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投稿者 明星 日時 1999 年 11 月 05 日 12:36:44:


Thursday, November 4, 1999 Published at 23:00 GMT

US and China to restore ties

The US and China are ready to establish military links broken off
after Nato's bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade in May.
The US Defence Secretary, William Cohen, said he hoped for concrete
steps to be taken soon to re-establish military-to-military contacts
which existed before "the incident". He said the Chinese had
"indicated that they would like to re-establish those contacts", and
the two nations were involved in talks. He said hoped to re-establish
his relationship with the Chinese Defence Minister, Chi Haotian, in
the near future, with reciprocal visits. Mr Cohen was forced to
abandon a visit to Beijing earlier this year because of the Kosovo
war. Positive signs No concrete steps have yet been agreed with
China, but Pentagon spokesman Ken Bacon said talks had been "very
positive". China passed on its decision to resume the military
relationship in meetings in Beijing last week with US Under
Secretary of State Thomas Pickering. "The next step is to get
together the US and Chinese officials to work out how we plan to
restart this relationship," Mr Bacon said. A senior American defence
official, Kurt Campbell, and an officer from the US Pacific Command
are due to visit China later this month. Mr Bacon said the Pentagon
hoped to hold a meeting of a US-Chinese defence consultative
committee in January. BBC Washington correspondent Paul Reynolds
says the announcement is a further sign that China is moving to
restore more normal relations with the US. It comes as President
Bill Clinton steps up his campaign for trade talks with China ahead of
a World Trade Organisation meeting. Beijing suspended military
contacts, including exchanges of senior and mid-level officers and
visits by US military ships to Chinese ports, after the embassy was
hit by a bomb during Nato's air campaign against Yugoslavia. Three
people were killed and more than 20 wounded in the attack. The
bombing led to huge demonstrations against the US throughout China.
Chinese officials consistently refused to accept Nato explanations
that the bombing was a mistake. Chinese and American officials
reached a deal in July for $4.5m compensation for the bombing. In
another move which could build confidence with China, a Senate
Committee has approved the appointment of retired Admiral Joseph
Pruher as the US Ambassador to China. He is a former Pacific
Commander who is experienced in contacts with China.



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