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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 10, 1969

TELEGRAM NUMBER 1930-33, 'CHINA AND THE EUROPEAN SOCIALIST COUNTRIES'

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

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    Etienne Manac’h reports that although China may soon re-appoint ambassadors to Eastern Europe, officials from Poland and Czechoslovakia are skeptical of China's policies toward their countries.
    "Telegram Number 1930-33, 'China and the European Socialist Countries'," October 10, 1969, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, France. Obtained by Enrico Fardella and translated by Garret Martin. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/116455
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Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Beijing, 10th October 1969

Received………………….

Telegram Number 1930-33

Forwarded via the Department to: Moscow 968-71 – Washington 1049-52 – London 910-13 – Warsaw 34-37 – Prague 26-29 – Belgrade 13-16 – Bucharest 68-71 – Tirana 14-17

China and the European Socialist Countries

From a conversation he had a few weeks ago with M. Qiao Guanhua, the Czechoslovak Ambassador noted that China was planning to pick Ambassadors for all the ‘socialist’ countries of Europe, but that the decision would only be implemented ‘later’.

The Polish chargé d’affaires, for his part, believes that the time has not come for his country. Indeed, Beijing disapproved of M. Gomulka’s hostile attitude towards China during the Moscow conference, and the relations between both countries, be they on the ideological and interstate level, are far from improving.

Moreover, Prague’s representative believes that, be it in 1956 or today, China’s interest for the European socialist countries is always colored by a profoundly anti-Russian aspect. Anti-Soviet feelings pushed Beijing to encourage Tirana to moderate its criticisms of Yugoslavia, and to suggest the creation of a Balkan zone to challenge Russian influence, which would include Romania in addition. They also noted that China had put an end a while ago to its old criticisms of Yugoslavia, and that Yugoslavia returned the favor. Nonetheless, it seemed that Tirana balked somewhat in front of some of the Chinese reversals: Albania had only sent a fairly junior delegate for the 1st October commemoration and had not sent anyone to the 10th Congress of the Romanian Communist Party.

Czechoslovakia’s Ambassador was hesitating last night about whether or not he should send back the document of 8th October to the Chinese Foreign Ministry because of the allusion to the ‘occupation’ of his country by ‘hundreds of thousands of Soviet soldiers’. He was going to carefully re-read the text. After leaving, he was going to meet the USSR’s chargé d’affaires, who maybe is in charge of relieving him of his hesitations.

Signed Etienne Manac’h