NAPSNet Daily Report
wednesday, april , 2000

I. United States

II. People's Republic of China

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I. United States

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1. Japan-DPRK Talks

Reuters (Teruaki Ueno, "HISTORY HAUNTS HEATED JAPANESE-NORTH KOREAN TALKS," Pyongyang, 04/05/00) and the Associated Press (Joji Sakurai, "JAPAN, N. KOREA BICKER OVER PAST," Pyongyang, 04/05/00) reported that Jong Thae-kwa, the DPRK's top negotiator in normalization talks with Japan, warned Wednesday that the negotiations would fall apart unless Japan agrees to discuss compensation and an apology for its colonial rule of Korea. Jong stated, "If the fundamental question of settling the past is not addressed, the sense of having these talks will disappear. The problems of the past must be given priority." He added that former Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama's 1995 apology for Japanese wartime aggression was insufficient because it was addressed to all of Japan's colonial victims, but "We were the country that suffered the most excessively from Japanese aggression." He also demanded that Japan improve the legal status of Koreans living in Japan and pay for its looting and destruction of cultural treasures during the colonial era. Japan's chief negotiator, Kojiro Takano, stated "We recognize the importance of the issue of the past," but added, "Apart from the issue of the past, other pending issues must not be shelved." Following the disagreement, a Japanese official said that the talks might not continue as planned, but the DPRK said that the next session would take place Friday as scheduled.

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2. ROK-DPRK Talks

Reuters ("SEOUL OFFICIALS REPORT STEPS TOWARD SUMMIT," Seoul, 04/05/00) reported that ROK officials said on Tuesday that the ROK and the DPRK are nearing an agreement on bilateral talks. An official in ROK President Kim Dae-jung's foreign affairs secretariat stated, "There will be some progress after the election. But we cannot confirm or deny talks between North and South Korea." Suh Young-soon, chairman of the ruling Millennium Democratic Party, said over the weekend that he had heard "from a most authoritative source" that there had been considerable progress made through ROK-DPRK contacts in Beijing and other channels on holding a summit. He added that the summit meeting would discuss "how to formulate greater economic cooperation." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

The Washington Times carried an analytical article (Edward Neilan, "CLIMATE DEEMED RIPE FOR A KOREAN SUMMIT," Tokyo, 04/05/00) which said that any optimism over recent developments on the Korean Peninsula must be carefully hedged with a recognition of the continued military standoff. The article quoted an anonymous Western diplomat as saying, "The stage seems set at long last for a positive new era in Northeast Asia. The North could revert to its old pattern of making promises and then breaking them, but the elements are in place for Pyongyang to gain some ground other than on the basis of employing tension." Takeshi Kondo, chairman of the Foreign Relations and National Security Issues Committee of the Japan Association of Corporate Executives, stated, "There is room for optimism on the Korean Peninsula for the first time in a while, with certain question marks. The agreements and other moves among North and South Korea, the United States, Japan and China appear to have put a cap on North Korea's missile and nuclear development." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

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3. DPRK Budget

The Associated Press (Sang-Hun Choe, "NORTH KOREA UNVEILS BUDGET PLANS," Seoul, 04/04/00) reported that the DPRK Supreme People's Assembly on Tuesday opened discussion on a new budget. DPRK Finance Minister Rim Kyong-suk said in her budget report that the DPRK's economy has begun to recover, with revenue growing for a second consecutive year in 1999. The total proposed budget was US$9.4 billion, projecting an increase of revenues by 3.1 percent from 1999. It includes increases in spending on the power and coal industries by 15.4 percent and 12.3 percent, respectively. Military spending would be frozen at last year's level of US$1.36 billion, 14.5 percent of the total budget. The budget also includes increased spending on farm industries by 5 percent and 4 percent more on improving light industry. It also increases spending on scientific and technological research by 5.4 percent.

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4. DPRK-PRC Air Routes

The Associated Press ("NORTH KOREA OPENS NEW AIR SERVICE TO CHINA'S SHENYANG," Seoul, 04/05/00) reported that the DPRK's official Korean Central News Agency said that the DPRK started a new passenger flight service on Wednesday to Shenyang in the northeastern PRC province of Liaoning. It said that a plane will leave Pyongyang every Wednesday for a round trip to Shenyang. The DPRK also runs air routes linking Pyongyang to Beijing, Moscow, Bangkok, Berlin and Hong Kong.

