Just weeks before President Clinton goes to China for a much-awaited summit meeting Republicans in Washington are intensifying charges that his party benefited from illegal Chinese contributions - and that the Chinese got something in return.
House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Monday that President Clinton should postpone his trip to China until the Justice Department determines whether two U.S. companies gave sensitive missile information to Beijing in 1996.Gingrich is considering setting up a special committee to look at the case and examine Clinton's decision this year to approve the export of satellite technology to China.
Amid a flurry of rhetoric from Capitol Hill, The Christian Science Monitor reported Tuesday that a state-owned Chinese aerospace com-pany acknowledged a senior executive gave nearly $100,000 to Democratic Party fund-raiser Johnny Chung in 1996. Such an admission would mark the first time officials in Beijing have said Chinese funds, even if not directly tied to the communist government, went to Democratic coffers.
The Monitor quoted a spokeswoman for the China Aerospace Corp. as denying that the funds from Liu Chaoying, the daughter of the then-highest ranking officer in the Chinese People's Liberation Army, were part of a government con-spiracy to influence the Clinton administration's foreign policy.
The donation "was done by Liu Chaoying acting as an individual," Zhang Lihui, a spokeswoman for China Aerospace, told the Monitor in Beijing. "She used her own financing rather than China Aerospace funds."
However, the spokesman quoted by the paper later denied being interviewed by the paper.