China Encounter of Long-Lost Comrades

Honecker is welcomed in Peking as Communist relations warm

When East German Communist Party Leader Erich Honecker, 74, and Chinese General Secretary Hu Yaobang, 71, got together last week in Peking, it was a little like a school reunion. There were bear hugs, "fraternal kisses" and reminiscences of the good old days. "I haven't seen you in 33 years," said Hu as he embraced the East German party chief in Peking's Zhongnanhai compound. Ho- necker presented Hu with a photograph taken during their last meeting at a Communist youth congress in Rumania 33 years ago.

The encounter was not merely a reunion between two long-lost comrades. For nearly a quarter-century,...

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