NAPSNet Daily Report 6 April, 2009
Contents in this Issue:
- I. Napsnet
- 1. DPRK Missile Program
- 2. UN on DPRK Missile Program
- 3. Japan on DPRK Missile Program
- 4. ROK on DPRK Missile Program
- 5. DPRK Missile Program Costs
- 6. DPRK Leadership
- 7. Sanctions on DPRK
- 8. DPRK Detention of Journalists
- 9. Inter-Korean Relations
- 10. ROK Participation in PSI
- 11. ROK Rocket Program
- 12. ROK Anti-Piracy Dispatch
- 13. ROK Energy
- 14. ROK Climate Change
- 15. ROK Immigration Policy
- 16. US Nuclear Policy
- 17. Japan on US Nuclear Policy
- 18. Japan SDF Anti-Piracy Operations
- 19. PRC Tibet Issue
- 20. Sino-Russian Military Relations
- 21. Sino-Russian Relations
- 22. PRC Environment
- 23. PRC Economy
- II. PRC Report
1. DPRK Missile Program
Associated Press (Paul Alexander and John Heilprin, “NKOREA ROCKET FIZZLES, US SAYS”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that U.S. and ROK officials claim the entire DPRK rocket, including whatever payload it carried, ended up in the ocean after Sunday’s launch. The Chosun Ilbo reported Monday that ROK and U.S. intelligence authorities confirmed that the rocket’s second stage landed in waters about 1,984 miles (3,200 kilometers) from the launch site, about double the range compared to the 1998 launch. Shin Son Ho, DPRK ambassador to the U.N., told reporters in New York, “We are happy. Very, very successful. You should congratulate” us.
Associated Press (“NORTH KOREA SATELLITE: ORBIT OR OCEAN?”, Seoul, 2009/04/05) reported that the DPRK claims the rocket it sent up Sunday put an experimental communication satellite into space. “The satellite is transmitting the melodies of the immortal revolutionary paeans ‘Song of Gen. Kim Il Sung’ and ‘Song of Gen. Kim Jong Il ‘ as well as measurement data back to Earth,” KCNA said. “The carrier rocket and the satellite developed by the indigenous wisdom and technology are the shining results gained in the efforts to develop the nation’s space science and technology on a higher level,” it said. North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command officials issued a statement saying, “Stage one of the missile fell into the Sea of Japan. The remaining stages along with the payload itself landed in the Pacific Ocean . No object entered orbit and no debris fell on Japan .”
New York Times (William J. Broad, “NORTH KOREAN MISSILE LAUNCH WAS A FAILURE, EXPERTS SAY”, 2009/04/05) reported that analysts said the failure to launch a satellite might reveal a significant quality control problem in the DPRK. “It’s a setback,” Jonathan McDowell, a Harvard astronomer who tracks satellites and rocket launchings, said. He added that the DPRK must now find and fix the problem. “The missile doesn’t represent any kind of near-term threat.” “It’s not unusual to have a series of failures at the beginning of a missile program,” Jeffrey G. Lewis, an arms control specialist at the New America Foundation, said. “But they don’t test enough to develop confidence that they’re getting over the problems.”
Hankyoreh (“N. KOREA HINTS AT POSSIBLE MILITARY USES FOR ROCKET TECHNOLOGY”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the Chosun Shinbo, a newspaper published by the General Association of North Korean Residents in Japan, quickly deleted a story mistakenly published on the Internet believing that the rocket had been launched on April 4. The article said that if the international community takes a confrontational stance, it could “force Pyongyang to transfer its multistage rocket technologies for military purposes.” It also said, “State-of-the art technologies can be secured through the development of rockets and various satellites. Transferring these technologies to the private sector, putting them to commercial use or selling them overseas can bring about economic benefits.”
2. UN on DPRK Missile Program
Agence France-Presse (Gerard Aziakou, “UN UNABLE TO AGREE RESPONSE TO UN ROCKET”, United Nations, 2009/04/06) reported that the UN Security Council adjourned after three hours of closed-door talks on the DPRK’s long-range rocket launch with no agreement on how to respond. “Members of the Security Council agreed to continue consultations on an appropriate action by the council in accordance with its responsibilities given the urgency of the matter,” Mexico’s UN Ambassador Claude Heller, the council chair this month, said. US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice told reporters that additional consultations would continue both here and in capitals around the world later Sunday and in the coming days, to try to agree “a clear and strong response from the council.” “The fact of the launch was in itself a clear violation of (1718). The use of ballistic missile technology is a clear violation of the resolution which prohibits missile-related activities,” Rice noted. “We are now in a very sensitive moment. All countries concerned should show restraint and refrain from taking action that might lead to increased tension,” PRC’s UN Ambassador Zhang Yesui said. “Our position is that the council’s reaction has be cautious and proportionate,” he added, vowing that his country would participate in the discussions in a “constructive and responsible manner.”
