPRK. These and other suggestions were delivered to the US Congress on Wednesday. The ROK Foreign Affairs and Trade Ministry briefed the National Assembly on the summary of the report earlier in the day. The full contexts were not released as they were classified as confidential. As a short-term measure to dispel the DPRK’s nuclear and missile threats, Perry said, the DPRK should suspend its missile testing while the US lifts some economic sanctions on the DPRK along with consideration by the ROK and Japan over proper and positive measures. As a mid-term goal, the report suggested that the US draw the DPRK’s “reliable” guarantee that it would cease engaging in nuclear and missile development. It also said the US should dismantle the Cold War structure on the Korean Peninsula with the help of the ROK and the DPRK and Japan as a long-term goal. The report also included proposals that the DPRK implement the 1992 inter-Korean basic agreement and promote dialogue with the ROK over the reunion of separated families. Perry also “strongly” recommended that the US maintain its 37,000 troops stationed in the ROK. He also evaluated that the Agreed Framework in Geneva in 1994 still serves as an effective tool in deterring the DPRK from trying to develop nuclear weapons. Perry suggested that the US administration adopt a new DPRK policy with a “comprehensive and integrated” approach. Other policy recommendations included the maintenance of the TCOG (Trilateral Coordination and Oversight Group), a high-level dialogue channel among the ROK, the US and Japan aimed at fine-tuning their DPRK policies, and the appointment of an ambassador in charge of coordinating DPRK policies among ministries in the US. Along with such peace efforts, the report said, the US needs to prepare for the contingency of the DPRK’s provocations in the near term, though there is little possibility that such a situation will come given the recent progress made in Berlin Talks.

2. ROK’s View on Perry Report

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “PERRY PROPOSALS LIKELY TO SERVE AS FIELD MANUAL ON POLICIES TOWARD N. KOREA,” Seoul, 09/16/99) reported that ROK officials and analysts attached much significance to the Perry proposal revealed on Wednesday. “It is meaningful that the report will likely serve as a manual for Washington, Seoul and Tokyo in working out their respective North Korea policies,” said an ROK official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. “The Perry recommendations jointly worked out by the three allied countries are based on our engagement policy on the North,” said Jang Jai-ryong, a deputy foreign minister. With the release of the Perry report, ROK ministry officials expected that the US would promote dialogue with the DPRK to discuss the peace proposals, but it remains to be seen whether the Perry concept will bear fruit given that the DPRK has yet to respond. “The North may attempt to raise tensions on the peninsula as it did in West Sea in June to test the effectiveness of the Perry proposals,” said an analyst.

3. DPRK Missile Exports

Chosun Ilbo (You Yong-won, “NORTH EXPORTED 490 MISSILES IN THE 90S,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that it was revealed on Wednesday that the DPRK is known to have exported 490 advanced Scud-B and Scud-C missiles to Iran, Syria and other Middle East countries from the 1980s to the present. ROK National Defense College professor Kim Chul-hwan unveiled this fact from a paper delivered at an International Security Symposium and said that the DPRK began focusing on exporting missiles in 1991 with a production line capable of producing 100-150 Scud missiles annually. In a breakdown of sales, Kim added that the DPRK exported 278 advanced Scud-B missiles with a range of 320-340Km and 212 updated Scud-C missiles with a 550Km range to Iran, Iraq, Syria, the United Arab Emirates, and India.

4. DPRK Missile Test

The Korea Times (“JAPAN’S DEFENSE CHIEF SAYS N.KOREA HAS NOT FROZEN MISSILE-LAUNCH PLANS,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that Japan’s Defense Agency chief Hosei Norota said on Tuesday that the DPRK has not put off plans to test a long-range missile despite US claims to the contrary. “It is absolutely not true that North Korea has frozen plans for a missile launch,” Norota said. He also stressed that Japan still plans to buy an in-air refueling tanker and other equipment to beef up its defense capabilities.

