NAPSNet Daily Report
monday, october 15, 2001

I. United States

II. Republic of Korea III. Japan

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I. United States

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1. ROK-Japan Relations

Reuters (Masayuki Kitano, "JAPAN PM VOICES REMORSE, S.KOREA WANTS ACTION," Seoul, 10/15/01) and The Associated Press (Jae-suk Yoo, "JAPAN LEADER TRAVELS TO SOUTH KOREA," Seoul, 10/14/01) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi voiced "heartfelt remorse" for ROK suffering under Japan's colonial rule on Monday and was told by ROK President Kim Dae-jung to put those words into action. Koizumi said during his a one-day trip to Seoul, "I saw the various museum displays including scenes of torture while feeling heartfelt remorse and sorrow over the great pain and suffering inflicted on South Koreans by Japan's colonial rule. As a politician and a human being I feel that I must not forget the vexation felt by the people who suffered." As he spoke, loudspeakers boomed with angry slogans as a tight cordon of riot police held back hundreds of protesters, some of whom burned an effigy of Koizumi. Kim, hosting Koizumi at the presidential Blue House for their first ever meeting, said he appreciated the Japanese statement of remorse but wanted action. Kim was quoted as saying, "I want to stress that the Prime Minister's expression of his recognition of history must be implemented concretely and publicly." Kim praised Germany's "proper handling" of its wartime past and urged Japan to follow suit. He said he understood Koizumi's statement that he visited the shrine as a pledge that Japan should never go to war again, but added: "We're bothered by the fact that Class A war criminals who started that war of aggression and caused great suffering and losses to Japanese people as well are enshrined there." Koizumi called for a forum for Japanese and Korean historians to discuss their views. Koizumi did not say whether he would visit Yasukuni shrine again next year. South Korean lawmakers have urged him to promise he will not visit the controversial war shrine again. Koizumi sought to ease ROK's concerns about his plan to enact new legislation to let Japan's military give logistical support to the U.S.-led war on terrorism. Kim said he saw the need for international cooperation against terrorism, but said it was vital that Japan's military, the Self-Defense Forces, operate within the limits of the country's pacifist constitution. The two leaders failed to make headway on a dispute over South Korean fishing rights in waters around Russian-held islands claimed by Japan. Japanese officials said the two countries agreed to launch high-level government talks on the issue.

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2. Powell in Asia

Reuters (Elaine Monaghan, "POWELL LEAVES FOR PAKISTAN, INDIA, CHINA," Washington, 10/14/01) reported that US Secretary of State Colin Powell set off for Pakistan and India on October 14 to try to cool passions between the nuclear-armed regional rivals that have been further heightened by the US- British bombing campaign in Afghanistan. Though his schedule was being kept secret, he was expected to be in Islamabad on Monday and visit New Delhi before setting off for talks with counterparts from 20 other countries at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Shanghai, PRC.

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3. Anti-Terrorism Declaration at APEC

Reuters (Andrew Browne, "US PRESSES ANTI-TERROR DECLARATION AT APEC," Shanghai, 10/15/01) reported that Philippine officials said Monday that the US is seeking to expand a global coalition against terrorism and has proposed a declaration committing the 21-member Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum meeting in Shanghai to help stop the flow of funds to terrorist groups. Host PRC has been strongly supportive of the draft declaration, which also calls on APEC countries to boost aviation security and cooperate on the use of energy in an emergency. There were rumblings of concern from several Asia-Pacific countries, including Japan, about the summit's increasing focus on terror instead of economic issues at a time when the region is suffering its worst economic downturn in decades. PRC Vice Foreign Minister Wang Guangya made clear that the PRC would work hard to ensure APEC adopted a declaration on terror, and hoped for better ties with the US as a result. Wang said, "What APEC ministers will do is to send a strong, specific, clear message. I think this issue will better US-China relations, because we can find more common interests." Analysts said that within APEC there were differences about how to define and combat terrorism. The PRC and Russia were courting US support for campaigns against Islamic separatists in their countries, while Indonesia was anxious to calm its vast Muslim population. One APEC source said, "Everybody has their own agenda in the war on terrorism. It's a real can of worms. There'll be a lot of talk about unity in public but in the backrooms there'll be some divisive issues to address."