Kyodo (Janice Tang, “JAPAN TO KEEP WORKING TO BRIDGE GAP WITH CHINA, RUSSIA AT UNSC: NAKASONE”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that Japanese Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone said Monday that Japan has yet to bridge differences with the PRC and Russia on a U.N. Security Council response to DPRK’s rocket launch. ”The various countries share the common concern that North Korea’s action has a grave impact on the region’s stability and security. Meanwhile, there is a certain degree of difference on how the U.N. Security Council should respond to that.” Nakasone said Japan emphasized that the launch was a clear violation of UNSC resolutions and ”won understanding to a certain extent from the other members.” ”China and Russia share the concern that this is a threat to the region, but they appear reserved and cautious as of now,” he said.
3. Japan on DPRK Missile Program
Asahi Shimbun (“NORTH KOREAN LAUNCH DRAWS JAPAN’S ANGER”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso said the launch clearly violated United Nations Security Council resolutions on the DPRK’s development of ballistic missiles. “The launch by North Korea is an extremely provocative act and Japan absolutely cannot ignore it,” Aso said. “We will cooperate with the international community in responding to this matter.” Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said Japan would extend its economic sanctions against the DPRK, including a ban on DPRK ships calling at Japanese ports, for a year until April 2010.
Asahi Shimbun (“TOKYO FAILS MISERABLY IN ITS 1ST TEST OF A MAJOR CRISIS”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that municipalities across Japan were erroneously informed Saturday that the DPRK had gone ahead with its rocket launch. “This showed the world how haphazardly the transmission of information is conducted within the Japanese government,” said Makoto Asari, president of the consulting firm Crisis Intelligence. “Because the false report was also reported by media in South Korea and other nations, Japan could end up losing trust because other nations will think twice about partnering with a nation that cannot handle crisis situations like Japan.” Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada apologized Saturday evening, indicating that disciplinary action would be taken after the central government completed its review of what went wrong.
Yomiuri Shimbun (“SURVEY: PUBLIC WANTS TOUGHER DPRK SANCTIONS”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that seventy-eight percent of Japanese want the government to strengthen sanctions against the DPRK, according to a nationwide Yomiuri Shimbun survey. Only 16 percent agreed that tougher sanctions were “unnecessary.” When asked if they felt anxious about the DPRK’s continuing development of ballistic missiles, 88 percent of respondents replied “Yes,” with only 11 percent saying “No.”
4. ROK on DPRK Missile Program
Dong-A Ilbo (“MAJOR POWERS BLAST N.KOREA’S ROCKET LAUNCH”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that Brigadier General Kim Jong-bae, chief operation officer of the ROK Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that the DPRK’s long-range missile will likely affect the wartime deployment of U.S. reinforcement troops and ROK-U.S. operational capabilities. The U.S. Forces Korea will likely significantly reinforce its missile capabilities by, for instance, deploying additional Patriot missile interceptors, he said.
Dong-A Ilbo (“NK LAUNCH DRAWS STRONG RESPONSE FOR S.KOREA”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that ROK presidential spokesman Lee Dong-kwan expressed “disappointment and regret” over Pyongyang’s “reckless act” for posing a serious threat to security on the Korean Peninsula and in the world. He warned that Seoul will respond to the provocation “sternly and resolutely.” Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan also said in an official statement that Seoul will strengthen its preparedness to cope with further provocations by Pyongyang.
Korea Times (“S. KOREAN WARSHIP KEEPING TABS ON N. KOREA”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that Kim Tae-young, chairman of the ROK Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Monday the ROK is keeping an advanced warship deployed in the East Sea to perform surveillance missions along with U.S. and Japanese destroyers even though the DPRK already fired its rocket. “There have been no changes with the destroyer’s mission since the rocket launch,” Kim said.