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5. US Spying in Korean War

The Associated Press (Robert Burns, "CIA DISCLOSES KOREAN SPY RECORDS," Washington, 04/04/00) reported that declassified US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) records showed that nearly all Korean agents sent behind enemy lines during the Korean War were killed or doubled to spy for the DPRK. The records indicated that the CIA sent thousands of agents into the DPRK on missions ranging from intelligence collection to establishing "escape and evasion" (E&E) networks to rescue downed US pilots. A July 1973 CIA historical review stated, "E&E operations as conducted by CIA in Korea were not only ineffective but probably morally reprehensible in that the number of lives lost and the amount of time and treasure expended was enormously disproportionate to attainments therefrom." It added, "no airman or POW was known to have been assisted by CIA-sponsored clandestine mechanisms," and that little was gained from the "numerous Koreans sacrificed in what proved to be a basically futile attempt." The report also mentions an individual Korean agent who engaged in the DPRK drug trade. It stated, "His trading with the enemy was an immense financial benefit to them since his American intelligence connections served to facilitate widespread traffic in narcotics amounting in value probably to many millions of dollars." The records show that the espionage efforts scored some notable successes early in the war, but most efforts failed once peace talks began in the summer of 1951. The records were declassified at the request of author Michael E. Haas, whose book, "In the Devil's Shadow," was published in March by the Naval Institute Press.

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6. ROK Election

Reuters (Yoo Choon-sik, "S.KOREA'S KIM MAY NOT WIN MAJORITY, MAY NOT MATTER," Seoul, 04/03/00) reported that ROK analysts said on Monday that President Kim Dae-jung's ruling Millennium Democratic Party (MDP) will have difficulty gaining a majority in next week's National Assembly election. According to opinion polls, the MDP and the opposition Grand National Party (GNP) should win most of their constituencies but neither is likely to gain a majority.

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7. Japanese Prime Minister

Reuters (Yoko Nishikawa, "JAPAN'S NEW PM PLEDGES TO MAINTAIN REFORMS," Tokyo, 04/05/00), The Washington Post (Doug Struck, "JAPANESE PARLIAMENT ELECTS MORI PRIME MINISTER," Tokyo, 04/05/00, A12), The New York Times (Howard W. French, "GOVERNING PARTY PICKS NO. 2 OFFICIAL TO TAKE OVER AS JAPAN PREMIER," Tokyo, 04/05/00) and the Los Angeles Times (Sonni Efron, "A RULING PARTY VETERAN BECOMES JAPAN'S PREMIER," Tokyo, 04/05/00) reported that Yoshiro Mori was elected as Japan's new prime minister on Wednesday. Mori had been secretary general of the ruling Liberal Democrats, the second-ranking official in the party. Mori said he had no plans to call an election soon. Mori reappointed the same cabinet as his predecessor, Keizo Obuchi, who remained in a coma and on life support. Because Obuchi is unable to step down formally, constitutional procedure required that the government be dissolved before a new one could be formed, leading Obuchi's entire cabinet to resign on Tuesday night. Mikio Aoki, acting prime minister following Obuchi's stroke, denied news reports that Obuchi had been declared brain dead. [Ed. note: This article was one of the top stories in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

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8. US-Japan Military Alliance

The Los Angeles Times carried an opinion article by John R. Bolton, Senior Vice President of the American Enterprise Institute ("DEALING WITH JAPAN AS A 'NORMAL' NATION," 04/05/00) which said that the continuance of constitutional limits on the use of military force imposed on Japan after World War II are "particularly vexing" given Japan's economic strengths and successful transition to democracy. It added, "Much of the concern motivating Japanese politicians in particular [to question the limits] is the realization that Chinese economic reforms and the growing prospects of Korean reunification, combined with Japan's lengthy inability to recover fully from the collapse of the 'bubble economy,' mean that Japan's pre-eminence in Asia is no longer unquestioned. These concerns explain in part Japan's willingness to enhance defense cooperation with the U.S. and its consideration of more independent military capabilities." The author stated, "Japanese fears of shifting American allegiances and the consequent Japanese stirrings have aroused concerns elsewhere in Asia about Japan's future regional role. From the U.S. perspective, these factors all counsel for remaining intensely involved in Asia, including strengthening existing defense commitments and alliances."

