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Digital Archive International History Declassified

July 26, 1960

RECORD OF CONVERSATION BETWEEN THE CZECH AMBASSADOR IN THE DPRK WITH THE SOVIET AMBASSADOR

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    A report on a meeting between Kim Il Sung and Nikita Khrushchev in which the two discussed Soviet aid to North Korea and the trilateral relations between China, the Soviet Union, and North Korea.
    "Record of Conversation between the Czech Ambassador in the DPRK with the Soviet Ambassador," July 26, 1960, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, State Central Archive, Prague, File A. Novotny, foreign affairs, KPDR, Translated by Adolf Kotlik. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113700
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MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
In Prague on
July 1960
No. 003923/60-7

23 –26/324
07/26/1960
Archive

Highly Classified.
4 attachments
[Added by hand: “p/998”]

(stamp)
STATE CENTRAL ARCHIVE IN PRAGUE
DEGREE OF SECRECY CANCELED
Reason: file no. 267 261/01- OZÚ
[OZÚ = Section for Special Assignments]
Date: 01/11/02 Alena Noskova, Ph.D.
Signature: (illegible)

Dear Comrade,

For information of Czechoslovak Communist Party Central Committee Politburo members, I attach 4 copies of a recorded conversation of the cs. ambassador in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea with the Soviet Union ambassador c. Puzanov. The record contains details about the dealings of the Korean delegation with c. Khrushchev in Moscow.


[Note in left
[OZÚ = Section for Special Assignments]
Date: 01/11/02 Alena Noskova, Ph.D.
Signature: (illegible)

[Note in left ..2/6”]
Pyongyang 28th June 1960

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

P r a h a
H i g h l y c l a s s i f i e d !

Subject: Record of a conversation with the Soviet ambassador to the DPRK, c. Puzanov on 23rd June 1960
I invited c. Puzanov for lunch on 23rd June to talk about the discussions with the Korean delegation in Moscow.
C. Puzanov told me that c. Kim Il Sung had talks with c. Khrushchev in Moscow. The most important topic of the discussion was his request for forgiving the post-war debt. It is about 700 – 800 million rubles. Neither the Korean nor the Soviet side had the data about the exact amount, including interest, at the time of the talks. As for the pre-war loan of 130 million rubles, the DPRK wants to pay it.


Further c. Kim Il Sung asked, within the framework of a trade agreement, that the USSR delivers 100,000 tons of wheat, 10,000 tons of cotton and 2 million tons of crude oil to the DPRK every year during the first five years of the seven-year plan, and that the Soviet Union helps to build the DPRK an oil refinery, and supplies [the DPRK] with necessary equipment. C. Khrushchev said they would deal with these issues as comrades, and ordered c. Kosygin to find out to what extent it was possible to meet the Korean requests. Further talks will be conducted either through the Ambassador, or c. Kim Il Sung will visit Moscow again. However, the Korean comrades were made aware, still during the talks, that cotton will not be available to them because the Soviet Union does not have enough of it and is delivering 400,000 tons to other socialist countries under the current obligations, and at the same time, it is importing 70,000 tons from China. C. Kim Il Sung said that China promised them 20,000 tons and that they are about to begin production of an artificial fiber (vinalon), which should amount to 20,000 tons a year in the next few years. C. Kim Il Sung informed c. Khrushchev about the main principles of their seven-year plan when in the first 3.5 years they want to develop namely light industry and agriculture. As for feeding the population, they want to achieve 30 kg of meat per person; further meat consumption should be satisfied with fish. They expect to support livestock production by double planting on 500 – 700 thousand ha: wheat before rice on irrigated fields, corn after wheat on un-irrigated fields.


C. Kim Il Sung then clarified how the Korean comrades view further development in South Korea. They expect some degree of democratization that will be conducive to the growth of progressive forces, which they intend to support in any way they can.


C. Khrushchev informed c. Kim Il Sung about the differences in opinion with the Chinese comrades and about their approach that resembles factional politics against the CPSU. Both c. Kim Il Sung and c. Kim Il, who took part in the meeting, expressed several times that they fully support the position of the CPSU. C. Kim Il Sung apologized for the approach of the DPRK delegate at the Worker's Unions Convention in Beijing with an explanation that the delegate is inexperienced and not knowledgeable about the matter. He said they published Mao Zedong's essay “Imperialism, the Paper Tiger” in the DPRK as well, but only because a good part of it dealt with revisionism that has not been mentioned in the Korean press for quite while, and c. Kim Il Sung did not know that it was actually a disguised attack against the CPSU. (See the note at the end of the report.)


C. Kim Il Sung was presented with documents indicating that the splinter group of the KWP, exposed some time ago, was organized and supported by Chinese comrades against Kim Il Sung.


During the return flight, c. Kim Il Sung explained to c. Puzanov that he categorically disagrees with many things in China, for instance with communes. During his visit in China, Chinese comrades showed him one commune. Of course, they chose one of the best. Mao Zedong then suggested setting up communes according to the Chinese example. C. Kim Il Sung ordered at that time in some place to introduce communal meals in a similar way but it did not work. While visiting that village, he gathered the elders and asked their opinion. They told him the problem is that everybody eats three times as much regardless of accomplished work. Before, all ate in moderation. After this experience, the Korean comrades abandoned the idea of introducing communes and instead made steps at the beginning of the year to eliminate egalitarianism and to improve compensation for work in agriculture according to the amount and difficulty of work.


Then we talked about how the Chinese influence has been growing in the DPRK during the last year. C. Puzanov knows that c. Kim Il Sung made a secret visit to China recently. Even though c. Kim Il Sung fully supports the position of the CPSU, there seem to be number of officials around him who are under the influence of the Chinese comrades. The Chinese ambassador in the DPRK was glad to have become a (illegible) and is trying to exploit this function to his own benefit. I mentioned again to c. Puzanov his speech during the New Year's dinner organized by the Foreign Affairs Minister for the diplomatic corps. At that occasion, the Chinese ambassador delivered on behalf of the diplomatic corps a speech that he, however, did not forward to the other titular heads in advance for comments, as it is customary in such a case. In his speech, he never mentioned the peace efforts of c. Khrushchev and the necessity of a peaceful coexistence. C. Puzanov was not present at that time. To further demonstrate the approach of Chinese comrades, he also mentioned how during a recent visit in the PRC of an Albanian delegation headed by Hadzi Desi, Chinese comrades tried to get them to support their position. However, a Politburo member c. Belikova decisively rejected their attempts.


According to c. Puzanov, soviet comrades are of the opinion that it is necessary to help the DPRK. They will handle the matter of aid in a brotherly manner, as c. Khrushchev said.


After lunch, I showed c. Puzanov the construction site of the new embassy.

Ambassador:
[Signature: illegible]

Note: C. Puzanov first talked in the sense as if Mao Zedong's essay “Imperialism, the Paper Tiger” was published in the Korean press. When I could not find anything like that, I asked him again when and where it was published. He told me that it was an article in
Nodong Sinmun from the 12th and the 14th of this month about Zedong's ideas. Actually, a Korean journalist published an article of no special content about the PRC named “Mao Zedong's Ideas Flourish All Over China” in Nodong Sinmun on the 12th and the 14th of this month. I was not able to find out which particular article c. Kim Il Sung was talking about.

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