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Digital Archive International History Declassified

July 31, 1973

TELEGRAM FROM NEW YORK TO BUCHAREST, SECRET, NO. 091.722, NORMAL

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    Romanians note that the Chinese are worried about the possible vacuum left behind on the Korean Peninsula if the US withdraws from South Korea. The telegram notes that the Chinese will not oppose continued US presence in South Korea even after the dissolution of the UN Commission for Unification and Rehabilitation of Korea.
    "Telegram from New York to Bucharest, SECRET, No. 091.722, Normal," July 31, 1973, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Archives, Matter 220/Year: 1973/Country: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – South Korea, The Ministry of External Affairs, CLASSIFICATION: SECRET, Department I Relations, Folder 1515, Vol. I, Concerning North-South relations and the position of various states, Period: 16.01 – 30.07.1973. Obtained and translated for NKIDP by Eliza Gheorghe. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114070
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From a discussion had by one of the members of our mission with a Chinese diplomat, the latter implied that the People’s Republic of China does not regard favorably, quite the contrary, is even worried by the possible withdrawal of U.S. troops from South Korea. In this vein, the Chinese diplomat mentioned that ‘some Western countries’ consider that withdrawal from South Korea would create a ‘vacuum,’ which, sooner or later, shall be filled by the U.S.S.R. with the approval of the DPRK. The Chinese diplomat expressed his ‘puzzlement’ regarding the refusal of the DPRK to accept a U.S. military presence in South Korea after the two states had been welcomed into the U.N.


Referring to the possibility of debating ‘the Korean issue’ at the next U.N. General Assembly meeting, the Chinese diplomat expressed his opinion that the only possible results would be the dissolving of the U.N. commission for Korea and of the U.N. commandment for foreign troops stationed in South Korea. He suggested that the People’s Republic of China would not oppose the stationing of U.S. troops in South Korea, granted they are based on bilateral agreements.

Signed: Chargé d’affaires Ion Duma