NAPSNet Daily Report
monday, july 28, 2003

I. United States

II. People's Republic of China

Policy Forum Online:
DPRK Briefing Book

DPRK Timeline of Events

Bush Administration's Asia Policy

Special Reports

Week in Review

South Asian Nuclear Dialogue

Nuclear Policy Project Flash

Ethical Governance Of Investment Biweekly Update

Browse Past Reports:
* Preceding Daily Report
* Daily Report Archive
* Search Daily Reports:

Email Services:
* Signup for Email Delivery
* Latest Report Emailed Now
* Send Comments

I. United States

next itemcontentscontacts

1. ROK on DPRK Nuclear Negotiations

Reuters (Kim Kyoung-wha, "SOUTH KOREA SAYS NORTH TALKS PROCESS BOGGED DOWN," Seoul, 07/28/03) reported that negotiations between the PRC and the DPRK on restarting talks on the DPRK's nuclear ambitions have become bogged down, ROK's foreign minister said Monday. Yoon Young-kwan told reporters no one could tell for sure whether multilateral talks would be held next month or in September because Pyongyang had yet to respond to the idea. "The negotiating progress between North Korea and China is not speedy, but has slowed down a bit," Yoon said. "North Korea holds the key. The ball now is in North Korea's court." New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said last Friday after talks with ROK President Roh Moo-hyun she saw possible fresh nuclear talks in a few weeks and said "hopefully August" when asked whether that meant September or next month. The PRC has played a crucial role in seeking to persuade the DPRK and long-time ally to return to talks and accept Japan, the ROK and possibly Russia at the table, too. "No one can tell for sure what the timing of the talks will be," Yoon said. "Since North Korea has yet to respond, we can't predict the timing. We need to wait."

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

2. 1953 Korean War Armistice Commemoration

Agence France-Presse ("VETERANS REMEMBER KOREAN WAR AS ANGRY NORTH KOREA LOOKS ON," Panmunjom, 07/27/03) reported that amid warnings of renewed conflict from the DPRK, veterans from 16 nations stood on Cold War's last frontier to mark the anniversary of the 1953 Korean War armistice agreement. "Today is a celebration. It is a great celebration. We celebrate the past, we celebrate the present and we celebrate the future," said General Leon LaPort, commander of US troops in South Korea, in the ceremony overcast with rain. He said peace on in Korea was destroyed by "an ill-fated attempt to unify the peninsula under communist control." About 2,500 representatives, including 900 veterans from the 16 countries of the US-led United Nations fighting force took part in the ceremony at Panmunjom, in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, set up under the armistice agreement. The agreement "represents nothing short of international stand against communist aggression," LaPort said. New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark paid tribute to UN troops who died during the three-year war and urged North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons drive. "North Korea must abandon nuclear ambitions to avoid a further conflict," she said. Clark, however, said the issue should be solved peacefully. The DPRK has described the ceremony as "very dangerous act" at a time when the risk of a far more destructive war was rising.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

3. Bolton PRC-DPRK Talks

Agence France-Presse ("SENIOR US OFFICIAL BOLTON IN CHINA FOR NORTH KOREA TALKS," 07/28/03) reported that Senior US diplomat John Bolton opened meetings with PRC officials here as efforts to kickstart a new round of talks on the DPRK's nuclear program accelerated. Bolton, undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, is also scheduled to visit the ROK for three days from Tuesday before heading to Japan. The US embassy said Bolton was in Beijing Monday for the second session of the US-PRC Security Dialogue and that talks with vice foreign minister Zhang Yesui would focus on the DPRK and Iran. A press conference has been scheduled for later Monday.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

