NAPSNet Daily Report
friday, october 25, 2002

I. United States

II. Republic of Korea III. CanKor E-Clipping Service

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I. United States

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1. DPRK Non-Aggression Pact

Agence France-Presse ("NORTH KOREA FLOATS NON-AGGRESSION PACT WITH US TO END NUCLEAR CRISIS," 10/25/02) reported that the DPRK proposed a non-aggression pact with the US on Friday and laid out other conditions for resolving the latest nuclear crisis on the Korean peninsula. "If the US legally assures the DPRK (North Korea) of non-aggression, including the non-use of nuclear weapons against it by concluding such treaty, the DPRK will be ready to clear the former of its security concerns," the foreign ministry said. The statement released by the official Korean Central News Agency was the fullest DPRK response so far to the crisis sparked by its recent admission that it was developing nuclear weapons. The DPRK said it was ready to seek a negotiated settlement of the crisis if the US agreed to the non-aggression pact and two other conditions. Under the two other conditions, the US must recognize DPRK sovereignty and agree not to interfere in the country's economic development. "The DPRK considers that it is a reasonable and realistic solution to the nuclear issue to conclude a non-aggression treaty between the DPRK and the US," the statement added. The 1,200 word statement was released ahead of summit talks Saturday in Mexico between US President George W. Bush, ROK President Kim Dae-Jung, and Japanese Prime Minister Junicho Koizumi on how to handle the crisis.

