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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 29, 1957

JOURNAL OF SOVIET AMBASSADOR TO THE DPRK A.M. PUZANOV FOR 29 SEPTEMBER 1957

This document was made possible with support from the ROK Ministry of Unification, Leon Levy Foundation

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    Pak Ui-wan informs Puzanov that the upcoming KWP CC Plenum will scrutinize his competence. Methods used for the trial of the factionalists are also harsh, and fear of condemnation by association makes it difficult for anyone to defend the accused; Soviet Koreans in particular seem to be heavily criticized. Kim Il Sung has discouraged KWP members from taking a holiday or seeking medical treatment in the Soviet Union.
    "Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 29 September 1957," September 29, 1957, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVPRF F. 0102, Op. 13, P. 72, Delo 5, Listy 275-300. Translated for NKIDP by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115661
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SOVIET EMBASSY IN THE DPRK TOP SECRET

Nº 223 Copy Nº 1

2 October 1957

[handwritten: 010698-gs

6 October [[5]]7]

[stamp:

Incoming 02856s;

9 October 1957]

The Journal of Soviet Ambassador to the DPRK A. M. PUZANOV

for the period 31 August through 30 September 1957

Pyongyang

[…]

29 September 1957

… I accidentally encountered Pak Ui-wan during a hunt. He said the following in the conversation which took place.

The issue of the results and prospects for construction in the DPRK, that is, the issue relating to the direct competence of the State Construction Committee headed by Pak Ui-wan, will be discussed at the upcoming KWP CC Plenum. However, Pak Geum-cheol [Pak Kum Chol], Deputy Chairman of the KWP CC, has been approved as the speaker on this issue. The leadership of the KWP CC advised Pak Ui-wan himself to be self-critical at this Plenum of shortcomings in the work of the State Construction Committee which he headed.

Pak Ui-wan took this decision of the Presidium as a manifestation of a definite mistrust in him.

Pak Ui-wan said that Pak Jeong-ae [Pak Jong Ae] made the proposal about the speaker, giving as the reason the advisability of a CC secretary making such a report in that a CC official and not a Cabinet of Ministers official should give the report at a CC Plenum.

Pak Ui-wan then dwelt on the issue of how preparations are going for the trial of the factionalists. He said in this connection that the preparation is being pursued with harsh methods. He cited the example of the issue of chief of construction for repair of the city of Hamheung was examined at a Party meeting for 15 days. They strenuously sought an answer from him to a single question, what assignment had he received last year from Kim Sung Hwa in connection with the plot. However, the construction chief answered that he had not received any assignment and then committed suicide. Pak Ui-wan then said that he already knew of eight cases of suicide by people who had been forced to confess to participation in factional activity or to their ties with the factionalists.

Pak Ui-wan also said that meetings are being held at the present time in all Party organizations at which a great many Party members are accusing someone of belonging to the factionalists' group but since an abnormal atmosphere has been created at these meetings no one comes to the defense of these people because of a fear of being counted as participants of the factionalists' group.

Pak Ui-wan also said that several days ago one of the officials of the State Construction Committee he heads was summoned to the Party Committee and was strenuously questioned about what assignment he had received from Pak Ui-wan when he stopped this official in front of him on the street and gave him a work assignment. In Pak Ui-wan's words, the interrogation was halted after this official stated that he would go and tell Pak Ui-wan that essentially the interrogation was about him, Pak Ui-wan.

Pak Ui-wan also related that several days ago he was summoned to Kim Il Sung's. Among the other KWP CC Presidium members present at Kim Il Sung's, was chief of the KWP CC Industrial Department, former Soviet Korean Go Hui-man, who from the impression made by him on Pak Ui-wan had obviously been subjected to a serious tongue-lashing before his arrival for Go Hui-man not making any accusations against Kim Sung Hwa.

Pak Ui-wan also said that not long ago the issue of a trip to the Soviet Union by senior Party and government officials for vacation and treatment was discussed in the KWP CC Presidium at the suggestion of Nam Il. Nam Il spoke in favor of the trip at the time. During the discussion Kim Il Sung spoke to the effect that there are enough good places in Korea and there are all the natural conditions to spend a vacation here in the motherland. In this connection Pak Ui-wan thinks that after such an indication hardly any of the senior Korean comrades will risk addressing a request to go to the Soviet Union for treatment and, in Pak Ui-wan's opinion, Pak Jeong-ae, who was to go to the Soviet Union for treatment, abandoned this trip in connection with the above statement by Kim Il Sung.

[…]

SOVIET AMBASSADOR IN THE DPRK

[signature] (A. PUZANOV)

Five copies printed:

1 - Cde. Gromyko

2 - Cde. Fedorenko

3 - Cde. Kurdyukov

4 - Cde. Solodovnikov

5 - to file

Nº 590

printed [pech.] g/k [abbreviation unknown]

2 October 1957