4. Japan Iraq Troop Deployment

Agence France-Presse ("JAPAN'S PARLIAMENT APPROVES CONTROVERSIAL DEPLOYMENT OF TROOPS TO IRAQ," 07/26/03) reported that Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi vowed to harness public support for the controversial decision to send Japanese troops to Iraq approved in a parliamentary session choked by dissent. The upper house of parliament voted in the early hours to approve the deployment of troops to Iraq in what will be the first dispatch since World War II of Japanese military personnel to a country where fighting is continuing. Voting was delayed for hours by stalling tactics from the opposition parties -- including an unsuccessful no confidence motion in Koizumi -- who said deploying troops to Iraq would contravene Japan's pacifist constitution. Yelling and scrambling opposition MPs surrounded the upper house committee chairman dealing with the Iraq motion but were unable to stop the passage of the bill by the committee and a later plenary session. Shortly after the bill's passage, Koizumi told reporters he believed he would be able to "gain people's understanding in the days ahead." "When they look back in the future, they will think the legislation was good for the country," Jiji Press news agency quoted the prime minister as saying. A poll in the liberal daily Asahi Shimbun showed Tuesday that 55 percent of Japanese opposed sending troops to Iraq, compared to 33 percent who support it.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

5. US-Japan Relations

The Associated Press (Audrey McAvoy, "BUSH PRAISES JAPAN FOR IRAQ ROLE APPROVAL," Tokyo, 07/28/03) reported that US President Bush phoned Japan's prime minister Monday to welcome parliament's vote to authorize sending Japanese troops to help in the policing and reconstruction of Iraq. Bush "expressed his respect" to Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi for his leadership in ensuring the law's passage late Saturday, the Foreign Ministry said. Koizumi replied that the move was one aspect of his commitment to strengthening the Japan-US alliance, the statement said. Media reports have said as many as 1,000 soldiers would be dispatched. White House spokesman Scott McClellan said Bush and Koizumi spoke for about 15 minutes. They discussed the significance of Japan's contributions to reconstructing Iraq and the importance of the next round of talks on the DPRK including the ROK and Japan, he said. Koizumi also praised Bush for his leadership in working for Middle Eastern peace and said the recovery of Iraq is important to the security of the region, according to the Japanese Foreign Ministry.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

6. PRC-Taiwan Referendum Issue

Agence France-Presse ("CHINA WARNS TAIWAN AGAINST REFERENDUM PLAN," 07/26/03) reported that the PRC has warned any attempt by Taiwan to introduce referenda would escalate tensions between them, reports here said. Two senior PRC officials made the warning while visiting Washington earlier this week. They were in the US capital just ahead of Chiou I-jen, a top aide to Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian, who visited for high-level talks on issues believed to include the referendum plan. Chen Yunlin, director of the PRC's cabinet-level Taiwan Affairs Office, and his deputy Zhou Mingwei met with US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs James Kelly during the trip. The visit was confirmed by US Department of State deputy spokesman Philip Reeker, the paper said. Chen and Zhou told the US that President Chen's intention to hold a referendum was a provocative step towards "progressive independence for Taiwan". This would cross the PRC's "red line" of tolerance and cause regional tensions, the report said. Taiwan's government is planning to hold a landmark referendum to decide whether a controversial half-completed nuclear power plant should be scrapped, coinciding with the presidential elections in March next year. The island also plans to hold a referendum to show the Taiwanese people's eagerness to join the World Health Organization.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

7. Hong Kong Anti-Subversion Law

Agence France-Presse ("HK CHIEF TUNG TO HOLD KEY TALKS WITH OPPOSITION PRO-DEMOCRACY CAMP," 07/28/03) reported that Hong Kong leader Tung Chee-hwa will meet pro-democracy lawmakers for the first time since massive public protests over a proposed anti-subversion law sparked a political crisis. Tung has pledged to listen more carefully to the demands of the public since the July 1 rally which saw 500,000 people take to streets and forced the government to shelve the legislation that many fear will curb rights and freedoms here. The Monday meeting with the pro-democracy camp, who have been among Tung's fiercest critics, is a key step in the uphill battle the Hong Kong chief executive now faces to win back public confidence. Democratic legislator Fred Li said the lawmakers would call for more consultation on the proposed anti-subversion law during the meeting. However, Li said the 22 pro-democracy legislators would not be calling for Tung to step down, but added they hoped that the beleaguered leader had noted the recent dissatisfaction expressed by the public. "Tung has to recognize the political reality. He's not popular among the people and the Democratic Party represent the majority of people in Hong Kong," said Li.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