5. DPRK to attend UN Session

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “N.K. FOREIGN MINISTER’S ATTENDANCE AT UNGA DRAWS SEOUL’S ATTENTION,” Seoul, 09/16/99) reported that DPRK foreign minister Paek Nam-sun’s scheduled attendance at the UN General Assembly, the first of its kind since 1992, is drawing considerable interest among DPRK watchers in the ROK. With the DPRK reportedly pushing for full-scale diplomacy this year, Foreign Minister Paek will also likely use the occasion to launch a diplomatic offensive by holding several bilateral talks with his foreign counterparts, particularly those from Europe, during the 54th UN assembly, ROK Unification Ministry officials said. Hong Heung-joo, director general at the ROK Foreign Ministry’s Information Analysis Bureau said that through this diplomacy, the DPRK seems to want to show that its system has been stabilized even after the death of its founder Kim Il-sung. The DPRK will likely seek more aid from the outside world by strengthening ties with foreign countries, and key UN members in particular, he said. As ROK Foreign Minister Hong Soon-young is also attending the UN session, analysts are focusing on whether or not the two Koreas’ foreign ministers will meet for the first time since the inauguration of the Kim Dae- jung government early last year. An official with the ROK Permanent Mission to the United Nations said, “There is no fixed schedule yet for any inter-Korean foreign ministers’ meeting here but the two may encounter each other by chance.”

6. Attempted ROK Defection to DPRK

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “KUMGANG TOURIST ARRESTED FOR TRYING TO DEFECT TO NORTH,” Seoul, 09/16/99) reported that an ROK citizen touring Mt. Kumgang in the DPRK was arrested by the ROK secret service on Wednesday on charges of attempting to defect to the DPRK, ROK officials said. Park Jong-tae, 48, who went on a trip to the DPRK’s mountain last Saturday boarding one of the Hyundai Group’s cruise ships, expressed his intention to defect to a DPRK tour guide, who rejected the bid and turned him over to ROK authorities, they said. This is the first time that an ROK citizen participating in the inter-Korean tour program tried to defect to the DPRK, said the ROK National Intelligence Service (NIS), adding that investigation is still under way. “Park said he had wanted to flee the South into the North after he went bankrupt in 1994 and was divorced by his wife.” When the DPRK made a contract with Hyundai, the DPRK made it clear that it would not allow any tourists to stay in the DPRK, while pledging to inform the ROK immediately of any such attempt and deport anyone seeking defection. “In this case, North Koreans informed Hyundai of Park’s attempt immediately, expressing their will to fulfill the agreement,” the official added.

7. ROK-DPRK Cultural Exchange

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, “FIRST INTER-KOREAN FRIENDLY BASKETBALL MATCHES TO BE HELD SEPT. 27-28,” Seoul, 09/16/99) reported that the ROK Unification Ministry said on Wednesday that the first friendly basketball matches between the ROK and the DPRK will be held in Pyongyang September 27-28, with some of the games broadcast live in the ROK via satellite. “The Hyundai Group and the (DPRK’s) Korean Asia-Pacific Peace Committee (KAPPC) have agreed to hold four matches, holding men’s and women’s games each day,” said Hwang Ha- soo, director general at the ministry’s Inter-Korean Exchanges and Cooperation Bureau. On the first day, the two Koreas will hold matches between teams of mixed members from both the ROK and the DPRK, while Hyundai’s men’s and women’s professional teams will meet with their DPRK counterparts, named Thunder (men) and Lightning (women) on the second day, Hwang added. On the sidelines of the sports events, there will likely be a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of an indoor sports complex, a US$580 million facility Hyundai promised to build in the DPRK, the Unification Ministry official said. In addition, the two sides have agreed to prevent the matches from being exploited politically, he added.

8. ROK Opposition Leader visits US

The Korea Herald (Yoo Jae-suk, “OPPOSITION CHIEF TEARS DOWN KIM’S N.K. POLICY,” Seoul, 09/16/99) and The Korea Times (Kim Yong-bom, “‘CONDITIONAL ENGAGEMENT’ WITH NK PROPOSED,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that ROK opposition leader Lee Hoi-chang continued attacking the Kim Dae-jung administration on Wednesday over its DPRK policy. In his address to the Heritage Foundation in Washington, Lee stressed the need for the ROK to redirect its approach towards the DPRK, while branding President Kim Dae-jung’s engagement policy toward the DPRK as “counterproductive.” “By putting so much at stake in its ‘sunshine policy,’ the Kim Dae-jung government has practically placed itself at the mercy of Pyongyang,” Lee said. Stressing that maintenance of peace on the Korean Peninsula should be the top priority, the opposition head said that the ROK should utilize its economic leverage to change the DPRK’s policies and attitudes, seeking constructive engagement, and preparing for eventual unification. He emphasized the need for strengthening ties with neighboring superpowers -the US, Japan, the PRC and Russia – and proposed the establishment of a regional body among these countries.

