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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 16, 1963

REPORT ON A CONVERSATION BETWEEN THE SOVIET AMBASSADOR IN NORTH KOREA VASILY MOSKOVSKY AND SOVIET SPECIALISTS IN NORTH KOREA

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    Vasily Moskovsky relays that, according to one Korean engineer, North Korea can produce an atomic bomb.
    "Report on a Conversation between the Soviet Ambassador in North Korea Vasily Moskovsky and Soviet Specialists in North Korea," October 16, 1963, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVPRF, fond 0102, opis 19, papka 97, delo 5, list 185. Obtained and translated for NKIDP by Sergey Radchenko. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/110613
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[I] had a talk with the Soviet specialists who are conducting research on uranium ores in the laboratories of the mining institute in Pyongyang. One of them, Comrade B.N. Syromyatnikov, said that he recently had a conversation with a Korean engineer who had studied in the Soviet Union. […] The Korean […] asked […] a question: In the opinion of our specialists, can the Koreans create an atomic bomb? Upon hearing the reply to the effect that the economy of the DPRK cannot cope with the creation of nuclear weapons, the Korean said that it would cost much less in the DPRK than in other countries. If we tell our workers, he declared, that we are taking up such a task, they will agree to work free of charge for several years. […]