8. Japan Earthquake Continuation

Agence France-Presse ("STRONG QUAKE AGAIN JOLTS NORTHERN JAPAN," 07/28/03) reported that a strong quake jolted northern Japan where three powerful earthquakes and some 1,000 aftershocks during the weekend left 560 people injured. Monday's quake, measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale, shook Miyagi prefecture, some 350 kilometers (220 miles) northeast of Tokyo, at 4:08 am (1908 GMT Sunday), an official from the Japan Meteorological Agency said. The quake, which was ten kilometers (6.2 miles) deep, was located in northern Miyagi, and no tidal wave warning was issued after the tremor. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

9. Japan Domestic Economy

The Associated Press ("JAPAN UNEMPLOYMENT DROPS TO 5.3 PERCENT," Tokyo, 07/28/03) reported that Japan's unemployment rate improved to 5.3 percent in June, the government said Tuesday, as this nation limps toward a fragile recovery largely dependent on export growth. The world's second largest economy has been battling job losses for years, unable to substitute manufacturing jobs, eroded by competition from emerging Asian rivals, with those in service and other growth sectors. For the first three months of this year, Japan's economy barely grew. Although some analysts say the economy is now headed toward a rebound - underscored by an upturn on the Tokyo stock market and stronger profits at some companies - many fear the recovery is unlikely to produce many jobs as companies struggle to restrict costs. Japan's joblessness hovered at 5.4 percent in March, April and May. It marked 5.5 percent - the highest level since the government began keeping track in 1953 - in August and October last year and January this year. It briefly eased to 5.2 percent in February. Much hinges on the US outlook at a time when exports remain the chief engine of Japan's growth. Japanese officials have been cautious about changing their gloomy outlook without clearer signs of US recovery.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

10. PRC SARS 'Victory'

Reuters ("CHINA PRESIDENT DECLARES A VICTORY AGAINST SARS," Beijing, 07/28/03) reported that the PRC was winning the fight against the flu-like SARS virus and controlling the illness while maintaining economic growth, President Hu Jintao said on Monday. The PRC "had achieved a major victory at this stage," Hu said in excerpts of a speech to a party meeting broadcast on state television. "The victory against this struggle increased all countries' confidence in China's development outlook." The PRC had come under fire from the international community for not being open enough about Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome early on, but Hu declared war on the disease in April and ended a government cover-up of the outbreak. SARS surfaced in southern China in November before exploding in Beijing in March. The disease infected 5,300 people nationwide and killed more than 340 while hammering the travel, hotel and airline industries before it was tamed in late June. Nevertheless, the PRC's economy grew a stunted 6.7 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier -- the slowest pace in 12 years -- as SARS had a sharp but transient impact on the world's sixth-biggest economy. As of Monday, there were still 12 SARS patients in PRC hospitals, all of them in Beijing, the official Xinhua news agency quoted the Health Ministry as saying.

