SENATE RESOLUTION 242--EXPRESSING THE SENSE OF THE SENATE OF THE PRESIDENT'S UPCOMIING VISIT TO AND NATIONAL POLICY TOWARD CHINA (Senate - June 04, 1998)

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Mr. ASHCROFT (for himself and Mr. Hutchinson) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations:

S. Res. 242

Whereas the President has pledged that the United States `must remain a champion' of the liberties of the Chinese people;

Whereas two of the most notable Chinese dissidents, Wang Dan and Wei Jingsheng, effectively have been exiled from their country;

Whereas thousands of other individuals remain imprisoned in China and Tibet for peacefully expressing their beliefs and exercising their inalienable rights, including freedom of association, freedom of speech, and freedom of conscience;

Whereas the Government of the People's Republic of China routinely, systematically, and massively continues to commit widespread human rights abuses in Tibet, including instances of death in detention, torture, arbitrary arrest, imprisonment for the peaceful expression of religious and political views, and intensified controls on the freedom of speech and the press, particularly for ethnic Tibetans;

Whereas China has taken extraordinary steps to avoid the condemnation of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights;

Whereas the President has failed to press China aggressively to protect the civil liberties of the Chinese people and failed even to sponsor a resolution at the meeting of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights condemning China's human rights violations, which include forced abortion, summary execution, arbitrary imprisonment, and persecution of religious minorities;

Whereas since November 1994, the President has declared annually a national emergency regarding the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and stated that such proliferation poses `an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States';

Whereas, in a June 1997 report on proliferation activity, the Central Intelligence Agency identified China as `the most significant supplier of weapons of mass destruction-related goods and technology', including missile, nuclear, and chemical weapons technology to rogue states such as Iran;

Whereas United States satellite cooperation with China has benefited China's intercontinental ballistic missile program--missiles with nuclear warheads pointed at the United States, and the Department of Justice is investigating possible missile technology transfers to China resulting from United States-Chinese satellite cooperation;

Whereas the President's decision to waive restrictions on the export to China of missile technology similar to that under investigation by the Department of Justice, and the President's efforts to lift the requirements for launch waivers altogether, undermine the present Justice Department investigation and threatens United States national security;

Whereas the Department of Justice is investigating possible campaign contributions from the People's Liberation Army to the Democratic National Committee through contributions from an executive at China Aerospace International Holdings, an affiliate of China Aerospace Corporation, the firm which oversees China's missile development and space programs;

Whereas China made written commitments to the United States during the October 1997 summit to terminate nuclear cooperation with Iran and was later reported to be violating that pledge by attempting to provide Iran with hundreds of tons of anhydrous hydrogen fluoride, a material for use in Iran's nuclear weapons complex to enrich uranium to weapons grade;

Whereas the President, in allowing nuclear cooperation to proceed with China, certified that `the People's Republic of China has provided clear and unequivocal assurances to the United States that it is not assisting and will not assist any nonnuclear-weapon state, either directly or indirectly, in acquiring nuclear explosive devices or the material and components for such devices';

Whereas the credibility of this certification is undermined by China's continuing proliferation activity, including efforts to assist Iran's nuclear weapons program;

Whereas since the United States normalized trade relations with China in 1979, China has risen from the 57th to 4th largest supplier of United States imports;

Whereas China's trade and investment practices have resulted in a 1997 trade deficit of $49,700,000,000, an imbalance more than 2.5 times larger than the United States trade deficit with all European countries, and accounting for one-fourth of the United States trade deficit with the entire world;

Whereas in the Executive branch's 1997 National Trade Estimate on Foreign Trade Barriers, China's trade regime was identified as `political', `severely restricted', `prohibitive', `unpredictable', `preferential', `de facto', `unpublished', `vague', `inaccessible', `inconsistent', and `noncompetitive';

Whereas facing Congress's near withdrawal of most-favored nation (MFN) status in 1991 and President Bush's threat of sanctions, China, in order to keep MFN status and have the United States support its accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO), agreed that it would allow the United States automobile sector to compete freely in the Chinese market and that, by December 31, 1997, it would eliminate significant trade barriers to United States agricultural exports;

