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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 05, 1965

CABLE FROM THE CHINESE EMBASSY IN THE SOVIET UNION TO THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, ‘SOVIET SUPPRESSION OF STUDENT DEMONSTRATIONS’

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    The Chinese Embassy in Moscow reports on the "barbaric actions" of Soviet police, who injured and arrested students from China and Vietnam, among other countries.
    "Cable from the Chinese Embassy in the Soviet Union to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ‘Soviet Suppression of Student Demonstrations’," March 05, 1965, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 109-03984-02, 9-10. Obtained by You Lan and translated by Jake Tompkins. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/119958
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[Handwritten note] Requesting the Department of Soviet and East European Affairs' immediate action

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Cable

Level: Extremely Urgent / From the Moscow Desk / Received (65) No. 225

Soviet Suppression of Student Demonstrations

To the Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

We have already given an overview of the situation of our students being beaten during the protests over the phone.  The Soviets arrested a total of eight students (four from Vietnam, one from Cameroon, one from Mexico, and one from China).  They were first taken to Police Station No. 11, and were later passed on to Station 88.  The officers accused the students of "vagrant activity" which was refuted by the arrested students.  The eight students all worked together, raising protest four times demanding to be released, and the protesters in front of the American embassy demanded for the Soviets to send out a representative and also sent a delegation to speak with the commanding officer of the police station (a Major-General) to negotiate the release of the four students.  The police were thereby forced to release the students after a total of two hours. (The whole incident lasted from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.).

Afterwards, the protesters walked to the gates of the Vietnamese embassy at which point the Vietnamese ambassador, a representative from [Nort]h Korea, the Cuban ambassador, our representative ZHANG Dequn (Ambassador Pan returned to the embassy at 10:00 p.m. on the 4th), our student representative, and a Soviet student representative all gave speeches.  Emotions were ever increasing among the protesting students, and when ZHANG Dequn was speaking, one student lead them in yelling, "Long live Mao Zedong! Long Live China!"  An attache from Vietnam went to see those of our students who were injured. In total, twelve of our students were injured. One was HUANG Zhaogeng who was attacked by a Soviet plain clothes officer who used a blunt object to break HUANG's eyes and gave him a bloody nose.  Another was  LU Jiqing who also suffered injuries to his eyes and currently can't see clearly. Ten students received light wounds, such as XU Zeguang who was surrounded by four officers and kicked by one.  These twelve students were all taken to the hospital and seven of them require inpatient care.

As for the barbaric actions of the Soviet police in arresting and beating our students, we have expressed our displeasure to the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Affairs Department of Far Eastern Affairs through our attache ZHANG Motang, and made contact with the Vietnamese embassy.  Furthermore, our students plan to begin exposing the actions of the police to the Soviet public and pay visits to their injured classmates.  We recommend that efforts be made domestically to expose the use of military police and armed force to suppress a student rally to the Soviet embassy.  What are your opinions on the above?  Please respond quickly.

[Chinese] Embassy in the Soviet Union

5 March 1965. 1:30 a.m.