5. DPRK Missile Program Costs
Chosun Ilbo (“ROCKET FLOP COST N.KOREA UP TO $500 MILLION”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the DPRK is estimated to have spent US$300 million on its missile launch, a Cheong Wa Dae official said Sunday. “Last summer, $300 million would have been enough to buy 1 million tons of rice since rice prices didn’t rise,” the official said. “It’s more than enough to resolve the food shortage the North suffers every year.” Nam Sung-wook, the director of the Institute for National Security Strategy, estimates the cost at nearer $500 million, based on reported remarks by DPRK leader Kim Jong-il that the launch in 1998 cost between $200 million and $300 million. One government official here said the DPRK is deliberately exaggerating the cost so it can negotiate for more compensation in return for abandoning the program.
6. DPRK Leadership
Associated Press (“NKOREA SAYS KIM JONG-IL WATCHED SATELLITE LAUNCH”, Seoul, 2009/04/05) reported that the Korean Central News Agency said Sunday that leader Kim Jong-il visited the General Satellite Control and Command Center and observed the liftoff of the country’s satellite. The KCNA report said Kim expressed “great satisfaction” that the country’s scientists and technicians “successfully launched the satellite with their own wisdom and technology.”
7. Sanctions on DPRK
Korea Times (Kim Se-jeong, “EU SEIZES NK DEPOSITS”, 2009/04/05) reported that the European Union has confiscated millions of dollars deposited by the DPRK to buy two Italian luxury yachts. The Japanese Jiji Press reported over the weekend that European authorities confiscated the money due to the uncertain source of the capital and the DPRK’s violation of U.N. Sanction 1718.
8. DPRK Detention of Journalists
Associated Press (“US WANTS JAILED JOURNALISTS IN NKOREA FREED SOON”, Washington, 2009/04/05) reported that U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said Sunday that the Obama administration hopes two American journalists detained in the DPRK will be released swiftly and safely. Rice said the United States is continuing to work with Swedish diplomats to win freedom for Euna Lee and Laura Ling. She said the two are safe, “to the best of our knowledge.”
9. Inter-Korean Relations
Arirang News (“N.KOREA REJECTS REQUEST TO MEET DETAINED WORKER”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the DPRK rejected a request by Hyundai Asan chief Cho Kun-shik to meet with the Kaesong employee who has been detained since last Monday. Cho, who travelled to the Kaesong Industrial Complex Friday, was reportedly told by DPRK authorities that a meeting was impossible because the investigation has not yet concluded. DPRK officials said that the safety of the ROK worker would be guaranteed.
Joongang Ilbo (“KAESONG, BORDER TO NORTH OPEN DESPITE LAUNCH”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the passage to and from Kaesong Industrial Complex remained open Sunday afternoon despite the DPRK’s rocket launch. The Unification Ministry ordered firms operating in the complex and Mount Kumgang to minimize workforce. “Our basic principle is to focus on protecting South Koreans residing in North Korea,” said Lee Jong-joo, deputy spokeswoman of the Unification Ministry. She said 528 ROK workers from Kaesong and 84 from other regions returned to the ROK on Saturday. The remaining ROK population in the DPRK is one in Pyongyang and 540 in Kaesong.
Korea Herald (Bae Hyun-jung, “ACTIVISTS SEND LEAFLETS TO N.K.”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that on Sunday the Fighters for Free North Korea, together with DPRK defectors’ group and the abductees’ family union, flew propaganda balloons from Imjingak. On each balloon were attached 10,000 leaflets containing DPRK banknotes and accusations against the Kim Jong-il regime. “Sending out peaceful leaflets is the only thing we can do to help the people in the North face the truth,” said Park Sang-hak, a DPRK defector and leader of the FFNK. “We will continue to send our messages to the North on a regular basis.”
10. ROK Participation in PSI
Chosun Ilbo (“SEOUL HOLDS THREAT TO JOIN WMD INTERCEPT GROUP”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that an official statement by ROK Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan on Sunday made no mention of the Proliferation Security Initiative. A government official said that was because Seoul was worried about “unnecessarily heightening tensions” given that the DPRK “is extremely sensitive about the PSI.” A senior Cheong Wa Dae official said, “The government has already made clear that the policy is to join the PSI. The process is underway and we’re moving in that direction. What matters now is when to join. We’re going to join the PSI not because North Korea has launched a rocket but based on our own schedule, though the plan is already sitting on the conveyor belt.” Another official said, “We’ll just wait and see for a few more days what further actions the North takes and what the UN Security Council will discuss.” But he claimed that would not “change our basic position.”
