Created: 6/1/1985

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The Changing Sino-Soviet Relationship





fnlorranlonf5 -Ji Wd In lW rqtoiration of ihu Eaimair. which ni approval tv iho Nalional Foroign Intlllaeocc Board orS.




The following intelligence organization, participated in the preparation of the Estimate:

Th* Central InteKoence Agency, the Del en ve Intelligence Agency, Ihe National Security Agency, and The iMefcgenc*ol the Department of Stole.

Also Participating:

Iho Atiitfanl Chief of SlofT loreportmoni ot the Arm,

Ihe Director ol Navalepartment of the Navy

Iho Aiiisront Chiol of Staff. Intelligence, Dcportmenl ol ihe Air Force


Several significant events in Sino-Soviet relations in the past year have led us lo reexamine the conclusions ofompleted inn spite of the current leadership tensions apparent in Beijing and the receni succession of Mikhail Gorbachev as Secretary General in the Soviet Union, we judge that the Estimate's major conclusions are still valid:

Moscow's and Beijing's fundamental strategic outlooks will remain at odds.

The basic differences at the root of iheir animosity for more than two decades will remain; each side will continue to be deeply suspicious of the long-range intentions of the other.

The Chinese leadership will coniinue lo sec the positiveand strategic value of Chinas relationship with the Uniied States.

There willurther warming in the atmosphere of the relationship and expansion in trade, scientific, technological, cultural, and educational ties.

Thc advances in the relationship over the past year havegenerally consistent with thc Estimate's description of the most likely course in Sino-Soviet relations: the level of hostility between Moscow and Beijing will decrease, and there will be additional agreements on trade and economic and other such secondary matters. These changes have come,ittle more Quickly and haveittle further than the Estimateear ago held likely.

Both Beijing and Moscow probably genuinely desire ways to lower tensionsariety of domestic polilical and economic reasons. Each side appears to be testing the other's flexibility anddeiermine whether something substantial can be attained at low cost. Moreover, overtures by both sides earlier this year probably were also intended for the benefit of third parties, particularly the Uniied States. Deng Xiaoping, for example, has sent signals that he wants more USin helping to bring about reunification with Taiwan. Beijing's positive gestures to lhe Sovicls could be partly designed to pressure Washington to be more responsive on this issue and less receptive to Taiwan's inlcrcsls in receiving more modern arms.

We probably will witness continued advancement in thc secondary aspects of tire relationship as well as limited parly-to-party contacts that may gradually takeore formal character:

Additional trade, scientific, technical, educational, and cultural agreements will be signed; the Soviets will helpew factories built with their aid during.

An agreement to open at least two, possibly four, consulates probably will be signed; additional border crossing points will be opened.

There will probably be additional state-to-state contacts, such as parliamentary exchanges; there may be conciliations between Foreign Ministers and possibly Premiers.

There could be some agreement on Confidence Buildingalong the border, such as mutual advanced notiGcation of troop movements or exercises.

Neither Moscow nor Beijing, however, will make the concessions necessary for their rcUtk-nship lo go beyond the bounds outlined above. They almost certainly will not make any significant progress on matters related to Afghanistan or Indochina. We now believe thai talks on border territorial issues are mote likely lo resume than the Estimate predicted. However, even if border talks do begin again, we judge thai resolution of the border territorial disputes as well as regional security issues will remain elusive. An understanding to "thin out" or withdraw some forces from the border is slightly more possible.

The most likely course of Sino Soviel relations will not harm any significant US Inlerests. We judge that for the next two years and probably longer Beijing will not move to an equidistant position in ils relations with Moscow and Washington. Chinese leaders keenlythe United States' valuetrategic countrrweight to Moscow andource of much-needed economic and military technology.

There are, however, sevetal uncertainties thai could affect our


Moscow, underew leadership, couldreater than-expected effort to accommodate Chinese securily concerns, which might leadore substantial rapprochement.

A power struggle could erupt within the Chinese leadership before or after Deng dies. We believe thai disagreementsumber of issues, primarily lhe pace and scope of economic reform and leadership changes, have strained relations among

cccjflf r

senior Chinese leaders. Questions concerning relations with the United States and the USSR have become parthese debates. Given our uncertainty over the outcome of these debates, we cannot rule out the possibility of Brijing's taking steps sooner than wc anticipate to further improve relations with Moscow.

