Tuesday, March 07, 2017

China may be the key in North Korean hostage situation

FMT - Malaysians in North Korea barred from leaving, Khairy cries ‘hostage’ (extracts):

SEOUL: The North Korean regime says it will not allow Malaysian citizens to leave the country, hours after both countries sent home their ambassadors amid worsening ties.

“All Malaysian nationals in the DPRK will be temporarily prohibited from leaving the country until the incident that happened in Malaysia is properly solved,” the government-controlled Korea Central News Agency said, citing the foreign ministry.

In an immediate reaction, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said the latest move was “tantamount to taking hostages”.

“This is unacceptable. DPRK must allow free passage of Malaysians at once,” he said on Twitter.

There are currently 11 Malaysians in North Korea, nine of whom are embassy staff and two who are part of the UN Food Programme.

The North Korean government, as I posted earlier, is mad, irrational and couldn't-care-less about international diplomatic norms and protocol.

I mentioned this in an earlier post titled Negara Gila.

Taking Malaysians as hostages would be saap-saap-suoi (chicken feed stuff) compared to the North Korean government having already kidnapped or murdered people on the international arena.

I recommend staying cool and not provoking that crazy government. They want mucho face.

Barring North Koreans from leaving Malaysia could be counter-productive as Pyongyang couldn't care less about its citizens, who I suspect would be quite happy to remain here as our 'guests' forever.

Go behind the public and diplomatic scenes, don't react to agitations (batu-api-rizations) from/by South Korea or the USA, and instead use the good office of the Chinese government to 'slow-talk' those crazies.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, stands with visiting Chinese official Liu Yunshan in Pyongyan

11 Malaysian lives in Pyongyang depend on cool heads in Putrajaya. I wish the government best of luck in arriving at a safe decision for our people, and to our 11 citizens in Pyongyang, selamat bertenang. May the heavens bless and smile on you.


  1. Last year, China media reported that Kim Jong-Un executed his uncle Jang Song-thaek by having him stripped naked and fed to a pack of starving dogs.

    Hmmm..... this is a seriously sick guy.

    Unfortunately there is a parallel dynamic going on, nothing to do with Malaysia. North Korea just fired 4 ballistic missiles simultaneously into the Sea of Japan, 3 of them landing within 200 miles of Japan, within its Exclusive Economic zone. It is a simulated wartime attack...a warning to Japan.

    Donald Trump just ordered the 1st deployment of US THAAD anti-ballistic missiles to South Korea - they arrive via C-5 Galaxy transport tomorrow.

    Kim Jong Un CANNOT afford to appear soft right now.

    The Malaysian diplomats in Pyongyang are in a very dangerous situation. It is extremely rare in modern times for diplomats to be in physical danger from their host nation, but this one may be such a case.

    In olden days, the Mongols used to execute envoys who displeased them. Such was the immense might of the Khan, they didn't give a damn what the other rulers would react.

  2. "2 of them with the World Food Program"...my goodness..that means Malaysians working with the UN Agency which is providing aid for North Korea's severe malnutrition problem.

    A country which lacks the ability to feed its own people, instead splurges money and resources on building nuclear bombs and ballistics missiles.

  3. my personal view is najib govt r trying very hard to provoke nationalism, first is myanmar, now is n korea, next is perhaps india, mahathir hometown.

  4. http://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2017/03/03/jongnam-murder-umno-to-review-ties-with-wpk/

    Many Malaysians do not realise that UMNO has close ties to the North Korean communist party, and a number of UMNO leaders have benefited from it.

    UN sanctions have banned member countries from exporting and importing most commercial goods to and from North Korea except food and medicine.

    Malaysia has allowed itself to be used as a "laundering" centre for North Korean imports and exports, and as usual some Ruling Party officials enrich themselves. Goods magically reappear as Country of Origin "Malaysia", and can be sold all over the world.

    Chickens coming home to Roost....

  5. China has a profound interest in ensuring the survival of the North Korean regime.

    An East German-style collapse of the Kim Dynasty would be a frightening nightmare, allowing a Capitalist, US defence treaty-ally South to reach right to its border on the Yalu river.

    "No Way" China will allow it.
    So, no matter what, China will not exert any real, severe pressure on North Korea's policies and actions.

    1. you are both right and wrong. Yes, it's in China's interest to sustain the North Korean regime but lately it's annoyed with NK firing missiles etc, and has as a show of its annoyance temporarily stop importation of NK's coal which to NK constitutes 90 of its export earnings.

  6. "China may be the key in North Korean hostage situation"

    My take Kim Jong-un doesn't give a damn shit to China now with the death of Kim Jong-nam who was living in Macau under the chinese protection. China has lost a valuable asset under its custody. What can the chinese leverage with Kim Jong-un now?

    The real brain behind North Korea regime is Russia. The North Koreans are now processing oil from Siberia and there are more than 10,000 North Koreans in Russia, either working (cheap labour), military training or in the universities.

    Kim Jong-un is actually hitting China but unfortunately Malaysia became the victim of circumstances.

    I put the blame on China for its security lapsed on Kim Jong-nam and for putting the lives of 11 Malaysians in danger.

    It is between China and North Korea. Biarlah komunis bergaduh dengan komunis dan janganlah kita mati di tengah tengah.

    Wisma Putra should follow the Vienna Convention i.e. to allow the safe return of all North Koreans in Malaysia to the suffocating embrace of Kim Jong-un.

    1. wakakaka, your spin is nonsense as NK is almost almost wholly dependent economically on China. But even then, China finds it difficult to control maverick NK, as evidenced by China's recent show of anger in stopping NK coal from being imported into China. The coal represents 90% of NK earnings.

      the assassination of Jong-nam has to do more with family inheritance issues where the puppet masters in Pyongyang finds it easier to control Jong-un. That has been why, apart from Jong-nam, his uncles etc had been assassinated.

      After the momentary stoppage of coal importation from NK, China will continue its mentorship and economic/food aid work in NK as it's defence-wise important to have NK on its side, politically and geographically

    2. Don't you think China would want to stabilize DPRK, perhaps, with the installment of a new regime loyal to China... but now both the uncle and also Kim Jong-nam are dead by firing squad and VX?

      But you are partly right because I think the Washinton post does spin a bit too. Wakakaka..

    3. of course China wants a stable reliable and dependable (as an ally) NK, but there's so much China can do, such as economic deprivation (but not for too long or that would increase the instability) and political cold-shouldering.

      In a sense NK in its maverick ways is independent. Besides, Chinese historical suzerainty over the two Koreas during the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties haven't really endeared China to Koreans, so the Chinese must not just be firm with NK but delicately so, wakakaka.

      China had just allowed Jong-Nam to take refuge in Macau as it had various other rulers and political leaders such as Sihanouk but did not necessarily control or manipulate them. The Chinese were investing in gratitude and strategic goodwill, just as Malaysia has been doing with the Pattani separatists, Abu Sayyaf, Abu Bakar Bashir, spiritual leader of Jemaah Islamiyah and founder of JAT, two terrorist groups in Indonesia but before he became involved, just as France also played host to Ayatollah Khomeini and various others

    4. Today, Kim Jong-Un and Putin have a much greater control on the lever than Beijing.

      You are right, geographically, China needs NK as a buffer. Persoalannya siapa kowtow siapa lah?

      Perhaps, there has been a mistake.. Kim Jong-Nam had died of a heart attack after all?