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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 15, 1983

HUNGARIAN EMBASSY IN THE DPRK, CIPHERED TELEGRAM, 15 AUGUST 1983. SUBJECT: CONFERENCE OF THE MINISTERS OF EDUCATION AND CULTURE OF THE NON-ALIGNED MOVEMENT IN PYONGYANG.

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

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    In this telegram, the Non-Alignhed Movement convened in Pyongyang. The Cuban ambassador speaks about the proceedings, namely North Korea's negative posture throughout the conference and their insistence on imposing the Juche ideology. The extremist ideas of the Korean delegation did not successfully push through in the conference.
    "Hungarian Embassy in the DPRK, Ciphered Telegram, 15 August 1983. Subject: Conference of the ministers of education and culture of the Non-Aligned Movement in Pyongyang.," August 15, 1983, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, MOL, XIX-J-1-j Non-Aligned Movement, 1983, 130. doboz, 209-7, 005155/1983. Translated for NKIDP by Balazs Szalontai. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115831
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The Cuban ambassador informed me about their preliminary evaluation of the conference’s work:

The conduct of the Korean side, which acted as host [of the conference], was of an extremely negative nature. Their political and organizational work was aimed exclusively at imposing the peculiar Korean juche line [on the participants].

The Cuban delegation was excluded from the committee in charge of editing the [conference’s] documents; instead, they admitted the Romanian delegation and the delegates of those countries over which the Koreans could exert influence.

The Korean drafts of the documents presented the juche idea as a model for other countries, and stigmatized Western culture in general. Thanks to the action of the Cubans, the Indians, and a few other countries, the final documents do not reflect the extremist Korean views.

The Korean side resorted to every possible measure to prevent the delegations from meeting each other, conducting discussions, and becoming familiar with the documents well in advance. The Koreans who accompanied the delegations forcefully pressured the guests to place the adulation of the “all-encompassing wise leadership” of Comrades Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, and the acceptance of the “international applicability of the juche [idea],” in the focus of their presentations and utterances.

The delegates of a number of African countries were particularly willing to assume the aforesaid role, a fact that one might also attribute to the apparently effective bribery conducted by the Koreans.

I will send a more detailed report by the next mail.

118 – E.