Korean Central News Agency Of DPRK ("CONCLUSION OF NON-AGGRESSION TREATY BETWEEN DPRK AND U.S. CALLED FOR PYONGYANG," 10/25/02) reported that a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry of the DPRK today released a statement as regards the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula. He said: "New dramatic changes have taken place in the situation on the Korean Peninsula and the rest of Northeast Asia in the new century. Inter-Korean relations and the DPRK's relations with Russia, China and Japan have entered a new important phase and bold measures have been taken to reconnect inter-Korean railroads which have remained cut for over half a century, settle the past with Japan and do away with the leftovers of the last century. The DPRK has taken a series of new steps in economic management and adopted one measure after another to reenergize the economy, including the establishment of a special economic region, in conformity with the changed situation and specific conditions of the country. These developments practically contribute to peace in Asia and the rest of the world. Almost all the countries except for the United States, therefore, welcomed and hailed them, a great encouragement to the DPRK. It was against this backdrop that the DPRK recently received a special envoy of the U.S. President in the hope that this might help fundamentally solve the hostile relations with the U.S. and settle outstanding issues on an equal footing. Regretfully, the Pyongyang visit of the special envoy convinced the DPRK that the hostile attempt of the Bush administration to stifle the DPRK by force and backpedal the positive development of the situation in the Korean Peninsula and the rest of Northeast Asia has gone to the extremes. Producing no evidence, he asserted that the DPRK has been actively engaged in the enriched uranium program in pursuit of possessing nuclear weapons in violation of the DPRK-U.S. agreed framework. He even intimidated the DPRK side by saying that there would be no dialogue with the U.S. unless the DPRK halts it, and the DPRK-Japan, and north-south relations would be jeopardized. The U.S. attitude was so unilateral and high-handed that the DPRK was stunned by it. The U.S. is seriously mistaken if it thinks such a brigandish attitude reminding one of a thief crying "stop the thief" would work on the DPRK. As far as the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula is concerned, it cropped up as the U.S. has massively stockpiled nuclear weapons in South Korea and its vicinity and threatened the DPRK, a small country, with those weapons for nearly half a century, pursuing a hostile policy toward it in accordance with the strategy for world supremacy. The DPRK-U.S. agreed framework was adopted in October 1994, but the U.S. has been deprived of the right to talk about the implementation of the framework since then. Under article 1 of the framework the U.S. is obliged to provide light water reactors to the DPRK by the year 2003 in return for the DPRK's freezing of graphite moderated reactors and their related facilities. But only site preparation for the LWR was made though 8 years have passed since the DPRK froze its nuclear facilities. This will bring the DPRK an annual loss of 1,000 mw(e) in 2003 when light water reactor no.1 is scheduled to be completed and that of 2,000 mw(e) from the next year under article 2 of the framework the two sides are obliged to move toward full normalization of the political and economic relations. Over the last 8 years, however, the U.S. has persistently pursued the hostile policy toward the DPRK and maintained economic sanctions on it. The former has gone the length of listing the latter as part of the "axis of evil." Under article 3 of the framework the U.S. is obliged to give formal assurances to the DPRK against the threat or use of nuclear weapons by the U.S. however, the U.S. listed the DPRK as a target of its preemptive nuclear attack. Under article 4 of the framework and paragraph g of its confidential minute the DPRK is to allow nuclear inspections only after the "delivery of essential non-nuclear components for the first LWR unit, including turbines and generators" is completed. But, the U.S. has already come out with a unilateral demand for nuclear inspection in a bid to convince the international community of the DPRK's violation of the framework. This compelled the DPRK to make public the confidential minute for the first time. The U.S. has, in the final analysis, observed none of the four articles of the framework. It is only the U.S. that can know whether it had willingness to implement the framework when it was adopted or put a signature to it without sincerity, calculating that the DPRK would collapse sooner or later. However, the Bush administration listed the DPRK as part of the "axis of evil" and a target of the U.S. preemptive nuclear strikes. This was a clear declaration of a war against the DPRK as it totally nullified the DPRK-U.S. joint statement and agreed framework. In the long run, the Bush administration has adopted it as its policy to make a preemptive nuclear strike at the DPRK. Such moves, a gross violation of the basic spirit of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, reduced the inter-Korean joint declaration on denuclearization to a dead document. Its reckless political, economic and military pressure is most seriously threatening the DPRK's right to existence, creating a grave situation on the Korean Peninsula. Nobody would be so naive as to think that the DPRK would sit idle under such situation. That was why the DPRK made itself very clear to the special envoy of the U.S. President that the DPRK was entitled to possess not only nuclear weapon but any type of weapon more powerful than that so as to defend its sovereignty and right to existence from the ever-growing nuclear threat by the U.S. The DPRK, which values sovereignty more than life, was left with no other proper answer to the U.S. behaving so arrogantly and impertinently. The DPRK has neither need nor duty to explain something to the U.S. seeking to attack it if it refuses to disarm itself. Nevertheless, the DPRK, with greatest magnanimity, clarified that it was ready to seek a negotiated settlement of this issue on the following three conditions: Firstly, if the U.S. recognizes the DPRK's sovereignty, secondly, if it assures the DPRK of nonaggression and thirdly, if the U.S. does not hinder the economic development of the DPRK. Nowadays, the U.S. and its followers assert that negotiations should be held after the DPRK puts down its arms. This is a very abnormal logic. Then, how can the DPRK counter any attack with empty hands? Their assertion is little short of demanding the DPRK yield to pressure, which means death. Nobody can match anyone ready to die. This is the faith and will of the army and people of the DPRK determined to remain true to the army-based policy to the last. The position of the DPRK is invariable. The DPRK considers that it is a reasonable and realistic solution to the nuclear issue to conclude a nonaggression treaty between the DPRK and the U.S. if the grave situation of the Korean Peninsula is to be bridged over. If the U.S. legally assures the DPRK of nonaggression, including the nonuse of nuclear weapons against it by concluding such treaty, the DPRK will be ready to clear the former of its security concerns. The settlement of all problems with the DPRK, a small country, should be based on removing any threat to its sovereignty and right to existence. There may be negotiations or the use of deterrent force to be consistent with this basis, but the DPRK wants the former, as far as possible.

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2. US Response to DPRK Overture

Reuters ("U.S. DISMISSES NORTH KOREA DEMANDS FOR TALKS," 10/25/02) reported that the US on Friday dismissed North Korea (news - web sites)'s conditions for talks on its nuclear weapons program. "We've been very clear on the need for North Korea to disarm itself of weapons of mass destruction and we are working very closely with friends and allies to address this issue," said Sean McCormack, spokesman for the White House National Security Council. The DPRK, in a lengthy statement from its Foreign Ministry, set three conditions for talks to address concerns raised by its admission that it had revived a banned nuclear arms program by preparing to enrich uranium. The Foreign Ministry demanded that the United States recognize the DPRK's sovereignty, that Washington assure Pyongyang of non-aggression and that it agree not to hinder the economic development of the DPRK. "The time of rewarding bad behavior is over," said a White House official, speaking on condition of anonymity. President Bush and PRC President Jiang Zemin, in a meeting at Bush's Texas ranch, were to discuss diplomatic, political and possibly financial pressures that can be brought to bear to force the DPRK to give up its nuclear weapons program, which US officials have said has led to one or two nuclear bombs. The US has ruled out negotiations with the DPRK until they dismantle the uranium enrichment program. But the US said it sought a peaceful solution and was maintaining contacts with the North through its UN mission.

