Diplomacy Comrades Once More: Beijing and Moscow

Long bitter rivals, Beijing and Moscow plan the first Sino-Soviet summit in 30 years

It was an ordinary gesture to herald an extraordinary event. As a biting wind chilled the tarmac, Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze walked down an airplane ramp, strode up to the man waiting to greet him and shook hands. His host was Qian Qichen, the Foreign Minister of China. After a long and bitter estrangement between the leviathans of the Communist world, Shevardnadze had come to Beijing to set a date for a meeting that would bring the two countries' leaders together for the first time in 30 years. Moscow and Beijing had reached the verge of something that eluded them...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!