893.00/11–2946: Telegram

The Ambassador in China ( Stuart ) to the Secretary of State

1998. Summary regular weekly press conference Minister [of] Information Peng Hsueh Pei 27th follows:

Denied National Assembly one party affair and quoted following statistics on delegates: Of 1744 delegates registered, 847 or 48 percent Independents, 725 or 42 percent Kuomintang and balance 10 percent divided with 118 Young China Party and 54 Social Democrats. Defined Independents as those elected by provinces and professional organizations and not by Kuomintang Party.

“This demonstrates that three of the four groups which held original Assembly meetings in 1938 are participating today while similarly of the five groups represented in last January’s political consultative conference (Kuomintang, Communists, Democratic League, Youth [Page 571] Party and non-partisans) all except Communists and part of the Democratic League are seated in National Assembly.”

Queried about criticism that Government has broken PCC resolutions, Peng said “best answer that criticism [is] draft constitution which carries out PCC resolutions.”

John C. Wu, China’s Minister to Vatican and one of authors of new draft constitution, spoke briefly on document, saying it contained some best features of United States and English constitutions as well as some typically Chinese sections. Suggestions of members of minority parties given heavy consideration in writing constitution and some of its most vital articles contributed by such minority leaders as Carsun Chang. Entire constitution written with the view that it is more democratic to yield than to deny suggestions by the minority parties. President given power mediate disputes between yuans which was not included in PCC draft because of the necessity have some authority settle disputes between heads of various yuans. Draft constitution gives local governments greater powers and makes Executive Yuan responsible in certain matters to Legislative Yuan. In general, draft presented Assembly follows closely provisions suggested by PCC draft constitution committee.