Deng's ambitious economic reforms could experience serious problems, which could leadeakening of his political position and that of his chosenetreat from the goals of Deng's economic program would diminish one of the Chinese motivations for good reUtidns with the Unitedthe need for US technology and investment. However, because the Soviets are not likely lo make major force reductions along thc border, or to back away from their goals in Indochina and Afghanistan, any new leadership in Beijing would face the same strategic situation (hat currently limits close Sino-Soviet political relations.

deterioration of relations between the United States and China over Taiwan could lead Beijing touch more even balance fn its relations with the two superpowers than currentlye do not believe, however, that in loosening ties to the United States (lie Chinese would move substantially closer to the USSR.

Crises over Afghanistan. Pakistan. Indochina. Tliailand. ond other areas could leadew estrangement in Sino-Soviet relations.

Soviet moves to draw North Korea closer could intensify Chinese suspicions of Soviet intentions

If our most likely scenario ptoves wrong and Moscow and Beijing go substantially further in improving their relationship, then US interests would be directly and adversely affected. Moves such as rapidly establishing more formal party-to-party contacts, an agreement to withdraw or draw down Soviet forces on the Sino-Soviet/Sino-Mongoliaii border, and resolution of the border territorial disputes wouldowerful impact on international perceptions. Other countries might conclude that such developments meant tliat the United States wastrategic asset and that Moscow had eased the threatwo-front war, thus strengthening its positionis NATO. More important, Soviet leaders might conclude that the general strategic danger to thc USSR had cased, leading them to adopt an even more aggressive attitude toward the Uniied Slates


Has Happened

1 Several significant events have occurred since lhe Estimate was completed in April of last year (for details, see Chronology in Ihewo of these events have been pivotal In further warming the atmosphere of Sino-Soviet relationset easing trade and economic tics:

First Deputy Premier ArVliipov was received in Helling Inaking him the highest ranking Soviet otTicial to visit China inears.'

Mikhail Gorbachev was appointed SovietSecretary after thc death of Chernenko

Toositive atmosphere and ensure the success of Arkhipov's visit, Beijing made unusual effoils, such as remaining silent on the fifthof the Soviel invasion of Afghanistan and briefly withdrawing troop* from the Sirto-Vietnamese border. The visit was described by both sidesuccess Moscow and Beninu signed an expanded tradeplus new agreements on economic cooperation and exchanges In science and technology. Moreover. Vice Premier Yao YlUn was Quoted by the official Chinese news service as calling Arkhipovnd Chen Yun alluded to the socialist nature of both countries.

Following Oiernenko's death, bothrnrticuUrly thea series of symbolic gesturesesire to improve relations.acceptance speech called lor serious improve tnent in relations with Chinaeciprocal basis Unlike the last speech attributedebruary USSR Supreme Soviet electionGorbachev's remarks did not mention "seriousdifferences" dividing Moscow and Beijing.this. Chinese National People's Congress Standing Committee Cha.iiman Peng Then called Gorbachev "comrade."Gorbachev met with Vice Premier Ll Peng, who conveyed party Generaln Yaoba tig's congratulalurvTins was the first Chinese partv- to-party message

eAlrtseimadr inilh Ihe late Pinnier Zhou Kntal.


Agreedive-year trade accord daring the Cm haHS aimed at laising lhe levnl ol trade to USillionnd increasing tradey aboutoercent.

Agreed tooint committee on economic, trade, "Sc. and technical cooperation toand implement agiremrnts and protocols.

Agreed to exchange scientific and technicaland groups, scholars, and experts, as well as train each other's technical personnel.

Agreed to discus Soviet help io refurhnhingbuilt with Soviet assistance duringto eichange and mutually study production technology.

Agreed to hold bilateral economic talis at the "" level inS.

