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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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Sino-Soviet Relations

This is a catch-all collection for sources on Sino-Soviet relations. For more focused collections that deal with specific periods of the relationship during the Cold War, see (1) Making of the Sino-Soviet Alliance, 1945-1950; (2) Sino-Soviet Alliance, 1950-1959; (3) Sino-Soviet Split, 1960-1984; (4) Sino-Soviet Border Conflict, 1969; and (5) Sino-Soviet Rapprochement, 1985-1989. (Image, Soviet propaganda poster, "Friends Forever.")

  • September 19, 1956

    Draft of Record of a Meeting between the Soviet and Chinese Delegations

    Mao Zedong reveals that several Korean Workers' Party members have been placed under arrest, including Pak Il-u, who is looked favorably upon by the CCP. Sino-North Korean relations have become strained as a result of Kim Il Sung's handling of the August incident. Mao admits to Mikoyan that the KWP leadership may not heed their advice, but they decide to send a joint delegation to Pyongyang the next morning.

  • September 23, 1956

    Telegram from A. Mikoyan to the CPSU Central Committee

    Peng Dehuai tells Mikoyan that the Chinese Communist Party fully supports the denunciation of Stalin's personality cult, partly because after the Chinese revolution, Stalin insisted that the new government take an inclusive approach to opposition parties. Peng also discusses Mao Zedong's recent meeting with the Egyptian ambassador.

  • October 14, 1956

    Notes of an Interview with Zhou Enlai

    Zhou Enlai describes China's desire to gain international recognition. However, the question of Taiwan as one out of "Two Chinas" makes it difficult to agree internationally, since Great Britain and the United States recognize Taiwan and not PR China as the legitimate Chinese government. Hong Kong and the US endeavor to gain control of Chiang Kai-Shek's Taiwan are also discussed.

  • November 22, 1956

    Diary of Soviet Ambassador P.F. Yudin, Memorandum of Conversation with Liu Shaoqi of 30 October 1956

    Liu Shaoqi discusses the potential withdrawal of Soviet advisors from China. Although the Chinese government was considering sending back some specialist, they did not want the abrupt removal of all specialists as happened in Yugoslavia. Liu Shaoqi also brings up the 1956 uprisings in Hungary and Poland, saying that such events were a “useful lesson for the entire communist movement.”

  • November 26, 1956

    Letter, Boris Polevoi to the CC CPSU, Mistakes Regarding Social Ties with China

    Soviet writer Boris Polevoi writes to the Central Committee concerning "a series of very serious mistakes" in Soviet social and cultural relations with China. These mistakes include the lack of a Soviet edition of the "Society for Chinese-Soviet Friendship" placed in the capital of the Soviet republics, the extravagant behavior of Soviet delegates in China, and evidence of China as being referred to as an inferior partner in the Soviet Union. Resetting these mistakes might strengthen Sino-Soviet public relations.

  • December 12, 1956

    Memorandum, Chen Yun to N. A. Bulganin

    Chen Yun explains why China cannot purchase as many military supplies from the Soviet Union as original proposed.

  • December 17, 1956

    Diary of Soviet Official K. A. Krutikov, Record of Conversation with Hungarian Envoy Ezhef Sall

    Conversation about the mood among the foreign Hungarian colony in PRC. The most of the conversation concerns the reasons for the 1956 uprising in Hungary. A lack of knowledge among the Hungarian leadership (with a predominant Soviet background) about the actual situation in Hungary, and the failure of the Soviet Embassy in Budapest to establish contacts with non-Russian speaking Hungarians, are here presented as main reasons for the Hungarian uprising.

  • January 24, 1957

    Report, 'My Observations on the Soviet Union,' Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong and the Central Leadership (Excerpt)

    Zhou Enlai comments on the weaknesses of the Soviet Communist Leadership in terms of problem-solving strategies and tactics, international relations, and general effectiveness of the Party leaders.

  • January 27, 1957

    Speech, Mao Zedong, 'On Sino-American and Sino-Soviet Relations'

    According to Mao, it would be beneficial for China to wait until after the Third Five-Year Plan to establish a relationship with the United States. In regards to the Soviet Union, he discusses the arrogance of the Soviets as a result of their abundant natural resources, and the “inevitable” disputes between the Communist parties in each country.

