NAPSNet Daily Report 18 January, 2010
Contents in this Issue:
- I. Napsnet
- 1. ROK, PRC on Six-Party Talks
- 2. ROK, Japan on DPRK Sanctions
- 3. DPRK Missile Program
- 4. Sino-DPRK Relations
- 5. Inter-Korea Relations
- 6. ROK Aid for DPRK
- 7. DPRK Detention of Missionary
- 8. DPRK Military
- 9. DPRK Leadership
- 10. ROK Participation in PSI
- 11. ROK Anti-Piracy Activities
- 12. ROK Military Procurements
- 13. ROK Politics
- 14. ROK Nuclear Exports
- 15. US-ROK Free Trade Agreement
- 16. ROK Energy Security
- 17. Comfort Women Issue
- 18. Japanese Politics
- 19. Japan on PRC Censorship
- 20. US-PRC Military Cooperation
- 21. Cross Strait Relations
- 22. PRC Ethnic Unrest
- 23. PRC Internet
- II. PRC Report
- III. Announcement
1. ROK, PRC on Six-Party Talks
Korea Times (Kim Sue-young, “SOUTH KOREA, CHINA AGREE ON HOUSE SUBPANEL TO HOLD EFFORT TO RESUME NUKE TALKS”, Tokyo, 2010/01/17) reported that ROK Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan and his PRC counterpart Yang Jiechi agreed Sunday to work together in a bid to resume the six-party denuclearization talks as soon as possible, a ministry official said. The two shared the view that efforts should be made to end the DPRK’s nuclear ambitions but did not discuss the DPRK’s demand for a peace treaty, the official said.
2. ROK, Japan on DPRK Sanctions
Yonhap (“S. KOREA, JAPAN OPPOSE LIFTING NK SANCTIONS”, Tokyo, 2010/01/16) reported that ROK Foreign Minister Yu Myung-Hwan and his Japanese counterpart Katsuya Okada on Saturday rebuffed the DPRK’s call for early talks on a peace treaty, saying any such concessions will only be made after the DPRK first commits to denuclearization. “They noted the removal of U.N.-imposed sanctions on North Korea can be considered by the U.N. Security Council, but only when there is progress in the process of denuclearizing North Korea,” an official accompanying Yu said.
3. DPRK Missile Program
Arirang News (“N.KOREAN MISSILE 8 TIMES MORE ACCURATE THAN PREDECESSOR”, 2010/01/18) reported that newly released data show that the DPRK’s Taepodong-2 is eight times more accurate than its predecessor, the Taepodong-1. Japan’s Mainichi Shimbun cited reports by a group of professors at Hokkaido University who collected data from more than 1,000 GPS observatory posts in Japan. The report said the results clearly point to a gradual improvement in the the DPRK’s missile technology.
4. Sino-DPRK Relations
Yonhap (“CHINA TO RENEW BORDER LINK WITH N.K.”, Seoul, 2010/01/17) reported that the PRC will mend a rail link between the city of Tumen and the DPRK’s northeastern port of Chongjin, a source familiar with DPRK affairs said Sunday. The source added Tumen will lend the DPRK $10 million, which will partly fund the restoration of the 170-kilometer-long railroad. Construction is due to begin in April this year, he said.”The agreement on repairing the railway indicates North Korea has also agreed on letting China use the Chongjin Port, which will give it better access to the East Sea,” another source said.
5. Inter-Korea Relations
Korea Times (Kim Se-jeong, “NK THREATENS TO WAGE HOLY WAR ON SOUTH”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that the DPRK threatened Friday to wage a “holy war” against the ROK and exclude it from future negotiations. “We will blow away the den of South Korean authorities, including Cheong Wa Dae, in a pan-national holy war of retribution,” said a statement issued by Pyongyang’s National Defense Commission. “South Korean authorities’ reckless provocation plan targeting our revolutionary supreme leadership and highly-esteemed socialist system will face an all-out holy war,” the statement said. “The holy war will mobilize not only armed forces in South and North Korea but also from overseas in an all-out strike.”
