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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 09, 1962


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    The Chinese Foreign Ministry offers a contingency plan in the event that India, in response to the Sino-Indian Border War, were to sever diplomatic relations with the PRC.
    "Cable from the Chinese Foreign Ministry, 'India’s Possible Announcement of Severing Relations with China and China’s Countermeasures'," December 09, 1962, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 105-01120-01, 1-2. Obtained by Dai Chaowu and translated by 7Brands.
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Approved, please send it.

It is already read and approved by Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, Zhu De, Deng Xiaoping, Peng Zhen, Chen Yun and Luo Ruiqing.

Please return it to Office of Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Zhou Enlai

10 December 1962

Send it to the Premier [Zhou Enlai] again: This issue should be notified to the whole Party (to the people’s commune level), the whole army (to the battalion level), and reliable democrats. (already handled. See (62) No. 5979 Document of CPC Central Committee)

Mao Zedong

13 December 1962, 4:00 a.m.

[Ed. note—these brief notes from Zhou Enlai and Mao Zedong were handwritten onto the document.]

Reported to Premier Zhou Enlai for examination and approval (already discussed by the Party Committee)

Geng Biao, 9 December 1962

India’s Possible Announcement of Severing Relations with China
and China’s Countermeasures

(1) It is estimated that India may take one of the following three actions:

1. To announce that it is severing diplomatic relations with China in the short-term;

2. To not sever diplomatic relations temporarily, but to shut down the consulate generals and reduce personnel in the embassy by a large number (India has two consulate generals in Lhasa and Shanghai and China has two consulate generals in Calcutta and Bombay)

3. To temporarily not shut down the consulate generals but to propose (or take measures to coerce China) to reduce the number of personnel in each other’s embassy and consulates to a minimum (several people in each embassy and consulate).

(Personnel in India’s embassy and consulates have begun to withdraw. Almost all of the women and children have been withdrawn. It is said that six people will remain in the embassy, including one diplomatic officer; four people will remain in the consulate general in Shanghai, including one diplomatic officer, and three clerks will remain in the consulate general in Lhasa.)

(2) We should be prepared for the worst circumstances under which diplomatic relations are severed.

First, China’s embassy and consulates in India should promptly begin withdrawal and contingency work and deploy personnel. Absolutely guarantee the safety of personnel without any problem. (Already being done)

Second, consider choosing which third country should protect China’s rights and interests (mainly protect our properties and Chinese nationals in India). After studying [the issue], we think it would be better to choose a socialist country. Specifically, we recommend Poland. India is predicted to choose the United Arab Republic. If India agrees to our selection of the third country, we will also agree to India’s selection.

Third, if India declares that it is severing diplomatic relations with us, we will promptly make a statement. At the same time, [we] will use public opinion to expose [India]. If India shuts downs its consulate generals, we will make a statement in the name of Ministry of Foreign Affairs (or during the spokesperson’s talk) and appropriately expose [India].

Fourth, the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office will make arrangements for India’s prosecution of Chinese nationals in India according to the actual situation.

Please comment on whether the above is appropriate.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

9 December 1962