Agreed to considerultural cooperation agreement

in IS years' Li also referred to. the USSR ascountry for the first tirae'rsinceiUingness lo raise theto the same level as the dialogues onculture, and lecbnologv. This series ofled us to reexamine trends in

Chinese ond Soviet Motivations

e have little reporting about eilher side'sand calculations In this latest round of symbolic gestures We believe that lioth sides probably have been engaged in tactical maneuvering, (rsling each others tlcaibilitv and Intentions and determining whether something substantial can be attained al low cost Both Beu'ing and Moscow probably genuinely desire lo lower tensionsariety of domestic political and economic leasuns

j We believe that the recent shills in atmosphere areaige extent abo intended lo influence the

'Allor Maoeatli.Pill, menace to

hirh lha Chinese iIkI not or act

behavior and perceptions of (hiid parties, particularly tbc United States. China would like to obtain greater room for maneuvering between the United States and the USSR while in the long run establishing itself as die swing pert net tn the ttlangulst relationship. Beijing does not want to appear to be standitui still in the tripolai relationship while the other two sidesInstead, Beijing probably decided to see if its hand could be strengthened in dealing with bothSince December, Deng has sent signals that he wants more US cooperation In helping to bring about reunification wiih Taiwan. Chinese gestures to the Soviets could be designed in partrelude to pressuring Washington on thu issue, oreans to test US susceptibility to such pressure. The Chinese may also hope that an improved relationship with Moscow would enhance Beijing's contacts andwith Eaulern Europe and other Soviet allies

hinese domestic policy disputes and politics! frictions probably also haveart in China's positive gestures to tbe Soviet Union in March. Weumber of reports that suggestumber ofthc pace and scope of economic reform and leadershipstrained relations among senior leaden Questions concerning relations with the United States and the USSB have become part of these debates. We are less clear about Deng's role in the positive gestures toDeng was merely placatingcritics or whether Deng aLso believed the lime was right foi more balance in relations with thc superpowers In either case, we have no convincing evidencelearly defined group in the Chinese leadership that Ls pushingajor loorimlalkm of Chinese foreign policy or thaiery different strategic outlook Wc strongly believe, moreover, that no specificallySoviet faction exists in the Chinese leadership Debates in Beijing probably focus on the degree of "tilt" toward the United States or the USSR and on how toalance that best serves Chinese interests

n thc Soviet side, we have little hard evidence concerning Gorbachev's foreign policy agenda. Initial statements by himesire to improve relations with China The Soviets have been assiduouslyGorbachev'sbut also for foreigna dynamic, active leader Cor bactsev has alreadyar more demanding schedule of meetings wiih loreign ofbcsals than either or Chernenko Moscow may view resalaons wiih Ihe Chinese as an area of opportunity lo protect a

mote aetiviit foreign policy at the perceived expense of Washington. At the same time, we have good reporting thai the Gorbachev leadership wants to establish an image of toughness and immunity to pressure toward all the USSR's adversaries, clients, and

allies This aim comtrains Soviet Bciibihty la dealing with the real security issues that concert) China. We

believe Moscow is looking for modest improvements in relations with Beijing, but only in areas that would not

necessitate fundamental Soviet concessions

side appears to doubt that tlie otherlo offer substantia! concesskiiu WeMoscow Embassy reports that suggestare optimisticurther warmingbul skeptical that Be;*rat's gestures willsubstantive changes For their part, thealso conbded that they believe it will bebefore Gorbachev will have enough power,he has the desire, to reorient Soviet policy

Strategic Constroints and Allied Concerns

is no evidence that either Beiiinghat altered its fundamental strategicthe other. We arc confident that lheal lhe root of their animosity for moredecades remain and that Use underlying issuesChina and lite USSR, as outlined in tlieare still valid

Each views tlie other as harboring cxpanslonistic ambitions lhat clash with Its own regionalaspirations.

Ideological estrangement and nationalistic rsostll-rties pcTStsL

still has some bitter memories of tlie high < costsery close association with Moscow

three obstacles posed byof Afghanistan, Soviet support to thein Cambodia, and Soviet forces alongborder and inremain aconstraint or. improvement in Si no-Sovietrelations We conclude that the Chineseto mail mi re their raegotiatirai room beforeSitlh Round of Talks in Moscow, ruberall relerences to the three security issueselliptically mentioning only more general "obsla-



have learned lha! Chineae nego-

tiators at the tana thd rmise all thi re issues once again Moreover, while Ihe talks were In session andDeng Xiaoping and Hu Yfobang reitriated the importance of removing these olntncles Wc believe these statements were intended, among other reasons, to put pressure oo thc USSR to respond lo Chinese security concerns.