Joongang Ilbo (Seo Ji-eun, “NORTH’S THREAT WON’T STOP AID”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that according to ROK military sources, DPRK forces were not conducting exercises that would require the ROK to go on alert as of Sunday. No signs of short-range missile launches were detected. “Although North Korea is sending complicated signals, the chance of the country reversing its attitude toward South Korea doesn’t seem high,” said a high-ranking ROK government official.
Chosun Ilbo (“UNIFICATION MINISTRY REVIVES TEXTBOOK ON N.KOREA”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that the Education Center for Unification under the ROK Unification Ministry has revived a textbook covering the DPRK’s ROK strategy 15 years after it was dropped from the center’s syllabus. The DPRK’s aim remains turning the ROK into a communist state, it says, and this will not change until the Juche and Songun ideologies are abolished and the entire system changes.
6. ROK Aid for DPRK
BBC News (“NORTH KOREA ACCEPTS FOOD AID FROM SOUTH KOREA”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that the DPRK has accepted an offer of food aid from the ROK, officials in Seoul have announced . The offer of 10,000 tonnes of food was made in October, but no response has been given until now.
7. DPRK Detention of Missionary
Chosun Ilbo (“DEFECTOR HELD FOR HELPING DAREDEVIL ACTIVIST SLIP INTO N.KOREA”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that a DPRK defector with ROK citizenship identified only as Kim has been arrested in the PRC for helping an evangelical Robert Park cross into the DPRK. “We’ve confirmed through various channels that Kim, who was staying at a hideout in Yanji, Jilin Province, was arrested by Chinese police last Friday,” Kim Sung-min, the head of defector-run station Free North Korea Radio, said Sunday.
8. DPRK Military
Associated Press (Hyung-jin Kim, “NKOREA’S KIM CALLS FOR STRONGER ARMY AMID TENSION”, Seoul, 2010/01/17) reported that DPRK leader Kim Jong-il said his country must bolster its armed forces, the Korean Central News Agency reported Sunday. The report said Kim had inspected a joint army, navy and air force drill that demonstrated the country’s “merciless striking power” against anyone trying to infringe on its territory. Kim expressed his satisfaction with the drill and ordered the military to continue to develop its capabilities in order to become “invincible revolutionary armed forces,” according to the KCNA report.
9. DPRK Leadership
Chosun Ilbo (“OLD PROPAGANDA HAND BECOMES N.KOREAN CULTURE MINISTER”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that the DPRK Supreme People’s Assembly appointed An Dong-chun, the chairman of the country’s authors’ association, as the new culture minister, the Korean Central News Agency reported Thursday. Yoo Dong-yeol of the Police Science Institute in South Korea said, “The propaganda department of the North Korean Workers’ Party oversees the personality cult, but the Culture Ministry serves as its arms and legs.” Yoo said An’s appointment seems to herald a major new propaganda push.
10. ROK Participation in PSI
Korea Herald (Kim Ji-hyun, “SEOUL HOLDS BACK FULL PSI SUPPORT”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that the ROK has yet to provide full material support for the Proliferation Security Initiative, sources said Sunday. Government officials said there was no need to instigate the DPRK when there was no urgent need to offer material support. “North Korea is a big factor for our decision. As long as the drills do not occur near the waters we share, the government has yet to feel the need to participate in terms of material provisions,” one official said requesting anonymity.
11. ROK Anti-Piracy Activities
Arirang News (“KOREA TO LEAD MULTINATIONAL NAVAL TASK FORCE”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that an ROK Navy task group is set to take command of a multinational naval force to deter pirates off the coast of Somalia starting this April. The decision comes largely in part to the Cheonghae unit’s successful mission escorting about 1,000 ships and deterring several attacks by Somali pirates.