9. US Theater Missile Defense

Joongang Ilbo (Kang Joo-an, “RUSSIAN RADIO URGES WASHINGTON TO SCRAP TMD SYSTEM,” Seoul, 09/15/99) reported that Russian Radio said on September 14, “The U.S. should adjust its theater missile defense (TMD) system as a consequence of North Korea’s decision to suspend its missile launch.” The broadcaster commented on the Berlin Talks, “As a result of the agreement, the stability in Asia-Pacific, as well as in Northeast Asia, will be improved. However, the Washington government has included Japan and Taiwan in the TMD strategy, always insisting this decision was made in order to cope with NK’s long-range missile development.” “Washington should keep pace with Pyongyang, which suspended the missile launching to ease its neighbors’ concerns. We had earlier expressed our concern over the NK’s proposed long-range missile launch at foreign affairs ministers’ talks between Russia and China, as it could incite the U.S. and Japan to extend the TMD system.”

10. ROK-New Zealand Summit

Chosun Ilbo (Hong Jun-ho, “KIM, NZ’S SHIPLEY CEMENT TIES WITH FRUIT DIPLOMACY,” Seoul, 09/15/99) and The Korea Times (Lee Chang-sup, “ROK, NZ SEEK TO SIGN FREE TRADE ACCORD,” Wellington, 09/15/99) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung held a summit meeting with New Zealand Prime Minister Jenny Shipley on Wednesday morning in which the two heads of state discussed issues of mutual interest before issuing a joint 19-point communique centering on the expansion of bilateral relations. In their meeting, the two leaders agreed to enhance the relationship between their two countries with the aim of establishing a new level of partnership at the start of the 21st century. The joint statement also said that the two governments look forward to further development of economic relations based upon market principles and interdependence. The two countries also committed to exerting their best efforts in the upcoming new round of WTO negotiations to help realize the goals set by APEC. Shipley particularly mentioned that her nation plans to eliminate all customs duties on Korean imports by 2006 to fully open New Zealand markets to their North Asian neighbor. The Prime Minister also welcomed the expanding number of Korean immigrants to her country. Both governments have also pledged to expand their work visa programs for the other country.

III. Russian Federation

1. DPRK-US Missile Agreement

Izvestia’s Gennady Charodeyev (“SECRET TALKS IN BERLIN,” Moscow, 4, 9/14/99) reported that US National Security Advisor Sandy Berger said in Washington that “North Korea at negotiations in Berlin agreed to freeze its long- range missile test program in exchange for improvement of bilateral relations with the United States.” He added that the US was considering measures to alleviate anti-DPRK economic sanctions. Izvestia’s author noted that no German officials could tell where the negotiations took place and who were the participants. Allegedly the secrecy was maintained at the DPRK participants’ request. In reply to DPRK allegations that the US “gift” was too small, Charles Kartman, head of the US delegation, told journalists that the delegation’s suggestions to the DPRK included unfreezing all DPRK bank accounts, lifting the ban on US-DPRK financial transactions, alleviation of restrictions on US investments in the DPRK, and permission to US vessels to visit DPRK ports, all in exchange for “temporary cancellation” of the planned launch test of the DPRK Taepodong missile. German sources reported that the DPRK early this year sent its missile designers to Iran, Pakistan and Syria to help those with their missile programs.

2. DPRK-ROK Maritime Border

Segodnya (“PYONGYANG DOES NOT RECOGNIZE ITS SEA BORDERS WITH SEOUL,” Moscow, 3, 9/3/99) reported that, following military talks, the DPRK said it would not recognize the sea border with the ROK anymore.

Nezavisimaia gazeta (“NORTH KOREA DECLARED A NEW BORDER,” Moscow, 6, 9/3/99) reported that the Commander of the general staff of the DPRK armed forces on September 2 announced the present DPRK-ROK demarcation border line in the Yellow Sea invalid and proclaimed a new one which the DPRK would defend by all means.

