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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 26, 1987

MEMORANDUM, 'RE: CHINESE EVALUATION OF THE VISIT BY HSWP'S GENERAL SECRETARY'

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

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    János Kádár's visit to Beijing is placed in the context of Deng Xiaoping and Zhao Ziyang's policies promoting China's reform and opening.
    "Memorandum, 'Re: Chinese Evaluation of the Visit by HSWP's General Secretary'," October 26, 1987, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Historical Archives of the Hungarian State Security (ÁBTL), 1. 11. 4. S-II/2/87, p. 30-31. Obtained by Peter Vamos and translated by Katalin Varga. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/119356
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MINISTRY OF INTERIOR

Department III/I-6

Strictly Confidential!

Especially important!

    Re: Chinese evaluation of the visit by HSWP's General Secretary

Memorandum

According to Chinese political circles, János Kádár's visit was intentionally scheduled by the Beijing leadership before the CCP's 13th Congress took place in order to promote the adoption of a resolution that would sanctify the continuation of political and economic reforms. Following the visit by Zhao Ziyang this year, leading circles formed the opinion that Hungary's reform policy, of all the socialist countries, was the most relevant for China.

In their judgment the friendly reception of the HSWP's General Secretary was almost unprecedented in the history of the People's Republic of China. It was the first time ever that Deng Xiaoping and Zhao Ziyang called on a foreign leader in his lodging quarters and held talks there. This was how the hosts wished to express their appreciation of and respect for the country, the Hungarian party and its General Secretary.

The visit was highly appreciated by China in terms of both domestic and foreign policy. Hungary had significantly contributed to the development of a reformist agenda in China, and the Beijing leadership confirmed their continued wish to rely on Hungary's willingness to cooperate in the transfer of experiences gained in the reform processes. The Hungarian practice in foreign policy also had useful lessons for China. Furthermore, the Chinese leaders regard János Kádár to be a prominent personality in the international communist movement, and as such, he could promote the improvement of relations between the Chinese Communist Party and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, which could prove beneficial to the international communist and workers' movement as a whole.

In the evaluation of western sources in Beijing, the visit was most of all significant in the aspect of domestic politics. In their opinion the visit scheduled before the Party Congress, which would focus on reforms, beneficially contributed to creating the right climate in domestic politics. They found it remarkable that reports on the visit were characterized by a friendlier tone than expected, and stressed serious reciprocal interests. This was not the case previously, when other Eastern European leaders had visited China.

(The information comes from an intelligence source close to the Chinese ministry of foreign affairs and from political circles in Beijing.)

Budapest, 26 October 1987

Prepared in 17 copies.

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