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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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Conversations with Kim Il Sung

 This collection of primary source documents assembles a record of Kim Il Sung's conversations with foreign allies and other outsiders from 1949 through 1986, providing insights into DPRK foreign policy and domestic politics from North Korea's highest leader. (Image, NARA, RG 242, SA 2006, Item 6/38.)

  • November 03, 1972

    Conversation between Lee Hu-rak and Kim Il Sung

    Kim Il Sung stresses the importance of reunification through the formation of the coordinating committee and emphasizes the role inter-Korean economic cooperation in facilitating dialogue.

  • October 30, 1973

    Memorandum on the Conversation between Kim Il Sung and Todor Zhivkov

    Todor Zhivkov, First Secretary of the Bulgarian Communist Party, reports on his meeting with Kim Il Sung. Zhivkov and Kim discussed global detente and the Cold War, Chinese-North Korean relations, collective security in Asia, North Korea's views of COMECON, Korean unification, and factionalism in the Korean Workers' Party.

  • August 19, 1974

    The Official Visit Paid by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Socialist Republic of Romania to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea

    The document describes a cordial bilateral relationship between the DPRK and Romania. Pyongyang expresses its desire to continue consulting with Bucharest regarding the issue of dismantling UN bodies in South Korea. In addition, North Korea notes the imperative of establishing direct contact with the United States and plans on using Washington's positive or negative response to its advantage.

  • December 21, 1974

    Record of a Meeting between Kim Il Sung and L. Rinchin

    Kim Il Sung and the MPR Foreign Minister comrade L. Rinchin have a conversation regarding North Korean-Mongolian relations, their economic conditions and policies, and Korean reunification.

  • December 21, 1974

    The Record of Conversation between Foreign Minister of Mongolian People's Republic and President Kim Il Sung of North Korea at 21 Dec., 1974

    During the Foreign Minister of the Mongolian People's Republic's visit to Pyongyang, Kim Il Sung thanks Mongolia for its support of Korea's unification and welcomes discussion on each country's economic situation. Kim Il Sung also laments North Korea's military burden, expressing distaste for American imperialism.

  • May 23, 1975

    Minutes of Conversation taken on the Occasion of the Romanian – Korean Discussions from May 23, 1975

    Kim Il Sung discuses the unity and solidarity of socialist and Third World countries in the struggle against United States. He also describes meetings he held with the representatives of Park Chung Hee.

  • June 18, 1975

    Information on the Talks between Kim Il Sung and Todor Zhivkov

    Todor Zhivkov summarizes his official and private talks about Korean unification with Kim Il Sung during Kim's visit to Bulgaria in June 1975.

  • August 11, 1975

    Voluntary Liberal Democratic Party MP North Korea Visit

    A report on visits by Japanese parliamentary delegations to North Korea.

  • October, 1976

    Report on a Stay of a GDR Military Delegation in the DPRK in October 1976

    Kim Il Sung and Heinz Hoffmann discuss the "axe murder" incident of 18 August, which Kim Il Sung interprets as a deliberate provocation by the Americans .

  • May 20, 1978

    Minutes of Conversation at the Official Meeting between the Romanian Delegation and the Korean Delegation

    Minutes of conversation between Nicolae Ceausescu and Kim Il Sung; the topic of the conversation is the domestic situation (mostly economic) in North Korea and the foreign relations of Romania and North Korea.

  • December 07, 1978

    Minutes of Conversation between Paul Niculescu Mizil, Vice-Prime Minister of Romania, and Kim Il Sung

    Kim Il Sung and Paul Niculescu Mizil discuss Romania’s position within the Warsaw Pact, Soviet military presence in socialist countries, and long-term economic collaboration between Romania and North Korea.

  • July 10, 1979

    Note for the File, 'Main Points Made by President Kim Il Sung in the Meeting with the Secretary-General on 3 May in PyongYang'

    Kim Il Sung claims that North Korea "would like to have economical, political and cultural cooperation with the Republic of Korea."

  • August 04, 1980

    Records of Conversation between Congressman Stephen J. Solarz and Kim Il Sung and Kim Yong-nam

    In this lengthy transcript of discussions between Stephen Solarz and Kim Il Sung, Solarz poses questions about prospects for Korea's unification, exchanges between North and South Korea, and exchanges between North Korea and the U.S. In his response, Kim emphasizes the DPRK's views regarding the necessary preconditions for unification and increased cooperation between the two Koreas. Later, Kim Yong Nam continues to elaborate to Solarz on the North Korean perspective of unification and the role of the international community in perpetrating division.

  • September 14, 1983

    Ciphered Telegram, Embassy of Hungary in North Korea to the Hungarian Foreign Ministry

    A report on a iscussion between Kim Il Sung and Demichev about foreign policies toward Soviet and KAL incident

  • May 30, 1984

    Stenographic Record of Conversation between Erich Honecker and Kim Il Sung

    Stenographic record of the first meeting between Kim Il Sung and Erich Honecker upon the former's 1984 official visit to the GDR. This is the morning session of 30 May 1984. Kim does most of the talking. Kim Il Sung discussed the economic situation in North Korea, objectives and problems of energy generation, the educational system. He asked the GDR for labor and cooperation in the education of specialists. He wanted to sign a long-term agreement of economic cooperation along with the intended friendship treaty. Kim Il Sung also evaluated the military situation in South Korea, explaining the problems of negotiations and reunification with the South. Honecker proposed the creation of an agreement towards economic and scientific cooperation between GDR and North Korea.

  • May 31, 1984

    Memorandum of Conversation between Erich Honecker and Kim Il Sung

    Summary of the conversation between Erich Honecker and Kim Il Sung on 31 May 1984. This is a continuation of the talks suspended on 30 May due to time constraints. Discussion of internal and foreign affairs of East Germany and North Korea, especially concerning relations with China and the Soviet Union.

  • June 01, 1984

    Memorandum of Conversation between Erich Honecker and Kim Il Sung

    Summary of the conversation between Erich Honecker and Kim Il Sung on 1 June 1984. Conversation concerning economic cooperation between North Korea and East Germany, and the expansion of relations to include African countries.

  • June 15, 1984

    Minutes of Conversation: Todor Zhivkov – Kim Il Sung, Sofia

  • May 26, 1986

    Report on Conversation between Prof. Manfred Gerlach and Kim Il Sung

    Report on the warm reception of Professor Manfred Gerlach by Kim Il Sung. Topics discussed include gratitude for Kim's reception in the GDR; Kim's desire for a reciprocal visit by Honecker; the need to further wide relations between the DPRK and GDR; and the unrest in South Korea.

  • October 19, 1986

    Transcript of Official Negotiations between Comrade Erich Honecker and Comrade Kim Il Sung

    Kim Il Sung and Honecker discuss diplomatic relations between East Germany and North Korea and the domestic economic and political situation in North Korea.