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Mao was on KMT payroll, archives show

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Communist Chinese leader Mao Zedong was once on the payroll of the Kuomintang, archives from Taiwan's ruling party show.

The KMT will kick off a series of exhibitions of its archives, giving glimpses into some of the most important developments in modern China.

Mao joined the KMT in the 1920s when the Nationalists adopted policy of tolerance by befriending the Soviet Union and the Chinese communists in a bid to unite the war-torn country.

The archives show that Mao received a salary of “120 Yuan” from the KMT in 1924.

The exhibitions also show correspondences and documents belonging to revolutionaries that contributed to the ultimate fall of the imperial Qing dynasty in 1911.

The archives will go on a tour taking them to five cities and counties. They will be exhibited at communities of military dependents, which are usually considered die-hard supporters of the ruling party.

Organizers of the tour say it is an interactive exhibition series where veterans can bring along their own treasured items and have them displayed along the KMT archives.

The United Evening News said a veteran will provide his “marriage report,” a document required of all military servicemen who wanted to get married. They could not get married without their superiors' approval.

The first leg of the exhibition will start in Tainan on Aug. 2. Visitors to the exhibitions will receive a souvenir in the form of an imitation “KMT Membership Card.”

Observers said the exhibitions probably are meant to shore up support for the KMT ahead of the year-end local elections.

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