NAPSNet Daily Report 3 November, 2009
Contents in this Issue:
- I. NAPSNet
- 1. DPRK Nuclear Program
- 2. ROK on DPRK Nuclear Program
- 3. DPRK Abductee Issue
- 4. DPRK Food Security
- 5. Inter-Korean Relations
- 6. ROK Afghanistan Dispatch
- 7. ROK Influenza Response
- 8. US-Japan Relations
- 9. Japan SDF Indian Ocean Mission
- 10. US-Japan Nuclear Pact
- 11. Japan Climate Change
- 12. Sino-Japan Relations
- 13. ROK, Japan, PRC Disaster Planning
- 14. Sino-Indian Territorial Dispute
- 15. Sino-US Energy Cooperation
- 16. Sino-Russian Environmental Cooperation
- 17. PRC African Diplomacy
- 18. Cross Strait Relations
- 19. PRC on Militarization of Space
- 20. PRC Anti-Piracy Operations
- 21. PRC Military
- 22. Uigher Detainee Issue
- 23. PRC Ethnic Unrest
- II. PRC Report
1. DPRK Nuclear Program
Yonhap (Sam Kim, “N. KOREA APPEARS TO HAVE RESTORED PLUTONIUM-GENERATING PLANT: OFFICIALS”, Seoul, 2009/11/02) reported that DPRK has apparently restored its facility used to produce weapons-grade plutonium at its main nuclear complex that had been mothballed under a six-nation accord, officials here said Monday. “The reprocessing factory appears to have been restored to its earlier conditions,” a senior defense official said, citing satellite photos that also showed a continuous stream of workers in and out of the site in Yongbyon, 90km north of Pyongyang.
Associated Press (Jae-Soon Chang, “NKOREA THREATENS TO EXPAND NUCLEAR ARSENAL”, Seoul, 2009/11/02) reported that DPRK issued a veiled threat Monday to increase its nuclear arsenal if U.S. officials do not quickly agree to the one-on-one talks that the communist regime is demanding. The regime’s impatience came days after No. 2 nuclear negotiator Ri Gun came away from meetings with Washington envoy Sung Kim without an agreement to hold bilateral talks. “If the U.S. is not ready to sit at a negotiating table with DPRK, it will go its own way,” DPRK’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by Pyongyang’s official Korean Central News Agency.
2. ROK on DPRK Nuclear Program
Yonhap (Tony Chang, “SEOUL WANTS N. KOREA’S DENUCLEARIZATION BY 2012: PRESIDENTIAL AIDE”, Seoul, 2009/11/02) reported that Seoul aims to denuclearize DPRK no later than 2012, the year set by Pyongyang for the country to become a prosperous and powerful nation, a top-level presidential aide in Seoul said Monday. Kim Tae-hyo, presidential secretary for national security strategy, highlighted several preconditions for President Lee Myung-bak’s “grand bargain” proposal over the denuclearization of DPRK at a seminar in Seoul. His comment also suggests that Lee would seek to end DPRK’s nuclear program before his five-year term ends in early 2013.
3. DPRK Abductee Issue
Bloomberg News (“KIM JONG IL MAY HAVE ORDERED ABDUCTIONS OF JAPANESE, ASAHI SAYS”, 2009/11/02) reported that DPRK leader Kim Jong Il may have ordered abductions of Japanese nationals in the 1970s and 1980s, the Asahi newspaper reported, citing a Japanese government agency study. The finding contradicts Kim’s claim in September 2002 that the abductions were conducted by rogue elements within the regime, the report said. Kim’s involvement may complicate efforts by Japan Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama to normalize DPRK relations, the Asahi said.
4. DPRK Food Security
IFES NK Brief (“NORTH KOREAN FOOD SHORTAGE TO GROW, CRIMES OF NECESSITY ON THE RISE”, 2009/11/02) reported that the DPRK agricultural ministry has announced that the countries food shortages are expected to be even greater next year. With food shortages this year and last, and now news that there will be food problems next year as well, it is rumored that there is a growing number of angry people in the normally mild-mannered Hwanghae Province. In addition, this is driving a growing number of people to turn to crime in order to put food on the table. According to the source, “Crimes of necessity, like pillaging granaries on farms, are spreading like never before as people act quickly to ensure food supplies,” and, “Fighting has grown fierce between people trying to maintain their standard of living.”