II. People's Republic of China

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

1. Commentary on Taiwan-Japan Relations

China Daily (Lu Xijun, "TAIWAN TIES MAR JAPAN'S CHINA INTERESTS", 07/26/03, P4) carried a commentary article saying that Japan should discard its strategy of benefiting from playing Taiwan off against the mainland if it wants to see Sino-Japan ties developing on a healthy track. Since the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), assumed power in Taiwan in 2000, the ties between the island and Japan have undergone some eye-catching changes, said the article. The article listed a series of development of Japan-Taiwan ties, then mentioned that many senior Japanese officials have expressed support for Taiwan and advocated visiting the island in an official capacity. The Taiwan authorities have also sent, on many occasions, a message to Japan maintaining that the status quo across the Taiwan Straits conforms to the interests of Japan and the US. The continuous advancement of Japan-Taiwan ties has been decided, to a large extent, by their unceasing development of economic and trade relations, the article said. The huge economic interests the two sides have in each other have significant influence upon their political relationship. The Taiwan authorities with Chen at the core, which never accepted the one-China policy, even concede to Japan on issues relevant to Chinese national sentiment and historical facts. Japan's policy towards Taiwan has been based upon a consideration of its own strategic interest in the international arena, the article said. China's rapid economic development and improvement of its comprehensive national strength in recent years regarded by some Japanese politicians as a threat, has deepened Japan's psychology of balancing the Chinese mainland's influence and strengthening its own security by taking advantage of Taiwan. However, despite some uncertainties on the Taiwan question, there is no need to be too pessimistic about the prospect of Sino-Japanese relations, the article said. So far, the status quo of Japan' ties with the Chinese mainland and Taiwan have not changed and will not if the mainland can maintain its economic growth. There is not much possibility for Japan to excessively strengthen ties with the island by sacrificing its substantial interests on the Chinese mainland. To reduce the influence of the Taiwan question and create a better prospect for Sino-Japanese ties, PRC and Japan should make active efforts to overcome problems hampering the development of ties.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

2. PRC-Japan Relations

People's Daily ("JAPAN'S ADHERENCE TO DEFENSE-ONLY POLICY CONFORMS WITH ITS OWN INTERESTS: FM SPOKESMAN", 07/27/03, P3) reported that PRC's Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan said on July 26 that Japan's adherence to defense-only policy conforms with its own interests. The Japanese Diet earlier Saturday gave the final approval to a government bill of sending Self-Defense Forces (SDF) personnel to Iraq for reconstruction work there. After saying that PRC has noticed the report, Kong urged Japan to earnestly adhere to the defense-only policy and the path of peaceful development for it is conducive to the peace and stability in the region and the world, said the report.

China Daily ("SINO-JAPANESE TIES STRESSED", 07/24/03, P1) reported that top Chinese leaders on July 23 called for more non-governmental contact between PRC and Japan. Meeting in Beijing yesterday with a delegation from the Japanese Association of the Dietmen (parliamentarians) League for Japan-PRC Friendship, President Hu Jintao said PRC and Japan should attach much greater importance than ever to non-governmental contacts. The two countries should encourage the younger generation, including young politicians in both countries, to develop greater friendship, he said. At a separate meeting yesterday, top legislator Wu Bangguo told Yoshiro Hayashi, president of the Japanese association and head of the delegation, that the friendship and common development of PRC and Japan is key to the peace and stability of the region and the world.

China Daily ("TANG MEETS GUESTS", Beijing, 07/22/03, P3) reported that Chinese State Councillor Tang Jiaxuan on July 21 met a Japanese delegation led by Yoshiro Hayashi, president of the Japanese Association of the Parliamentary League for Japan-PRC Friendship. The two sides exchanged views on developing friendly Chinese-Japanese ties.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

3. DPRK Nuclear Issue

China Daily ("DPRK SETS SEPT 9 AS DEADLINE FOR NUCLEAR ANNOUNCEMENT", Tokyo, 07/24/03, P1) reported that the DPRK is prepared to declare itself a nuclear state unless the US responds positively to its proposals for resolving a row over Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions by September 9 - the anniversary of the country's founding, diplomatic sources in Tokyo said. One source with close ties to Pyongyang told reporters that the DPRK was ready to declare itself officially a member of the nuclear club, opening the way for possible nuclear tests and the production of weapons. Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing asserted on July 23 that PRC wants to see the Korean Peninsula free from nuclear weapons and strongly recommended dialogue as the only option to resolve the issue.

