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Digital Archive International History Declassified

May 11, 1953

TELEGRAM TO V.M. MOLOTOV FROM BEIJING FROM THE USSR AMBASSADOR TO THE PRC, V.V. KUZNETSOV

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    Results of a conversation with Mao Zedong, on 11 May 1953, regarding the falsification of evidence proving US use of biological weapons.
    "Telegram to V.M. Molotov from Beijing from the USSR Ambassador to the PRC, V.V. Kuznetsov," May 11, 1953, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Archive of the President of the Russian Federation. Translated by Kathryn Weathersby. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/112031
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    https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/112031

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Malenkov Kaganovich
Khrushchev Mikoyan
Bulganin Saburov
Beria Pervukhin
Molotov Gromyko
Voroshilov

In accordance with the resolution confirmed by the USSR Council of Ministers No. 1212 487 of 7 May 1953, the adviser of the embassy of the USSR to the PRC Vas'kov was sent to Beijing and Pyongyang with instructions from the Soviet government.

On 11 May 1953 at 24:00 Kuznetsov and Likhachev were received by Mao Zedong. Zhou Enlai was also present.

After listening to the recommendation of the Soviet government and the CPSU Central Committee about the desirability of curtailing the campaign for unmasking the Americans' use of bacteriological weapons in Korea and China, Mao Zedong said that the campaign was begun on the basis of reports from the command of Chinese volunteers in Korea and in Manchuria. It is difficult to establish now the authenticity of these reports. However, we have studied this question and will return to it once more. If falsification is discovered, then these reports from below should not be believed. In his turn, Mao said that in the struggle against counterrevolution, 650,000 persons were executed in the country, [and] it is true that one should not think that all those killed were guilty. Some number of innocent people apparently suffered.

In the course of the conversation some nervousness was noticed on the part of Mao Zedong, he smoked a lot, crushed cigarettes and drank a lot of tea. Towards the end of the conversation he laughed and joked, and calmed down. Zhou Enlai behaved with intent seriousness and some uneasiness.

Kuznetsov