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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 21, 1964

CABLE FROM THE CHINESE EMBASSY IN NORTH KOREA, 'REACTIONS AMONG THE NORTH KOREAN MASSES TO CHINA'S NUCLEAR TEST'

This document was made possible with support from the Carnegie Corporation, Henry Luce Foundation

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    Cable from the Chinese Embassy in North Korea notes North Koreans' positive responses to China's first nuclear weapons test and a downfall of Khrushchev in the Soviet Union
    "Cable from the Chinese Embassy in North Korea, 'Reactions among the North Korean Masses to China's Nuclear Test'," October 21, 1964, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 113-00395-08, 62-63. Translated by Caixia Lu. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/119039
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Received by the [Chinese] Foreign Ministry

From the North Korea Desk

Foreign Ministry Incoming (64) You (997)

Reactions among the North Korean Masses to China's Nuclear Test

To the Foreign Ministry:

The North Korean cadres and masses continue to have the following reactions to our nuclear test:

The Secretary General of the International Trade Promotion Council said: China’s first successful nuclear test occurred when Khrushchev was deposed. They have picked a very opportune moment. It will have a huge international impact.” Some North Korean comrades in contact with our experts all said that China did a good thing, and they praised China for reaching a new level in ascending the technological peak. Some of the staff from the Pyongyang Urban Design Institute had thought that North Korea would be ahead of China in producing atomic bombs, and they had not expected that China would be so quick and were shocked. The teachers at the International Relations Institute in North Korea congratulated us on Arabic teacher day today, and were rather happy about our successful nuclear test. There were residents in Nampo who said: “China possessing nuclear bombs is the same as us possessing nuclear bombs.”, “It seems that the possibility of the United States launching a war of invasion on North Korea has been greatly reduced.”, “It will be henceforth impossible for the United States to launch a war of invasion on North Korea”. Many people said that they had “never imagined that China would produce a nuclear bomb in such a short time.” On the train from Nampo to Pyongyang, the passengers were in fervent discussion: “Baldy Khrushchev has lost power while China has dropped a nuclear bomb. What a good news!” Some factories, plants and offices had even gathered everyone together to listen to the broadcast.

[Chinese] Embassy in North Korea

21 October 1964