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4. Cross-Strait Relations and APEC

Reuters ("CHINA CASTS DOUBT ON TAIWANESE ENVOY TO APEC SUMMIT," 10/14/01) reported that tensions rose for cross-strait relations on October 14 as the PRC appeared to rule out the attendance of Taiwan's nominated chief delegate to the coming Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Shanghai. Taiwan has selected former Vice President Li Yuan-zu to head its team, but PRC foreign ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao told reporters that the island should abide by APEC protocol and send a minister with an economy-related post. Zhu did not explicitly declare Li would be excluded, but made clear the PRC believed he was the wrong person. He said, "We have clearly expressed our attitude. We will act according to APEC protocol and past practice, anything that doesn't follow that will not be allowed. Taiwan should act according to APEC protocol and past practice, and send their so-called economics-related minister." Under protocol agreed when the PRC and Taiwan entered APEC in 1991, Taiwan has attended as "Chinese Taipei" and has been represented by a senior economics-related minister. At a separate news conference, PRC APEC spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue played down the disagreement and suggested a deal could be reached. Zhang said, "As long as the representative from Chinese Taipei is in accordance with the provisions of the memorandum of understanding, I don't think we will have any objection to it. There are channels of communication. I don't think there will be a problem. Both sides should understand what to do."

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5. Changes to Japanese Defense Policy

Reuters ("JAPAN PM FAILS TO WINS SUPPORT FOR LAW BACKING US," Tokyo, 10/15/01) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said Monday he had failed to persuade Democratic Party leader Yukio Hatoyama to drop his demand that a government-sponsored legislation be revised to require parliamentary approval prior to any dispatch of Japanese troops overseas and win backing for a controversial bill to provide non-combat logistical support for US-led retaliatory attacks. Koizumi said, "I thought we were able to reach an agreement. I made significant concessions." However, he said he had no plans to make any more concession. The breakdown of the talks set the stage for Koizumi's ruling coalition to push the legislation through the powerful Lower House of parliament on October 16. While the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has enough votes to enact the law on its own, it was seeking opposition support to avoid making it a partisan issue. The bill would clarify the role that Japan's military could play in US military actions without violating the pacifist constitution that renounces war as a policy option. The party has also objected to the transport of arms and ammunition which the bill allows, although it bans the supplying of them.

II. Republic of Korea

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1. ROK and US on Terrorism

The Korea Herald (Hwang Jang-jin, "SEOUL, WASHINGTON REAFFIRM COOPERATION ON TERRORISM, NORTH KOREA POLICY," Seoul, 10/13/01) reported that a visiting senior US State Department official said Friday that the ROK and the US will cooperate closely in the ongoing US-led attacks on international terrorism and the DPRK engagement policy. US Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly ended his two-day visit to Seoul, during which he met with President Kim Dae-jung and top Korean foreign affairs and security officials. Defense Ministry officials said that Kelly expressed gratitude for the ROK's support for the US-led military action against terrorism in a meeting with Defense Minister Kim Dong-shin on October 12. Kelly said the anti-terrorism war would extend over a long period of time and that Washington will share intelligence with Seoul through US Forces Korea (USFK) and its embassy here. Minister Kim reiterated ROK's full support and its readiness to contribute non-combat forces in assistance to the US campaign. The Foreign Ministry plans to ship $1 million worth of medicine, tents, blankets and other relief goods for Afghan refugees in Pakistan next week.

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2. ROK- DPRK Family Reunion Canceled

The Korea Herald (Kim Ji-ho, "N. KOREA INDEFINITELY POSTPONES FAMILY REUNIONS, CITES TERROR ATTACKS," Seoul, 10/13/01) reported that the DPRK Friday postponed a scheduled reunion next week of 200 separated families in the two Koreas, citing ROK's security alert following last month's terrorist attacks in the US. In a statement of the DPRK ruling party's Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland, Pyongyang also called off a plan to send a taekwondo demonstration team to the ROK next week. A committee spokesman said, "in South Korea, the whole military and police force has been put on emergency alert under the pretext of what is happening abroad, creating an unpredictable atmosphere of tension." The statement was carried on the DPRK's two official radio stations - KCBS and Radio Pyongyang. The spokesman noted that the move was "getting on the North's nerves," and said his government "cannot continue with" the two joint programs, on which the two Koreas agreed during their cabinet level talks last month. The spokesman said that despite the postponement, the DPRK would hold three rounds of scheduled talks with the ROK as promised. The talks are another round of cabinet-level talks, slated for Oct. 28-31, economic talks Oct. 23-26, and discussions on joint tourism project Oct. 19. The ROK expressed regret over the DPRK's abrupt action in a telephone message sent to the DPRK, urging Pyongyang to fulfill the agreements from the ministerial talks. In the message, Seoul said "it is doubtful" that the scheduled talks will make progress unless the DPRK withdraws the postponement of the family reunion.

