Wednesday, August 9, 2017

This Day in 1989: May 18, 1990, Jiang Zemin Interviewed by Barbara Walters

On May 18, 1990, American Broadcasting Company (ABC) broadcast an interview of Jiang Zemin by reporter Barbara Walters. This was the first interview of the new General Secretary by a western reporter. It was also the first private interview by a Chinese leader after the Tiananamen Massacre.

The interview was actually conducted on May 2 at the Beijing Diaoyutai State Guesthouse.

Jiang Zemin stated in the interview that the military suppression of the 1989 movement was necessary and that the strong reactions by western countries was "much ado about nothing."

Walters showed a picture of the "Tank Man," famous in the west and asked for the whereabouts of the person in picture. Jiang Zemin replied that he didn't know where the person was but he did not believe that he had been killed. This confrontation is available on YouTube.

Jiang Zemin also called on President Bush to extend China's "Most Favored Nation" trade status.

Days of 1989

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