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9. US Arms Sales to Taiwan

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, "TAIWAN'S NEW CHIEF REQUESTING SAME ARMS," 04/05/00, 8) reported that Parris Chang, a Taiwanese legislator and member of the soon-to-be ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), said that Taiwan President-elect Chen Shui-bian supports the same arms purchases as his predecessor, Lee Teng-hui. Chang stated, "Chen Shui-bian supports the arms sales request because we need continuity and we need to have a bipartisan approach to defense." He added, "If the Taiwan arms sales request is rejected, it will have a demoralizing effect because it will send the signal that [the] United States doesn't support Taiwan's democracy. That would be very unfortunate and would send the wrong signal." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

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10. PRC-US Spying Row

The Associated Press ("REPORT: CHINA OVERTURNS SENTENCE FOR STANFORD RESEARCHER," Beijing, 04/03/00), and the Washington Post (John Pomfret, "AFTER LOBBYING, CHINA OVERTURNS CONVICTION OF U.S.-BASED RESEARCHER," Beijing, 04/04/00, A30) reported that the PRC's High Court overturned the conviction of a Stanford University researcher Hua Di for allegedly leaking PRC state secrets. Hua had been sentenced to 15 years imprisonment. The High Court found that the evidence against Hua was unclear. The Hong Kong Center for Human Rights and Democratic Movement in China said that Hua's case will be returned to the Beijing Intermediate Court for retrial. While at Stanford, Hua helped produce works on the PRC's nuclear and other weapons programs, but his research relied largely on already public documents.

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11. US-PRC Trade Relations

Reuters (Adam Entous, "U.S. HOUSE SETS LATE MAY VOTE ON CHINA TRADE PACT," Washington, 04/05/00), the Washington Post (Matthew Vita and William Booth, "VOTE ON CHINA TRADE IS SIGNALED FOR MAY," 04/04/00, A04) and the Associated Press (Tom Raum, "HASTERT SETS VOTE ON CHINA TRADE," Washington, 04/05/00) reported that US House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert said on Wednesday that the House will vote during the week of May 22-26 on a new trade agreement with the PRC. The agreement calls for the PRC to open up a wide range of its markets in exchange for the granting of permanent normal trade relations.

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12. PRC Activities in Panama Canal

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, "CHINESE BUSINESSMAN EYED CANAL CONTROL, PENTAGON SAYS," 04/05/00) reported that a declassified report by the US Army intelligence report showed that PRC businessman Li Ka- shing was planning to take over operation of the Panama Canal before the pullout last year of the US. The report quotes a Defense Intelligence Agency information report as saying that "the owner of Hutchison Whampoa Lt. and Cheung Kong International Holdings Ltd. is planning to take control of Panama Canal operations when the US transfers it to Panama in December 99." The report added, "Li is directly connected to Beijing and is willing to use his business influence to further the aims of Chinese government." An unnamed Army analyst commented in the report, "Li's interest in the canal is not only strategic, but also a means for outside financial opportunities for the Chinese government." The report also stated, "China, the canal's third-largest user, consequently has a significant amount of influence. If China were to assume control of canal operations, it would have to abide by the neutrality requirements of the Torrijos-Carter treaties." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

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13. US-Russian Arms Control Talks

The Associated Press (Barry Schweid, "RUSSIA TO SEEK NUCLEAR WEAPONS CUTS," Washington, 04/04/00) reported that Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov will visit the US on April 26-27 to discuss reopening negotiations to reduce US and Russian long-range nuclear weapons. Ivanov will stop first in New York for a review April 24-25 of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

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14. Alleged Nuclear Smuggling

The New York Times (Tim Weiner, "UZBEKS SAID TO SEIZE PAKISTANI NUCLEAR CARGO," Washington, 04/05/00) reported that US State Department officials said Tuesday that border guards in the former Soviet republic of Uzbekistan seized a radioactive cargo on an Iranian truck bound for Pakistan last week. US officials said that the material is being tested by officials in neighboring Kazakhstan, where it originated, and that they hoped to know as early as Wednesday it could have been used to make a weapon. US officials said that to the knowledge of US intelligence services, no weapons-grade nuclear material has ever been smuggled successfully out of the former Soviet Union. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

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15. US Missile Defense

US Defense Department spokesman Admiral Craig Quigley ("DEFENSE DEPARTMENT REGULAR BRIEFING," 04/04/00) that the acquisition costs for US National Missile Defense from 1991 through 2026 are US$20.2 billion. Quigley stated, "The ... often used [US$]12.7 billion [figure] represents the total cost from 1999 to 2005." He added, "the 12.7 includes 2.3 billion increase ... [due to an] increase in the scope of the program from the 20 interceptors to 100, and significant upgrades to the X-band radar." Quigley said that the total life cycle cost of the program to 2026 is projected to be US$30.2 billion in 1999 dollars. He added that the Defense Department is "committed to giving enough technical information to the president for him to make an informed decision. Now when he makes it, what the decision is, is completely his call, of course."

