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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 20, 1958

NOTE FROM G. DOBASHIN, CONSUL-GENERAL OF THE USSR IN ÜRüMCHI, TO COMRADES N.T. FEDORENKO, ZIMIANIN, AND P.F. IUDIN

This document was made possible with support from the MacArthur Foundation

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    G. Dobashin summarizes recent talks with leading officials in Xinjiang, including Wang Enmao, S. Äzizov, and Xin Lanting, about the Party Plenum in Xinjiang. Full versions of the conversations are attached to the file.
    "Note from G. Dobashin, Consul-General of the USSR in Ürümchi, to Comrades N.T. Fedorenko, Zimianin, and P.F. Iudin," January 20, 1958, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, RGANI, fond 5, opis 49, delo 130, listy 59-60. Translated by David Brophy. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/175893
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Consulate-General of the USSR in Ürümchi

20 January 1958

No. 6

To the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the USSR

Comrade N. T. Fedorenko

To the Head of the Far East Department of the MFA of the USSR

Comrade Zimianin

To the Envoy of the USSR to the PRC

Comrade P. F. Iudin

We are sending you a series of memoranda on the Consul-General’s discussions with leading workers of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region Party Committee and People’s Committee, on questions involving the ongoing expanded plenum of the Autonomous Region Party Committee, which is dedicated to the struggle against local nationalism.

In an announcement by leading workers of the XUAR Party Committee, the Party Committee plenum, which convened on 16 December 1957, was extended until the end of February 1958, meaning that the date for the end of the plenum has been pushed back twice. The plenum is the first event since the liberation of Xinjiang where the question of local nationalism has been raised in the course of discussion. It is proceeding, from our point of view, in unusual circumstances.

Secretary of the XUAR Party Committee Wang Enmao [王恩茂] gave the opening address at the plenum, and then Party Committee Secretary S. Äzizov delivered a 4-hour report. As some participants in the plenum inform us, actual bearers of nationalist tendencies were not identified in the reports. However, in the course of the discussion of the report concrete individuals started to be named as nationalists. Feelings ran high, and the affair reached the point of very sharp interventions, many of which contained a great deal of calumnies, including libels in the form of anonymous letters stuck up in the corridors or stairwells of the building where the plenum is being held. This refers to the sessions of representatives of the national minorities, which are being carried out separately [60] from the Chinese. All the materials from these sessions are reaching the Chinese representatives at the plenum, and the latter are viewing them, but are yet to draw any conclusions. The Chinese side is providing hardly any of their own session materials to the representatives from the national minorities.

At the end of the first 10 days of January, Wang Enmao and Säypidin Äzizov flew to the city of Xi’an for a meeting with the general secretary of the CCP Central Committee, Deng Xiaoping [邓小平]. We have not yet been informed of the results of this meeting, but upon returning from Xi’an, Wang Enmao told us that they had been in Xi’an, and that permission had been given to extend the plenum until the end of February 1958.

We imagine that the Chinese Communists have decided to allow complete freedom of expression to the representatives of the national minorities at the plenum, and then to draw firm party conclusions and reach a decision on the question being discussed.

According to communications from leading Chinese comrades, bearers of nationalist views are mainly turning out to be individuals who occupy significant positions in party organs and state institutions. Among these are secretary of the XUAR Party Committee Säypullaev, deputy chairmen of the XUAR People’s Committee Ishaqov, Sugurbaev, and to some extent Iminov, head of the Department of Education Zakirov, head of the Department of Culture Ziya Sämädi, head of the Department of Internal Affairs Ibrahim Turdi, mayor of the city of Ürümchi Abdurehim Said, as well as others.

Deputy Chairman of the People’s Committee of the Ili-Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture, Abdurehim Äysa, who took part in the work of the plenum, at which his nationalist views were denounced, ended his life by suicide on the 17th of January.

Apart from these memoranda on conversations, the Consulate-General is sending translations of the speeches at the plenum by first secretary of the Party Committee Wang Enmao, and the report of S. Äzizov.

Consul-General of the USSR in Ürümchi G. Dobashin […]

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