China boycott

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The Independent Online
WASHINGTON (Reuter) - China has informed the United States it is boycotting multilateral Middle East talks on arms control, which began in Moscow yesterday, a senior State Department official said.

China, along with the four other permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, attended the first session of the talks in Washington last April. But the Chinese said President George Bush's decision to sell 150 F-16 jet fighters to Taiwan two weeks ago would make it difficult for them to co- operate in arms control efforts.

The boycott of the Moscow meeting appeared to be a result of that threat, the official said.