People's Daily ("ANNAN STRESSES PEACEFUL SOLUTION TO NUCLEAR ISSUE ON KOREAN PENINSULA", Beijing, 07/26/03, P3) reported that UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said on July 25 that resolving the nuclear and related security issues of the Korean Peninsula must be given pressing priority and a diplomatic solution is both imperative and realistic. In a statement to mark the 50th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice Agreement, Annan said there is a strong international consensus that the Korean peninsula should be free of nuclear weapons. The countries of the region have declared their willingness to address the matter jointly, through peaceful means. Annan noted that resolving the current stand-off must be the first step towards a permanent resolution of the Korean conflict, and only a comprehensive settlement will prevent the recurrence of new crises. He promised that his personal envoy will intensify efforts to help avert a humanitarian calamity in the DPRK, defuse current tensions and prepare for a new era of peaceful development, said the report.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

4. ROK-US Relations on DPRK Nuke Issue

People's Daily ("ROH, BUSH EXCHANGE VIEWS ON DPRK NUCLEAR ISSUE", 07/25/03, P3) reported that ROK President Roh Moo-hyun and US President George W. Bush exchanged views on the settlement of the DPRK's nuclear issue during a telephone conversation on July 24. According to a news release of the Blue House, the South Korean Presidential Office, Roh and Bush reaffirmed that Pyongyang must scrape its nuclear program through "complete, irreversible and verifiable manner." Moreover, the two leaders believed "multilateral talks" can help concerning parties find the threads of the settlement of the nuclear issue. They vowed to try hard for an opening of multilateral meeting.

next itemprev. itemcontentscontacts

5. US-DPRK Relations on DPRK Nuke Issue

People's Daily ("DPRK WARNS US AGAINST DETERIORATING SITUATION", Beijing, 07/25/03, P3) reported that the DPRK warned the US on July 24 against creating a deteriorating situation on the Korean Peninsula. "The United States should know well that its escalated moves to aggravate the situation on the Peninsula will lead it to self-destruction," said a statement released by the foreign ministry before the 50th anniversary of the Korean Armistice Agreement, which was signed on July 27, 1953. Fifty years have passed since the conclusion of the Korean Armistice Agreement, but durable peace have not yet settled on the Korean Peninsula, and the danger of a nuclear war is increasing, the statement said. The DPRK called upon the US earlier this week to drop its hostile policy towards the DPRK and hold negotiations based on equality and trust in settlement of the nuclear issue, said the report.

People's Daily ("US DENIES OFFERING NON-AGGRESSION PLEDGE TO DPRK: SPOKESMAN", 07/23/03, P3) reported that the US on July 12 denied reports that the US is considering to offer a formal non-aggression pledge to the DPRK in exchange for the latter's dismantling of its nuclear programs. "I disagree with that characterization. That is not something that is happening," McClellan said at a news briefing, referring to a report by the Washington Post. The Post reported that Bush administration officials are considering granting DPRK formal guarantees it will not come under US attack as part of a verifiable dismantlement of its nuclear facilities. McClellan described the report as inaccurate. "Our position remains the same," he stressed. "We still continue to seek a diplomatic solution working with the countries in the neighborhood," McClellan said, but adding that "all options of course remain on the table." Such remarks are usually interpreted as Washington's refusal to give up military options. McClellan also reiterated US position to press for "multilateral talks" on DPRK's nuclear issue, saying that progress on "key issues" can be made if talks are held on multilateral basis.

People's Daily ("DPRK URGES US TO HOLD NEGOTIATIONS BASED ON EQUALITY, TRUST", Beijing, 07/21/03, P3) reported that the DPRK on July 21 called upon the US to drop hostile policy toward it and hold negotiations based on equality and trust. "If the United States truly wants a peaceful solution of the DPRK-US nuclear issue, it should respond to" the DPRK proposal for holding "negotiations based on equality and confidence," the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said in a commentary. The DPRK has repeatedly demanded a non-aggression treaty with the US, the KCNA commentary said. However, US is still insisting on "scrapping nuclear program before dialogue" and seeking to isolate and stifle the DPRK by forming an "international siege", it noted. "The nuclear issue between the DPRK and the United States is a very acute matter of 'who beats whom'. Therefore, there can be no unilateral concession or compromise forced by one side," the commentary said. "It can be settled only through negotiations based on the principles of fairness, equality and trust," it added. If the US dropped its hostile policy toward the DPRK and legally committed itself to non-aggression, the DPRK "would be ready to dispel the US concern," the commentary said.

