NAPSNet Daily Report
wednesday, august 9, 2000

I. United States

II. Republic of Korea

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I. United States

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1. PRC Missile Threat to Taiwan

Reuters ("TAIWAN SEES GROWING MISSILE THREAT FROM CHINA," Taipei, 8/9/00) reported that Taiwan's defense ministry on Wednesday accused the PRC of stepping up deployment of missiles in provinces facing the island. In a 250-page national defense report seen on Wednesday, the ministry said that the threat of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) is "ever more imminent as well as serious." The report said that the PRC has 400 missiles of various ranges, including intercontinental ballistic missiles in the Dong Feng series, and that the number is likely to exceed 600 by 2005. The report said, "The very much-modernized PLA is hurling threats to ROC not just simply in terms of numerical superiority. The whole matter has turned into a race for better quality and larger quantity." The report said that the PRC has deployed short-range Dong Feng ballistic missiles in areas facing the Taiwan Strait and could use them to attack the island's major political, economic, and military installations. It also said that ground-attack cruise missiles, now near completion, further added to the threat. It continued, "They can be employed for multiple-wave, and multi-directional saturation attacks. This then will be the most seriously threatening form of PRC military invasion." Defense experts said that missile attacks would be the most fearful, and effective, tactic against Taiwan, which has insufficient anti-missile capability. Chung Chien, a professor at Taiwan's Armed Forces University, said, "The biggest damage of cruise missiles is not its destructive power, but its ability to shake public confidence." Shu Ching-chiang, director of the Institute of Peace and Strategic Studies at Nan Hua University, said, "The intensity of low-altitude missile deployment in Taiwan is among the top in the world, but we don't have medium- and high-altitude capability. Missile attacks will create a great sense of uncertainty and anxiety in Taiwan. It's very powerful.

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2. PRC Missile Sales

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, "PAKISTAN GETS MORE CHINESE WEAPONS," 8/9/00) reported that the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) said in its latest semiannual report to the US Congress that the PRC increased its missile-related sales to Pakistan last year and is continuing to supply nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and missile goods to the DPRK, Libya and Iran. The report stated, "Chinese missile-related technical assistance to Pakistan increased during this reporting period. In addition, firms in China provided missile-related items, raw materials, and/or assistance to several countries of proliferation concern such as Iran, North Korea and Libya." The report also stated that "we cannot preclude" that the PRC has ongoing contacts with Pakistani nuclear weapons officials - contrary to a pledge made by the PRC in 1996 to halt aid to nuclear programs in Pakistan that are not under international controls. However, a US Senate aide said that the Senate Intelligence Committee is investigating why additional arms proliferation activities by the PRC were left out of the unclassified report. The aide said, "We welcome the report but the committee has some concerns over the content and whether certain information should have been included in the unclassified report that was not." Michael Pillsbury, a former defense official during the Reagan and Bush administrations, said that the report shows that the PRC is using its arms sales against the US. Pillsbury said, "This illustrates that China remains angry over the embassy bombing in Belgrade over a year ago and the announcement of increased arms sales to Taiwan." Besides the PRC, the report also said that the DPRK increased its procurement of missile-related components from the PRC, and purchased goods that could be used for nuclear weapons. DPRK also purchased MiG21 jets from Kazakhstan. [Ed. note: This article was included as a Top Story in the US Department of Defense's Early Bird news service for August 9, 2000.]

II. Republic of Korea

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1. DPRK-US Talks

The Korea Herald (Shin Yong-bae, "NORTH KOREA, U.S. TO OPEN TALKS ON TERRORISM IN PYONGYANG TODAY," Seoul, 08/09/00) reported that ROK officials said on August 8 that the DPRK and the US will open two days of talks in Pyongyang on Wednesday to discuss US removal of the DPRK from its list of countries that sponsor terrorism. Officials said that US State Department coordinator for counter-terrorism Michael Sheehan and DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Gye-gwan will represent their respective governments. ROK officials expect little progress at the Pyongyang talks. An official said, "We understand these negotiations are primarily aimed at creating momentum for future talks." Observers said that the two sides' decision to reopen the talks on terrorism demonstrates their resolve to remove the DPRK from the list. An analyst said, "The fact that a senior U.S. official entered Pyongyang to discuss the matter seems to be a good sign."