n recent yean, top Chinese officials have urged Moscow to accommodate them oo at least ooe of the three issues. This suggests China's willingness lorelations further if the SovieU begin to deal with one of tlse issues, without the Chinese dropping their demand that the USSR give ihem satisfactionon all three. Lately. Deng Xiaoping, Foreign Minister Wo Xucojan, and Vice Foreign Minister Qian Qichen have all reiterated tlse Chinese position that Soviet support to Vietnam In Cambodia might be the "easiest" one lo solve or is the most important of lhe three obstacles. The Chinese probably made such recent remarks In part to encourage Vietnameseof Soviet intentions.

n the Soviet side, there are fuodamenti!to making concessions regarding the three obstacles On Afghanistan and Indochina, agiccing lo negotiate or to cornprornisc by any degree would undermine the legitimacy of these Soviet interests, while major concessions would blunt Moscow's efforts toits influence and power in Asia. Although the Soviets have some room to maneuver on force deployments near Ihepossible economic incentive;hinning out of activevalue ihc eilsting force balanceource of pressure on Chinese behavior In return for easing thatthe Soviets wouldigiuBcant political ccneession rather than rust reciprocal rnilitary moves from the weaker party.

oncern for tlievoerceptlorss ol allies and other friendly countries Is yet another constraint on lhe pace and nature ol improvements inSovietlie Chinese have made special cQorts to reassure the Uniled States and other friendly countries ihat no dramatic change In policy toward the Soviet Union is expected, and that they are pessimistic about progress on political and security issues. Reijing is awareignificant breakthtmiRh in Sino-Soviet relation!such private reassurances would strain relations wiih thr United States, (apart. Thailand. Pakiitan. and Others II relations with lhe Soviet Union move too far. too last. Belling runs Ihe risk of undercutting in effort

to obtain US teclmology and weapons and enhancing Taiwan's leverage with Washington Moscow is sumoncerned about the potslble damage to its relations with friendly courUries and allies, mostVielnam, India, and North Korea.

The Sixth Round of Talks

It The Sixth Round of Talks, which was held in Moscowopril, was lhe first formal opportunity since Gorbachev's accession for Moscow and IViiing to engage in concrete bargaining.^


t conclude thai the talks did not result in any nl concessions by either side.

| claims both

Beijing and Moscow were disappolnleTlhat the talks were setpiece presentations rather than teal exchangesissatisfaction with the outcome was apparent inl.rii! press account of Vice Foreign Minister Olaneeting with Foreign Minister Grotiiy-lu Xinhua, the official Chinese press, highlighted Qiao's reminder that Moscow hidish for "significant improvement" in relations and thatwaits for the Soviet Union toove in this regard "

IS The Soviets repeated In lhe talks their previous calljuridical document" governing relationsilateral declaration of principles)esumption of border talks. They- ottered lo drscussoop thin outs along their common border! but refused to talk about tlicir forces in Mongolia. The Chinese parried these suggestions by insisting that there must first he progress on outstanding regional issues. No date was set for official talksigher level, such as between Foreign Ministers.

here were,o new wrinkles. First, both sides agreed toilateral conferenceto the Sino-Soviet border. We do not know lhe agenda of the conference. The Soviets have been pushingesumption of the border talks that were suspended at Chinese initiative in8 We believe the Chinese may have agreed now toonlercnce tn order to piobe lor Moscow's possible proposals before deciding whethei to participate in the border talks once again

omi press statement carried in TASS following ihc talks' conclusion mentioned, lot Ihe first time, that progress in "political relations" was expected In the future. IMiiiui opressed intetest in


rsoLlieal tics when Vice Premier Li Peng mel GorbachevChernenko's funeral Mention ol this point following the talks icBecis an unproved dimite in relations. We assume that both sides are leaving thc possibility open for more itsovcrnciit during Iheyear, perhaps during Vice Premier Yao Yilin's visit lo Moscow thu July or at the Seventh Round of Tails this fall. The Soviets, in particulai, have gone out of their way since the talks' conclusion to reaffirm their interest in improving ties through positive recent statements by both Gorbachev and Politburo Member Ali'vev.