Korea Herald (Hwang Jang-jin, “LEE AFFIRMS WILLINGNESS TO JOIN PSI”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that ROK President Lee Myung-bak on Monday reaffirmed Seoul’s willingness to fully join the Proliferation Security Initiative. Prime Minister Han Seung-soo and Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan also told the National Assembly that the government is adjusting its timetable for entry.
11. ROK Rocket Program
Korea Herald (Kim So-hyun, “SEOUL LAGS N.K. IN ROCKET TECHNOLOGY”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that experts say the ROK lags behind the DPRK in rocket technology as it has yet to develop the engine on its own, but is way ahead in satellite development. Korea Space Launch Vehicle-1, which is slated to carry an experimental satellite into orbit in late July, is expected to have a much shorter range of 2,750 kilometers. The KSLV-1 rocket is being jointly developed by Russia’s Khrunichev State Space Science and Production Center and the Korea Aerospace Research Institute. The ROK has so far developed and put six satellites into orbit mostly for scientific research purposes, whereas little has been confirmed about the DPRK’s satellite development.
12. ROK Anti-Piracy Dispatch
Arirang News (“CHUNGHAE NAVAL CONTINGENT ARRIVES IN MIDDLE EAST”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that a small fleet of ROK naval vessels arrived in Bahrain on Friday to protect ROK ships off the coast of Somalia. The Chunghae Division, composed of a naval destroyer, a high-speed frigate, and around 300 sailors, will begin operations in the coming days.
13. ROK Energy
Chosun Ilbo (“W170 BILLION FOR NEW ENERGY TECHNOLOGIES PLEDGED”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the ROK is to spend W170 billion on developing new energy technologies, including retrieving rare metals from used batteries and turning carbon dioxide from steel mills into electricity. The Ministry of Knowledge Economy on Sunday said W96.4 billion will be spent on new renewable energy technologies; W36.8 billion on original technologies for the electricity industry; W24.4 billion on energy resources technologies; and W7.7 billion on nuclear power generation and radioactive waste management technologies.
14. ROK Climate Change
Hankyoreh (“TRANSPORTATON-RELATED GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS DOUBLE THE 1990 FIGURES”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (MLTM) released its “Study of 2007 Greenhouse Gas Emissions for the Transportation Sector by Region and Means of Transportation” showing the ROK’s transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions exceeded 100 million tons in 2007. This is an increase of 2.4 times the 42.92 million tons emitted in 1990. Greenhouse gas emissions increased by 7.5 percent per year on average between 1990 and 2000, and since then have shown an annual rate of increase of between 2 and 3 percent.
15. ROK Immigration Policy
Arirang News (“FINGERPRINTING FOR FOREIGN VISITORS TO TAKE EFFECT IN 2010”, Seoul, 2009/04/06) reported that foreign visitors to the ROK will be required to undergo fingerprinting and be photographed before entering the country. Officials at the Justice Ministry say the measure is in line with the government’s efforts to strengthen immigration control and will likely take effect from July 2010.
16. US Nuclear Policy
New York Times (Helene Cooper and David E. Sanger, “OBAMA SEIZES ON MISSILE LAUNCH IN SEEKING NUCLEAR CUTS”, Prague, 2009/04/05) reported that US President Barack Obama on Sunday laid out a new approach to American nuclear disarmament policy. “In a strange turn of history, the threat of global nuclear war has gone down, but the risk of a nuclear attack has gone up,” Mr. Obama said. “Black market trade in nuclear secrets and nuclear materials abound. The technology to build a bomb has spread.” He said that his administration would “reduce the role of nuclear weapons” in its national security strategy, and would urge other countries to do the same. He said the US would try to reach an agreement by the end of the year with Russia on reducing warheads and stockpiles. He also promised to aggressively pursue American ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
17. Japan on US Nuclear Policy
Kyodo (“JAPAN EXPRESSES SUPPORT FOR OBAMA’S ‘NUCLEAR-FREE WORLD'”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that the Japanese government expressed strong support Monday for U.S. President Barack Obama’s vision for a world without nuclear weapons. ”The Japanese government has strongly sought nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation, which was expressed in the speech by President Obama in Prague,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said. ”The Japanese government strongly hopes that President Obama’s call will foster momentum for nuclear disarmament on a global level that includes the participation of other nuclear-weapon states,” he said.
