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Chinese FM to attend Reagan funeral

June 10, 2004 at 5:53 AM

BEIJING, June 10 (UPI) -- China announced Thursday it was sending Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing to represent the country at Ronald Reagan's state funeral in Washington.

The announcement was made by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs press spokesman Liu Jianchao at a briefing for reporters in Beijing.

Liu said, "Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing will be the special envoy of President Hu Jintao to attend the funeral of former president Reagan."

United Press International asked for the ministry's response to reports that former Taiwan Foreign Minister Fredrick Chien would be at the funeral. Liu stated, "China is strongly opposed to any official contacts, or any contact of an official nature, between Taiwan and the United States."

UPI has learned that Chien will attend the funeral as the personal representative of Taiwan president Chen Shui-bian. Also attending the event will be Chen Chien-Jen, Chief Representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the USA, based in Washington D.C.

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