THE GANDO DIS­PUTE

The Washington Times Weekly - - Geopolitics -

The tick­ing sound of a po­lit­i­cal time bomb in Chi­nese-South Korean re­la­tions got a lit­tle louder last week. On Sept. 19, South Korea’s For­eign Af­fairs and Trade Min­istry sent an of­fi­cial note to the National Assem­bly af­firm­ing South Korea’s ter­ri­to­rial and sov­er­eign rights to a large swath of land in­side China’s bor­der, just north of the up­per por­tion of the Chi­nese-North Korean bound­ary.

The area is roughly 17,000 square miles, twice the size of New Jersey. The Chi­nese call the area the Yan­bian Eth­nic Korean Au­ton­o­mous Pre­fec­ture, while the Kore­ans have long known it as the Gando re­gion.

The root of the dis­pute dates to the 1909 Gando Con­ven­tion in which the Ja­panese, who had been ex­ert­ing de facto colo­nial con­trol over Korea af­ter the 1904-05 Russo-Ja­panese War, handed this eth­ni­cally Korean ter­ri­tory to China’s Qing dy­nasty, and China has kept it ever since.

Pop­u­lar de­mand is grow­ing among Kore­ans to void the Gando Con­ven­tion. In Oc­to­ber 2004, Ban Ki-moon, the cur­rent United Na­tions sec­re­tary-gen­eral who was then South Korea’s for­eign af­fairs and trade min­is­ter, caused sim­i­lar diplo­matic stir when he re­sponded to a par- ing pot shots at the can­di­date.

Ms. Tsai was in Washington last week and is the Demo­cratic Pro­gres­sive Party choice to face cur­rent Kuom­intang Party Pres­i­dent Ma Ying-jeou in a Chi­nese com­mu­nist pro­pa­ganda. The ar­ti­cle was based upon a psy­cho­log­i­cal pro­file of Ms. Tsai called “Ob­ser­va­tions and Anal­y­sis of Tsai Ing-wen’s Po­lit­i­cal Per­son­al­ity.” It was car­ried by

The area is roughly 17,000 square miles, twice the size of New Jersey. The Chi­nese call the area the Yan­bian Eth­nic Korean Au­ton­o­mous Pre­fec­ture, while the Kore­ans have long known it as the Gando re­gion. The root of the dis­pute dates to the 1909 Gando Con­ven­tion in which the Ja­panese, who had been ex­ert­ing de facto colo­nial con­trol over Korea af­ter the 1904-05 Russo-Ja­panese War, handed this eth­ni­cally Korean ter­ri­tory to China’s Qing dy­nasty, and China has kept it ever since.

sion that she is “cold,” “cal­cu­lat­ing,” “pro-Ja­panese,” “anti-com­mu­nist,” “spoiled,” “stub­born,” “op­por­tunis­tic,” “glib,” “men­da­cious,” “self-seek­ing,” “cruel,” “re­venge­ful,” “pro-[Tai­wan] in­de­pen­dence,” “dis­hon­est” and, worst of all, a “Cold War­rior.”

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