The Korea Times (Son Key-young, "NK-US TERRORISM TALKS TO AFFECT FATE OF S-N SUMMIT," 8/9/00) reported that US State Department officials said on August 7 that the implementation of an inter-Korean summit accord might hit a snag as long as the DPRK remains in the US list of state sponsors of terrorism. A government official said, "As long as North Korea is classified as a sponsor of terrorism, South Korea's plans to make investment in North Korea will be hampered substantially." Another official said, "We hope that the terrorism talks would be wrapped up successfully and in time, lest it would be an obstacle to future investments by South Korean firms in North Korea. The successful conclusion of terrorism talks would create a favorable atmosphere for the MFN (Most Favored Nation)- related talks. However, the two talks are not directly linked." He said that the MFN status is not a topic of direct implication because the DPRK is not regarded to have "competitive" goods to sell in the international markets. He said, "However, it would become a key issue when South Korean firms, which have invested in North Korea, want to sell their products to the United States." [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense's Early Bird news service for August 9, 2000.]

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2. Inter-Korean Talks

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, "SEOUL REQUESTS TALKS ON OPENING N-S LIAISON OFFICES," Seoul, 08/09/00) reported that officials said that the ROK on August 8 proposed that the DPRK and the ROK kick off consultations this week on reopening their liaison offices on August 15. In a telegram, relayed through the border truce village of Panmunjom, the ROK proposed the two sides hold phone discussions on August 10 and working-level talks on August 14 on the issue. An anonymous ROK official said, "The two sides will discuss procedural details on reopening the offices through working contacts, and then, new office chiefs from both sides will meet each other. Led by the chiefs, 10 liaison officers from each side will likely serve in the offices, as had been the case in the past."

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3. Reunion of Separated Families

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, "TWO KOREAS EXCHANGE LISTS FOR FAMILY REUNIONS," Seoul, 08/09/00) reported that the ROK and the DPRK on August 8 exchanged their final lists of 100 people who will visit each other's capitals August 15 to meet family members they have been separated from for over five decades. Along with the names of the separated family members, the two sides also exchanged lists of 51 supporting personnel, including a leader and 20 journalists, who will cross the border for the four-day event. The two countries have yet to hammer out procedural details for the four-day exchange visits of divided families, such as modes of transportation and timetables. The list of 100 DPRK citizens visiting Seoul includes dozens of social celebrities, 29 of them older than 70 years old. Twenty-one of them expressed the hope of reuniting with their parents in the ROK.

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4. ROK Media in DPRK

Joongang Ilbo (Lee Yung-jong, "NORTH KOREA ROLLS OUT RED CARPET FOR SOUTH MEDIA CHIEFS," Seoul, 08/08/00) reported that the ROK's Korean Newspapers Association (KNA) reported on August 7 that the DPRK is extending its best hospitality to the ROK media chiefs now visiting. A KNA insider said, "The North Korean Press is reporting substantially on the South media figures' visit. North Korean citizens seem very excited about it. It seems that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has been calling the shots, making sure that the visitors are well taken care of." A group of 48 leaders from major ROK newspaper and broadcasting companies arrived in the DPRK August 5 for an eight-day stay.

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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
International Policy Studies Institute Seoul, Republic of Korea
The Center for Global Communications, Tokyo, Japan
Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China
Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Gee Gee Wong:
Berkeley, California, United States

Robert Brown:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Yunxia Cao:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

John McKay:
Clayton, Australia

Leanne Payton:
Clayton, Australia

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