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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 23, 1950

BURMESE FOREIGN MINISTER’S STATEMENT TO CHINESE AMBASSADOR DURING A LARGE GATHERING OF ETHNIC CHINESE, HIS PERSPECTIVE, AND OUR IDEAS FOR A RESOLUTION

This document was made possible with support from the MacArthur Foundation, Leon Levy Foundation

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    The Burmese Foreign Minister is critical of Chinese Ambassador Yao Zhongming's anti-American remarks.
    "Burmese Foreign Minister’s Statement to Chinese Ambassador during a Large Gathering of Ethnic Chinese, His Perspective, and Our Ideas for a Resolution," October 23, 1950, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 105-00067-02(1). Obtained by Hongwei Fan and translated by Max Maller. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/118225
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Burmese Foreign Minister told Ambassador Yao [Zhongming] that in a speech he [Yao] gave on October 1 to a group of Chinese expatriates he made inappropriate anti-American comments. He informed me that at the large gathering for expatriates on October 1 he made reference to “American imperialism.” In order to avoid a mess, it would be better to mind his tongue, he said. I replied that I ‘could not condemn what I myself believed’. Since American imperialism is a fact based on territorial invasions, why shouldn’t people be allowed to discuss it? The Burmese minister explained, “I do not support American imperialists’ invasions, and I support your objection, but I don’t want to cause trouble. I will allow for a normal reference to American imperialism or opposition to the American empire based on specific facts. But I shall speak out broadly against American imperialism.”

The Chinese Foreign Ministry responded to Yao: “Minister Yao, in regard to what you have said about the subject of your October 1 lecture, this Ministry finds nothing inappropriate in your response…For the ambassador to inform our expatriates of this fact cannot in any way be construed as a violation of foreign relations etiquette.”