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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 15, 1984


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    Report on a meeting with O. B. Rakhmanin in which they discuss the Soviet Union's policy toward China and the upcoming Interkit meeting.
    "Iván Németh, 'Memorandum for the Attention of Comrade Mátyás Szűrös'," October 15, 1984, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, National Archives of Hungary (MNL OL), M-KS 288 f. 32. cs. 110/1983 ő.e., pp. 152-153. Obtained by Péter Vámos and translated by Katalin Varga.
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Strictly confidential!

Prepared in 2 copies

Budapest, 15 October 1984

Hungarian Socialist Workers' Party

Central Committee

International Department


for the attention of Comrade Mátyás Szűrös

On 11-12 October I paid a visit to Moscow to discuss a number of unsolved issues related to the joint draft document entitled Protocol Note of the Interkit Meeting. I was received for a brief discussion by Comrade O. B. Rakhmanin, first deputy head of the International Department of the CPSU CC. He said the following:

Comrade Rusakov was ill at the moment, he [Rakhmanin] was his deputy, and as such he would arrive for the Interkit in the evening of the 29th or the morning of the 30th and return to Moscow on the 31st after the meeting with the Secretary of the HSWP's CC.

Due to a weak health condition, M. I. Sladkovsky, director of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the USSR Academy of Sciences, would not be among the members of the Soviet delegation this time. Comrade Rakhmanin stated that no political significance should be attached to this situation; however, later on he stressed that the meeting needed to be held along "party line", and it was unnecessary to "involve scientists". (My impression was that this proposal was a result of internal Soviet disputes on Chinese issues.)

In the following he explained that the Chinese question looked different when viewed from Budapest, Sofia or Prague, and again different when viewed from Khabarovsk. "I have been keeping on repeating this to everyone recently," he added. The Soviet Union shaped its China policy with national interests taken into account, then he added that international circumstances and the interests of the community were naturally also considered. Taking Vietnamese interests into account was also important, but it was not possible to subordinate all issues to the Vietnamese question.

He stated that it was not possible to talk about China in abstract terms, and he admitted that there was a "subjective factor" at play on Soviet part.

"There aren't any complicated issues between us" regarding China as seen on Soviet part. He said that he only went into expounding the Soviet standpoint, so that we had a good understanding of one another. The position of the CC was represented when, on Soviet part, it was stated that the PRC was conducting a policy to differentiate between socialist countries.

Regarding the draft jointly worked out as the Protocol Note, he judged point 3 to be all too positive, and he suggested the omission of the sections referring to talks by foreign ministers in the UN and to the continuation of Soviet-Chinese talks on deputy foreign minister level.

Comrade O. B. Rakhmanin asked me to forward his regards to Comrade Mátyás Szűrös.

Iván Németh