NAPSNet Daily Report 30 October, 2002

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 30 October, 2002", NAPSNet Daily Report, October 30, 2002, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-30-october-2002/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. DPRK on Non-Aggression Treaty
2. ROK on DPRK Nuclear Issue
3. DPRK Nuclear Issue
4. DPRK-Japan Relations
5. PRC Domestic Politics
6. DPRK-Canada Relations
7. Cross-Straits Relations
II. Republic of Korea 1. DPRK-Japan Normalization Talk
2. US Response to DPRK
3. DPRK’s Urge of Joint Defense
4. ROK President’s Sunshine Ongoing

I. United States

1. DPRK on Non-Aggression Treaty

The Korean Central News Agency (“PRACTICAL MEASURES TO CONCLUDE NON-AGGRESSION TREATY CALLED FOR PYONGYANG,” 10/29/02) carried an official item that reported that how the US approaches the proposal to conclude a non-aggression treaty between the DPRK and the US is a touchstone showing whether the US has a true will to solve the nuclear issue and whether it intends to settle it through dialogue and negotiations with the DPRK or by a war. Rodong Sinmun today says this in a signed commentary, urging the US to respond to the DPRK’s proposal. It goes on: The public at home and abroad has warmly hailed and supported the important proposal advanced by the DPRK to conclude a Non-Aggression Treaty between the two countries in a bid to bridge over the grave situation prevailing in the Korean Peninsula owing to the U.S. unilateral and high-handed attitude. The key to straightening out the grave situation lies in concluding a non-aggression treaty between the DPRK and the US as proposed by the former. The U.S. listed the DPRK as part of the “axis of evil” and singled it out as a target of US preemptive nuclear strikes. This was an open declaration of a war against the DPRK and a brigandish act of completely ditching the DPRK-U.S. agreed framework. The DPRK’s right to existence is most seriously threatened by the US reckless moves and the situation prevailing on the Korean Peninsula is so grave that a war may break out any moment. This notwithstanding, ultra-right conservatives of ROK are crying out for “cooperation” with the U.S. and inciting confrontation with the north, far from calling for the conclusion of a non-aggression treaty between the DPRK and the US No one can predict what serious consequences this row will entail. The US is well advised to properly understand the DPRK’s revolutionary will and spirit and behave itself. It should opt for concluding the Non-Aggression Treaty to solve the nuclear issue.

2. ROK on DPRK Nuclear Issue

The Associated Press (“SOUTH KOREAN PRESIDENT SAYS NORTH KOREA’S NUCLEAR CRISIS HEADING TOWARD SOLUTION,” Yoo Jae-suk, Seoul, 10/30/02) and Reuters (Paul Eckert, “S.KOREA TELLS NORTH TO MOVE ON NUCLEAR ISSUE,” Seoul, 10/30/02) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung said Wednesday the crisis over the DPRK’s nuclear weapons program is headed toward resolution, but added that the DPRK must act. Kim returned from a summit in Mexico where he, US President George W. Bush, and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi urged the DPRK abandon its nuclear program “in a prompt and verifiable manner,” and pledged to push for a peaceful resolution. The leaders’ agreement “doesn’t mean that the problem is solved. We have now entered a road to solution,” Kim said when he arrived home after the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. He said, the “ball is now in North Korea’s court.”

3. DPRK Nuclear Issue

The New York Times (Howard W. French, “NORTH KOREA REJECTS DEMANDS TO END ATOM BOMB PROGRAM,” Kuala Lumpur, 10/30/02), NORTH KOREA DEMANDS JAPAN’S ECONOMIC AID, WAR-TIME APOLOGY and Reuters (“JAPAN,NKOREA END TALKS AT ODDS ON NUKES, ABDUCTEES,” Kuala Lumpur,” 10/30/02) reported that the DPRK today flatly rejected international demands that it abandon its nuclear weapons program. The statement came at the opening session of talks with Japan aimed at establishing normal relations between the two countries. The rejection, reflected in opening remarks and repeated during the first day of talks, followed consultations in Mexico that ended two days ago, in which the US, ROK and Japan urged the North to end its bomb program. “Japan expressed grave concern on nuclear issues, and we also referred to the statement issued last week by Japan, the United States and South Korea,” a Japanese official here said. “To put it in one sentence, the DPRK’s response was they do not accept it at all.” Even before talks opened here this morning, a DPRK diplomat, Jong Thae Hwa, signaled his delegation’s unwillingness to discuss security issues, saying, “We have come with no such preparations.” In a brief exchange of greetings, Jong set the tone for difficult talks, adding, “Although we gathered here for talks on normalizing ties, certainly, we are far apart.” Japanese diplomats said Jong blamed Washington’s “hostile stance toward North Korea” for the region’s security problems.

