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Digital Archive International History Declassified

July 24, 1965

MINUTES OF CONVERSATION BETWEEN DENG XIAOPING AND HEAD OF THE KOREAN DELEGATION KIM GWANG-HYEOP

This document was made possible with support from the ROK Ministry of Unification, Leon Levy Foundation

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    The Chinese and Korean Delegation in Bucharest exchange information about their visits in Eastern Europe, discussions with the Romanians, the situation in Yugoslavia and Albania, and the possibility of holding the Afro-Asian Conference.
    "Minutes of Conversation between Deng Xiaoping and Head of the Korean Delegation Kim Gwang-hyeop," July 24, 1965, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 106-01479-03, 11-20. Translated by Jeffrey Wang. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115339
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Time: 24 July 1965, 7:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Location: Residence of the [North] Korean Delegation in Bucharest

Kim Gwang-hyeop [Kim Kwang Hyop] (to be abbreviated as Kim): Where have you visited?

Deng Xiaoping (to be abbreviated as Deng): We visited the Sino-Romanian Friendship Agricultural Cooperative, an agriculture research center, and petroleum and chemical industries. They kept us for one additional day.

Kim: When did you leave?

Deng: We originally planned to leave on Tuesday, but the itinerary did not work out, so we left on Wednesday.

Kim: When is Comrade [Dipa Nusantara] Aidit leaving?

Deng: Tomorrow at 11:30 a.m.

Kim: How many days is he staying in Moscow?

Deng: Five or six days. He is going to China in early August.

Kim: When is [Leonid] Brezhnev leaving?

Deng: He is leaving after Aidit.

Kim: Aidit is going to Moscow first and Brezhnev still will not be back yet. Who will [Aidit] be talking to?

Deng: Aidit’s delegation did not come together. They are still without one person.

Kim: What time will they leave for the Soviet Union?

Deng: He is visiting Africa with Subandrio at the moment. Comrade Aidit said that he does not even know where he is right now.

Kim: The Romanian side kept you for an extra day?

Deng: [Our] meeting was on Monday afternoon, and then they [Romanians] visited factories with us on Tuesday. [It was like], if we do not finish the talks [on time], then we can continue them and leave on Wednesday.

Kim: Since we are here, we should talk with them.

Deng: You did not talk with them?

Kim: They are receiving us tomorrow at 5:00 p.m.

Deng: They might be speaking with the Soviets in the morning and then with you in the afternoon.

Kim: We are not clear when they are speaking with the Soviet delegation. There are not many other issues. After the talks we will go back.

Deng: Where will you pass through when you return?

Kim: We will take off from here and pass through Moscow and Irkutsk. Then we will fly directly from Irkutsk to Pyongyang.

Deng: We are returning via Moscow and Novosibirsk.

Kim: What issues are you prepared to discuss with them?

Deng: We have already discussed Vietnam. Not long ago, Vietnam’s Le Thanh Nghi went abroad for visits and they did not receive him. They have not been active towards the Vietnam issue. The resolution [they] passed today only mentioned American imperialism in one place. It also mentioned a withdrawal of all foreign armies, but the implications [of this] are unclear. Our formulation is different. The British, French, and Americans call the North Vietnamese a foreign army.

Kim: Foreign army basically [means] the American army and their puppet armies, including the South Korean army.

Deng: According to Western views, the North Vietnamese are also a foreign army. A few days ago we were eating with [Nicolae] Ceausescu and [Ion] Maurer [and] we talked about our position towards Vietnam and our prediction of how the situation will develop. They have always [said] that the Vietnam issue can only be resolved through negotiations. I said that we have never opposed negotiations, but if we are not victorious in battle, then negotiations will not be successful. I mentioned the Panmunjeom [Panmunjom] negotiations as an example. Only after a few battles and exterminating a few enemy divisions did they sign an agreement with us.

Kim: Absolutely correct. We have experience [in fighting and then negotiating]. The Panmunjeom example, which you have just raised, is a very good one. If we were not victories on the battlefield, then negotiations would not have yielded any results either.

Deng: Negotiations [over Vietnam] can only be considered after the United States withdraws. What is there to talk about now?!

Kim: Negotiating now is the equivalent to submitting.