Whereas China's trade liberalization commitments in 1991 have not been honored, yet the Executive branch is moving forward in negotiations for China to accede to the WTO;

Whereas concessions made by China in negotiations to accede to the WTO have been piecemeal, inconsistent, and deficient, and thus limit the economic opportunity of United States businesses and workers;

Whereas Taiwan serves as an example of democratic governance to China and the authoritarian Chinese communist party;

Whereas the People's Republic of China carried out missile exercises in 1995 and 1996 intended to intimidate the people of Taiwan, continues a military buildup directed at the island, refuses to renounce the use of force against Taiwan, and consistently seeks to isolate Taipei from membership in international organizations and general relations with other countries;

Whereas the Chinese communist party has undermined the institutions of democratic government in Hong Kong by abolishing Hong Kong's elected legislature, designing a framework for legislative elections that severely limits representative democracy, and passing retroactive legislation exempting Chinese entities from a host of Hong Kong's laws; and

Whereas the Democratic Party of Hong Kong won every seat elected by direct ballot in Hong Kong, garnering over 60 percent of the popular vote, yet President Clinton has declined to meet individually with the leadership of the Democratic Party of Hong Kong: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That, in the interest of improving United States-China relations, it is the sense of the Senate that--

(1) a healthy and stable relationship with China is in the national interests of the United States;

(2) the Chinese people should be allowed to freely exercise their unalienable rights, including the rights to freedom of speech, of religion, and of association;

(3) efforts by the Chinese government to restrict those liberties pose a threat to a stable China and a positive long-term relationship with the United States;

(4) the President should submit a report to Congress as soon as possible after the proposed summit in China concerning his progress in securing the release of persons remaining imprisoned in China and Tibet and other significant steps to improve human rights;

(5) China's proliferation of weapons of mass destruction technology poses an unusual threat to the national security of the United States;

(6) the President has failed to confront China's proliferation of weapons of mass destruction technology, proliferation that is directly responsible for contributing to an escalating nuclear arms race between India and Pakistan;

(7) the trustworthiness of the Chinese government is undermined when nonproliferation and trade commitments of Chinese officials are repeatedly broken;

(8) the President, in addition to applauding narrow trade concessions from China, should ensure that the highest levels of diplomacy are used to open the entire Chinese market to United States trade and investment;

(9) China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) should be conditioned on China's compliance with past market access commitments and further steps to open China's market to United States investment and trade in goods and services;

(10) the United States should not jeopardize cooperation with and assistance to the democratic government of Taiwan to appease the Chinese government but instead should maintain unambiguously its legal commitments to help maintain Taiwan's capacity for self-defense while calling upon the Chinese government to renounce the use of force against the people of Taiwan;

(11) the preservation of democratic government and rule of law in Hong Kong is an obligation of the Chinese government and failure to honor that obligation will have a negative effect on United States policy toward China;

(12) China is resisting the spread of democracy in Asia, which is occurring from South Korea to Indonesia, and the failure of President Clinton to meet with the leaders of the Democratic Party of Hong Kong undermines his statement to President Jiang that China's repressive government is `on the wrong side of history'; and

(13) the President should not go to China to attend a summit with President Jiang until--

(A) the President has provided a full disclosure to Congress concerning the transfer of United States satellite and missile technology to China; and

(B) United States policy toward China in general has been formulated more effectively to protect United States national security, economic, and human rights interests.
Sec. 2. The Secretary of the Senate shall transmit a copy of this resolution to the President.

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Mr. ASHCROFT. Mr. President, it is fitting on this day, the ninth anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, to submit this resolution calling for the President to delay his trip to China. With allegations swirling about China's efforts to influence U.S. elections, and with the hard evidence we do have of China's continuing proliferation of weapons of mass destruction technologies, rewarding China with a summit visit is sending the wrong signal at the wrong time.

