US man in Peking chides Reagan

In a highly unusual move, US Ambassador Leonard Woodcock publicly took issue with Republican candidate Ronald Reagan Tuesday on the issue of American relations with Taiwan, after being called to meet with Vice Minister Zhang Wenjin at the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Monitor correspondent Takashi Oka reports.

"This triangular relationship [among the United States, China, and Taiwan] is most delicate," the ambassador said in a meeting with American journalists at his official residence. "It is essential to preserve the ap pearance and the fact of unofficiality in the Taiwan relationship.

"To endanger the carefully crafted relationship between the People's Republic of China and the United States, when they are progressing so well and to our mutual benefit, runs the risk of greatly weakening the United States international position at a dangerous time."

Mr. Woodcock, former president of the United Automobile Workers, is a Democrat and a political appointee. However, he had scrupulously avoided any appearance of partisanship since his appointment as ambassador.

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