Segodnya’s Anna Apostolova (“DISPUTE BETWEEN PYONGYANG AND SEOUL CONTINUES,” Moscow, 3, 9/4/99) reported that the ROK firmly stated that ROK-DPRK sea borders established in 1953 are not subject to discussion and that it intends to defend its territorial integrity. ROK local authorities started to store food for inhabitants of five islands situated in the disputed area of the Yellow Sea.

3. Kazakhstan Fighter Sales to DPRK

Izvestia’s Daniyar Kereyev (“NORTH KOREA BOUGHT A LITTLE BIT OF MIG-21,” Moscow, 4, 9/1/99) reported on the scandal connected to the selling of 40 MiG-21 fighters to the DPRK by “some CIS country.” Izvestia’s author argued that, although there were no legal obstacles to the export, it could not have been the RF, Ukraine, or Belarus. That left Kyrghyzia and Kazakhstan. Of those two only the latter has a history of arms deliveries to the DPRK, for instance 24 100-millimeter AA KS-19 guns in 1995. Besides, Kazakh Deputy Defense Minister Amangelgy Kozhibayev in April of 1998 said India was planning to buy 40 MiG-21 fighters. No contract conclusion was reported, though. Therefore, it was either that the contract was not concluded, but the same amount was sold to the DPRK, or the contract was concluded, but with the DPRK, not India, or, finally, that India was an intermediary. The “Kazakh version” was further proved by the retirement of Mukhtar Altynbayev, Kazakh Defense Minister, and Nurtai Abykayev, Chairman of the National Security Committee, officially “for breaches in the procedure of selling of military equipment.” As for the DPRK, 40 MiG-21s are an optimal number both in technical and financial terms. The deal is estimated as US$10 million altogether, which is cheaper than one modern fighter made in the US, the RF, Europe, or even the PRC. The DPRK air force consists of about 500 planes, including 266 MiG-17/19s, 130 MiG-21s and 46 MiG-23s, plus 7 percent of it consists of Su-25s and only 6 percent of fourth-generation MiG-29 fighters. The ROK possesses 88 F-16C/Ds, 195 F-5E/Fs, 130 F-4D/Es and 22 A-37Bs. The purchase of 40 MiG-21s for the DPRK presented the only chance to somewhat compensate for the imbalance without much expenditure.

Izvestia (“C.I.S NEWS,” Moscow, 4, 9/7/99) reported that Kazakhstan’s Deputy Premier, Foreign Minister Kasymzhomart Tokayev on a visit to Tokyo promised to make arms export controls more strict. He said that recent delivery of MiG-21s to the DPRK was made without the government’s knowledge. Tokayev said that Kazakhstan made a request to the DPRK to return the planes and created a special group to investigate the case. The deal is known to have aggravated Kazakhstan’s relations with the USA, the ROK and Japan, which are its main economic partners and donors.

4. RF-ROK Military Talks

Nezavisimaia gazeta (“IGOR SERGEYEV’S VISIT,” Moscow, 9/3/99) reported that RF Defense Minister Marshal Igor Sergeyev on his official visit to the ROK said the RF was carrying out its military-technical cooperation with foreign countries “on a mutually beneficial basis and taking into account that this field of interaction is not to be aimed against third parties’ security interests.” He said that during the visit “no contracts to deliver Russian weapons and equipment to Seoul are planned…. This is not the Defense Ministry’s sphere.” According to him, the missile technologies non- proliferation regime is to be a major issue of the agenda. On September 2 the defense ministers of the two countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the exchange of military delegations in 2000-2001.

Segodnya (“MOSCOW DECIDED TO IMPROVE MILITARY COOPERATION WITH SEOUL,” Moscow, 2, 9/4/99) reported that RF Defense Minister Marshal Igor Sergeyev on a visit to Seoul said that the RF was ready for “the closest cooperation” with the ROK. RF Military sources reported that in recent years the RF delivered arms to the ROK worth about US$240 million.

