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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 21, 1978

TELEGRAM 085.304 FROM THE ROMANIAN EMBASSY IN WASHINGTON TO THE ROMANIAN MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS

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

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    David Blakemore and Petre Anghel discuss US-ROK relations, North Korea's unification policy, and Soviet-ROK contacts.
    "TELEGRAM 085.304 from the Romanian Embassy in Washington to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs," September 21, 1978, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AMAE, Folder 786/1978, Issue 220: Regarding some Aspects of the Republic of Korea’s Foreign Policy. Relations between the United States and the Republic of Korea (January 21st – September 22nd 1978). Obtained and translated for NKIDP by Eliza Gheorghe. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/116435
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TELEGRAM 085.304

To: the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

From: the Romanian Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Date: September 21st, 1978

Classification: Secret

Subject: Korea

David Blakemore, deputy head of the Korea desk at the State Department, told Comrade Petre Anghel, Third Secretary:

The American-South Korean relations are currently going through a calmer period, determined by the termination of the Koreagate affair (acts of corruption led by South-Korean representatives in the United States of America), but also by the salience in the US foreign policy agenda of problems like the Middle East , relations with the USSR.

The Congressional approval of the Legislation regarding the American military equipment –worth 800 million US dollars - that will be left in South Korea after the withdrawal of American troops, contributed to this [calmer period] as well. The same legislation stipulates the sum of 275 million dollars as credits for selling military equipment.

This turn of events allow the continuation of the retreat of US troops at the proposed rate – 2400 soldiers by the end of the current year and 3600 soldiers in 1979.

Regarding the discussion of the Korean question at the [next] session of UN General Assembly, the US has no clue if the Korean question is on the agenda and it  hopes that it will not be [introduced], because such discussion would be sterile and detrimental to the discussion of problems of immediate concern.

Regarding the attitude of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the American diplomat mentioned one aspect which [he noticed] in the recent speech of the president Kim Il Sung in which he said that for the peaceful reunification of Korea 3 conditions are necessary: the modifications of South Korea’s constitution , the liberty of the political parties, and the change of the South Korean government. The novelty of this remark consists in the fact that until now, the three conditions were referring to the beginning of the discussions for reunification, which hints to the fact that the North Koreans wish to resume the North-South discussions. Of course, this declaration will have to be confirmed by the actions that the North Koreans will undertake.

An interesting element is the attitude of the Soviet Union towards South Korea. Lately, a South Korean sport team has performed in the USSR and the South Korean ministry of health was granted the permission to take part that the session of the World Health Organization, but he also requested a separate meeting with the minister of health of USSR. The US interprets this attitude as a wish of the USSR to initiate economic relations with South Korea, which has one of the prosperous economies in the Pacific region.

Signed

Ion Besteliu