12. ROK Military Procurements
Korea Times (Jung Sung-ki, “NAVY PLANES FAIL TO GET US SENSOR”, Seoul, 2010/01/17) reported that the planned delivery of eight refurbished U.S. P-3C maritime patrol aircraft to the ROK Navy has been delayed again according to the ROK’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) on Sunday. “The U.S. government raised the issue of the export license for the ESM system in July last year, citing technology protection of some equipment related to electromagnetic waves,” a DAPA official said. The United States is developing measures to protect the technology and U.S. procurement officials recently hinted that the export control would be lifted soon for the ROK the official said, adding that no official U.S. response has arrived yet.
Donga Ilbo (“MILITARY SEEKS PURCHASE OF US ANTI-MINE VEHICLES”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that the ROK Defense Ministry is seeking to buy the latest model of the U.S. M-ATV (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected All-Terrain Vehicles) to protect ROK troops to be deployed to Afghanistan in July. A high-ranking official said Sunday that the ROK military has officially asked the Pentagon to sell some 20 units of the vehicle to protect Korean soldiers from attacks from improvised explosive devices (IEDs), mines and ambush attacks.
13. ROK Politics
Korea Times (Lee Tae-hoon, “ROH FOLLOWERS CREATE NEW PARTY”, Seoul, 2010/01/17) reported that former Unification Minister Lee Jae-joung was elected Sunday as the leader of a new liberal party during its inaugural convention in Seoul. It is named the People’s Participation Party (PPP) and is composed of supporters of the late President Roh Moo-hyun. “We are here to make a fresh start and revive the spirit of former President Roh Moo-hyun,” the 65-year-old said after his election.
14. ROK Nuclear Exports
Korea Herald (Song Sang-ho, “KOREAN CONSORTIUM WINS DEAL ON JORDAN REACTOR”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that the ROK Ministry of Education, Science and Technology said that a consortium consisting of the state-run Korean Atomic Energy Research Institute and Daewoo Engineering and Construction Co. received a “letter of acceptance” last Sunday from the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission to build a 5-megawatt research reactor to be built at the Jordan University of Science and Technology in Irbid by 2014. The signing of the deal will make Korea the third country to export an atomic research reactor after Argentina and Russia.
Yonhap (“EGYPT ASKS S. KOREA TO HELP TRAIN NUCLEAR ENERGY ENGINEERS”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that Egypt has asked the ROK to help train its nuclear energy engineers, the state-run Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) said Monday. The agency said the Egyptian government has formally made the request with Seoul as part of its support program for developing economies. The Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute in Daejeon will be responsible for training the Egyptian engineers, although details of the training program have yet to be fixed.
Arirang News (“KOREA ON COURSE TO BUILD NUCLEAR POWER PLANT IN TURKEY”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that Turkey’s Hurriyet newspaper says the government will most likely put a Russian firm in charge of building one plant in Akkuyu and give a second plant at Sinop to a consortium composed of the ROK’s KEPCO and U.S. firms GE and Westinghouse. The reason Turkey favored the ROK-U.S. consortium is that the country wants to reduce its energy dependence on Russia, the paper said.
15. US-ROK Free Trade Agreement
Yonhap (“TRADE MINISTER SAYS ‘NO RENOGOTIATION’ OF KORUS FTA”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that ROK Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon said Friday that the government will not respond if the United States repeats its demand to amend a bilateral free trade accord. “Our stance is still firm. It is impossible to renegotiate (the accord),” Kim said.
Chosun Ilbo (“U.S. OFFICIALS JOIN PESSIMISTS ABOUT FTA WITH KOREA”, Seoul, 2010/01/18) reported that senior officials in the U.S. administration, congressmen and staff see nearly no prospect for the ratification of the ROK-U.S. free trade agreement by the U.S. Congress, according to a group of ROK lawmakers just back from the U.S. Grand National Party lawmaker Yoon Sang-hyun said “none” of the administration officials saw a high chance of the FTA being ratified this year. “They told us that it would be impossible for the FTA bill to be ratified before the midterm elections in November.” Son Beom-gyu, also of the GNP, said, “We heard that there is strong opposition to the bill from industries including carmakers and congressmen who believe industries or districts they represent would be disadvantaged by the FTA.” But he said U.S. government officials were “sensitive” to calls for urgency given that an FTA with the EU is likely to be ratified in the ROK this year.