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3. APEC DPRK Summit

Agence France-Presse ("AM SOUTH KOREA'S KIM SET FOR SUMMIT ON NORTH KOREA," 10/25/02) reported that ROK President Kim Dae-Jung is due to confer Saturday with President George W. Bush and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi in talks aimed at forging a united front after the isolated state admitted trying to develop weapons from enriched uranium. The talks were to be held on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum at this Mexican coastal resort. All three leaders want to settle the issue peacefully and through diplomatic means, but differences are evident on how to navigate out of the crisis. The United States, which extracted the admission after sending an envoy to Pyongyang, insists there can be no dialogue with the DPRK on the issue, and that its leader Kim Jong-Il must give up the program. But they are making a semantic distinction between the idea of a "dialogue" with the DPRK and the idea of a resumption of some diplomatic contact. "I am not ruling out direct contact or direct communications with the North Koreans ... but that's not negotiation," a senior State Department official said here on Thursday. US Secretary of State Colin Powell helped to set the agenda for the three-way conference on Thursday in a meeting with RPL Foreign Minister Choi Sung-hong. The two men agreed that the situation was "very serious and that it should be handled peacefully," said a second senior State Department official. "They and we agree that the ball is in the court of the North Koreans," the official said on condition of anonymity.

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4. PRC-US Relations

Reuters ("U.S. AND CHINA EXPECTED TO CHART MORE COOPERATIVE COURSE," Washington, 10/25/02) carried an analytical article that reported that forced to grapple with crises from terrorism to Iraq and the DPRK, the US and the PRC are charting a more moderate and cooperative course than ever seemed possible. As President George W. Bush and PRC leader Jiang Zemin hold their third summit on Friday, a number of thorny issues remain unresolved, including weapons proliferation, Taiwan, human rights and trade. But the focus is far more on problem-solving than stoking tensions. "I think it's a quite favourable relationship," said National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice. That language is a far cry from the "strategic competitor" epithet the Bush team used when they first came to office. Experts say this shift derives from the PRC's growing self-confidence as a key player in international affairs and acceptance of US leadership. Also, the PRC recognizes it needs several decades of relative stability to pursue economic growth and military modernization, experts say. "Smooth relations with the United States are vital not only to ensure unfettered access to the American market but also to maintain the benign international security climate and a benign view of China that promotes record-breaking levels of foreign investment," according to PRC expert Alan Romberg of the Henry L. Stimson Center, a think tank. Bush, who initially took a tougher attitude toward the PRC, has also mellowed toward Beijing. Experts say the administration now understands it must work with the PRC to resolve key problems like combating terrorism, defusing the nuclear face-off in South Asia, dismantling the DPRK's nuclear program and settling the confrontation with Iraq. However, Bush is expected to continue to vigorously assert the US determination to defend Taiwan, while Jiang defends the PRC's military build-up across the Taiwan Straits and faults US arms sales to Taiwan.

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5. PRC Domestic Politics

Reuters ("CHINA LAUNCHES SWEEPING LEADERSHIP RESHUFFLE," Beijing, 10/25/02) reported that after months of secretive maneuverings, PRC leaders have finalized their most sweeping reshuffle in more than a decade and started the first top personnel change. Initial moves suggest PRC President Jiang Zemin will succeed in promoting several allies to the new leadership at a party congress next month when he and other leaders over 70 are expected to retire, they said. Rumors in political circles in Beijing -- as yet unconfirmed -- say Jiang also may have engineered the retirement of his rival, political liberal Li Ruihuan, even though he is only 68. And Jiang, 76, looks set to keep his third post as head of the Central Military Commission, at least until a parliament meeting next year, when he must step down as president under the constitution. Beijing party boss Jia Qinglin and Shanghai party chief Huang Ju, both members of the 21-man Politburo, left their jobs to take unspecified central government or party posts. Then Jiang's chief protege, party organisation department head Zeng Qinghong, 63, was replaced by another of his allies, Chongqing party boss He Guoqiang, 59 this year. Hardline propaganda chief Ding Guangen, 73, who is expected to retire from political life, also stood down in favor of his deputy Liu Yunshan, 55 this year.