4. DPRK-Japan Relations

The Wall Street Journal (Sebastian Moffett, “NORTH KOREA REJECTS DEMANDS TO ABANDON NUCLEAR WEAPONS,” Tokyo, 10/30/02) and The Associated Press (Eric Talmadge, “NO ACCORD IN N. KOREA, JAPAN TALKS,” Kuala Lumpur, 10/30/02) reported that the DPRK rejected Japanese demands that it abandon its nuclear-weapons program, saying it would only discuss the issue with the US. The refusal came as officials from Japan and the DPRK met Tuesday in Kuala Lumpur for talks aimed at forging diplomatic relations for the first time. But during the first of two scheduled days of negotiations, the DPRK abandoned its recent cooperative attitude. A Japanese official told reporters in the Malaysian capital that the DPRK rejected Japan’s calls for the DPRK to give up nuclear-weapons development, and blamed concerns over its nuclear program on the “anti-North Korean stance of the United States,” Japanese news reports said. The DPRK also accused Japan of breaking a promise to return to the DPRK five Japanese citizens who had been abducted by the DPRK. While the head of the DPRK delegation, Jong Thae Hwa, during Tuesday’s bilateral talks accused Tokyo of breaking its promise, he brushed aside the issue when speaking later to television reporters. “Everything has been made clear and there is not a big problem,” he said of the abduction issue. He added that there was no reason why the children of the five — who remained in the DPRK during the abductees’ trip to Japan — shouldn’t join their parents later if they wanted. [This Wall Street Journal article originally appeared in today’s edition of the US Defense Department’s Early Bird News Summary.]

5. PRC Domestic Politics

Reuters (“JIANG SNUB HINTS AT CHINA POWER STRUGGLE,” Bejing, 10/30/02) reported that when PRC President Jiang Zemin left Beijing for the United States last week, there was one glaring omission in the lineup of leaders who saw him off at the Great Hall of the People. Li Ruihuan, number four in the Communist Party, was not only absent on that occasion — he also missed the welcoming ceremony when Jiang returned on Tuesday. Worse still, his only public commitment was a painting exhibition. Li’s absence has raised eyebrows and fuels speculation in political and diplomatic circles over a power struggle between him and Jiang. PRC sources say Jiang tried to force Li, a rival and relative liberal two years away from the unofficial retirement age of 70, to go too. Until recently, word was that Li had resisted Jiang’s efforts and was a favorite to take over as head of the National People’s Congress, next year. But last week, rumors swirled that he would retire from the seven-man Politburo Standing Committee. His absence from the ceremonies could be read either way, analysts said. “Some would say he’s comfortable enough with his own power base not to have to pay tribute,” said one Western diplomat. “But Li has no faction as such and can’t count on allies for support.”

6. DPRK-Canada Relations

Korean Central News Agency (“CANADIAN DELEGATION ARRIVES PYONGYANG,” 10/29/02) reported that the Canadian group for probing the truth behind the GIs’ atrocities led by Stephen Endicott, honorary professor at York University in Canada, arrived here today.

7. Cross-Straits Relations

The Associated Press (“CHINA SAYS TAIWAN USED TO LAUNCH NEW ATTACK ON TELEVISION SATELLITE,” Beijing, 10/30/02) reported that a pirate broadcaster based in Taiwan tried to break into a PRC satellite signal last week to show Falun Gong material, a government spokesman and a state television employee said Wednesday. The PRC demanded that Taiwan track down the broadcaster and hand out “severe punishment.” It was the second time in six weeks that PRC authorities have claimed that Falun Gong protesters using Taiwan as a base tried to break into signals on Sinosat. The satellite carries state-run China Central Television and other channels. The latest attempt began October 24 and continued off and on until Tuesday, said Li Weiyi, a spokesman for the PRC Cabinet’s Taiwan Affairs Office. He said PRC technicians tracked the broadcast to Taipei. “We strongly demand the Taiwan administration immediately find the illegal signal source and give severe punishment,” Li said at a news conference. Taiwanese officials did not immediately comment on Li’s accusation.

Reuters (“CHINA SAYS AIR LINKS WITH TAIWAN CAN RESUME WITHOUT AFFECTING POLITICAL TALKS,” Beijing, 10/30/02) reported that commercial flights between the PRC and Taiwan can begin without affecting talks on their political relationship, so long as the flights aren’t described as “between country and country,” the PRC’s office that handles Taiwan issues said Wednesday. Taiwan’s premier said Tuesday that the island is considering allowing charter flights to the PRC for the Lunar New Year holiday in February. They would be the first direct commercial flights since the two sides split 50 years ago. Limited direct shipping ties have resumed and the two sides are discussing resuming direct air and mail services – connections known as the “three links.” Li Weiyi, the spokesman for the PRC cabinet’s Taiwan Affairs Office, did not comment directly on the Taiwanese proposal for direct flights.

