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U.S. Department of State
96/11/19 Press remarks en route Beijing, China
Office of the Spokesman

                       U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
                       Office of the Spokesman

                      (En Route Beijing, China)
For Immediate Release                        November 19, 1996

                             Remarks by
            Secretary of State Warren Christopher
                     En Route Beijing, China

                         November 19, 1996

First, let me stress the great importance that the President and I 
attach to the relationship between the United States and China.  From 
the standpoint of the people of the United States, the people of this 
region -- indeed the people of the world -- I regard this as one of a 
handful of the most important relationships.  In that context, I think 
it is of high importance that we adopt a steady and comprehensive 
approach to the relationship and we have done so.  This has, I think, 
enabled us to accomplish a number of things over the recent months--the 
settlement of the ring magnets issue, the agreement in respect to 
intellectual property, working together on the North Korea issue, 
working together at the United Nations on many issues including the Non-
Proliferation Treaty and Comprehensive Test Ban.  These have been the 
product of a steady and comprehensive approach to the relationship 
between the two countries.

History and circumstance and tradition probably mean that there will be 
divergent views over the years, but they are substantially outweighed in 
my judgment by the common interests we have between our two countries.  
I look forward to these meetings as ones that will enable us to 
establish an even broader strategic concept for the relationship from a 
global, regional and bilateral basis.  The meetings will also help to 
prepare for the meeting between Jiang Zemin and President Clinton in 
Manila three or four days from now.  

But we have lots of work to do together.  Just take the global areas 
where we need to be working together.  Proliferation is one example.  
There is also narcotics, law enforcement, terrorism, human rights, the 
rule of law and the environment.

Speaking of the environment, I expect to be discussing the progress we 
have made and can make on environmental issues where the United States 
and China may be the two most important countries in the world on issues 
like climate change--where we both contribute to the problem and have 
the ability to effect its solution.  Issues of sustainable development 
that the Vice President has been working with Li Peng have great 

Just from those global issues you can see the very broad range of issues 
we need to address.  On the regional front, there are such issues as 
North Korea, Hong Kong, the South China Sea and working together in the 
ASEAN Regional Forum.  So it is a very comprehensive, very broad 
relationship and I feel a strong commitment to working on all facets of 
the relationship and not letting any one dominate our approach to China.  

With that introduction let me try and answer some of your questions.

QUESTION:  Mr. Secretary, can you talk specifically about how you are 
going to approach the Chinese on non-proliferation issues.  What is your 
message to them specifically?  And are you going to ask them to halt the 
Iranian processing facilities, for instance?

SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER:  I am going to be discussing with the Chinese 
ways in which we can bring into effect the 1985 agreement on peaceful 
nuclear cooperation.  Among the problems we will need to discuss in 
connection with that are some administrative issues within their own 
country relating to their export controls.  I will be discussing Iran 
with them as I frequently do.  There may be some basis for contending 
that Iran is already bound by the Non-Proliferation Treaty and full-
scope safeguards.  Nevertheless, the United States feels that Iran's 
record with respect to terrorism, with respect to attempts to acquire 
weapons of mass destruction, with respect to its open opposition to the 
peace process--I simply think that Iran is not to be trusted with this 
highly sensitive technology and I will be discussing it in those terms.

QUESTION:  Mr.  Secretary, you mentioned North Korea several times in 
your opening remarks.  As you well know, there are problems with the 
nuclear arrangement.  South Korea is demanding an apology from North 
Korea.  North Korea is threatening to fire up the reactors again.  Can 
you first of all give us your assessment of the extent to which that 
agreement is in danger?  And second of all, what kind of assistance at 
this point would you like to see from the Chinese in trying to put it 
back on track again?

SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER:  The Framework Accord between the United States 
and North Korea has proved to be quite durable through a rather long 
period of time as we have gone through the steps called for by the 
Accord.  The United States has been furnishing oil and KEDO has been 
moving forward in its processes.  When I met with Foreign Minister Gong 
recently we agreed it was very important to preserve the Framework 
Accord because through it we have frozen the North Korean nuclear 
development and have the potential to dismantle it.  So I expect to be 
talking with the new South Korean--Republic of Korea--Foreign Minister 
in Manila on the importance of moving forward with the Framework Accord-
-carrying through on the steps in respect to KEDO.  In connection with 
China, I will be talking with the Foreign Minister in China about the 
importance of encouraging the North Koreans to go forward with the four 
party talks and looking toward a peace treaty to replace the Armistice.  
I think it is in that connection that China can be most effective in 
trying to persuade the North Koreans to accept the briefing we want to 
give them as to how those four party talks might go forward.  The 
Chinese quite regularly indicate that their influence is limited but 
nevertheless we think there is some influence and I think they have been 
helpful in the past and I hope they will be helpful in the future.  The 
simplest way I can say it is:  we want to keep that accord on track and 
we think that China also recognizes the importance of a nuclear free 
Peninsula and can use its influence with North Korea to that end.

QUESTION:  Mr.  Secretary,  on the questions of visits that are coming 
up.  Obviously we want to use the visits to some degree as leverage with 
the Chinese but would you expect that Mr. Gore--the Vice President-- 
would still go to China before the end of the year?  And secondly, would 
you think that his visit would be dependent on what happens on July 1 in 
Hong Kong?

SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER:  One thing I think I can answer with some 
assurance is I don't think the Vice President will be going before the 
end of this year.  I will be discussing the possibilities of visits with 
the Chinese officials that I will be meeting with tomorrow.  I will 
expect those issues to be further discussed in Manila in the meetings to 
take place there.  As you know, I said in New York that I thought it was 
desirable to have regular visits between the leaders of our two 
countries.  I think that is true of the Foreign Minister level and I 
will certainly be recommending that to my successor.  I think we need to 
work out a regular program of visits at higher levels.  I think that is 
something that will be suffused throughout this trip--both here in 
Beijing and in Manila--in the meetings in Manila as well.  Michael?

QUESTION:  Mr. Secretary, as you know prior to your visit the Chinese 
authorities took a number of harsh actions against dissidents including 
a long sentence for Wang Dan.  Have you anything to say about this 
action by the Chinese authorities?  And in connection with the previous 
question, can you envisage a formal summit meeting between President 
Clinton and Jiang Zemin as long as these repressive actions against 
human rights activists continue in China? 

SECRETARY CHRISTOPHER:  I expect that I will be discussing human rights 
and rules of law issues at all of my meetings tomorrow.  I have a very 
full schedule of meetings tomorrow and I expect those issues to come up.  
With respect to the meetings at the highest levels, I would emphasize 
the importance of the overall relationship--the fact that we need to 
have a steady and comprehensive approach to the relationship where it is 
not rooted in a single issue.  I think I went over with you the very 
important global and regional issues not to mention the many bilateral 
issues we have with China.  I think the President will want to take 
those steps which are in the interest of the people of the United States 
and the region and the world in judging the desirability of meetings at 
the highest levels.  Thank you very much.

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