WASHINGTON (Jul. 8)
Sen. Henry M. Jackson said today that the People’s Republic of China was less interested in the Arab-Israeli dispute than it was concerned about Soviet power in the Indian Ocean, that he was prepared to reach a “sensible arrangement” with the Soviet Union on the emigration issue but that the Russians would have to show more “give” if a compromise is to be reached on the Jackson Amendment. The Washington Democrat made those points addressing a press conference here following his return from an official visit to mainland China.
He said that Soviet interference with American news media during the Nixon summit visit when the media tried to report on the situation of “Jews seeking emigration was a “setback” to any arrangement with regard to the Jackson Amendment, “They are not going to get MFN (most favored nation treatment) until they show a willingness” to abide by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Jackson said.
He said that on his trip he found the Chinese not willing to talk in detail about the Middle East except in terms of the Indian Ocean and what they see as a Soviet threat to Iran and Pakistan. He said this did not indicate a handsoff policy by China in the Middle East. Jackson said he had discussed the Middle East with Chinese leaders, however. “China formally supports the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization); China formally supports the Arab countries against Israel.” Jackson said, adding “I said formally. How much it goes beyond that I was unable to ascertain.”
KEY ISSUE IS HARASSMENT
Referring to his amendment to the Trade Reform Bill that would condition U.S. trade benefits to Russia on an easing of its emigration policies, Jackson said there “are areas in which compromise and negotiations from which compromise can be effectuated.” But the movement has to come from Russia, he stressed. He emphasized that any agreement in substance with the Russians must be in a form that the U.S. by its own means can determine if it is being carried out.
He said he had made it clear from the beginning that not everyone has to leave the Soviet Union at once. “The real issue is whether it is possible for a person to apply for a visa and no lose his job or have his child treated in a discriminatory way,” Jackson said. “The harassment issue is the key issue and it continues,” he said. But he stressed that the number of people who leave Russia “can be worked out. I am ready to work out a sensible arrangement.”
Jackson rejected a statement by his colleague, Sen. J. William Fulbright (D.Ark.) on the NBC “Meet The Press” program yesterday that the Jackson Amendment could be “revoked in light of developments. He said opponents of the measure were always raising that viewpoint and it was wrong. Asked if there would be a Trade Reform Bill this year, Jackson replied, “I know what I’m going to do.”