5. Inter-Korean Relations
Stars and Stripes (Jon Rabiroff, “WITH AN EYE TOWARD UNITY, SOUTH KOREA UNVEILS NEW BIKE TRAIL NEAR DMZ “, 2009/11/02) reported that i t was the chance of a lifetime, to ride on a new bicycle trail through an area that has been shut off from most of mankind for decades. 100 people recently took part in? the DMZ Peace Bike March — a ride meant to preview a recently developed trail in an area off limits to most civilians since Korean War hostilities ended in 1953. Officials hope to open the trail along the Civilian Control Line — east and west of the Unification Bridge — early next year on a limited basis with an eye toward promoting exercise, tourism and the idea of an eventual reunification of the peninsula.
6. ROK Afghanistan Dispatch
Yonhap (“S. KOREA TO HOLD INTER-AGENCY MEETING ON AFGHAN AID”, Seoul, 2009/11/02) reported that ROK was set to hold an inter-agency meeting to prepare for its troop dispatch to Afghanistan, Seoul’s foreign ministry said. Seoul announced its decision to send an independent “Provincial Reconstruction Team” (PRT) to the South Asian country. It will be composed of more than 50 civilian aid workers and around 300 military troops tasked only with protecting them.
7. ROK Influenza Response
Yonhap (“S. KOREA RAISES FLU ALERT TO HIGHEST LEVEL TO PREPARE FOR EMERGENCY”, Seoul, 2009/11/03) reported that the ROK on Tuesday raised its flu alert status to the highest “red” level to prepare for a possible national emergency caused by the rapid spread of Influenza A (H1N1). The Ministry for Health, Welfare and Family Affairs said in a news briefing the number of H1N1 flu cases has shot up recently with the onset of cold weather and may peak in three or four weeks. As part of its preparation effort, a central disaster relief headquarters will be set up Wednesday under the Ministry of Public Administration and Security. It will be tasked with overall preparations such as providing more hospital beds, intensive care units and medical personnel.
8. US-Japan Relations
Kyodo News (“U.S. SORRY FOR OKADA-CLINTON SNAFU”, 2009/11/03) reported that the United States has apologized to Japan for saying over the weekend that Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton would meet with Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada in Washington on Friday and then retracting the announcement, a senior Japanese official said Monday. Also on Monday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano said there is no fixed schedule for Okada’s trip to the United States after Japanese sources said over the weekend that arrangements for a meeting with Clinton, possibly on Friday, were taking place.
Mainichi Shimbun (“JAPAN, U.S. MAY HOLD FOREIGN MINISTERIAL MEETING OVER FUTENMA RELOCATION DIFFERENCES”, 2009/11/02) reported that Japan and the United States are considering holding a foreign ministerial meeting in the U.S. on Friday, local time, to narrow differences over the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, government officials said. Tokyo has proposed a meeting between Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton before President Barack Obama visits Japan on Nov. 12 and 13. They are expected to discuss the Futenma relocation issue and assistance to war-torn Afghanistan.
9. Japan SDF Indian Ocean Mission
Xinhua News (“JAPANESE PM CONFIRMS JAPAN’S AFGHAN SUPPORT MISSION TO END”, Tokyo, 2009/11/02) reported that Japan’s Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama confirmed on Monday that the government of his Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) will not renew the mission refueling military vessels in the Indian Ocean in support of the U.S.-led conflict in Afghanistan. Hatoyama said at the Diet, Japan’s parliament, that the nation would discuss future ways in which the nation can contribute to the stabilization of the region that would not involve military means.
10. US-Japan Nuclear Pact
Kyodo News (“DOCUMENTS SHOW U.S. PRESSED JAPAN IN 1964 NOT TO REVERSE ON SECRET PACT”, 2009/11/02) reported that wary of Japanese officials seemingly inclined toward tearing up a promise that allowed U.S. military ships to bring in nuclear arms to the country, Washington pressed Tokyo to make good on the covert agreement in 1964, according to newly declassified U.S. documents. The documents show how then U.S. Ambassador to Japan Edwin Reischauer urged ruling party heavyweight Masayoshi Ohira to exert his influence. A U.S. government memorandum dated Sept. 4, 1964, said Tokyo’s intent in making the remarks “is not yet clear,” but they “have disturbing implications for the future utility of our bases in Japan.”
11. Japan Climate Change
Agence France-Presse (“JAPAN AIMS TO BURY GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS”, 2009/11/02) reported that swathes of dirty clouds brood over a coal plant in rural Japan , but scientists are now hoping to send the pollutants the other way, deep into the bowels of Mother Earth . The cutting-edge but controversial technology of carbon capture and storage (CCS) is being tested at the Mikawa power station, located near the coast of Japan’s southern Fukuoka prefecture. Toshiba Corp. has chosen it as a pilot site for a technology it sees as a necessary complement to renewable energies such as wind and solar in the battle to cut industrial emissions blamed for global warming .
