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Document 36 of 39.

Copyright 1998 Kyodo News Service  
Japan Economic Newswire

JUNE 16, 1998, TUESDAY

LENGTH: 178 words

HEADLINE: Clinton may meet dissidents in Beijing, says McCurry



U.S. President Bill Clinton may meet with political dissidents during his visit to China from June 25, a White House spokesman indicated Monday.

'The president, every time he goes to countries, touches base with a broad cross-section of the life of that country, and I expect him to do so when he is in China,' spokesman Mike McCurry told a news briefing.

But McCurry avoided further comments on the matter, including who the president may meet.

A group of exiled Chinese dissidents recently asked Clinton to meet them before visiting Beijing next week.

The group, the Free China Movement, said it wants Clinton to allow some of its members to accompany him to Tiananmen Square to lay a wreath as a memorial to those killed by the Chinese military during pro-democracy demonstrations in 1989.

During his visit to Beijing in February 1989, then U.S. President George Bush invited dissident scientist Fang Lizhi to a party hosted by the president.

The invitation, however, angered Chinese authorities, who forced Fang to decline the invitation.


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