Inside Missile Defense (Michael C. Sirak, "FAVORABLE WINDS, SEAS CALLED CRUCIAL TO NMD CONSTRUCTION PROCESS," 04/05/00, 1) reported that the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) said in a prepared statement that should US President Bill Clinton decide later this year to deploy a National Missile Defense (NMD) system, construction activities at the system's proposed X-band radar site on the island of Schemya, Alaska, must begin in early April 2001 to meet the 2005 deadline for initial operational capability. It added, however, that transferring of the materials and equipment to Schemya and crane work "are constrained by environmental factors" and will be subject to favorable weather conditions. It added, "Any delays resulting in either of these two activities missing their respective window could cause a delay in IOC." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Defense Department's Early Bird news service for April 5.]

II. People's Republic of China

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1. ROK-DPRK Relations

People's Daily (Gao Haorong, "KIM DAE-JONG: TO PUSH FORWARD SOUTH-NORTH SUMMIT," Seoul, 4/2/00, P2) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung said on March 31 that the ROK will make great efforts to push forward talks and a summit with DPRK authorities. According to the report, the ROK president said during an interview by East Asia Daily that at present the ROK and the DPRK are making informal contacts through channels of various kinds and that the contacts have reached a considerable level.

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2. DPRK-Japan Talks

China Daily ("NATIONS UPBEAT AS NORMALIZATION TALKS START," Pyongyang, 4/5/00, P11) reported that officials from the DPRK and Japan expressed confidence on April 4 that they will be able to bridge differences in their first talks in eight years on establishing diplomatic relations. Kojiro Takano, Japan's chief negotiator, and his DPRK counterpart, Jong Tae-kwa, exchanged remarks at a banquet held at the DPRK Foreign Ministry guest house in the countryside about 30 kilometers north of Pyongyang, the report said. "We must strive hard to build trust and work toward establishing diplomatic ties," said Jong. "Nothing is impossible," the report said.

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3. ROK-PRC Relations

People's Daily (Wang Linchang, "ROK PRESIDENT MEETS WITH CCP DELEGATION," Seoul, 4/4/00, P6) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung met with a Chinese Communist Party (CCP) delegation, led by Zeng Qinghong, on April 3. The two sides had a friendly talk, the report said. Kim said at the meeting that since the ROK and the PRC established diplomatic relations, they have made great progress in all aspects, and that the development prospects of the bilateral relations will be better in the future. Kim reiterated the ROK government's position on Taiwan issue. He said that Taiwan is a part of China and ROK insists on "one-China" principle and will not change its position on this regard. Kim also praised the PRC's important role in maintaining peace and stability on Korean Peninsula, the report said. Zeng said that the CCP and the PRC government attach great importance to the friendly cooperation with the ROK. He expressed that maintaining peace and stability on Korean Peninsula is a basic principle of the PRC in dealing with Korean affairs. The supports the ROK and DPRK efforts to improve their relations, Zeng said. He appreciated the reiteration of the one China policy by President Kim and his government and set forth the PRC's position on the Taiwan issue.

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4. PRC-US Relations

People's Daily (Zhang Jingyu, "PRESIDENT JIANG ON SINO-US RELATIONS AND THE TAIWAN ISSUE," Beijing, 03/31/00, P1) reported that PRC President Jiang Zemin met with US National Security Advisor Samuel Berger in Beijing on March 30 to address the PRC's positions on Sino-US relations and the Taiwan issue. "Currently the Sino- US relations meet both opportunities and challenges," Jiang said. He called on both the PRC and US governments and leaders to be far-sighted and be aware that there exists important common interest between the two countries. Jiang also noted that differences between the two countries, especially the Taiwan issue, should be handled properly on the basis of three Sino-US joint communiques, so as to safeguard the foundation of Sino-US relations. On the Taiwan issue, Jiang said that the "one China" principle is the basis and prerequisite for a peaceful solution of the Taiwan issue and that any form of "Taiwan independence" will not be tolerated. "We will not compromise or make any concessions on the fundamental issue concerning China's sovereignty and territorial integrity," Jiang said, stressing that issues concerning sovereignty cannot be negotiated. The Chinese government and people are determined not to allow Taiwan to be separated from the motherland, Jiang said. "We have the confidence and capabilities to realize the complete reunification of the motherland," Jiang said.

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5. PRC-Japanese Relations

China Daily ("JIANG, ZHU SEND GET-WELL NOTES," 4/4/00, P12) reported that PRC President Jiang Zemin and Premier Zhu Rongji on April 3 issued separate messages to Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi with good wishes and hopes for a quick recovery. "We are very concerned about the hospitalization of Premier Obuchi," a PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman said.