12. Sino-Japan Relations
Xinhua News (“FIFTH BEIJING-TOKYO FORUM OPENS IN NORTHEAST CHINA CITY”, Dalian, 2009/11/02) reported that the fifth Beijing-Tokyo Forum with the theme of “PRC-Japan cooperation in global economic crisis” opened in the northeast PRC city of Dalian Monday. Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said in his congratulatory message to the forum that Japan-PRC relations could develop further through dialogues and expanded cooperation between the two countries. PRC State Councilor Dai Bingguo in his congratulatory message said as two important nations both in Asia and the world, enhanced cooperation between PRC and Japan help the two countries to tackle difficulties brought about by the global financial crisis.
13. ROK, Japan, PRC Disaster Planning
Xinhua News (“JAPAN, CHINA, S KOREA TO STRENGTHEN COOPERATION IN DISASTER CONTROL”, 2009/11/02) reported that Japan, China and ROK held the first ministerial meeting on strengthening cooperation in disaster readiness and control in the Japanese city of Kobe Saturday. Luo Pingfei, China’s vice minister of civil affairs, Seiji Maehara, Japan’s state minister in charge of disaster prevention, and Park Yeon Soo, administrator of ROK’s National Emergency Management Agency, took part in the meeting. They agreed to exchange visits by officials in charge of disaster preparedness and sharing information on measures to improve the earthquake resistance of buildings and facilities, and to reduce the losses caused by disasters.
14. Sino-Indian Territorial Dispute
United News of India (“INDIA NOT TO ACCEPT CHINA’S DEMANDS ON ARUNACHAL SILENTLY: THAROOR”, Kolkata, 2009/11/02) reported that Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor today said India was ready to continue bilateral talks with the PRC on Arunachal Pradesh to solve the border issue but would not accept its demands silently. Interacting with members of Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce (MCC) here, the Minister said India had 13 rounds of discussions with the PRC so far regarding Arunachal and was not averse to having more, but would not succumb to any kind of threats. ”China had no right to question Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Arunachal on the eve of the Assembly polls and India had rightly lodged diplomatic protest to deter the country from such activities, ” Mr Tharoor observed.
15. Sino-US Energy Cooperation
The New York Times (“CHINA-U.S. GROUP PLANS TO BUILD TEXAS WIND FARM”, 2009/11/02) reported that a consortium of PRC and American companies announced a joint venture on Thursday to build a 600-megawatt wind farm in West Texas, using turbines made in the PRC. Construction of the $1.5 billion wind farm will be financed largely by PRC banks, with the help of loan guarantees and cash grants from the United States government. “This wind farm project came about thanks to the openness of the United States for investments in the field of renewable energy,” said John S. Lin, chief operating officer of A-Power Energy Generation Systems, which is part of the consortium building the project.
16. Sino-Russian Environmental Cooperation
RIA Novosti (“RUSSIA, CHINA LAUNCH JOINT PROJECT TO PROTECT TIGERS, LEOPARDS “, 2009/11/02) reported that Russia and the PRC have started a joint program on the conservation of Amur tigers and Amur leopards in the Far East, the World Wildlife Fund announced. The program, set up with the assistance of the WWF, got going in Russia’s Primorye Territory and the PRC’s Jilin Province following the signing of an agreement between the countries. The sides acknowledged the importance of joint programs in restoring wild animal populations in cross-border regions, and the agreement stipulates ways to protect the Amur tiger and Amur leopard populations and preserve their habitats.
17. PRC African Diplomacy
Xinhua News (“CHINA TO ANNOUNCE NEW POLICIES TO BOOST COOPERATION WITH AFRICA”, Beijing, 2009/11/02) reported that PRC will announce further measures to promote substantial cooperation with Africa at the upcoming meeting between PRC and African nations, Vice Minister of Commerce Chen Jian said on Monday. “PRC will further promote cooperation with African nations on agriculture, food security, infrastructure, trade, investment and public health,” said Chen at a briefing ahead of the fourth ministerial meeting of the Forum on PRC-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). The meeting will review how the consensus of Beijing Summit has been implemented and chart the path of practical cooperation for the next three years, said Chen.
18. Cross Strait Relations
Agence France-Presse (“TAIWAN’S MA URGES CHINA TO REMOVE MISSILES”, 2009/11/02) reported that President Ma Ying-jeou called on the PRC to withdraw missiles targeting the island to ensure peace between the two former bitter rivals. The PRC now has nearly 1,500 missiles pointed at Taiwan, with no signs that the build-up is about to stop anytime soon, according to defence officials here. “We hope that the Chinese communists will consider removing the missiles facing Taiwan to create a peaceful environment for both sides,” Ma said.