Deng: Equivalent to surrender. They always want peaceful resolution.

Kim: It is surrender. I did not discuss these issues with them. I am prepared to talk when I meet them again. We fully support the statement of North Vietnam and the South Vietnamese National Liberation Front [Viet Cong].

Deng: They did not clearly express support for the Five-Point Statement of the South Vietnamese National Liberation Movement and the Four Proposals of North Vietnam. They only briefly discussed them. They told us that they have an idea, they want to put out a resolution on Vietnam. We said they can do that, but do not engage in joint actions. Aidit discussed the Yugoslavia issue with them. Aidit asked them: does Yugoslavia count as a socialist country? They said it is a socialist country. Aidit then told them about Sukarno and his experience in Yugoslavia during the meeting of the non-aligned countries. [He] said that Yugoslavia is not a socialist country. We do not have a common language with them on these issues.

Kim: We have not discussed this issue with the senior Romanian leaders. We have only asked a Minister from the Central Committee of the Romanian [Communist] Party, who was accompanying us, if Yugoslavia is a socialist country. I first said that we do not want to interfere in your relations with Yugoslavia. We only ask because we are unclear about it. He said [Yugoslavia] is a socialist country.

Deng: We discussed this issue with the delegation led by Maurer in Beijing. He initiated and explained their position towards Yugoslavia. We expressed that we do not oppose the improvement of relations between Yugoslavia and them. However, Yugoslavia is not a socialist country and [the Yugoslav party] is not a Marxist-Leninist party. The conversation ended there with each side expressing their own views.

Kim: When they came to [North] Korea, our discussion with Maurer was the same as yours. When he discussed their relations with Yugoslavia, we said that we do not have opinions on their national relations with Yugoslavia, but that Yugoslavia is not a socialist country. It is a dog of American imperialism. During the Korean War, Yugoslavia called us the aggressor at the United Nations. We pointed out all of these things.

Deng: Yugoslavia has done a lot horrible things.

Liu Fang: Recently the United States provided them with 20 million dollars in food.

Deng: When we talked with them, we said that we do not have many issues [which we want] to talk about, but if they have any, we are happy to talk. We have discussed a series of issues with them in the past.

Kim: What is the anticipated subject of this meeting?

Deng: We might talk about the issue of the Afro-Asian Conference.

Kim: How is this issue related to them?

Deng: It is one side of the international [situation]. There are also issues of joint action and common action. We told them that when Brezhnev spoke of joint action, we understood what it meant, therefore we did not applaud.

Kim: Did they directly propose common action?

Deng: The way they said it was unity. Today they composed a resolution on Vietnam. I am prepared to give them our 14 July reply to the CPSU’s letter of 7 April. Have you read our reply?

Kim: No. What did the letter from the CPSU say?

Deng: They said we obstructed Soviet assistance to Vietnam and they even said that we encouraged the American invaders.

Kim: We have not seen your reply letter.

Deng: We gave it to you around 15 July.

Kim: I left on 16 July. Can the Afro-Asian Conference be held on time?

Deng: It is possible. The African Summit has been postponed. It will be held on 20 November or so. We emphasized that if they want to hold it, then it should be held in Algiers. If it cannot be held now, there is nothing wrong with it being held a few years from now. Of the African countries, some of the good ones have become bad ones; some of the bad ones have become good ones.

Kim: Which countries have become bad?

Deng: Kenya and Tunisia. Uganda is somewhat better. Ghana is changing in a bad direction. Burundi became bad. And Tanzania has become good. Some countries are good today but bad tomorrow. All kinds of forces are at work there. The situation is very complex.

Kim: Yesterday at the conference we met a representative from the United Arab Republic. He is responsible for managing external liaison work. I asked him whether or not the Afro-Asian Conference can be held, [and] he very confidently said that it could.

Deng: In sum, the likelihood of it being held is greater [than not]. Many countries in Africa had to recognize Algeria.

Kim: They have already formed a government and so they should be recognized.

Deng: What other way is there besides recognizing them. It is not certain that [Houari] Boumediene’s rule will be worse than Ben Bella. Ben Bella ruled for many years and never visited eastern countries or Indonesia or China. During the war period, we were the first country to support Algeria. In terms of courtesy, he should have visited China. He has visited Yugoslavia, Cuba, and the Soviet Union, but he has not visited a single country in the East.