Nezavisimaia gazeta’s Igor Korotchenko (“‘ASIAN’ VECTOR OF THE RF DEFENSE MINISTRY,” Moscow, 1, 9/4/99) reported on RF Defense Minister Marshal Igor Sergeyev’s 3 days official visit to the ROK that started on September 2. Of most interest is a possibility of further purchases of RF-made weapons by the ROK. In Seoul, however, Igor Sergeyev specifically pointed out that his visit should not be linked to that, because “for that purpose other structures exist.” Yet, according to information obtained by the newspaper, military-technical cooperation was to be a key issue at his talks with ROK Defense Minister Cho Seong-tae, centering primarily on a contract to sell six Kilo- class diesel submarines to the ROK. A principal consensus had already been reached that the submarines were to be purchased mainly with “live money,” unlike the previous shipments of other items delivered to service the RF debt to the ROK. The ROK is expected to first buy 3 submarines and attached equipment worth about US$1 billion, 70 percent of which is to be paid in hard currency and 30 percent to be used to partially service the RF debt. The Hyundai company is to provide guarantees and to mediate. Then the RF is to transfer some technologies to make possible production of 3 more Kilos at Hyundai shipyards in Ulsan. In other agreeements, the RF is to permit 3 official ROK intelligence representatives to work at the ROK Consulate General in Vladivostok, with the ROK guaranteeing that their activities will not pose a threat to RF national security. Also the ROK hopes that the forthcoming trial of Valentin Moiseyev, a former high-ranking RF diplomat, will not turn into an anti-ROK propaganda campaign. Plus, the RF is to do its best to try discouraging the DPRK from continuation of its missile program.

5. Ethnic Koreans in RF

Segodnya’s Gennady Charodeyev (“SEOUL HAS PUT ITS EYE ON OUR KOREANS,” Moscow, 4, 9/3/99) reported that recently the ROK National Assembly adopted a law granting Koreans living abroad the same rights as enjoyed by ROK citizens in terms of job, health care, and insurance. Those include Koreans living in the RF as well. An RF Foreign Ministry representative reminded Segodnya’s author that according to a recent poll, potential migrants among RF Koreans expressed a wish to be entitled to those rights plus a free-of-charge residence. A year ago another poll showed that of 36,000 Koreans living on Sakhalin, some 5,000 were ready to emigrate to the ROK, but in the end less than 1,000 emigrated, chiefly those of senior age. Moreover, some discouraged emigrants, who got higher education, grades and recognition in the RF, already would like to return back to the RF. Altogether, 430,000 Koreans reside in the former Soviet Union, including 36,000 on Sakhalin, 160,000 in Uzbekistan, 150,000 in Kazakhstan, and 12,000 in Kyrghyzstan, as well as large communities in the RF Far East, Siberia, Northern Caucasus, Saint Petersburg and Moscow.

6. PRC Military Exercises

Nezavisimaia gazeta (“PRC AGAIN CARRIES OUT MANEUVERS,” Moscow, 6, 9/11/99) reported that the PRC has again carried out large-scale military exercises with combat planes, ships and thousands of troops participating. According to Xinhua news agency, the exercises were to make troops prepared in case of Taiwan’s secession from the PRC.

Nezavisimoye voyennoye obozreniye (“TAIPEI IS NOT AFRAID OF P.L.A.,” Moscow, 1, 9/3-9/99, #34(157)) reported that Taiwan’s Defense Minister Tang Fei said in an interview to the Defense News weekly magazine: “We all believe that in the nearest future no large-scale or immediate threat will emerge from the mainland China, though small incidents of provocative nature can be expected.” In the next few years the military technology gap between the PRC and Taiwan will remain, but the PRC’s use of missiles remains the main threat. In that connection Taiwan hopes to purchase a new early warning radar system from the US.

7. PRC-Taiwan Espionage Row

Izvestia’s Yury Savenkov (“CHINESE GENERAL EXECUTED FOR ESPIONAGE IN TAIWAN’S FAVOR,” Moscow, 4, 9/15/99) reported that General Lyu Lian-kun, 58, was executed in late August in Beijing for “selling state secrets to Taiwan.” His son received a long prison term for not reporting him. Senior Colonel Shao Cheng-chung was also executed for participation in that crime. The two allegedly received over US$1.5 million from Taiwanese intelligence. They provided Taiwan with data on the location of PRC troops and PRC missiles, in particular those used during the 1996 crisis, as well as documents of the Central Military Council of the PRC. The scandal is the largest in 50 years.