Agence France-Presse (“TAIWAN-CHINA TRADE TALKS HELD UP AGAIN”, 2009/11/02) reported that Taiwan has called off a delegation that was to have left Monday morning for informal trade talks in the PRC, after the mainland said it needed more time to prepare, a Taiwanese official told AFP. This marks the latest in a series of delays in the talks, the fourth round since the PRC-friendly Ma Ying-jeou was elected president last year. “(China) informed us a couple of days ago they need more time to prepare for the talks. Their schedule is tight,” said Huang Chih-peng, director of the Bureau of Foreign Trade and the head of the delegation.
19. PRC on Militarization of Space
Agence France-Presse (“CHINA CHIEF SAYS SPACE ARMS INEVITABLE: STATE MEDIA”, 2009/11/02) reported that a top PRC air force commander has called the militarisation of space an “historical inevitability”, state media said, marking an apparent shift in Beijing’s opposition to weaponising outer space. In a wide-ranging interview in the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Daily, air force commander Xu Qiliang said it was imperative for the PLA air force to develop offensive and defensive operations in outer space. “As far as the revolution in military affairs is concerned, the competition between military forces is moving towards outer space… this is a historical inevitability and a development that cannot be turned back,” Xu told the paper.
20. PRC Anti-Piracy Operations
Xinhua (“CHINESE NEW NAVAL FLOTILLA SETS SAIL FOR GULF OF ADEN WHILE MERCHANT VESSEL STILL HELD BY PIRATES”, 2009/11/02) reported that a new PRC naval flotilla was deployed to the Gulf of Aden and waters off the coast of Somalia on Friday to protect merchant vessels against rampant pirates that still hold a PRC ship for ransom. The flotilla of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy has been the fourth task force of its kind that the PRC has sent to the region since the end of last year. The fourth flotilla will have a crew of more than 700, including a special force unit and two ship-borne helicopters. They would actively take part in international humanitarian rescue missions, said Liu Xiaojiang, the Navy’s political commissar.
21. PRC Military
Xinhua News (“AIR FORCE “NO THREAT TO OTHERS” “, Beijing, 2009/11/02) reported that PRC’s quest for a strong air force is in line with the need to safeguard regional stability and world peace, the service’s commander-in-chief, General Xu Qiliang said Sunday. “Regardless of its extent of development, the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) will never pose a military threat to any country,” Xu said in an interview to Xinhua News Agency just days before the 60th anniversary of the Chinese air force on Nov 11.
22. Uigher Detainee Issue
Reuters (Ben Blanchard, “CHINA SLAMS U.S. FOR SENDING UIGHURS TO PALAU”, Beijing, 2009/11/03) reported that PRC lashed out at the United States on Monday after the Obama administration sent six Uighur Chinese detainees from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay to the Pacific island nation of Palau. PRC has repeatedly demanded that the Uighurs be returned but the U.S. government has said it could not do so because they would face persecution, and it has searched for months for a nation willing to accept them. PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said the six were “terror suspects” and ought to have been sent back to PRC.
23. PRC Ethnic Unrest
Agence France-Presse (“CHINA IN NEW XINJIANG CRACKDOWN: STATE MEDIA”, Beijing, 2009/11/03) reported that police in Xinjiang have launched a fresh manhunt aimed at capturing fugitives wanted in connection with ethnic violence in July this year, the Xinjiang Daily said Tuesday. The regional public security bureau ‘s “strike hard and rectify” campaign, which began on Sunday, will run until the end of the year. “We must expand the scope of our work on capturing fugitives, do better to gather, analyse and research all intelligence and focus on cases and clues related to violent acts of terrorism ,” said the report, citing Xinjiang police. “We must strictly prevent violent acts of terrorism and ensure stability.”
II. PRC Report
24. PRC Civil Society
Gaungzhou Daily (“CHARITY LAW ALREADY SUBMITTED TO STATE COUNCIL”, 2009/11/02) reported that Charity Law has been submitted to the State Council, which means the drafting of the Law entering into an important stage, said an official of Ministry of Civil Affairs at Shenzhen Cultural Lecture Hall yesterday.
25. PRC Environment
Dalian Evening News (“STARS APPEAL FOR ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION”, 2009/11/02) the Adding Subtraction to Life Activity was held in Beijing recently. Many stars including Miao Pu, Wang Xuebing, Chen Lihui, and so on, have participated in it, and appealed the public to protect environment.