18. Japan SDF Anti-Piracy Operations
Asahi Shimbun (“MSDF DESTROYER SENDS PIRATES PACKING”, Tokyo, 2009/04/06) reported that a Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer scared off a flotilla of suspicious boats closing in on a Singaporean tanker off Somalia on Friday local time, Defense Ministry officials said. It was the first time that one of the two MSDF destroyers dispatched to the region in March has encountered suspected pirates.
19. PRC Tibet Issue
Associated Press (“REPORT: TIBET REOPENED TO FOREIGN TOURISTS”, Beijing, 2009/04/04) reported that the PRC has reopened Tibet to foreign tourists, state media said Sunday. A group of 11 German travelers arrived in the regional capital of Lhasa late Saturday, the Xinhua News Agency said. The group was on a six-day tour, which would take them to a number of “key scenic spots” before leaving for Nepal , Xinhua said.
20. Sino-Russian Military Relations
Vladivostock Times (“PN WARSHIPS DETACHMENT GOING TO CHINA”, Vladivostock, 2009/04/05) reported that the Frigate “Admiral Vinogradov,” and “Boris Butoma,” a tanker of the RF Pacific Navy are going to the port Tianjin, PRC on an official visit on April 6-10, according to the information and public relations service of the RF Pacific Navy.
21. Sino-Russian Relations
Vladivostock Times (“RAILWAY BRIDGE BETWEEN RUSSIA AND CHINA TO BUILT [sic] ACROSS AMUR RIVER”, Vladivostock, 2009/04/03) reported that a railway bridge between Russia and the PRC will be built across the river Amur. The bridge will be about 2100 meters at length. According to the treaty Russian and PRC sides will share the total volume of all costs.
22. PRC Environment
Associated Press (Tini Tran, “SLOWDOWN’S GIFT TO BEIJING: CLEANER AIR”, Beijing, 2009/04/04) reported that the global economic slowdown is helping to accomplish what some in the PRC’s leadership have striven to do for years: rein in the insatiable demand for coal-powered energy. In the second half of last year, a period that included the Olympics in August, Beijing recorded its lowest air pollution readings since 2000, according to data from the Ministry of Environmental Protection. The average monthly air pollution was 74, about 25 percent lower than the previous seven years.
23. PRC Economy
Reuters (Paul Eckert, “RICH CHINA, POOR CHINA CONUNDRUM AS CLOUT GROWS”, Washington, 2009/04/06) reported that the PRC holds $2 trillion in foreign reserves, including about $1 trillion in U.S. debt, while also having tens of millions of rural poor and falling in the same World Bank per capita income rankings as Cameroon and Guatemala . “I can’t think of any other instances where an economy at this relative level of development compared to the other leading countries in the world had such a large role to play in terms of world trade, world finance and overall contribution to the world economy,” said Eswar Prasad of Cornell University. “It’s a fair thing for China to say ‘We’re not rich yet,’ and we have to deal with that,” said trade expert Derek Scissors of the Heritage Foundation .
II. PRC Report
24. PRC Civil Society
China News Net (Liu Wanqiang, “GUANGXI OVERSEAS CHINESE LOVE FOUNDATION TO BE ESTABLISHED”, 2009/04/03) reported that Guangxi Overseas Chinese Love Foundation is to be established in Guangxi. The Foundation will raise fund from returned overseas Chinese in Guangxi, overseas Chinese and compatriots in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, to help those returned overseas Chinese who have living difficulties, and other cultural, educational, health, and other public welfare cause.
25. PRC Civil Society and the Environment
Public Welfare Times (Zhang Jun, “MODERN ENTERPRISE MANAGEMENT USED IN ALXA SEE ECOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION”, 2009/04/03) reported that Alxa SEE Ecological Association (SEE) is one of the most characteristic environmental protection NGO in China. Its sponsors and members are a group of the most active entrepreneur giants of China, and it also establishes modern enterprises management system and democracy in it. They try to harmonize the logic of entrepreneurs with the logic of experts, and use the “grassroots” method to carry out projects. Their idea of “driving environmental protection by community development” has seen initial success and will been hold on.