16. ROK Energy Security
Yonhap (“INDUSTRIAL DEMAND FOR ELECTRICITY HITS NEAR 16-YR LOW”, Seoul, 2010/01/17) reported that industrial demand for electricity surged to a near 16-year high in December, the government said Sunday. Sales of electricity for industrial use totaled 19.06 million megawatt-hours last month, up 18.6 percent from the same month a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Knowledge Economy. It was the largest on-year expansion since January 1994 when demand shot up 21.4 percent. Power demand from the steel sector jumped 42.8 from a year ago, while demand from the machinery manufacturing and automobile sectors rose 24.5 percent and 33.8 percent, respectively, the ministry added.
17. Comfort Women Issue
Arirang News (“JAPANESE CIVIC GROUPS PROTEST FOR ‘COMFORT WOMEN'”, Seoul, 2010/01/15) reported that Japanese civic organizations held their own protests Wednesday in time for the 900th weekly rally by former ROK “comfort women.” Some 20 Japanese people stood in front of a parliamentary hall to draw attention to atrocities committed against women by the Japanese army during World War II.
18. Japanese Politics
Yomiuri Shimbun (“POLL: 70% SAY OZAWA SHOULD QUIT HIS POST”, Tokyo, 2010/01/18) reported that seventy percent of respondents to the latest Yomiuri Shimbun survey said Ichiro Ozawa should resign as the Democratic Party of Japan’s secretary general to take responsibility for a series of arrests linked to a dubious land purchase by his political funds management organization. Only 21 percent of respondents said Ozawa did not need to resign from his post. The approval rating for Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama’s Cabinet plunged to 45 percent in the survey, down 11 percentage points from the previous survey conducted about a week earlier. In contrast, the Cabinet’s disapproval rating rose to 42 percent, up from 34 percent in the last poll.
19. Japan on PRC Censorship
Asahi Shimbun (“OKADA TAKES SWIPE AT CHINA CENSORSHIP”, Tokyo, 2010/01/16) reported that Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada on Friday called for countries to respect freedom of speech. “Every nation has discretion in regulation,” Okada told a news conference. “But I believe, living in a nation with democracy and freedom, that freedom of speech should be guaranteed as much possible.”
20. US-PRC Military Cooperation
Yomiuri Shimbun (“CHINA MAY TAKE OVER REFUELING”, Tokyo, 2010/01/17) reported that the PRC Navy is considering taking over the Maritime Self-Defense Force’s refueling mission in the Indian Ocean that ended Friday, according to Japanese government sources. They said a confidential PRC government document states that the navy is undergoing training in preparation for a refueling mission in the Indian Ocean. The sources also said that when the MSDF’s refueling mission was suspended in November 2007, a party connected to the PRC Navy unofficially sounded out the U.S. government on taking over the mission. However, the United States did not accept the proposal at that time. The country is believed to wish to further boost its influence in the Middle East through the refueling mission in the Indian Ocean.
21. Cross Strait Relations
Associated Press (Cara Anna and Annie Huang, “HAITI AID A TELLING TEST OF CHINA-TAIWAN RELATIONS”, Beijing, 2010/01/16) reported that both the PRC and Taiwan are rushing aid to Haiti, one of Taipei ‘s few remaining diplomatic allies. While the aid to Haiti comes with large PRC flags on display, analysts say it has no apparent strings attached. “What’s really interesting here is that China apparently is providing Haiti with assistance without making any demands regarding Haiti’s relationship with Taiwan,” said Taiwan scholar Shelley Rigger of North Carolina’s Davidson College .
