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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 27, 1964

MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION BETWEEN THE ROMANIAN PARTY AND GOVERNMENT DELEGATION LED BY ION GHEORGHE MAURER AND SOVIET LEADER NIKITA KHRUSHCHEV

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

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    Representatives from Romania and the Soviet Union discuss the current industrial and economic situation, as well as foreign relations with China.
    "Memorandum of Conversation between the Romanian Party and Government Delegation Led by Ion Gheorghe Maurer and Soviet Leader Nikita Khrushchev," September 27, 1964, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Romanian State Archives, CC RCP files, Chancellery, 55/1964, pp. 25. Translated by Mircea Munteanu. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/117355
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The party and government delegation led by I. G. Maurer stopped in Moscow for a few hours on its way to Beijing. N. S. Khrushchev invited [the delegation] to lunch.

E[mil] Bondaras and P[aul] NiculescuMizil also participated from the Romanian side.

A[natoly] N. Kosygin, V. P. Mdjavanadze, V. V. Kuzhnetzov, L. N. Tolkunov, and E. D. Karpeshchenko (translator) were present from the Soviet side.

T. Sinu and G. Marin (translator) participated on behalf of the Romanian embassy.

The lunch was organized by the Guest House of the CPSU CC and the Council of Ministers at 15:00 hours. The lunch was followed by discussions which lasted until 20:00 hours.

During the lunch, the following issues were discussed:

1.    N. S. Khrushchev made a presentation of situation in agriculture for the current year, citing typical (caracteristice) statistics for all the union republics and some of the regions.

[Khrushchev] spoke of a very good wheat production this year, stating that this year, taking into account the surface, it was a record production.  In 1964, the Soviet Union will not have to import wheat, and in the next four years it hopes to create a one year reserve.

2.    Cde. I. Gh. Maurer informed [the Soviet leadership] of the beginning of construction at the Iron Gates hydroelectric plant. He mentioned that a Romanian delegation of specialists [hydroelectric engineers] will arrive in the Soviet Union in the first half of October of this year to negotiate the purchase of [needed] machines. A. N. Kosygin, interupted the discussion and said that [the Soviets] are prepared for the beginning of the negotiations.

3.    N. S. Khrushchev spoke of his visit to an experimental weapons test site. Without going into details, he spoke of a new defensive weapon developed recently by Soviet specialists.

4.    Discussing with Mdjavanadze the vacation he took in Romania, Cde. I. Gh. Maurer—addressing Kuzhnetzov— admonished him that he continues to refuse to come spend his vacation there [as well]. N. S. Khrushchev intervened in the discussion and recommended that Kuzhnetzov respond positively to the Romanian invitation.

5.    After lunch N. S. Khrushchev continued the discussion, concentrating on the issue of disagreements with the Chinese over the [SinoSoviet] border. He stated that before Pravda published the discussions between Mao Zedong with the Japanese Socialists and the article regarding the position of the Soviet Union, the Soviet government sent a telegram to the Chinese government attempting to confirm the facts published in the Japanese media.

The answer received [from the Chinese]—Khrushchev continued—let it be understood that what was published in the Japanese press was correct.

Khrushchev presented the issue of the territorial conflict as an issue that reached a climactic point. (N. S. Khrushchev spoke of numerous border crossings and of the concentrations of Chinese armed forces on some parts of the Sino Soviet border). The Soviet prime minister said that if the Chinese side would look at the situation realistically, renouncing their demand to include in a future [Sino Soviet] treaty of a statement about the unequal character of the treaties signed by the Tsarist governments, the Soviets would be agreeable to consider negotiating some changes in the current border with the People’s Republic of China

N. S. Khrushchev described the history of some of the Soviet regions on the border with China, mentioning the discussions [he] had with the Chinese leadership over time, including the issue of Mongolia.

Speaking about the discussions Mao Zedong had with the Japanese socialists with regard to East German and Polish territories, N. S. Khrushchev underlined that these issues are not currently of interest. It is important to mention that during the discussions about the possible problems that might arise between the Byelorussians, Ukrainians and Poles on one side and between the Poles and the Germans on the other, the Russian prime minister did not, as in the past, mention anything about the S. S. R. of Moldavia.

Making references to the activity of the Sino Soviet commission on border issues, N. S. Khrushchev said that, after the discussions broke down, no decision was made as to when they would begin again.

