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Digital Archive International History Declassified

1955

REPORT BY THE CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY, 'SOME EXISTING ISSUES IN AND SUGGESTIONS FOR THE ASIA-AFRICA CONFERENCE'

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    A Chinese Foreign Ministry report on three sets of issues facing the Asian-African Conference.
    "Report by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, 'Some Existing Issues in and Suggestions for the Asia-Africa Conference'," 1955, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 207-00004-06, 59-62. Obtained by Amitav Acharya and translated by Yang Shanhou. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113179
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Some Existing Issues in and Suggestions for the Asia-Africa Conference

The existing issues of the Asian-African Conference can be generally divided into three categories:

1. The common issues of the conference;

2. The relations between China and other countries;

3. Special issues of China.

The issues of the three categories are now separately listed as follows:

1. The Common Issues of the Asian-African Conference

(1) Strive to confirm the Five Principles in the final communiqué or declaration. India may propose to list both the Five Principles and the UN Charter side by side, or list the Five Principles in a changed appearance, but not its essence in order to reach an unanimous agreement. If such happens, we may compromise.

(2) Colonialism

The eight-item agenda put forward by India confines the colonialist issue to the specific colonies and trustee territories, which seems to have an attempt to absolve US from the blame. We should still take US as the main target of attack. In case some other countries raise the specific issues such as West Irian, Goa, Tunisia, Morocco, etc., we should give a warm support. Regarding to the issue of trustee territories, our argument is that at the present time, the practical conditions of the trustee territories are not in conformity with the words and spirit of the UN Charter.

(3) Racial discrimination

(4) Social issues

Emphatically introduce our achievements obtained in various social reforms due to the victory of the new democratic revolution.

(5) Economy

Our principle is: conduct trade and develop technical and economic cooperation on the basis of equality and mutual benefit in order to consolidate and promote the peace and development of independent economy. In discussion we may mention the opposition to embargo, but don't demand to reach an agreement on it.

(6) Culture

We may propose the specific measures for cultural exchange and agree to the proposal of "cultural festival".

(7) Atomic weapons

Our principle is still to prohibit and destroy atomic weapons and all weapons of mass destruction. If other countries propose to ban the use of atomic weapons, or control the atomic weapons, or stop the experiment, etc., it seems that we should take an attitude of encouraging them all and agree to list it in the communiqué or declaration.

(8) Indochina

Our principle is to resolutely implement the Geneva Agreement, the key is that all the Indochinese countries shall not join any military alliances, and withdraw(withdraw from Haiphong) in time, and carry out the preparatory work of Vietnam's election according to the timetable.

(9) Joining United Nations

We do not have to demand the other countries to support us on the restoration of our status in UN.[2] But if other countries submit the proposal on the issue of Asian-African countries' joining UN , it seems that we should adopt the same position as Soviet Union, i.e. Ceylon, Nepal, Jordan and Libya should be accepted as the UN members together with the other ten countries, including Romania, the time for the Indochinese countries to join UN shall come when the all-round political solution in accordance with the Geneva Agreement has been realized, and Japan's joining UN is subject to its conclusion of formal treaties with China and Soviet Union.

(10) Permanent institution of the Asian-African Conference

It seems that we do not have to take the initiative to raise this issue, but can encourage other countries to propose the establishment of a permanent institution for economic and cultural cooperation or the permanent institution of Asian-African Conference in the meeting.

2. Relations between China and the Other Participating Countries

In addition to China and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, the participating countries may be generally divided in several categories as following:

(1) "Peace and neutral" countries: India, Burma, Indonesia and Afghanistan.

(2) Close to "peace and neutral" countries: Egypt, the Sudan, Nepal, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the Gold Coast, Cambodia, Laos, Ceylon and Pakistan.

(3) Close to "anti-peace and anti-neutral" countries: Japan, South Vietnam, Libya, Liberia, Iran, Iraq, and Abyssnia [Ethiopia].

(4) "Anti-peace and anti-neutral" countries: Thailand, the Philippines and Turkey.

Under the general line of expanding the united front of peace, it seems that we should unite the countries of the first category, win over the second, influence the third and isolate the fourth in the conference.

Outside the conference, we should select some key countries from each category as our work target and solve some specific issues. Besides the Colombo countries, Egypt and Japan are the other key countries.

A. India, Indonesia and Burma: It seems that we should try to discuss all the issues related to the conference with these countries beforehand.

B. Egypt and other countries: Try to establish diplomatic or work (for example, set up commercial institutions in each other's country) relations with Egypt and Syria, solve the issue of diplomatic envoy with Nepal, and solve the issue of pilgrimage with Saudi Arabia.

C. Japan: Try to solve the issues unsolved by the trade delegation and lay a foundation for establishing work relations.

D. Thailand and the Philippines: Try to establish contact with them and influence them to a certain extent.

E. South Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia: Mediate their present disputes with the Democratic Republic of Vietnam and prevent them from further undermining the Geneva Agreement.

3. The Special Issues of China

(1) Taiwan

Find opportunities to express the possibility of peaceful liberation of Taiwan under the pre-condition of the withdrawal of US armed forces from Taiwan and Taiwan Straits.

(2) The so-called Communist subversive activities

(3) Overseas Chinese issues

(5) Other

We have border disputes with some of the participating countries, and some countries slandered China of trafficking in narcotics and detention of prisoners of war. It is anticipated that the possibility is very small for other countries to mention these issues in the conference, but we should make preparation to cope with it.