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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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China and South Asia

South Asia was one of the most important regions in China's international relations and foreign policy. Drawn largely from the Chinese Foreign Ministry Archives, this collection sheds light on China's relations with India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan in particular. In the absence of similar sources from South Asia, these documents, moreover, are also invaluable to the study of South Asia in context of the Cold War. (Photo: The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy, meets Mao Zedong (right) in October 1956.) (See also: Sino-Indian Border War, 1962.)

  • June 30, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'The Main Themes of Pakistan’s Diplomatic Activities'

    The report claimed that the two main themes of Pakistani diplomatic activities are 1/Winning the support of foreign leaders for its position on the Kashmir issue and 2/Breaking away from its isolated position and resolving its financial difficulties. Pakistani diplomatic stance toward China, the Soviet Union, the United States, Great Britain, France and the Arab League was examined.

  • July 31, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'The Main Themes of Pakistan’s Diplomatic Activities During the Past Month'

    This Chinese report on Pakistani diplomatic activities focused on a visit by Pakistani President Mirza to Turkey. The talks revolved around two main topics: The Cyprus issue and the Kashmir dispute.

  • August 01, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'Pakistan’s Relations with the Soviet Union and People’s Democratic Countries since March'

    The Chinese Embassy in Pakistan reports on the improving relation between Pakistan and socialist countries as well as the remaining apprehension.

  • September 11, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'The Circumstances of Pakistan’s Recent Diplomatic Activities'

    Chinese report on Pakistani diplomatic activities regarding the Soviet Union and other Muslim countries

  • October 11, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'Pakistan’s Parliamentary Debate About Foreign Policy'

    The Chinese Embassy in Pakistan reports on the domestic debate inside Pakistan regarding changes in foreign policy.

  • October 19, 1956

    Briefing on the Visit to China of Pakistani Prime Minister Suhrawardy (No. 3)

  • October 22, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'The Pakistani Foreign Minister’s Speech'

    Chinese report on a speech by the Pakistani Foreign Minister concerning bringing the Kashmir issue to the UN Security Council, Pakistan's relations with Muslim countries, the Southeast Asian Defense Treaty and the Baghdad Pact, the possibility of Pakistan joining the Suez Canal Users' Association and its willingness to accept aid from any country.

  • November 16, 1956

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'A Comprehensive Report on Recent Circumstances in Pakistan'

    Chinese report on the impact of the Suez Canal Crisis on the Baghdad Pact and Pakistani foreign policy

  • January 21, 1957

    Summary of the Two Conversations between Premier Zhou and Prime Minister Khan of Afghanistan

    Zhou Enlai and Mohammed Daoud Khan agree to strengthen cooperation between China and Afghanistan.

  • February 16, 1957

    Premier Zhou Enlai Receives Pakistani Ambassador Ahmed, and Accepts Letter From Pakistani Premier Suhrawady Explaining the Kashmir Issue

    Zhou Enlai and Pakistani Ambassador Ahmed discuss the Indian-Pakistani dispute over Kashmir, the likelihood of a military conflict in the region, and the possibility that such a conflict could be used by the United States to its advantage.

  • June 13, 1957

    Cable from the Chinese Foreign Ministry, 'Premier Zhou’s Conversation with Ambassador Nehru'

    Premier Zhou Enlai and Indian Ambassador Ratan Kumar Nehru exchanged views on Taiwan Incident and situation in West Asia.

  • January 21, 1958

    Abstract of Conversation: Vice-Minister Zhang Receives Indian Ambassador Nehru

    Responding to concerns about Great Britain expressed earlier by Premier Zhou in an earlier conversation, Ambassador Nehru reports that UK Prime Minister Macmillan believes that any major powers conference on disarmament should be organized by the US and USSR. Ambassador Nehru emphasized the necessity of Chinese involvement to PM Macmillan.

  • January 23, 1958

    Ambassador R.K. Nehru's Letter to Chairman Mao

    Indian Ambassador R.K. Nehru pens a farewell letter to Mao Zedong.

  • February 06, 1958

    Abstract of Conversation: Premier Zhou and Ambassador Nehru

    Indian Ambassador to China Nehru and Premier Zhou discuss Sino-British relations, focusing on Britain's position on Chinese representation at the United Nations. According to the Premier, Britain is acceding to American demands and allowing the United States to create 'two Chinas.'

  • September 30, 1958

    Memorandum of Conversation: Premier Zhou Receives Indian Ambassador to China Parthasarathy

    Premier Zhou and Ambassador Parthasarathy discuss Chinese representation at the United Nations, progress at the Sino-US Ambassadorial Talks in Warsaw, and the ongoing crisis in Taiwan. Zhou expresses frustration with American intransigence regarding Taiwan, particularly its insistence on a ceasefire, which Zhou views as an attempt "to fool the people of the world," and vows that China will continue to fight in Taiwan.

  • January 23, 1959

    Letter from Prime Minister of China to the Prime Minister of India, 23 January 1959

  • May 07, 1959

    Ambassador Yudin's Letter to Zhou Enlai

    The Soviet Ambassador to China expressed his admiration of an article regarding the Tibet issue in the People's Daily

  • May 16, 1959

    Statement made by the Chinese Ambassador to the Foreign Secretary, 16 May 1959

  • July 25, 1959

    Deputy Department Director He Ying Receives Indonesian Chargé d'Affaires Suleman and Discusses Matters Related to Sino-Pakistani Relations

    He Ying and Suleman discuss the visit of a Chinese Muslim delegation from Taiwan to Pakistan and the state of Sino-Pakistani relations more generally.

  • September 08, 1959

    Premier Chou En-lai's [Zhou Enlai's] Letter to Prime Minister Nehru