There is perhaps nothing more indicting than a vote in the United States Congress that the actions of a Commander-in-Chief were not in the national interest. And yet, that is precisely what the House of Representatives did on May 20, 1998. By a vote of 417 to 4, the House voted that the President's decision in February 1998 to allow the export of satellite technology to China was `not in the national interest.' The Justice Department reportedly protested the waiver, expressing concern that it would undermine an ongoing criminal investigation of a possible satellite technology transfer that occurred in 1996.

What is just as troubling is the possible link between the export of U.S. satellite technology and political donations from China's People's Liberation Army (PLA). Liu Chao-ying, an officer in the PLA, gave Johnny Chung--one of the central figures in the Administration's fundraising scandal--$300,000 to funnel into democratic coffers in the 1995-96 election cycle. Ms. Liu just happens to be a senior manager and vice president in the China Aerospace conglomerate, Beijing's state-owned company that oversees China's missile development and space launch programs.

The White House says it did not know the source of Mr. Chung's funding. I question how diligently Administration officials and democratic fundraisers wanted to know. Warnings from the National Security Council as to the intentions of Mr. Chung, described by one official as a `hustler,' went unheeded. Senator Thompson's fundraising investigation describe in careful detail how the Democratic National Committee dismantled its vetting process for contributions. Mr. Chung himself visited the White House 49 times. This was not a superficial relationship. This man was a regular guest of the Administration.

The recent scandals surrounding satellite technology transfers and Chinese efforts to influence U.S. elections are only the latest, troubling signs that this Administration's China policy is an abysmal failure. As Harry Wu said at this morning's press conference to commemorate the Tiananmen Square massacre, appeasement does not bring peace.

Appeasement is precisely what this Administration's China policy has become. China announces it will not conduct an inquiry into the Tiananmen Square massacre, yet President Clinton begins his summit at this site, where possibly thousands of Chinese were killed. In Hong Kong, President Clinton will not meet individually with Martin Lee, the leader of pro-democracy forces in the former colony whose Democratic Party won over 60% of the popular vote in the May 24 elections. China is identified by the CIA as the world's worst proliferator of weapons of mass destruction technology, proliferation activity that has contributed directly to the spiraling arms race between India and Pakistan. Yet the Administration rewards China with a nuclear cooperation agreement that will send America's best reactor technology to China. China repeatedly breaks commitments to open its market to U.S. businesses, yet the President renews MFN year after year.

This Administration apparently will overlook any offense to our nation's principles and security to continue the bankrupt policy of engaging communist China. China points nuclear missiles at the U.S., and PLA officers describe the United States as China's `international archenemy.' Yet the Administration allows advanced satellite and missile technology to be sent to China which a Pentagon memo says harmed U.S. national security.

China's actions, and this Administration's response to those actions, has set the U.S.-China relationship on a gravely dangerous course. It is time for a fundamental reevaluation of U.S. China policy. This resolution will provide a good start. This resolution outlines the areas of concern in our policy toward China, from human rights to national security to trade matters. In contrast to how U.S.-China relations have been administered for the last six years, a sound relationship between our two countries must be based on integrity, responsibility, and mutual respect.

China's behavior across the board has not given any basis for this Administration to pursue a `strategic partnership' with Beijing. Appeasement will not bring peace. This Administration obviously did not learn the lessons of the Cold War. China is an aggressive power that seeks regional hegemony. Extending MFN trade status in exchange for a $50 billion trade deficit, sending China our best nuclear reactor technology in exchange for Chinese weapons proliferation, and beginning the summit at Tiananmen Square when China continues to imprison its people is not the kind of policy that will bring mutual respect and peace in East Asia.

I call on the President to delay his trip to China until questions surrounding satellite technology transfer have been answered and U.S. China policy has been formulated more effectively to protect American interests. Senator Hutchinson is joining me as a cosponsor of this resolution, and I appreciate his tremendous work in this area. This resolution is designed to send a signal to the Chinese government and the victims of its repression that there are limits to the tolerance of China's appalling human rights record, continuing trade obstructionism, and destabilizing proliferation.

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