  • March 13, 1957

    Memorandum, Chinese Foreign Ministry to the Soviet Embassy to Beijing

    The Chinese government corrects perceived errors in a report complied by the Soviet Far East Economic Committee on China's economic development.

  • March 22, 1957

    Memorandum from the Soviet Government to the Chinese Government on the Arms Reduction Issue

    A memorandum from the Soviet government to the Chinese updating them on the arms reduction talks, a key component of which was a prohibition of the testing of atomic and hydrogen weapons. The Soviet proposal also called for reductions in conventional weapons and the prohibition of installing nuclear weapons outside their territorial borders.

  • April 02, 1957

    Letter, to the Deputy Chair of the Soviet of Ministers, M.G. Pervukhin, Regarding Radio Technology

    Soviet Minister Pervukhin writes regarding assistance to the Chinese with the set up of radio equipment and technical specialists. They also need assistance with maintaining tropical equipment, and he suggests sending specialists to the Paris Exhibition to learn more.

  • April 15, 1957

    Memorandum of Conversation with East German Ambassador Fr. Everhartze

    Meeting with East German Ambassador Everhartze concerning the recently concluded Chinese-Polish negotiations and the recent 1956 uprisings in Poland. The main purpose of the visit was to find out about the future visit ofZhou Enlai to Czechoslovakia, because the GDR has also invited Zhou Enlai to a state visit.

  • July 09, 1957

    From the Diary of P. A. Abrasimov, Memorandum of Conversation with the General Secretary of the CCP, Deng Xiaoping, 3 July 1957

    Deng Xiaoping talks about the struggle with "rightist" elements in the People's Republic of China.

  • July 11, 1957

    Handwritten Letter from Nie Rongzhen to Zhou Enlai on the Development of the Atomic Energy Industry

    A letter to Zhou Enlai informing him that the industrial development plan for China's atomic energy program has not been finalized and that the technical agreement with the Soviet Union must be delayed.

  • August 12, 1957

    Letter from Zhang Wentian to the Soviet Chargé Concerning the Development of the Atomic Energy Industry

    A letter from the Chinese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs to the Soviet Chargé informing him that revisions must be made to the “Agreement on the Provision of Technical Assistance from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics to the People’s Republic of China in Establishing an Atomic Energy Industry,” and that until it is revised the delivery of technical equipment should be delayed.

  • September 11, 1957

    Protocol No. 1 of the Joint Meeting of the Delegations of the Soviet Ministry of Defense Industry and Representatives of the Chinese People’s Republic

    Minutes from a meeting on Sino-Soviet efforts at defense planning and collaboration. Chinese defense officials looked for Russian help in the production of guided missiles, and the document illustrate their efforts to collaborate in the education and preparation of specialists, the staffing of military research institutes, the construction of defense-related factories, and the sharing of technology.

  • September 23, 1957

    Report on Meetings Between Chinese and Soviet Representatives on Rocket Production

    Record of four meetings with Chinese defense officials who were seeking Russian assistance in the production of guided missiles in Chinese factories. The discuss Sino-Soviet collaboration in the education and preparation of specialists, the staffing of military research institutes, the construction of defense-related factories, and the sharing of technology. Arrangements for the sale of R-2 and S-75 missiles were also discussed.

  • September 25, 1957

    Meeting of the Ministry of Defense Industry with Representatives of the Chinese Delegation

    Domrachev and the Chinese representatives discuss an article which states that the USSR will render assistance in the planning and creation of two research institutes in China for rockets and guidance equipment. It is decided that Chinese resources can enable the creation of no more than two institutes. Domrachev outlines the projected costs of the planning and technical documentation of the institutes, as well as the cost of construction materials.

  • October 02, 1957

    Meeting of the Representatives of the Chinese Delegation at the Ministry of Defense Industry

    Soviet Ministry of Defense Industry representative, Illarionov, explains to the Chinese delegation the radio technology industry’s role in the construction of rockets and components of the S-75 system.