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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 18, 1979

TRANSCRIPT OF CPSU CC POLITBURO MEETING (EXCERPT), 18 OCTOBER 1979

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    [Excerpt] Transcript of CPSU CC Politburo Meeting regarding telegrams from Cuba regarding the attitudes of SWAPO men and Angolans towards the Cubans and fighting. The Politburo members also discussed Sino-Soviet relations, Cuban sugar sales, and Soviet cooperation with Spain.
    "Transcript of CPSU CC Politburo Meeting (excerpt), 18 October 1979," October 18, 1979, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, TsKhSD, f. 89, per. 25, dok. 6, ll. 21. Copy obtained by David Wolff; translation by Vladislav M. Zubok. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113054
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[...]

8. About signing agreement with Spain about developing economic and industrial cooperation

SUSLOV: Ministry of External Trade is proposing a project of agreement of development of economic and industrial cooperation between the USSR and Spain. The idea is to have talks with the Spanish side and sign an agreement.

PATOLICHEV: I will have to travel to Spain for conducting the talks. I think, this is an important deed for us.

Resolution for project is adopted.

9. Telegram from Havana Spec[ial]. # 741 and 744

SUSLOV: Comrades, you have read these telegrams. In one of them a question is raised that in a conversation with our ambassador, Raul Castro told about difficulties that had emerged with regard to replacement of the Cuban troops in Ethiopia. In the second conversation Raul Castro said the Angolans in all probability would appeal [probably to us] with a request to take over the maintenance [i.e., costs--trans.] of the Cuban troops in Angola. Secondly, he said that the Angolans treat the Cuban representatives rather tactlessly.

The next question concerned the assistance with arms to SWAPO. He remarked, that Soviet comrades assist SWAPO with arms but the SWAPO men absolutely do not fight and do not want to fight. Then one wonders, why we should help them with weapons[?] In one word, there are a number of very important principled questions which we should consider. I think that we should order the Defense Ministry and the International Department of the CC to consider these questions advanced in these telegrams, taking into account the exchange of opinions that took place at the meeting of the Politburo, [and] the proposals will be introduced to the CC.

ALL. Agreed.

10. Telegrams from Havana special ##738 and 745 from 11 October 1979.

SUSLOV: In these telegrams our ambassador informs us that the Cubans this year won't be able to fully provide the amount of sugar agreed upon previously, which means we will have to compensate that amount some other way.

TIKHONOV: We should buy sugar in other countries. For this we will need no less than 345 million currency rubles.

SUSLOV: Let us give this question to the Council of Ministers to look into and present suggestions.

11. About the Soviet-Chinese talks

SUSLOV: Yesterday was the first plenum meeting. The not of Yliychev is sent around, let us hear him out.

IL'ICHEV: Soviet delegation, as it was foreseen by the directives, brought in for discussion the project of "Declaration of the principles of relations between the Soviet Union and the Chinese People's Republic." In accordance with that Declaration we took a stand and justified the necessity to adopt the Declaration, which could lead to the normalization of Soviet-Chinese relations, the reestablishment of good-neighbor relations between the USSR and China. This is completely in accordance with the principles and the course of the CC CPSU and Soviet government in relations with China. The head of the Chinese delegation gave a strange speech, in which he delivered in uncovered condition previously known terms of the Chinese side. The terms were as following:

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