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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 19, 1957

JOURNAL OF SOVIET AMBASSADOR TO THE DPRK A.M. PUZANOV FOR 19 AUGUST 1957

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

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    Kim Il Sung and Puzanov discuss the possibility of Korean citizens in Japan studying in DPRK higher education institutions, matters of the DPRK's draft five-year plan and terms of trade between the Soviet Union and North Korea, factionalist activities against the KWP leadership and DPRK government, and South Korean insurgency against North Korea leading up to DPRK elections.
    "Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 19 August 1957," August 19, 1957, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVPRF F. 0102, Op. 13, P. 72, Delo 5, Listy 193-236. Translated by Gary Goldberg. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115650
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SOVIET EMBASSY IN THE DPRK TOP SECRET

Nº 196 Copy Nº 1

31 August 1957

[handwritten: 010343-gs

[[11]] September [[5]]7]

[stamp:

Incoming 02416-s;

11/12 September 1957]

The Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A. M. PUZANOV

for the period 16 through 30 August 1957

Pyongyang

SECRET

[…]

19 August.

I visited Kim Il Sung and orally passed him CPSU CC information about the 1-2 August meeting in Romania between CPSU CC and Soviet government delegations and SKYu and FNRYu [Yugoslav] government delegations.

Kim Il Sung thanked the CPSU CC for the information and expressed his opinion in the following words: the meeting went well; it is a new step in the path of strengthening the countries of the socialist camp and meeting our common interests, the interests of the socialist countries.

In accordance with a USSR MFA instruction I informed Kim Il Sung that the Association of Korean Citizens Living in Japan had addressed a request for assistance in sending Korean citizens on Soviet steamships through the USSR to study at DPRK higher educational institutions. When doing so they referred to an alleged agreement that the Association has with corresponding DPRK authorities. It is planned to send 60 people to study in the DPRK this year.

I asked Kim Il Sung's opinion on this issue.

Kim Il Sung said that we can accept and help Korean citizens living in Japan study at DPRK higher educational institutions. But how do the Japanese see this, will they give exit visas? We have given agreement to give aid and assistance to those Koreans living in Japan who want to study at DPRK higher educational institutions. We base this on the fact that the Association of Korean Citizens Living in Japan do not have a bad attitude toward the DPRK.

Kim Il Sung then said that if there is an opportunity then assistance ought to be given to send Korean citizens living in Japan on Soviet steamships through the USSR to study at DPRK higher educational institutions.

In the conversation which took place Kim Il Sung stated his point of view on the comments by Gosplan and the State Committee for Economic Aid about the draft of the first DPRK five-year plan and provided information about the progress of the investigation of the case of the group of Choe Chang-ik, Pak Chang-ok, and others, and about measures being taken by the KWP CC to strengthen vigilance against intrigues by domestic and foreign enemies in connection with elections to the DPRK Supreme People's Assembly.

Concerning comments and suggestions about the draft of the five-year plan

Kim Il Sung reported that at a meeting in the CC he had heard a preliminary report from the delegation leader, Kim Il. Kim Il Sung said that the comments, advice, and suggestions were very good and correct and I completely agree with them. The Soviet comrades studied the draft of our five-year plan very closely, comprehensively, and deeply and gave valuable, skillful comments and suggestions. In all the work which was done there was felt the wish and a desire of the Soviet comrades and leaders to help the DPRK in every possible way to develop the economy and improve the population's standard of living.

Kim Il Sung said that I gave instructions to Gosplan to make changes and amendments to the draft of the five-year plan in accordance with the recommendations. Today I gathered ministers and department managers, where I talked about the main comments concerning the draft of our five-year plan for the development of the economy for 1958.

Kim Il Sung then said that the KWP CC Presidium did not give the delegation instructions to raise with the Soviet government the issue of an extension of the 240 million ruble credit which we have to pay in 1960-1961, and also about keeping the prices for monazite and zinc concentrate. At this point Kim Il Sung repeated three times and stressed that Kim Il raised these issues at his own initiative. He personally considers it correct and necessary to pay the credits. One hundred and sixty million rubles were already reserved for this purpose in the draft of our five-year plan. As regards the prices for monazite and zinc concentrate they need to be set at world princes as envisioned by the Soviet government. In reply to Kim Il's query about this issue I sent a telegram in this spirit which I thought over carefully and dictated myself. I suggested that Kim Il, inasmuch as they raised these issues at their own initiative without having instructions from the CC Presidium, not include these issues in the aide-memoire to the CC about the results of the trip to the USSR with the draft of the five-year plan. Kim Il's report about the results of the trip with the draft of the five-year plan will be heard at the next KWP CC Presidium meeting.