What's Aheod

hc developments listed in the inset are those we Judge will occur over the neat two years. In addition, we believe that there will be additionalo-party contacts and that these contacts may graduallyore formal and routineIn pursuing additional party-tr> party coot sets, both sides could agree to reestablish trade union tieshange propaganda officials and/or pressDuring future leadership visits, increasing mention could be made of party titles, and written as well as oral party greetings could be oirhangcd


continue to claim lhat party-to-partyons with tbe Soviet Union will not be resumed. We are somewhat skeptical of these statements in light of Hu Yaohang's greetings to Gorbachev and the joint press statement following the last round of talks ButQ

]wr believe lhat

Beijing wall try toeliberate ambiguity concerning the character of iheir party contacts with Moscowjor tho next several years.

he resumption of Sino-Soviet party relations would dearie enhance lhe imageloser overall relationship. The real content of thai relationship is another nutter, howeverons of ideology and leadership politics could intrude lo coanplicate the relationship in new ways China lias embarked on an ambitious course of liberalizing economic reform that is politically contentious The Soviet Union under Gorbachev is. al the same time, trying to hammerew, probably much more conservative, course of economic revival that is also bound lo be politically controversial Soviet elites are oertainlv watchingrelorms. some hopeful and others learful of Iheir success Interest by each side in the ullier's leadership

Projectedin Sino-Soviet Reiotions

in the Neii Two Years

The lone term Irade agrrrmrnt will be Mgnrd this My.

The Soviets will helpew (actoriei bulk -tth their aid ditrir*.

There will be additional agreements on economic, educational, and culturalen.

wiU be additional ataie to-state root acts, such as parliamentary exchanges; there may be consultations between Fotclan Ministers and [osii bly Premiers.

An agreement to open two. possibly four,will be siiised; additional border crossing points will be opened-

The number of Soviet economic and technical advisers in Gum will increase. (We are unsure how many, if any. Soviet advisers are currently

Stationed In China )

number of Sino-Soviet students will Increase. (Aporoiimatclyoviel students currently are in China andhinese student* in the Soviet Union In companion, tea the acadeoiKhere0 Chinese studenis In the United States)

could lead to the same sort of suspicions about internal political interference that bedevilecrSino-Soviet rela-ttorts in. Internal disputes over economic reforms on one side could lead to the use of thc other side's piyfornvanceolemical foil, producing new ideological frictions China has before it tbe tricky doctrinal problem ol explainingSSR can abo be hegemonist Historical suspicions and conflicting strategic interests will tend to make expanded paity ties as fractious as the overall relationship because restoration ol such ties could give China greater freedom to expand contacts with pro-Soviet parties and to compete with thc Soviets for inOuence within the Communist movement.

ccordingecent report, the Chinese have agreedonference to discuss border relations Therefore, we now judge lhat il is more probable thantimate predicted that the bolder talks onbsues will tesunse Such negotiations may lead to agreement on Confidence Building Measures such as mutual iiinilication of troop exercises along their



border. Even if border talks resume, we believe Ihe current stalemate on the territorial issues will continue through the nest (wo years.

further assess that resolution ofconcerns will remain elusive and thatsituations will continue:

Soviet presence In Afghanistan and support fo Vietnam.

Chinese support to Afghan insurgents,to the Khmer resistance, and military pressure on the Vietnamese border.

An Alternotive Outcome on lhe Border

While It is highly unlikely that Moscow and Beijing will make significant progress on thc Afghan or Indochincse Issues in the next two years, it is somewhat more likely that ihey could reach an understanding to reduce forces along the Sino-Soviet and Sino-Mongo-lian borders. The constraints against such moves as listed in thcas the limited room to pull back Soviet forces because of the presence In thc easternmost sector near thc border of large vulnerable cities and thc Trans-Siberianstill valid. However, the mlUtary imbalance favoring the Soviets gives them the option lo make some conciliatory gestures. If they choose to do so, while retaining their miliiary superiority. For example, lhe Soviets could withdraw one or more of their divisions stationed in the Soviet Far East near thc Chinese border or in Mongolia They could also thin out various units by reducing manpower or relocating selected equipment.

