Petition 80439

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US-China Political Relations (80439-GM-R301)

Revise Resolution 301, United States-China Political Relations, as follows:
Revise first paragraph:
Our Political Understandings
In late 1978, the governments of the United States and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) reached agreement establishing full diplomatic relations. The United States ended official relations-diplomatic and military-with the authorities on Taiwan.   (In March 1979, the U.S. Congress passed and Taiwan Relations Act, putting U.S. Relations with Taiwan on an unofficial basis.) The United States recognized the People’s Republic of China as the “sole legal government of China” but reserved the right, over PRC objections, to sell “defensive” weapons to Taiwan. At the time of normalization, the PRC refused to rule out the possibility of reunifying with the island of Taiwan by force but offered to allow Taiwan to maintain the political, economic, and military status quo if Taiwan were to recognize PRC sovereignty.  
Delete fifth paragraph, as follows:
Fundamentally, the two countries have yet to determine what kind of long-term relationship they want. Misperceptions and misunderstanding are all too common on both sides, even on basic principles.
As a case in point, the two sides had sharp disagreements during 1981 and 1982 over the issue of continuing U.S. arms sales to Taiwan.  By August 1982, Washington and Beijing had clarified their understanding on this question: The PRC stated that its “fundamental policy” was to “strive for peaceful reunification” with Taiwan. In that context, the U.S. government pledged not to increase and in fact to reduce its sale of arms to Taiwan. But this agreement only holds in abeyance a resolution of the Taiwan issue.