Kim Il Sung warmly recalled the great attention, concern, and work done by Counsellor Makarov (Chairman of the State Committee for Economic Relations) and Adviser to DPRK Gosplan Lukovnikov.

Concerning the group of Choe Chang-ik, Pak Chang-ok, and others. Kim Il Sung reported that the criminal activity of the group of Choe Chang-ik, Pak Chang-ok, and others directed at overthrowing the KWP CC leadership and DPRK government is being increasingly revealed in the course of the investigation and at Party meetings. He said that at a Party meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers' Directorate of Affairs former Administrator Yang Gye reported at his own initiative about a secret meeting of the group of Choe Chang-ik, Pak Chang-ok, and others at which they stipulated who will occupy what posts in the Party and government and planned the measures which ought to be taken to overthrow the leadership. For example, the post of Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers was designated for Choe Chang-ik; Chairman of the KWP CC, for Kim Du-bong; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ri Sang-jo; and Minister of Internal Affairs, Ri Pil-gyu. A new composition of the KWP CC Presidium was also planned.

Kim Il Sung said that the group intended to prepare a group of workers who, while participating in a workers' demonstration passing by the reviewing stand on liberation day, 15 August, would stop at it and demand the overthrow of the leadership, and Seo Hwi (former Chairman of the CC of the Trade Unions) would arrest the leadership right there on the reviewing stand.

According to Kim Il Sung's report, there was also an alternative plan for a terrorist act against him and at Choe Chang-ik's order Pang Hak-se, was given three blank passes for free passage to the Cabinet of Ministers. All these facts are being carefully verified right now.

Kim Il Sung said with great indignation that as it is now increasingly being revealed business was consciously neglected in those ministries which were led by participants of the anti-Party group and everything was being done to provoke the workers' indignation. For example, the Ministry of Trade, a large quantity of goods were written off under the pretext of poor quality and spoilage and buried; a large quantity of textiles received from the Soviet Union was handed over to speculators. We will deal very harshly with the people who hid the goods and profiteered with them, we will judge and execute them. The Ministry of Construction deceived the government, reporting false information about the progress of construction. Some days ago the CC removed the managers of two Pyongyang construction trusts who were in particular building the Soviet Embassy and thus were dragging out the construction.

Concerning preparations for elections to the DPRK Supreme People's Assembly.

Kim Il Sung said that enemies are stepping up their activity in connection with elections to the Supreme People's Assembly. The South Koreans are dropping enormous quantities of leaflets from balloons (according to information available in the Embassy from 7 to 9 August local residents and KNA servicemen collected up to 29000 enemy leaflets in the provinces of North and South Hwanghae, Kangwon, and Chagang. MVD organizations arrested one Choe Chang [Sik], who had infiltrated from the South and testified that he was infiltrated with the purpose of organizing a rebellion in the area of Nampo. At the beginning of August a large quantity of leaflets produced on a mimeograph machine were found and collected in Hamheung and Sinpo. Kim Il Sung said that in the past 11 years no such quantity "of local manufacture" had been found (the Embassy knew that 800 leaflets had been found and collected). These leaflets contain reactionary propaganda directed against the policy of the DPRK and the Soviet Union. In one of the conversations with Nam Il I cautiously directed attention to an increase of vigilance and suspiciousness, and it was recommended that Cde. Ivanov, MVD specialist and consultant, talk about this in suitable form with Pang Hak-se, the Minister of Internal Affairs]).

Although the overall situation here in the country is good, all these and other facts put us on guard and right now we are taking a whole series of steps to increase vigilance through CC and government channels. I spoke about this today at a meeting of ministers, and leaders of provincial committees and leaders of provincial MVD's [SIC] will be gathered about these issues.

I noted for my part that the measures being taken by the CC are politically important and advisable since in a situation of political and labor enthusiasm in the country there are also many leaders who are complacent and do not exhibit vigilance toward enemy intrigues, and enemies striving to damage the cause of socialist construction usually take advantage of this.

Nam Il was present at the conversation, which lasted two hours.

[…]

SOVIET AMBASSADOR IN THE DPRK

[signature] (A. PUZANOV)

Five copies printed:

1 - Cde. Gromyko

2 - Cde. Fedorenko

3 - Cde. Kurdyukov

4 - Cde. Solodovnikov

5 - to file

Nº 527

31 August 1957