22. PRC Ethnic Unrest
Associated Press (Tini Tran, “TEXT SERVICE RESUMES 6 MONTHS AFTER XINJIANG RIOTS”, Beijing, 2010/01/17) reported that text messaging services restarted Sunday for cell phone users in Xinjiang, more than six months after ethnic rioting prompted the government to shut them down. Users are once again able to send text messages throughout the PRC, but sending texts to overseas numbers remains prohibited, a staffer with the information office of the Xinjiang provincial government said. Calls to a service hot line for state-owned China Mobile in the western region were answered with a message that said texting had resumed but “in order to prevent this service being made use of by lawless persons, each person will be allowed to send a maximum of 20 messages a day.”
23. PRC Internet
BBC News (“YAHOO CRITICISED BY ALIBABA FOR ‘RECKLESS’ CHINA STANCE”, Beijing, 2010/01/16) reported that Yahoo’s partner in the PRC has called the company “reckless” for supporting Google in its stand-off with Beijing over alleged cyber-attacks. Yahoo said it was “aligned” with Google’s position that the violation of internet privacy was deeply disturbing and something that had to be opposed. But an Alibaba Group spokesman said on Saturday it did not “share this view”.
VOA News (“US GOVERNMENT WILL STAY OUT OF GOOGLE’S TALKS WITH CHINA”, Beijing, 2010/01/15) reported that U.S. Ambassador to the PRC Jon Huntsman said the U.S. government will stay out of negotiations between Google and the PRC government. “This is an issue that will play out for some time between Google and Google’s partners here in China and the Chinese government, and they will make whatever decisions Google feels is appropriate,” he said. “It is very difficult in today’s environment to do business, anywhere in the world, without some sort of commitment to openness, transparency, and freedom. That is kind of where the world is inexorably going,” he said.
The Telegraph (Malcolm Moore, “CHINESE HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS CLAIM THEIR GOOGLE EMAILS WERE HACKED”, Shanghai, 2010/01/15) reported that some of the PRC’s most famous human rights activists have said that they have had their Google email accounts hacked. Ai Weiwei said that two of his Google email accounts had been hacked by “unknown visitors” who read and copied his email. Teng Biao, a law professor at the University of Political Science and Law in Beijing and a human rights lawyer, said his emails had been hacked into in 2007. “Many of my friends told me they received entrapment emails from the email address I was using at the time: firstname.lastname@example.org,” he wrote on his blog.
II. PRC Report
24. PRC Disaster Relief
Xinhua Net (“CHINA INTERNATIONAL RESCUE TEAM ARRIVES IN HAITI”, 2010/01/15) reported that PRC international rescue team including 50 rescuers and seven jounalists on a chartered plane arrived here Thursday morning to help Haiti out of the aftermath of Tuesday’s magnitude-7.3 earthquake. Also on the plane were rescue equipments, three sniffer dogs and over 20 tons of materials.
25. PRC Civil Society and Disaster Relief
China News Net (“ONE FOUNDATION DONATES 100,00 USD TO HAITI”, 2010/01/15) reported that according to Shanghai Office of One Foundation, One Foundation decided to donate 100,000 USD to Haiti earthquake disaster areas through China Red Cross Society on January 14, and also expressed deeply sympathy for people in disaster areas.
26. PRC Environment
China Economic News (“SUBSIDY POLICY FOR NEW ENERGY AUTOMOBILE TO BE ISSUED”, 2010/01/15) reported that except subsidy for public transport, the government may also issue policies to subsidize private automobile purchase in this month, said Miao Xu, vice minister of industry and information technology on a forum yesterday.
27. Global Nuclear Futures Briefing Book
Nautilus Institute (“NEW TAB IN GLOBAL NUCLEAR FUTURES BRIEFING BOOK”, 2010/01/18) The Nautilus Institute announces a new page in it’s only Global Nuclear Futures Briefing Book: “Republic of Korea.” The new page contains links to research and information on the ROK’s nuclear energy program as well as it’s position on nuclear nonproliferation issues. New material is also available on the “US Global Nuclear Policy” page. For more information, please visit: http://www.globalcollab.org/Nautilus/programs/energy-security/nuclear-briefing-book