8. RF-Taiwan relations

Segodnya’s Aleksandr Chudodeyev (“‘WE HAVE NO NEED TO PROCLAIM INDEPENDENCE’,” Moscow, 3, 9/10/99) took an interview with Jang Wen-jung, head of the RF representative office of Taipei-Moscow economic and cultural cooperation coordination commission. Jang said, “Taiwan … strives for re-unification, but through negotiations. The Republic of China (ROC) on Taiwan is not ‘a rebellious province,’ but a sovereign state…. The very existence of the ROC has never ceased. Therefore we have no need to proclaim independence. At the same time, proclaiming the PRC in 1949, the Communists have not ruled Taiwan for a single day, therefore one cannot talk about it as ‘a province’ of the PRC…. President Li Teng-hui’s statement of July 9 was included in the resolution of the last congress of the Kuomintang. Therefore it is not just a statement, but the party’s policy…. The majority of Taiwanese approve such an approach in relations with mainland China. Therefore we will make no concessions to Beijing on that issue.” Asked if Taiwan will buy arms from other countries, he replied that “we need a permanent and stable source…. As yet there is no talk about purchasing Russian military equipment, because, as different from the USA, we are not sure the process would be of permanent and stable nature…. Besides, last November the Russian president publicly said Russia would not sell military equipment to Taiwan.” Concerning Taiwan-PRC relations, Jang said, “our president is ready to meet with the PRC leader during the APEC summit. But that proposal was publicly rejected by Beijing.” Jang stated, “our representative office has been operating for seven years, the RF mission in Taiwan has been functioning for 3 years,” bilateral trade amounted to US$1 billion with its balance heavily in RF’s favor, Taiwanese businessmen attend all international fairs in the RF and about 100 Taiwanese students study in Moscow. He doubted that all that damaged the PRC’s sovereignty.

9. RF Military Sales to PRC

Izvestia’s Elmar Guseinov (“A ‘PIKE’ IN THE MEDITERRANEAN IS NOT FOR NOTHING,” Moscow, 4, 9/8/99) reported that, according to NATO sources, an RF “Shchuka” (“Pike”) type strike submarine last week passed into the Mediterranean Sea through the Straits of Gibraltar. It was detected by US and British radars, but then lost. Later it was detected near the former Yugoslavia, and then Corsica. Military experts believe that in this way the RF Navy was testing a new “non-detectability” system mounted on the submarine. NATO analysts, however, also noted a recent visit of RF Vice Premier Ilya Klebanov to the PRC for talks about arms deliveries. According to the Hong Kong media, the talks concerned not only 50 Su-30s, but also the possibility of deliveries of RF-made nuclear submarines to the PRC. NATO naval experts speculate that the submarine’s voyage was a pre-sale demonstration of its characteristics and do not rule out a possibility that there were PRC specialists on board the submarine to assess its behavior in near-combat environment.

Nezavisimaia gazeta (“A SCANDAL IN VLADIVOSTOK,” Moscow, 2, 9/11/99) reported that on August 31 Vladivostok customs detained acoustic modules about to be sent to Harbin Engineering University in the PRC. According to the Federal Security Service (FSS), the modules are dual-purpose system that can be put to military uses. Additionally, FSS officers sealed laboratories of acoustic noises and wave field modeling of the Pacific Oceanology Institute, from which the modules had been sent.

Segodnya’s Evgeny Lentz (‘AN OCEANOLOGIST UNDER THE F.S.S. ‘CAP’,” Vladivostok, 1, 7, 9/8/99) reported that RF Federal Security service suspected Vladimir Shchurov, Head of Ocean Acoustic Noises Laboratory, Oceanology Institute, of delivering dual-purpose technologies to the PRC. Shchurov said that the contract with Harbin Engineering Institute of the PRC was signed by the Oceanology Institute 3 years ago.

10. RF-Japan Relations

Nezavisimaia gazeta’s Andrey Ilyashenko (“ALL PROBLEMS CAN BE SOLVED,” Moscow, 6, 9/3/99) took an interview with new Japanese Ambassador in Moscow Minoru Tamba. Tamba said, in particular, that in view of intensive Japan-RF exchanges, any talk about a depression in Japan-RF relations looked “strange at least.” In his words, “the main issues of bilateral relations should be how Russia and Japan will build cooperative relations for the sake of peace and stability in the Asia Pacific region in the 21st century.” He said the fact that a Japan-RF peace treaty had not been concluded for 50 years was “unnatural” and “regrettable,” but agreements reached at the Krasnoyarsk summit of 1997 opened a road toward that. Tamba said his most important function as Japanese Ambassador in Moscow was to make the people of Japan aware of the importance of the RF and to make the people of the RF aware of the importance of Japan. In 30 years he has visited the USSR/RF 30 times and Moscow 13 times. He added he planned to visit Sakhalin as it was his birthplace.