Likewise, an agreement on the territorialwould require strong: leadership in both capitalsillingness to compromise. We do not know how such negotiations mightmight be ottered by each side and Isow lhe ctlter might respond. We believe, however, thai the Soviets might be willing to concede some of thc minor islands in the Amur and Ussuri Rivers as well as to agree to some compromise on tlie Pamirs; but ihey would lie less likely to yield on ownership of Tarabarov and Bolshoy Ussuriysk Islands (called Heixiaii bv thepposite the Soviet city of Khabarovskection of the Trans-Siberian Railroad. The Chinese. In turn, would probably want lo consider anyterritorial border settlement in conjunction with Soviet force withdrawals, particularly of some divisions in Mongolia, and admittance by the Soviets of thcature of the Tsaristey

indicator of China's desire to compromise oa this Issue would be its willingness to drop its demand that thc USSR withdraw its troops from all "disputed areas"erritorial settlement is negotiated. Thishas prevented any progress in past negotiations.

Implications for Ihe United States

as we believe most likely, the USSRlimit the Improvement la their relationshipmeasures as trade, cultural, andlimited party-to-party exchanges,Confidence Building Measures on theUS interests will not be significantlyFor their part, the Chinese continue toneed for good relations with the United States:

Beijing remains committed to modernizing Its economy, for wliich It needs Western, andUS. technology and investment China has much lo gainong-term economic relationship with Japan and thethe Unitedless from one with the Soviet Union, especially as'Beijing moves forward on its economic reform-

Beijing remains committed to modernizing its armed forces gradually and needs Western,US. arms and miliiary technology.

Hence, certainly for the next two years and probably well beyond, China is not likely toenuinely equidistant position lit its relations with Moscow and with Washington ao3 its allies. Patterns may be modified somewhat, but not substantially, from tbe current imbalance in relations with the superpowers. For example, In thc academic. there were0 Chinese students in thc United States and approximatelyn the Soviel Union. Last year China's total trade with the United States was aboutillion and withillion, compared with just over JI billion wiih the Soviet Union. It wouldone time. If ever, before such statistics would balance out.

Most important, thc US-Sino-Sovict triangular relationship probably will never be really "balanced" as long as both Beijing and Washington believeoviet Union Is thc primary threat to their security. Sino-US military contacts haveetback with the postponement ol the US port call lo Shanghai However, as long as the US relationship with China, in general, continues to progress and the Chinese do not fundamentally alter Iheir strategic outlook. Moscow


will Giid it liard lo use China as an eflective "card" wiih ibe United Suits,ill he difficuli for China to play the USSR against lhe United Slates.

n live coming months, llciiing may try lo press Washingtonore direct role in promoting oegotutions for the reunification of Taiwan. We do not believe, however, that the Chinese want thc Taiwan issue lo impede overall relations withand thev will not revert lo formerbadgering tactics unless they perceive theStates as violating its commitmentOne China'* policy or agreements on arms sales toeterloiation of relations between the United States and China over such issues could lead China toar greater balance in its relations with tbe two superpowers than currently elists. Thii could lead the USSR to be more dcrnaitdlng toward Rolling, however. We do not believe lhal modestly Increased fi idiith tbe United States would move the Chinese substantially closer to the USSR.

lven our uiicertainty ova the outcome of current policy debates in Beijing, we cannot rule out the rmsibility of China's taking additional steps much sooner than we anticipate to improve relations with Moscow further. If Beijing and Moscow do go further than we expect in Improving relations, then USwill be affected Moves such as reaching aagreement on border issues involving ain Soviet forces would probablympact on international perceptions Ihan the actual substance of such agreements or ties should merit. Other countries might interpret such development* as meaning the United States wasttategic asset while the Soviets were lessening the linearwo-front war and. thus, strengthening their positiontrNATO. More imprartant, Soviet leaden might also conclude that the strategic dancer to the USSR had cased, and this might lead them loore aggressive attitude toward the Unlled States We do notesolution of Sino-Soviet differences over Afghanistan and Indochina id our time frame.US interests would be served to the extent that the