II. Republic of Korea

1. DPRK-Japan Normalization Talk

Joongang Ilbo (Ser Myo-ja, “ROUGH START FOR NORTH’S JAPAN TALKS,” Seoul, 10/30/02) reported that DPRK rejected Japan’s demand that it give up its nuclear development program, as negotiations resumed to normalize the two countries’ diplomatic relations. The two-day talks, the first in two years, got off to a rough start in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Tuesday. The Japanese delegation called the issues preconditions for restoring bilateral ties. It urged DPRK to allow the five surviving Japanese abductees, currently on a temporary homecoming after a quarter-century in the DPRK, to stay permanently in Japan. Suzuki expressed serious concerns over DPRK’s secret nuclear program. Japanese delegates sought a DPRK pledge to dismantle the nuclear development, a Japanese official stated. Jong Thae-hwa, DPRK’s roving ambassador and chief of DPRK’s delegation, replied that DPRK and Japan differ on many issues. DPRK reportedly focused on economic assistance.

2. US Response to DPRK

Joongang Ilbo (Ser Myo-ja, “US STUDY COUNSELS BALANCING NORTH, IRAQ,” Seoul, 10/30/02) reported that US government should balance its response to DPRK with its policy toward Iraq, according to a report released by a US Congressional research arm on Monday. The Congressional Research Service updated its report on DPRK’s nuclear weapons program on October 21, after the Bush administration’s disclosure on October 16 that DPRK had admitted to having a secret nuclear program. The report, written by researcher Larry Niksch, suggested that US decide whether to negotiate with DPRK, “seeking a new agreement dealing with the secret program,” or to handle the issue under the 1992 bilateral agreement between DPRK and the International Atomic Energy Agency. The Bush administration was also advised to decide whether to stick with the 1994 accord, which the DPRK and US officials called “nullified” after the revelation, or suspend or terminate it. In a press briefing in Washington, US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said DPRK will not be able to break out of its self-imposed isolation unless it dismantles its secret nuclear program.

3. DPRK’s Urge of Joint Defense

Chosun Ilbo (Kim In-ku, “NK URGES JOINT PENINSULA DEFENSE,” Seoul, 10/30/02) reported that in a statement DPRK Central Radio, Tuesday, the Fatherland Peaceful Unification Committee said both ROK and DPRK had benefited from DPRK’s emphasis on military development. It continued that if DPRK had not concentrated on “military first policies,” there would have been numerous wars and the ROK people would not have survived. The FPUC said thanks to DPRK’s strong self-defensive power, both Koreas were able to exist peacefully in their protective zones. It urged ROK to join in protection of the independence of the peninsula, which it said was seriously threatened by US. The statement said the object of the “military first policies” was not ROK and this would remain the case in the future. The Workers’ Party organ the Rodong Shinmun reported the nuclear issues raised by US were directed against both DPRK and ROK, and collision initiated by the US would inflict damage on all Korean nationals. It added that in light of this a non-aggression treaty was the most sensible option.

4. ROK President’s Sunshine Ongoing

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, “KIM URGES US TO CONTINUE BUILDING REACTORS IN NK,” Seattle, 10/30/02) reported that president Kim Dae-jung urged US on Monday not to stop construction of light-water reactors in DPRK in retaliation for its nuclear weapons development program. He also made clear his opposition to the US imposing economic sanctions against the communist country, saying such punitive measures will lead to war on the Korean Peninsula. Kim spoke at a meeting with about 260 ethnic Koreans here after arriving in this US city from Mexico. He said that like a military option, punitive actions against DPRK, including a halt to provide light-water reactors or interim heavy oil, is “dangerous.” “Economic sanctions, if imposed, will lead DPRK to be eager to develop nuclear bombs, creating a nuclear-war crisis,” Kim told the participants. But some hard-liners in the administration have said the next step US will take is to mobilize as much international pressure as possible on DPRK, forcing it to discard its program.

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Department of Political Science, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

International Peace Research Institute (PRIME),
Meiji Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan

Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Brandon Yu: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Young-soo: yskim328@hotmail.com
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hibiki Yamaguchi: hibikiy84@hotmail.com
Tokyo, Japan

Saiko Iwata: saiko@akira.ne.jp
Tokyo, Japan

Hiroya Takagi: hiroya_takagi@hotmail.com
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin: icipu@online.ru
Moscow, Russian Federation

Wu Chunsi: cswu@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen: dlshen@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

John McKay: John.McKay@adm.monash.edu.au
Clayton, Australia

 


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