prev. itemcontentscontacts

6. Russia's Stance on DPRK Nuke Issue

People's Daily ("RUSSIA PRESSES FOR POLITICAL SOLUTION OF DPRK NUCLEAR ISSUE", Beijing, 07/24/03, P3) reported that Moscow supports diplomatic efforts for the political settlement of the deteriorating nuclear issue of the DPRK, Deputy Foreign Minister Yury Fedotov said July 23. He considered the escalating tension around DPRK's nuclear problem "a very serious problem," which poses a serious threat to Russia, Interfax reported. "All this is happening in the immediate vicinity of our bordersand the consequences of the possible aggravation of the situation and escalation of tension could be very negative," said Fedotov. Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov warned earlier on July 23 that "there is a hypothetical possibility of a nuclear conflict" on the Korean Peninsula. "The consequences of a nuclear blast, even if it goes off on DPRK's territory, could be detrimental for both the South and the North and, of course, for neighboring countries, including Russia," Losyukov said. Talks ought to be launched immediately, but the main obstacles are DPRK's rejection of a multilateral format and the US' refusal to conduct a two-way dialogue with Pyongyang, said Losyukov.

People's Daily ("RUSSIA URGES DPRK NUCLEAR TALKS TO RESUME AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE", 07/21/03, P3) reported that Russia believes that talks should resume as early as possible for resolving the nuclear issue of the DPRK regardless of Moscow's own participation, visiting Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov said on July 21. Losyukov said this after discussing with ROK Foreign Minister Yoon Young-kwan about the situation on the Korean Peninsula. "Losyukov expressed it is important for nuclear talks to resume at an early date regardless of Russia's participation," an unnamed ROK Foreign Ministry official was quoted by ROK's Yonhap news agency as saying. Losyukov also said that "Russia supports China's role and will work closely with South Korea to make a due contribution (at the talks)," according to the official. Losyukov told Yoon that he was hopeful the DPRK nuclear issue would be resolved peacefully, because all concerned parties agreed that the issue poses a threat to regional and global security, the official said.

The NAPSNet Daily Report aims to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchange among peace and security specialists. Conventions for readers and a list of acronyms and abbreviations are available to all recipients. For descriptions of the world wide web sites used to gather information for this report, or for more information on web sites with related information, see the collection of other NAPSNet resources.
We invite you to reply to today's report, and we welcome commentary or papers for distribution to the network.

Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:

Ilmin Internationl Relations Institute
BK21 The Education and Research Corps for East Asian Studies
Department of Political Science, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China

International Peace Research Institute (PRIME),
Meiji Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan

Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Brandon Yu:
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Young-soo:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hibiki Yamaguchi:
Tokyo, Japan

Saiko Iwata:
Tokyo, Japan

Hiroya Takagi:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Wu Chunsi:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
Shanghai, People's Republic of China

John McKay:
Clayton, Australia

Global Peace and Security Program Northeast Asia Peace and Security Network DPRK Renewable Energy Project Nuclear Policy Project Non-Nuclear NATO Network Related Nautilus Projects NAPSNet Special Reports NATO Flash Nuclear Policy Update South Asia Nuclear Dialogue Nautilus Institute Publications Policy Forum Online Signup for Nautilus Email Services Nautilus Research Kiosk Send Feedback Global Peace and Security Program Staff Nautilus Institute Home Energy, Security and Environment Globalization and Governance Youth/Pegasus Program Digital Library Search the Nautilus Site