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Joint Statement Following Discussions With the Vice President of the Republic of China.

August 02, 1961

PRESIDENT KENNEDY and Vice President Chen have concluded a series of cordial and constructive talks on a broad range of international problems and matters of common interest to the governments and peoples of the United States and the Republic of China. Foreign Minister Shen, Secretary Rusk, Ambassador Yeh, Ambassador Drumright, and other Chinese and U.S. officials participated in the conversations, which were characterized by a spirit of understanding and mutual interest consonant with the deep and lasting friendship between the two countries.

The President, who at his personal initiative had invited the Vice President to the United States for these discussions, welcomed this opportunity to reaffirm the close ties between the Governments and peoples of the United States and the Republic of China.

In their review of the world situation, the President and the Vice President agreed that while Berlin is the current focus of world attention, this problem can be evaluated only against the background of the world-wide Communist challenge. They agreed that although the free world has made serious efforts to relax world tensions, the belligerency of the Communist bloc has thus far rendered these efforts fruitless. They further agreed that free world interests require the continued presence of free world forces in West Berlin and the maintenance of the security and the viability of West Berlin.

The President and the Vice President discussed at length the present situation in Asia and expressed their concern over the future of Laos. The President stated that while he is hopeful that the Geneva Conference on Laos will result in the emergence of a truly neutral and independent Laos, the United States will not approve any arrangement which would result in Communist domination of that country. The President stated that the United States is determined that the Republic of Viet-Nam shall not be lost to the Communists for lack of any support which the United States Government can render.

The President and the Vice President welcomed the announced policies of the new Korean Government to continue its partnership with the free world, to oppose communism, and to combat the economic problems that face the Korean people.

In their discussion of Chinese representation in the United Nations there was a candid and comprehensive exchange of views on all relevant issues including the pending applications for United Nations membership of Outer Mongolia and Mauritania. The President reiterated firm United States support for continued representation of the Republic of China in the United Nations, of which she is a founding member. He also reaffirmed the U.S. determination to continue to oppose admission of the Chinese Communist regime to the United Nations.

The President and the Vice President expressed their intention to support the admission to the United Nations of the nations emerging into independence which meet the qualifications set forth in the Charter. In this connection they noted with concern the Soviet veto which has frustrated the admission of Mauritania. The Vice President declared that the Republic of China has consistently supported admission of the newly independent states and that it will continue to support the deserved admission of Mauritania.

The President and the Vice President reviewed conditions on the China mainland. In the economic field, they noted that Communist mismanagement, unworkable agricultural policies, and the Commune system have brought serious food shortages and grave hardships to the Chinese people. They noted that reports from refugees and visitors indicate the magnitude of the apathy, discontent, and disillusionment on the mainland of China. They agreed that these developments provide vivid proof that the Communist regime cannot meet the genuine needs and desires of the Chinese people for economic and social progress.

The President and the Vice President discussed United States assistance for the continued economic growth of free China. The President noted the remarkable achievements of the past ten years in Taiwan, which have brought unprecedented improvements in the standard of living, in public health and education, and in industrial and agricultural output. He noted that, in contrast with the disregard for human rights manifested by the Chinese Communist regime, this record was accomplished without violence to the great traditions and human values which have been cherished throughout history by the Chinese people. The President confirmed the intention of the United States Government to continue its military aid program in the Republic of China and to provide substantial assistance to the Republic of China in support of its economic development program designed to achieve accelerated social and economic progress for the welfare of the people of free China.

In conclusion, the President and the Vice President recognized the importance of further strengthening the close cooperation and coordination of both countries in matters affecting their common security interests.

John F. Kennedy, Joint Statement Following Discussions With the Vice President of the Republic of China. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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