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China, Taiwan Agree to Hold Talks

April 24, 1998| Times Wire Services

BEIJING — Opening their first talks in three years, China and Taiwan made plans Thursday for a higher-level meeting before year's end that would mark a significant step forward in relations between the two rivals.

But the negotiators appeared to have quickly become bogged down in details of the meeting, in which a top Taiwanese negotiator, Koo Chen-fu, would travel to China for the first time to meet with his counterpart, Wang Daohan.

China considers Taiwan a renegade province and wants talks on political issues. But Taiwan, which has been separated politically from Beijing since the civil war ended in 1949 with the Communist takeover of the Chinese mainland, said it wants to discuss less sensitive issues first. It has said it will not consider reunification with China until Beijing adopts a market economy and a democratic political system.

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