Kim: During the war period, they sent representatives to China. I have met them before in Beijing.

Deng: Many rulers who have lost power have been to China. We gave them a lot of economic assistance. We provided the equipment for Boumediene’s regular army. Items such as weapons, uniforms, boots, tents, and funds.

Kang Shen (to be abbreviated as Kang): The moment that stood out the most was his absence from the tenth anniversary of Bandung.

Deng: He should have been there. Two or three days would have sufficed. It is an issue of courtesy.

Kim: Our contacts are not as broad as yours. We only have an ambassador there. Foreign Minister Pak [Seong-cheol] [Pak Song Chol] has been there once, but due to strict time constraints, we do not understand the situation there as clearly as you do.

Deng: Ben Bella originally wanted to finish Boumediene before the Afro-Asian Conference. He wanted to use the United Arab Republic’s (UAR) 30,000 soldiers in Algeria to suppress Boumediene’s army. He even asked the UAR to send warships to Algeria, which the UAR did.

Kang: Ben Bella used the opportunity of Boumediene’s visit to the Soviet Union to change the Chief of Staff. The Chief of Staff was actually Boumediene’s man. On 18 June, this Chief of Staff told Boumediene that they have to do it, they even wanted to bribe me. Since they were in a hurry, his government did not make proper preparations. Therefore they did not announce the members of the government even after the emergency.

Kim: This is the first time that I have heard this information. The UAR stationed 30,000 troops in Algeria?

Deng: They were not all soldiers. They were sent because Ben Bella had border conflicts with Morocco, therefore the UAR sent tank units and the air force. Boumediene held a meeting of military cadres and proposed to do it after the Afro-Asian Conference. He did not want to affect the Afro-Asian Conference. He still proposed this even until the afternoon of 18 [June]. He only did it earlier because of what the Chief of Staff had told him.

Kim: Even his own relatives were all bribed.

Deng: He had to do it.

Kim: It is connected to the UAR.

Deng: This incident was primarily [related] to the UAR. During that time, the country was actually a dependency of the UAR. Their relations with Yugoslavia, Cuba, and the Soviet Union were the best.

Kim: Their relations with Yugoslavia were good. We can see this from the joint statement issued when Tito visited Algeria.

Deng: Ben Bella asked revisionist elements within the Algerian Communist Party to help write his draft. His military depended on the UAR. The Soviet Union also supplied some arms. They copied Yugoslavia’s economy. That was Ben Bella’s path. They have made a mess and now their economic situation is very difficult.

Kim: During the conference, Ulbricht mentioned the issue of the new industrial framework. I did not understand him, what does it mean?

Deng: The meaning is the liberalization of industries, to have profits as the center.

Kang: They have a new academic forum in Berlin. The Soviet Union and other Eastern European countries all participate in it. We do not participate in it.

Ye Huosheng: [North] Korea sent an observer and gave us 500 pages of material.

Kim: Our Ambassador attended.

Deng: It is for publicizing the new industrial framework. After Boumediene came to power, our relations with him were not necessarily worse than those with Ben Bella. To be honest, our relations with Ben Bella were not good despite our continued support for him.

Kim: It is very good that you discussed these situations today, particularly the issue of Algeria’s relations with the UAR. In the past we did not know about these issues.

Kang: On the surface, the UAR appears to be supportive, but they are secretly conducting sabotage.

Deng: It is very complicated.

Kim: Is the UAR’s army still there?

Deng: [They] are currently negotiating. Boumediene wants to keep their weapons and have the UAR army withdraw. That was how the UAR army withdrew from Syria. The time is up, let us attend the reception! We ask that after your return to [North Korea,] please greet comrade Premier [Kim Il Sung], Comrade Choe Yonggeon [Choe Yonggon], Comrade Kim Il, and the other leaders [on our behalf].

Kim: Thank you, please also [help us] greet Chairman Mao [Zedong], Chairman Liu [Shaoqi], Comrade Zhou Enlai, and Comrade Zhu De [on our behalf].

Deng: Thank you. Goodbye.

Kim: Goodbye.