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3. DPRK Harbored Terror Group Remains on the List

The Korea Herald (Hwang Jang-jin, "TERROR GROUP DROPPED FROM U.S. LIST DIFFERENT FROM N.K.-HARBORED RED ARMY," Seoul, 10/12/01) reported that a Seoul official said Thursday that the group of Red Army terrorists being harbored by the DPRK is not the same as the Japanese Red Army (JRA), which the US has recently removed from its list of "foreign terrorist organizations." The official said "the removal of the JRA is unlikely to greatly affect the status of North Korea as the U.S.-designated state sponsoring terrorists because the two organizations are different from each other." Pyongyang has been providing shelter to nine Red Army members who hijacked a Japanese airplane to the DPRK in 1970. The DPRK has refused demands to hand over four living hijackers, a key reason behind the decision of the US to keep the DPRK on its list of states sponsoring terrorism. The US Department of State dropped the JRA from its biennial list released Friday, citing a lack of significant activities. Mistaken over the identity of the two different Red Army groups, the measure was seen in the ROK as a sign that the DPRK could be excluded from the list of terrorist-sponsoring nations.

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4. ROK- DPRK Talks

Joongang Ilbo(Lee Young-jong, "NORTH TOLD VENUE FOR TALKS WILL NOT MOVE," Seoul, 10/15/01) reported that risking a breakdown in inter-Korean dialogue, the ROK said Sunday that it would not accept a DPRK proposal for a second round of talks on Mount Geumgang tourism at the scenic mountain in the DPRK. A high-ranking government official said "the future of the second government-level talks for the Mount Geumgang tourist project slated for Friday will determine the outlook for future inter-Korean relations." The DPRK proposed October 13 in a telephone communiqué sent through the truce village of Panmunjom that the talks be held at Mount Geumgang, turning down the ROK's proposal that Mount Seorak be the venue, on the grounds that Mount Geumgang was safe and corresponded to the agenda. A government official said, "it is difficult for us to accept the rationale. Public opinion would be adverse to the government if it held the Mount Geumgang tourist-project talks." The government fears that if it accedes to Pyeongyang's proposal, it would be akin to admitting that the ROK is indeed an insecure place. But the ROK government decided not to link the food aid to the DPRK with whether talks will be held. It will go ahead with the planned provision of 300,000 tons of surplus rice.

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5. ROK-Japan Summit

Joongang Ilbo (Oh Young-hwan, "HISTORY, FISHING ON AGENDA FOR KOIZUMI'S VISIT TODAY," Seoul, 10/15/01) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-jung will discuss the assessment of past colonial history and fishing in the waters off the Southern Kuril Islands, among other issues, with Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi during summit talks in Seoul Monday. It will be their first meeting since Mr. Koizumi's inauguration in April. The government plans to press Japan not to repeat actions that rub on the sensitive issue of Korea's history of colonization by Japan. Mr. Kim also plans to reiterate that the proposed ban by Russia and Japan on fishing in waters off the Southern Kuril Islands should not damage ROK's fishing economy. Mr. Koizumi is scheduled to tour the Independence Park in Seodaemun, where martyred patriots were incarcerated, and to reflect and apologize for past history at the same level that former Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama did in 1995 and as stated in the 1998 Korea-Japan Partnership Joint Declaration. But he is said not to have made clear his position on future visits to the Yasukuni shrine. Little progress, therefore, is expected on the two main issues of contention. The two sides will also touch upon cooperation in the war against terrorism, the soccer World Cup to be hosted jointly by the ROK and Japan next year and DPRK policies.

