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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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China-North Korea Relations

This collection of documents probes the relationship between China and North Korea from the 1940s through the 1980s. While often described as being "as close as lips to teeth," this collection highlights instances of both cooperation and mistrust between China and North Korea. See also the Digital Archive collection on Repatriation to North Korea.

  • December 17, 1957

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 17 December 1957

    Kim Il Sung discusses his plans to send a letter to Mao Zedong about the withdrawal of the Chinese volunteers from DPRK and to convene a Party conference as well as the current situation with trade in pork and progress of the conference of agricultural cooperative workers.

  • December 20, 1957

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 20 December 1957

    PRC Ambassador Qiao Xiaoguang discusses the withdrawal of Chinese People's Volunteers from the DPRK.

  • January 08, 1958

    Minutes of Conversation between Zhou Enlai and Soviet Ambassador Yudin (Excerpt)

    Zhou Enlai discusses the withdrawal of the Chinese People's Volunteers from North Korea with Ambassador Pavel Yudin and North Korea's views on the security situation on the Korean Peninsula.

  • January 23, 1958

    Minutes of Conversation between Zhang Wentian and Pavel Yudin (Excerpt)

    Ambassador Pavel Yudin discusses the Soviet Union's views on the withdrawal of the Chinese People's Volunteers from North Korea with Zhang Wentian.

  • February 14, 1958

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 14 February 1958

    Puzanov discusses a rally with Kim Il Sung and Zhou Enlai addressing the friendship between DPRK and PRC's war of liberation against the West and Japanese imperialists.

  • February 15, 1958

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 15 February 1958

    Puzanov discusses his participation in the laying of the wreath by the Chinese delegation at the monument to the Liberation of Korea, the satisfactory reception for the delegation, and presenting Pak Jeong-ae with a letter from the CPSU CC.

  • February 19, 1958

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 19 February 1958

    Zhou Enlai gives a speech regarding the positions expressed in the joint Statement of the DPRK and PRC governments and confirms the friendship of the two states.

  • February 22, 1958

    Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 22 February 1958

    At the 40th anniversary of the USSR Armed Forces meeting, Kim Il Sung shares impressions of the visit of the PRC delegation and discusses the South Korean aircraft that overflew DPRK in February 16 and students who renounced the DPRK citizenship.

  • August 03, 1958

    Plan for Vice Premier Li Xiannian to Receive and Dine with the Korean Government Delegation

    Arrangements and plans for a dinner and reception involving North Korea's Deputy Prime Minister Ri Ju-yeon.

  • August 05, 1958

    Reference Materials for the Sino-Korean Negotiations on Supplying Equipment and Constructing Power Plants

    A report on the quantity and types of industrial equipment being provided to North Korea by China, as well as the types of factories being constructed in North Korea with Chinese assistance.

  • October 18, 1958

    Notification from the Ministry of Interior on Opinions Relating to Marriages between Chinese People and Korean Women

    The Ministry of the Interior transmits a report entitled "Internal Opinions on Marriages between Chinese [Men] and [North] Korean Women" as reference for Civil Administration Departments in the People's Republic of China. The document outlines policies for addressing requests from North Korean women wishing to marry Chinese men.

  • November 22, 1958

    Record of Conversation from the Premier's Reception of the Korean Government Delegation

    Zhou Enlai and Kim Il Sung discuss the economic situation, electricity production, agricultural production, cooperativization, and the military in North Korea, as well as the withdrawal of the Chinese People's Army from the DPRK. Zhou and Kim also touched on issues relating to U.S.-Japan relations, inter-Korean relations, Chinese development, the Great Leap Forward, U.S. global strategy, Korean nationals in Japan, and Taiwan.

  • 1959

    Cable, Chinese Embassy in North Korea to the Foreign Ministry Consular Department

    Chinese and North Korean officials attempt to resolve the messy citizenship question of KPA veterans with ties to China.

  • April 20, 1959

    Cable, Chinese Embassy in North Korea to the Foreign Ministry Consular Affairs Department

    Continuing exchanges between Chinese and North Korean officials over illegal cross-border migration.

  • June 18, 1959

    Cable, Chinese Embassy in North Korea to the Foreign Ministry Consular Affairs Department

    North Korean and Chinese officials discuss what to do with Koreans who have illegally entered China.

  • September 21, 1959

    Report by Qiao Xiaoguang on a Conversation with Kim Il Sung

    Qiao Xiaoguang, the Chinese Ambassador to North Korea, reports to the Central Committee that Kim Il Sung expressed the desire to discuss North Korea's economic development with Mao Zedong and Liu Shaoqi. Kim also states his support for the CCP and the solidarity of the China-DPRK relationship.

  • October 11, 1959

    Cable, Chinese Embassy in North Korea to the Foreign Ministry Consular Department

    North Korean and Chinese officials discuss what to do with Koreans who have illegally entered China.

  • October 28, 1959

    Cable from the Chinese Interior Ministry, 'Reply to the Letter from the Korean Side Proposing that Former Captives Who are Chinese Citizen Korean Nationality People’s Army Soldiers be given Veteran’s Benefits'

    The Chinese Interior Ministry devises a policy to accord veterans benefits to Chinese Koreans who served in the North Korean army and have since returned to China.

  • December 10, 1959

    Chinese Foreign Ministry, 'Summary Report on Organizing Ethnic Koreans and Mobilizing Korean Immigrants to go to Korea to Take Part in Construction'

    The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs summarizes efforts made to organize ethnic Koreans in Northeast China to relocate to North Korea to lend support to economic construction in the DPRK.

  • April 04, 1960

    Cable from the Chinese Interior Ministry Benefits Bureau, 'Reply to the Letter concerning how to Handle Benefits for Chinese Citizen Demobilized Former Korean People’s Army Soldiers Holding Valid Korean Demobilization Documents who Came to China'

    The Interior Ministry weighs on the proposed benefits for Chinese Koreans who formerly served in the North Korean army during the Korean War.