Segodnya (“RUSSIA GOT U.S.$50 MILLION FROM JAPAN,” Moscow, 4, 9/8/99) reported that following RF First Vice Premier Viktor Khristenko’s visit to Japan, the RF received the first US$50 million tranche out of the recently unfrozen US$1.5 billion Japanese credit line intended for structural reconstruction of the RF Economy. Khristenko said that an additional US$700 million is to come soon.

11. RF Missile Test

Izvestia’s Yury Golotyuk (“RUSSIAN SURPRISE FOR THE U.S.A.,” Moscow, 2, 9/9/99) reported that on September 2 the RF Strategic Missile Forces conducted the 8th test of RF’s newest “Topol-M” ICBM. The warhead in 23 minutes flew from Plesetsk to the “Kura” site in Kamchatka. The ICBM designers said they would test a mobile version of the launching system already this year. During all recent tests, the ability of “Topol-M” to break through the anti-missile defense of the “probable enemy” were emphasized.

12. RF Pacific Force Exercises

Nezavisimoye voyennoye obozreniye’s Valery Aleksin (“THE NAVY MAINTAINS ITS NAVAL READINESS,” Moscow, 1, 9/3-9/99, #34(157)) reported that the general purpose forces of the RF Pacific Fleet finished exercises on August 26. In particular, in the Pacific Naval Theater the assembly-march of the ships of Primorskaya Flotilla of Various Type Forces (PFVTP) of the Pacific Fleet was held under the command of PF Commander Admiral Mikhail Zakharenkov. Their zone of activity is the Sea of Japan. 14 combat surface ships, the large anti-submarine ships “Marshal Shaposhnikov” and “Admiral Panteleyev,” and 10 various purpose support ships participated. Nuclear submarines are not part of the PFVTP and did not participate in the assembly-march.

Nezavisimaia gazeta’s Valery Aleksin (“PLANES AND MISSILES OVER THE OCEAN,” Moscow, 2, 9/15/99) reported that on Thursday the RF Pacific Fleet was scheduled to begin joint command-staff exercises of missile- carrying aviation of the RF Navy and long-distance aviation of the RF Air Force. The purpose is to rehearse fighting against an enemy’s strike aircraft carrying group and repelling its attacking air- and sea-based cruise missiles. Several NATO countries possess such groups and the number of such in the world is expected “to grow significantly.” A wing of Tu-22M3s of naval aviation and a similar wing of long-range aviation will represent two regiments respectively. APKR X-22M missiles will be used to hit the targets.

13. RF Naval Missile Exports

Segodnya (“RUSSIA EXPANDS ITS EXPORTED WEAPONS NOMENCLATURE,” Moscow, 2, 9/11/99) reported that the RF expanded its list of arms permitted for export by one more item, namely a new anti-ship 3M-54E missile produced at “Novator” engineering bureau in Ekaterinburg. The missile can be launched from surface ships and submarines to destroy single and grouped surface targets at a range of 300 kilometers. It has no analogues abroad and there are good export prospects for it.

14. RF-PRC-India Security Assocation

Nezavisimaia gazeta’s Aleksey Tamilin (“COMMON THREAT UNITES,” Delhi, 6, 9/15/99) reported that at a recent RF-PRC-Indian scholarly meeting in Delhi a Trilateral Association was created. In particular, it will draft recommendations for the governments of the three countries on national security and on financial and economic issues. Special attention will be paid to “the upsurge of Islamic extremism in the region, drafting of effective ways to combat it, so that there are no obstacles to stable work of energy systems in Middle and Central Asia, and to put effective bar on the way of NATO expansion to the East as well.”

The NAPSNet Daily Report aims to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchange among peace and security specialists. Conventions for readers and a list of acronyms and abbreviations are available to all recipients. For descriptions of the world wide web sites used to gather information for this report, or for more information on web sites with related information, see the collection of other NAPSNet resources.
We invite you to reply to today’s report, and we welcome commentary or papers for distribution to the network.

Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
International Policy Studies Institute Seoul, Republic of Korea
The Center for Global Communications, Tokyo, Japan
Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Chunsi Wu:
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China


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