6.    Cde. Ion Gheorghe Maurer began to inform [the Soviet leadership] about the Romanian governmental visit in France and the discussions held with De Gaulle. He under line that the principal object of the discussions was the economic cooperation between the two countries. The issue of peaceful coexistence was also discussed. N. S. Khrushchev interrupted him and said: “You see, when you Romanians speak of peaceful coexistence, the Chinese say nothing; when I say something about it, I am immediately attacked by them. Tell us, what is your secret tactic, how did you manage to get the Chinese in you [back] pocket.”

N. S. Khrushchev continued about the Chinese propaganda campaign against the CPSU and Soviet leadership, about the various accusations made [against them] and about the necessity to forcefully respond to these attacks. Within this context [Khrushchev] mentioned that lately the CPSU leadership has been accused of intending to hold negotiate ions with the FRG to the detriment of GDR’s interests. “How is it possible for us not to respond to these accusations,” asked N. S. Khrushchev.

Cde. I. Gh. Maurer said that it was necessary to look closely at what accusations were brought and an analysis be made if a response is necessary. “For example—Maurer said— it is not necessary to respond to the accusation that the Soviet Union is restoring capitalism since everybody knows that the USSR is building communism.”

Kosygin interjected in the discussion and tried to argue that it is necessary to respond to all issues raised by the Chinese leadership. Among other things, he said: “How would you respond if at Romania’s borders certain things would be happening [?]” Cde. I. Gh. Maurer responded: “Of course, we would closely analyze the situation and, if warranted, we would take any necessary measures.”

N. S. Khrushchev said that “you can be opposed to the public polemics since the Chinese are not attacking you. I’ll tell you what the secret is: the Chinese have a tactical plan which calls for leaving out the P. R. Hungary, P. R. Poland, P. R. Romania, and GDR, and concentrating their fire on the USSR, the CPSU, and especially on me.”

7.    With regard to the issue of the [World] Workers’ and Communist Parties Congress, N. S. Khrushchev under lined the need to hold [the meeting], stating that the [the meeting] is not about excluding any part that is out of the question —but rather about establishing a programmatic document of the Communist and Workers’ movement.

After all, [Khrushchev] said, there is no forum out of which a party could be excluded, and the document that might be produced [at the meeting] would only be the continuation of the 1960 Declaration, which was signed, among [many] others, by the Chinese C. P.

Cdes. I. Gh. Maurer and E. Bondaras represented our Party’s point of view, underlining that acting with calm, wisdom, and by manifesting extraordinary care with respect to the issues [at hand], it is their opinion that some changes could be expected on behalf of the CCP. Some new elements [in the Chinese position] have been apparent lately, such as the notion and content of [the idea of] the popular commune, [their] accepting of the principle of peaceful coexistence in some of the communiqués signed by the Chinese leadership with the leadership of certain states in Asia and Africa, the reanalysis of the avenues and methods of socialist industrialization.

Within this context, it was suggested that, even though the invitation of a Soviet delegation to the 15th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China—from what N. S. Khrushchev described—was not done in quite an appropriate manner, the CPSU leadership showed political maturity by sending a delegation to Beijing.

8.    Suggesting that the R[Romanian] W[orkers’] P[arty] and the government of R[omanian] P[eople’s] R[epublic] has adopted the Chinese theory of selfhelp in the construction of a socialist economy, N. S. Khrushchev said he is not against it, mentioning the times when the USSR was the only socialist country.

He said that he does not understand the [North] Korean position, who in theory have adopted the same position, but practically are demanding [economic] aid, [often] proposing deals that are not mutually advantageous. [Khrushchev] continued, stating that he supports intrasocialist economic relations based on the principle of equality and on mutual advantage, and that the CPSU leadership took numerous steps to rectify the flawed practices of Stalin’s regime. He gave the Sovroms as examples, which—Khrushchev said—“are driving you Romanians up the wall every time you hear about them.”

9.    N. S. Khrushchev said that he will be leaving Mos cow for a while, being in Gagra [Crimea] to finish the report he will be giving at the CPSU CC plenary session, scheduled for the second half of November or the beginning December.

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d.  T. Sinu G. Marin (ss) emp.  Unic

ct. N. Radulescu