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6. Japanese Nuclear Industry

China Daily ("JAPAN'S NUCLEAR POWER EXPANSION DELAYS TARGET, Tokyo, 04/01/00, P8) reported that Japanese utilities are lagging behind a national target for new nuclear power plants, as public opposition and depressed power demand are forcing many utilities to delay or scrap reactor construction plans. Long-term investment plans announced by Japan's big electric power companies this week showed that only 13 nuclear reactors are due to begin operating during the next 11 years, far short of the targeted 16-20. The Japanese Government had set a target of increasing nuclear power generation by 21-25 gigawatts by the fiscal year to March 2011 to meet its 1997 pledge to trim greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 6 percent during the 2008 to 2012 period from 1990 levels. However a recent spate of accidents at Japanese nuclear power facilities have heightened public distrust of nuclear energy, which has always been a sensitive issue in the only country ever attacked with an atomic bomb. The Japanese Government has already said that it will review its nuclear policy with an eye on a possible downward revision in planned plant construction.

China Daily ("TWO NUKE REACTORS SHUT DOWN," Tokyo, 4/4/00, P11) reported that a Japanese official said that two nuclear reactors were manually shut down on April 3 because of malfunctions in parts controlling fuel rods. According to him, there were no radiation leaks or other damage. In the town of Orai, 100 kilometers northeast of Tokyo, a pilot fast breeder reactor was stopped after fuel rods made abnormal movements, said Science and Technology Agency spokesman Akihiro Myoga. Also on April 3, an advanced thermal reactor had to be manually shut down in Tsuruga, 330 kilometers northwest of Tokyo, after an indicator monitoring the position of fuel rods malfunctioned, Myoga said.

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7. Five-Nation Meeting of Defense Ministers

People's Liberation Army Daily (Chen Qimin and Zhang Yan, "FIVE COUNTRIES' DEFENSE MINISTERS HOLD MEETING," Astana, Kazakhstan, 3/31/00, P1) reported that defense ministers from the PRC, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan held a meeting in Astana on March 30 to fulfill the agreements reached previously by the five countries' presidents. The five defense ministers reiterated their determination to develop military and political relation among their countries and to carry out equal and mutually trusting cooperation. Speaking at the meeting, PRC Defense Minister Chi Haotian said that cooperation in this field plays a constructive role in maintaining regional peace and stability. He said that the PRC is willing to cooperate with the four countries to fight against separatism, extremism and cross-border terrorism to ensure regional stability.

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8. PRC View of Russian-NATO Relations

People's Daily (Tang Jinxiu, "RUSSIA REPAIRS RELATIONS WITH WESTERN COUNTRIES," 4/5/00, P6) carried a commentary saying that since mid-January of this year, Russia has made efforts to recover and develop its relations with Western countries. Russia's relationship with Western countries dropped to the lowest point because of NATO's bombing of Yugoslavia last year, the report said. It said that both Russia and the West have the need to approach each other. However, according to the commentary, as long as US-led NATO sticks to its plan of eastward expansion, continues to pursue "new interventionism," and further intrudes on Russia's strategic space, encroaches upon Russia's interest and threatens Russia's security, Russia will have to respond. So, the article said, the conflicts between Russia and NATO are irreconcilable. The improvement of bilateral relations between Russia and NATO is limited, the article said. For a long period of time, it predicted, cooperation and confrontation will coexist in the relationship between Russia and NATO.

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9. PRC Access to WTO

People's Daily (Gong Wen, "CHINA-EU TALKS END," Beijing, 4/1/00, P2) reported that the PRC and the European Union held talks on the PRC's access to the World Trade Organization (WTO) on March 28-31. The negotiations are positive, constructive and fruitful and both sides have made a great effort, the report said. It added that both sides hoped to reach an agreement as soon as possible and that the negotiations will continue in the future.

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10. Dalai Lama's Visit to Taiwan

China Daily (Shao Zongwei, "DALAI LAMA DRAWS CRITICISM," 4/5/00, P1) reported that the PRC criticized the Dalai Lama for contemplating another visit to Taiwan. "The political purpose of a visit of the Dalai Lama to Taiwan is quite obvious," said PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Sun Yuxi. "We are opposed to any kind of political activity by any person to split the motherland and undermine national unity," he said. Sun stressed that both Taiwan and Tibet are inalienable parts of China. He added that any attempt to undermine the Chinese people's desire for national unity and reunification is doomed to failure. The Dalai Lama is reportedly considering a visit to Taiwan. He previously visited the island in March 1997, the report said.

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