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6. Japan Abduction Issue

The Associated Press (Hans Greimel, "JAPAN NEGOTIATING FOR ABDUCTEES," Obama, 10/25/02) reported that Japan conceded Friday that it has yet to win DPRK approval for the permanent return of five Japanese abducted decades ago by DPRK spies, and said negotiations on the issue will likely run into next week. The acknowledgment came a day after Japan said it would let the abductees stay indefinitely in Japan, stepping up a tug-of-war with the DPRK over their fate. The five, currently in Japan for a reunion with their families after decades apart, initially were expected to return to the DPRK after just one to two weeks. DPRK officials reportedly had accepted the principle of permanent return for the five. But the plan for them to remain in Japan has been bogged down by the question of whether the abductees' seven children - all in their teens or early 20s and still in the DPRK - would be allowed to join them. Acknowledging that the DPRK has not yet accepted Japan's demands, Chief Cabinet spokesman Yasuo Fukuda said Friday that "talks are continuing." But Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi said that the DPRK hadn't even responded. The permanent resettlement of the abductees and their families is likely to be a major sticking point when Japanese and DPRK officials meet next week in Malaysia to discuss establishing diplomatic relations.

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7. DPRK Economic Survey Team

The Associated Press ("NORTH KOREAN ECONOMIC SURVEY TEAM TO VISIT SOUTH KOREA," Seoul, 10/24/02) reported that a DPRK economic survey team due to arrive in the ROK weekend will include top state planners and close confidants of leader Kim Jong Il. The 18-member DPRK delegation is scheduled to fly to the ROK on Saturday and return home nine days later. Its itinerary includes visits to semiconductor, car, chemical and steel plants. The visit is part of a broad agreement reached with the ROK in August. "The list includes far more heavyweights than we expected," said Huh Nam-duk, an official at the Ministry of Finance and Economy. "The names suggest how serious North Korea is about the visit." The DPRK team will be headed by Park Nam Gi, chairman of the State Planning Committee which oversees the North's overall economic development, and Chang Sung Taek, a senior official in the communist Worker's Party. South Korea officials drew particular attention to Chang, a brother-in-law of the DPRK leader. "Chang's visit is really significant," said the ROK official, Huh. "He is the real power in North Korea and is in a position to report directly to leader Kim Jong Il." Other names on the list include top government and party officials handling trade, tourism, chemical industry, engineering, computer and agriculture.

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8. Perry and Carter on DPRK-US Relations

The Washington Post (Ashton B. Carter and William J. Perry, "Back to the Brink," 10/20/02) carried an op-ed that read: Eight years before the Bush administration issued its national security strategy espousing a doctrine of preemption, the United States came to the brink of initiating war to stop the DPRK from acquiring nuclear weapons. Faced with Pyongyang's threat to divert plutonium from a nuclear reactor to its weapons program, the Clinton administration contemplated its own act of preemption against the strange, isolated regime then considered the greatest threat to US national security. The two of us, then at the Pentagon, readied plans for striking at DPRK's nuclear facilities and for mobilizing hundreds of thousands of US troops for the war that probably would have followed. That crisis ended with a negotiated agreement, and the latest episode could, too. In the face of this month's revelation by the DPRK that it had begun a second nuclear weapons program based on uranium, the Bush administration has rightly concluded that it should respond with deliberation and, initially, diplomacy. The reason for a measured approach to the DPRK is not that it poses less danger than Iraq. In fact, the DPRK's acquisition of nuclear weapons would be at least as serious and just as intolerable. The military situation in Korea, and US interests and allies in the region, are just as vital as those in the Persian Gulf. And with the DPRK we face many of the same dilemmas as we do with Iraq: an absence of trust and transparency, combined with weapons know-how that seems capable of rising above each country's otherwise dismal state of development. The full op-ed can be found:

II. Republic of Korea

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1. Inter Korean Ministerial Talk

Joongang Ilbo (Lee Young-jong, "VAGUELY, NORTH CALLS FOR DIALOGUE," Seoul, 10/24/02) reported that after the ROK's delegation to the latest round of ministerial talks returned from Pyongyang with a controversial agreed statement Wednesday, an ROK official that the ROK government would step up efforts for international dialogue with DPRK to end its nuclear weapons program. He said the biggest issue was ensuring DPRK's compliance with international commitments on nuclear arms control, including a 1994 agreement with US. A National Security Council meeting will be held Thursday to coordinate ROK government's position, which will be presented at meetings with the leaders of US, Japan and Russia, the official said. The meeting in Pyongyang was extended by a day because of difficulties in hammering out an agreed statement, but the document met with a mixed reception in the ROK because of what some critics said was weak language concerning DPRK's persistent nuclear weapons development efforts. The delegates finally issued a joint statement in an open meeting at about 2 a.m. Wednesday before reconvening again behind closed doors. A few hours later, Unification Minister Jeong Se-hyun and his team flew back to Seoul on a chartered flight. The ROK and DPRK agreed to "cooperate actively on all matters, including the nuclear issue," within the framework of peace and security for the Korean peninsula based on the spirit of the joint declaration made by the leaders two years ago in Pyongyang.

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2. Cutoff of Oil by US

Joongang Ilbo (Yoo Kwang-jong, "SEOUL WORRIED ABOUT CUTOFF OF FUEL SHIPMENTS TO THE NORTH," Seoul, 10/24/02) reported that before this weekend's Asia-Pacific summit in Mexico, an official in Seoul conceded that US could halt the flow of heavy fuel oil to DPRK. The deliveries are part of the 1994 agreement that defused, at least temporarily, tensions that had arisen because of the DPRK nuclear program. Foreign Minister Choi Sung-hong and US Secretary of State Colin Powell will meet Thursday in Mexico on the status of the Agreed Framework before leaders of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation nations meet Saturday. An official, speaking anonymously, said that reluctance on DPRK's part to dismantle its nuclear program could result in a halt to the flow of fuel oil. Other officials said the foreign minister would push hard to prevent any public threats by US to withdraw from the 1994 framework agreement. Those sources cited a hint from Kim Young-nam, DPRK's titular head of state, that DPRK was preparing for dialogue as a reason for not provoking DPRK.

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3. ROK's Efforts to Prevent Terrorism

Joongang Ilbo ("15 ministries discuss anti-terror provisions," Seoul, 10/24/02) reported that Prime Minister Kim Suk-soo Wednesday advised that ROK take precautions against terrorism and ordered that bullet-proof doors be installed at cockpit entrances on domestic flights. Airline pilots and officials from 15 ministries met to discuss security measures. Heightened precautions were advised in such areas as Itaewon and Dongducheon, frequented by foreigners and posing higher risks of terrorism. By 2003, ROK government said, it would station safety equipment for biological terrorism in local health centers. The officials agreed that the government should strengthen security policies near foreign embassies, energy plants and other facilities belonging to US. The group also recommended that advance notification be required when radioactive materials are moved.

III. CanKor E-Clipping Service

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1. Issue #103

Although David Kilgour, Canada's Secretary of State for Asia-Pacific, was unable to attend, the "Grand Opening" of a Computer Graphics Institute in Pyongyang "went very well yesterday." That news from a member of the institute's Canadian NGO sponsor, GAiN, came to CanKor on 24 October 2002 via the DPRK's first internet café. More on this event in a future issue. Former abductees return to their homes in Japan, where together with their families, they wrestle to find meaning in their 24-year DPRK experience. As fears about its nuclear programme continue to preoccupy the media, the DPRK calls for a new non-aggression treaty with the USA. In a joint statement with the ROK, the two Koreas promote a peaceful dialogue on the nuclear issue. The latter is the first of an 8-point agreement, issued during the eighth inter-Korean ministerial meeting on 23 October 2002. Speculation, analyses and disparate opinions regarding DPRK's nuclear "confession" abound this week. This issue of CanKor focuses on Canadian reactions, including that of foreign minister Bill Graham.

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