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6. DPRK on Alert

Joongang Ilbo ("NORTH KOREA HEIGHTENS ALERT TOWARD U.S. STRIKE," Seoul, 10/15/01) reported that since the September 11th terrorism, the DPRK has been bracing itself as well, ordering its armies to stay in full alert and watching every move of the US. A source in the ROK government said Sunday, that the "North Korean Military has been gearing up its army, marine and air forces nationwide, and converting into crisis management status since the attack in the U.S. This could be precisely the North's counteraction to ROK's beefing up its own military in accordance with the U.S. stance and preparations against the possible spread of terror. They are paying great attention toward the latest installation of the U.S. F-15E jet in the Korean Peninsula, which is in line with the movement of the aircraft carrier Kittyhawk, as well as other injection of high-tech weaponry in the region. They are likely to analyze and make use of the information in developing their own strategy. This latest military movement in the North joined with other internal complications may have resulted in the sudden postponement of the fourth family reunion event."

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7. Japanese Protest Against DPRK

Chosun Ilbo (Kim Mi-young, "RALLY FOR NK ABDUCTEES HELD IN TOKYO," Tokyo, 10/15/01) reported that a civic group in Japan aimed at rescuing family members abducted by the DPRK, 'The People's Grand Assembly to Rescue those Kidnapped by North Korea' was inaugurated Saturday afternoon in Hibiya Park, Tokyo, with the participation of nearly 2,000 Japanese and Korean. Those in attendance included Choi Woo-yong, the chairperson of Families of Abductees and Detainees in the DPRK (FAD, in the ROK; Pierre Rigoulot, the leader of the DPRK People's Committee in France, and Dr. Norbert Vollertsen, a German expatriate who had been giving medical care in the DPRK. In a statement, the new civic group appealed to people's anger against terrorism saying they wanted those kidnapped to be returned home safely and quickly.

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8. ROK Aid to DPRK

Chosun Ilbo (Choi Gu-sik, "MDP TO PUSH NK RICE AID," Seoul, 10/14/01) reported that the Millennium Democratic Party decided at a party executive meeting Saturday that it will push to supply the DPRK with rice aid as planned, regardless of the postponed displaced family exchanges. MDP Spokesman Jeon Yong- hak said at the meeting briefing that while the party respects the principle of mutual cooperation, it will treat the rice aid issue separate from the family exchange issue, adding that the rice aid is a humanitarian act. Also, the spokesman of the ruling party explained that sending rice to the DPRK would help stabilize prices and increase government procurement volume.

III. Japan

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1. Japan-PRC Relations

The Financial Times (Richard McGregor and Gillian Tett, "KOIZUMI SAYS SORRY FOR JAPAN'S WARTIME ROLE IN CHINA," Shanghai and Tokyo, 10/09/01, 19) reported that Junichiro Koizumi, Japan's prime minister, flew to Beijing and made "heartfelt apology" to China for his country's brutality before and during the second world war on October 9. Mr.Koizumi's gesture apparently succeeded in winning Beijing's acceptance of Japan's desire to participate in the US-led war on terrorism, the article said. Mr.Koizumi also placed a wreath at the symbolically important Marco Polo Bridge in Beijing, the site of an incident used by Japan to intensify its attacks on China in 1937. Mr.Koizumi told Japanese reporter that "The ill-feeling up until now was dispersed and we agreed to co-operate to make next year's 30th anniversary of the restoration of Sino-Japanese relations a meaningful event."

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2. Yasukuni Shrine Issue

Yomiuri-shinbun ("EMPHASIZING ON IMPROVEMET OF RELATIONSHIP," 10/10/01, 4) and Asahi shinbun ("APOLOGY IS ONE THING; SHRINE ISSUE IS ANOTHER," 10/10/01) reported that Japan's prime minister, Junichiro Koizumi in the meeting with his Chinese counterpart, Jiang Zemin, avoided referring to whether he would visit the Yasukuni Shrine again. In the meeting Koizumi explained to Jiang his reasons for making the visit to the Yasukuni Shrine on Aug.13, saying that he visited the Yasukuni Shrine to express renunciation of war and his regret over the deaths caused by the war. However, China was not completely satisfied by Koizumi's explanation. Zhang Yibo, who heads a group of scholars that views the Manchurian Incident as an act of war, accepted Koizumi's apology as a major step forward. On the other hand, Zhang expressed his dissatisfaction, saying "I wanted to hear a clear expression of his attitude toward the textbook issue and whether he would visit Yasukuni next year."

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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
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International Peace Research Institute (PRIME),
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Monash Asia Institute,
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Gee Gee Wong:
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hibiki Yamaguchi:
Tokyo, Japan

Rumiko Seya:
Tokyo, Japan

Hiroya Takagi:
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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

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