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2008.10.24 (Fri)

Urgent Recommendation from JINF The Japanese Government Should Refuse To Accept Misguided U.S.-North Korea Agreement

October 24, 2008

Urgent Recommendation from JINF

The Japanese Government Should Refuse To Accept Misguided U.S.-North Korea Agreement

On October 11, the U.S. Department of State issued an agreement entitled “U.S.-North Korea Understandings on Verification.” On the same day, the Bush Administration announced that it had removed North Korea from the State Sponsors of Terrorism list, ignoring voices of opposition even in the U.S.

We at JINF attach immense importance to the Japan-U.S. alliance. For that very reason, we feel compelled to express our disappointment in this ill-advised decision, which blemishes the reputation of the United States and undermines the U.S.-Japan relationship.

Though we have yet to determine whether or not the Japanese government issued a proper warning prior to these developments, the designation of nations as state sponsors of terrorism (as well as the removal of that designation) is, ultimately, a matter of U.S. policy. Therefore, the responsibility for such decisions sits squarely on the shoulders of the U.S. government.

Japan must bear complicit responsibility if it accepts the portion of the U.S.-North Korea deals that concerns verification of North Korean denuclearization. We urge our government to base its actions on decisions made independently.

By using the language “based on mutual consent,” U.S.-North Korea Understandings on Verification affords North Korea the right to refuse access to undeclared sites. It is difficult to envisage North Korea’s consenting to the inspection of nuclear bomb manufacturing or storage facilities. Therefore, the October 11 agreement in fact relinquishes verification rights and tolerates the manufacture of nuclear weapons. Moreover, it harbors the potential for acceptance of North Korea as a nuclear power.

We also urge the Japanese government to take the following actions during the next installment of the Six-Party Talks, anticipated to take place in the near future:

1.    Announce that Japan will not accept any North Korean declaration not including crucial information (e.g., nuclear weapon manufacturing facilities) as “a complete and correct declaration of all its nuclear programs” (Joint Statement of October 3, 2007).

2.    Adopt a strong, principled stance on verification. Do not accept the U.S.-North Korea deal; instead, propose that North Korea allow inspections, even of undeclared sites, should the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) deem them necessary.

JAPAN INSTITUTE FOR NATIONAL FUNDAMENTALS

Sakurai Yoshiko
Takubo Tadae
Ushio Masato
Endo Koichi
Oiwa Yujiro
Shimada Yoichi
Takaike Katsuhiko
Tomiyama Yasushi
Nishioka Tsutomu