Soviets in pursuitloser relationship with Beijing made concessions regarding these issues

e abo do not rule out the possibilityew estrangement In Sino-Soviet relations over the next Iwo yearsevelopment could spring from many sources an increase in Chinese support to the Afghan resistance groups, escalation of Vietnam's military campaign in Cambodia and along lhe border of Thailand, Soviet moves to draw North Koreaore overt Soviet miliiary threat to Pakistan orin Moscow's covert attempts to destmbilijeZia. as wellariety of other potential crises around lhe world. Upoint, the United States bcneBtsore hostile Sino-Soviet rcbtiotisiiip Beijing would probably be more receptive to US policies and cooperate more fully against Sovietaround lhe world

inally, our analysis might be altered

ower struggle erupts within the Chinese leadership before or after Deng dies that results in the wealerring of his chosen successors

If Dong's ambitious economic reformsKrious problems, which in turn leadeakening of Deng's political position or those of his chosen successors

If Moscow underirectionun-expected cBortccommodate the

A retreat from the goab of Deng's economic program would diminish one of the Chinese motivations for good telatfons with the Unitedneed lor US technoliigy and investment Thb retreat could be accompaniedurge of anti-Westernism lhat might be directed particularly againsi the United States However, because the Soviets are not likely to make major force reductions along lhe border, or to back away fiom their goab In Indochina andany new leadenhip in Beijing would face the same slralegic situation that currently inhibits close Sino-Soviet political relations




Fourth Round of Sino-Soviet Talks convenes.4

rotocol on student exchanges signed inincreasing the number of students eligible lo travel between the two nations from

President Reagan arrives in China.4

Soviets, angered over positive aspects of Reagan's trip, increase media criticism of Beijing's policies.


TASS criticizes Chinese "military provocations" on the Si no-Vietnamese border.


Soviets cancel planned visit of First Deputy Premier Arkhipov, claiming thc delegation is not prepared for thc talks; Chinese interpret cancellationesult of Reagan's visit, recent activity in Vietnam, and Soviet domestic infighting.


General Secretary Hu Yaobang meets with President ol Iheague of Communists Dragoslav Mowkovic and indicates that the territorial aspect of the border dispute with the USSR is minor and can be easik settledT"

L 1


Chernenko meets with Vietnamese partyuan and Premier Pham Van Dong, criticizingforeign policy wiih some of thc strongest Ian-guage used since


Chinese Defense Minister Zhang Aiping visits thc United States, France, and Japan.

Sovietibition opens in Moscow, highlisMuu; Chinese "agKiessivc activity" on thc Si no-Vict nam esc border.


Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Qian Qichort, Beijing's top Soviet expert, arrives in Moscow for talks with Soviet Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Kapitsa.


Beijing press assails Chernenko's foreigna destructive force slowing the course of Sino-Soviet normalization and derailing US-Soviet arms talks."


Chineseoviet article on thc Nonaligned Movement.


Beijing accuses Soviets of navigation violations on the Ussuri River.


Foreign Ministers Wu Xueqian and Andrev Cromyko meet during UNGA; talks arc calm, but not substant ive.


Fifth Pound of Sino-Soviet Talks convenes in Beijing.


Soviet journal Internationala strongof Chinese domestic and international politics.


Bilateral trade agreement signed increasing (heof trade to about3 billion.


Chen Jic. headhinese trade delegation to Moscow, signs5 goods exchange and payment agreement based on theovember trade


First Deputy Premier Arkhipov arrivesighly publicized trip to Beijing Three agrcemcnls signed, calling for biUtcral economic and technicalbilateral scientific and technical cooperation; and the establishmentommission on economic, trade, and scientific and technical cooperation.


Bilateral agreement lo increase thc volume of trade from approximately USillion toillion in

f jjl. |

Thc but public reference by Ihe Chinese lo iheir concerns over the "three obstacles" until the Sixth Round ol Talks convenes in

Genera! Vesaey. Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrives In China


Chinese Ambassador to Burma, after only one month in the country,rivate dinner for the high-ranklnc officers of the Soviet Embassy; theclaims the dinner was possible because ofrelations between the two countries


Chinese name new Ambassador and DCM to Moscow, both of whom are ciperienced Soviet hands

Uvestiva articles hard-hitting anti-Chinese critique typifies increased Soviet media criticism of Chinese



Chexneokos "election speech"ote tone on Sino-Soviet relations, initiating an

5 Chinese National Peoples Congress delegation visits Moscow, the first parliamentary exchange in two decades

Soviet leader Konstantin Chernenko dies; Mikhail Gorbachev ll named fits successor.

