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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.)

  • July 14, 1961

    Memorandum of Conversation between Liu Shaoqi and R.K. Nehru

    Liu Shaoqi and R.K.Nehru discussed agriculture and the people's communes system.

  • July 19, 1961

    Memorandum of Conversation: Deputy Foreign Minister Geng Biao and Director Zhang Wenji with Indian Ambassador to China Parthasarathy

    Chinese Foreign Minister Geng Biao and Zhang Wenji have a conversation with Indian Ambassador Parthasarathy discussing current border disputes between India and China.

  • August 09, 1961

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Morocco, 'A Goan Discusses Goa’s Issues with Us'

    Report on a conversation with a spokesman for the Nationalist Organizations of the Portuguese Colonies' permanent secretariat in Morocco, named Aquino de Braganca, who is a native of Goa, India, and a member of the Goan People's Party. The conversation covers two main issues: First, the current political situation in Angola, and second, the status of Goa's struggle to oppose Portugal and gain independence.

  • August 12, 1961

    Telegram from Chinese Foreign Ministry to Embassy in India, 'Please Investigate and Report on Goan People's Party General Secretary's Situation and Make Recommendation Re: Visit to China'

    The Goan People's Party general secretary Kakodkar wishes to visit China and explain the Goan People's Party's struggle to oppose Portugal and win independence.

  • September 04, 1961

    Telegram from Chinese Embassy in India to Foreign Ministry, 'Kakodkar's Situation'

    The embassy advises against inviting the Goan People's Party general secretary to visit China before the Indian election.

  • September 16, 1961

    Telegram from Chinese Foreign Ministry to Embassy in Morocco, 'Currently Inadvisable to Invite Kakodkar to Visit China'

    The Foreign Ministry advises against inviting the general secretary of the Goan People's Party to China for the time being.

  • November 28, 1961

    Telegram from Chinese Embassy in Morocco to Foreign Ministry, 'Request Foreign Ministry Learn About Braganca Situation Through Embassy in India'

    A member of India's Goan People's Party visted the embassy asking for support from the Chinese.

  • December 19, 1961

    Cable from the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 'We Support the Action Taken by India against Goa, but We Cannot Agree with India’s Demand that We Withdraw Our Sentry Posts'

    Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs ordered the Chinese Ambassador to convey to India that while China wholeheartedly support India taking back Goa, it could not agree to the demand that Beijing withdraw their sentry posts.

  • December 23, 1961

    Telegram from Chinese Foreign Ministry to Embassy in Morocco

    The Foreign Ministry orders the embassy to refrain from initiating contact with a representative of the Goan People's Party as it could cause diplomatic problems with India for China to be in direct contact with the Goan liberation movement.

  • January 01, 1962

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in India, 'Overview of India’s Foreign Relations in 1961'

    The Chinese Embassy in India reported on Indian foreign relations for the year 1961. In the report, the following issues are mentioned: Indian dependence on the United States, capitalism, opposition to China and communism, imperialism, and Indian-Pakisti relations.

  • March 01, 1962

    Note given by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Peking, to the Embassy of India in China, 1 March 1962

  • March 08, 1962

    Summary of Conversation between Premier Zhou Enlai and Pakistan’s Ambassador to the PRC, Rashidi (Excerpt)

    Zhou Enlai and Ali Muhammad Rashidi discuss the disputes between Pakistan and India and Afghanistan, and China's positions in those conflicts.

  • July 21, 1962

    Note given by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Peking, to the Embassy of India in China, 21 July 1962

  • September 01, 1962

    Record of Conversation following Pakistani Ambassador to the PRC Raza’s Presentation of Credentials to Liu Shaoqi’s

    Liu Shaoqi and N.A.M. Raza discuss the Sino-Indian border dispute, and criticize India for having "great power chauvinism."

  • September 05, 1962

    Pakistani Ambassador Raza Pays Formal Visit to Chinese Premier Zhou

    Zhou Enlai and Pakistani Ambassador Raza discuss Chinese and Pakistani relations with India, especially Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's positions on Kashmir, Sino-Indian border disputes, and Sino-Indian interactions on Taiwan and Tibet.

  • October 20, 1962

    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, 'Minutes of the Conversation Between the Chinese Ambassador Ding Guoyu and Pakistan’s Foreign Affairs Secretary on the Sino-Indian Border Clash'

    The two discussed Pakistan's view toward the Sino-Indian conflict. Pakistan sympathized with China and thought that India "deserved to be taught a lesson". Islamabad regarded Nehru as a liar who was ostensibly neutral, anti-colonialist and anti-imperialist but in fact signed secret treaties with the US. Both Chinese and Pakistani representatives agreed to strive to resolve peacefully the border issue between Beijing and Islamabad.

  • October 27, 1962

    The Editorial Department of Renmin Ribao [People's Daily], 'More on Nehru's Philosophy in the Light of the Sino-Indian Boundary Question'

  • November 15, 1962

    Premier Chou En-Lai's [Zhou Enlai's] Letter to the Leaders of Asian and African Countries on the Sino-Indian Boundary Question (November 15, 1962)

  • November 24, 1962

    Minutes of Conversation between Chinese Director of First Department of Asian Affairs Zhang Wenjin and Ambassador of Pakistan Raza

    Ambassador Raza expressed his support for China in the Sino-Indian border conflict, accused India of being two-faced, and talked about how people had misunderstood Pakistan in favor of India in the past.

  • August 02, 1963

    Letter, Homi Bhabhi to Jawaharlal Nehru

    Homi Bhabha writes to Prime Minister Nehru to convey that the Chinese nuclear test will be of no military significance and Chinese possession of a few bombs will not make any difference to the military situation. In order to counter the Chinese bomb’s psychological-political impact, Dr. Bhabha argues that India needs to be in a position to produce the bomb within few months.