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132. Message From the Government of the United States to the Government of the People’s Republic of China 1

President Nixon has carefully reviewed the May 29, 1971, message from Premier Chou En-lai which President Yahya Khan so kindly conveyed. President Nixon looks forward to the opportunity of a personal exchange with the leaders of the People’s Republic of China.

The President appreciates the warm welcome extended by Premier Chou En-lai to his personal representative, Dr. Kissinger. Because of the shortness of time available and the need to arrange a suitable pretext for his travel, Dr. Kissinger now finds it impossible to leave Washington before the first week of July. Accordingly, President Nixon proposes that Dr. Kissinger arrive in China early on July 9 and leave on July 11, flying in a Pakistani Boeing aircraft directly to and from an airport to be designated by the Chinese.

Dr. Kissinger will be authorized to discuss all issues of concern to both countries preliminary to President Nixon’s visit to China. Dr. Kissinger will not require his own telecommunication equipment. It is envisaged that four members of his personal staff will accompany him.

President Nixon appreciates the fact that the Government of the People’s Republic of China is prepared to maintain strict secrecy with respect to Dr. Kissinger’s visit and considers this essential. Dr. Kissinger will be authorized to discuss a possible communiqué to be issued sometime after his return to the United States.2

President Nixon reciprocates Premier Chou En-lai’s anticipation of the meeting between the Premier and Dr. Kissinger. He considers it a hopeful first step in improving relations between the United States and the People’s Republic of China.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 1031, Files for the President—China Material, Exchanges Leading up to HAK’s Trip to China, December 1969–July 1971. No classification marking. Nixon initialed the message, which bears the notation: “5th Draft—handed to Hilaly 5:30, 6/4/71.” Kissinger and Hilaly met from 5:50 to 6:47 p.m. (Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Kissinger Papers, Box 438, Miscellany, 1968–1976, Record of Schedule)
  2. Kissinger wrote the word “joint” in front of the word “communiqué” in this sentence.