Gorbachev states in his aoceplance speech that the Sovietserious improvement In relations with China, given reciprocity In lhe talks.

While signing condolences book at Soviet Embassy. NPC Standing Committee Chairman Peng ZhenGorbachev, calling him "comrade

Vice Premier Li Peng, head of lhe delegation to Cherneolo* funeral, meets Gorbachev, the highest ranking meeting between the two countries Inean I. conveys General Secretary Hu Yaobang's congratulatory message and calls the Sovietsocialist" country. Li stales China's hopes for an improvement in "political millions "


Foreign Minister Wu Xueqian meets withfrom the European Economic CommunityQ


Under Secretary of State for Political Attain Armacccl meets Vice Foreignhu Cnxhen; Chinese state that normalization still depends on resolution of the three obstacles.

Vice Foreign Minister Olan Qiclien and DeputyMinister Mikhail X'anilta both attend the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific meeting in Bangkok.


High-level economic delegation led by State Economic Commission Vice Minlsler Zhao Weichang meets wiih Arkhipov to discuss bilateral transportation issues


Chinese invite officials Irom Moscow's Institute of the Far East, once renownedotbed ofeception in Moscow.




5 Second high-level economic delegation led by State Economic Commission Vice Minivtei Wang Lei iraveb to Mowow to discuss Soviel economics and pricing techniques.


Soviet friendship delegation arrives in China and onpril signs plan5 program

Bilateral protocol signed in Beuing calling lot the exchingctudents and trainees duringcademic year


Sirth Bound of Si no Soviel Talks convenes in Moscow.


Parly Ccncral Secretary llu Yaobang meets with Hong Kong press, claiming lhal China is willing lo upgrade ihe level ol official contacts as the Soviets desire. He riles live possibility of future meetings at the Foreign Minister/Prime Minister level.

flenmin lit bioront-page Interview with Hu Yaobansj. Hu announces the upcoming US naval ship visit and states that China lias received US assurances that only conventional ships will make the trip.


COCOM meets to discuss adopting less stringenton exports to China.


Ineporter's question. Deng Xiaoping mentions the gravity of the three obstacles and states that tbe Soviets must make some effort to remove them if ihey hope toomplete rwrmalization of relations This is the first explicit mention of the three obstacles sinceeng also identifies Indoclmia as the "easiest" obsUiclc for the Soviets to overcome.


peech celebratingth birthday. Ceydar Aiiyev, First Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers, states that the Soviet Union is striving seriously for an improvement of relations with China based on reciprocity.

entral Committee plenum speech, Gorbachev reaffirms Moscow's commitment to improved ties with Beijing withouteciprocity."'

Ptavdaoint communique signed by thc Soviets and the North Koreans. Of particular interest is DPRK's signal in an official document of Its growing divergence with Chinaumber of issues.Cambodia. Gromyko also accepts an invitation to visit P'yongyang; if he goes, he would become the brst Soviet Foreign Minister to visit the nation.

VE Day with ex-


Soviets and North Koreans mark change of air squadrons


Visit to China by Japanese Vice Defense5

Protocol signedhort-term exchange of TASS and Xinhua staff members.

What lies Ahcod

Early July

Vice Premier Yao Yilin is scheduled to visit Moscow

andive-year bilateral trade agreement.


Peng Zhen, Chairman of thc Standing Comm China's National People's Congress, arrives in Japanine-day visit

Sixth Round of Sino-Soviet Talks concludes in Moscow. TASSoint statement identifying among other areas "political relations" as an issue for improvement

Wang liachong. Vice President of the All-China Fed eralion of Trade Unions, announces that China may restore relations with trade unions in thc Soviet Union and Eastern Europe These telalions have been tut nended



USSR Supreme Soviet delegation may vbit Beijing.5

lapancsc Defense Minister may visit China.5

Foreign Ministers Wu and Crornyko may meet at the United Nations in New York.


Seventh Round of Sino-Soviet Talks will convene tn Bciiing


Possible port calls by Japanese naval vessels.

Original document.

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