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January 14, 1962

Ambassador Reis Malile, ‘Information on the Meeting of the Government-level Economic Delegation led by Comrade Abdyl Kellezi with Comrade Mao Zedong’

This document was made possible with support from The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

Information on the meeting of the government-level economic delegation led by comrade Abdyl Kellezi with comrade Mao Zedong

On the evening of 14 January 1962 comrade Mao Zedong and comrade Liu Shaoqi hosted a meeting with the government-level economic delegation headed by comrade Abdyl Kellezi. Present at this meeting were:

From the Chinese side: Comrades Mao Zedong; Liu Shaoqi; Li Xiannian; Luo Ruiqing, vice premier of the State Council; Ye Jizhuang, minister of Foreign Trade of the PRC; Fang Yi, deputy director of the State Planning Commission and director of the central Office for Economic Relations with Foreign Countries; Huang Zhen, deputy minister of Foreign Affairs; and Li Qiang, deputy minister of Foreign Trade of the PRC.[1]

From the Albanian side, the following comrades were present: Abdyl Kellezi, Kiço Ngjela, Pupo Shyti, Reis Malile, Milo Qirjako, Ramis Xhabija dhe Vasil Kati.

A conversation of about half an hour took place at the beginning and after that, the delegation was invited to a separate room to have dinner, at which all of the aforementioned individuals were present. In the form of a summary, we note here the conversation that took place at this meeting:

Comrade Mao Zedong: Greets the delegation and asks when it has arrived and how long it will stay.

Comrade Abdyl: Provides the answer and conveys the greetings on behalf of comrade Enver Hoxha, comrade Mehmet and the entire Party and our people.

Comrade Mao: Heartily thanks and continues “When you go back, bring my regards and greetings to comrade Enver and all the leaders of the Party. We wish them health, success, and good progress. The difficulties at work will be overcome step by step. We will face a vicious conflict (against the revisionists). The truth is undeniable; the sky does not touch the earth. In the old China, there were people who believed this.”

Comrade Liu Shaoqi: alluding to the weaknesses of the revisionists says “We have published a book with short stories about how one must not fear the devil.”[2]

Comrade Mao: continuing the line of conversation opened by comrade Liu Shaoqi, says: “According to the idea of the book, imperialism is the big devil, [Indian prime minister Jawaharlal] Nehru is half-man and half-devil, and Tito is the devil. There are also other devils (implies Khrushchev), but the book was published in the spring of 1959. The former ambassador of the Soviet Union in China [Pavel] Yudin said to me that “I once spoke against Nehru also, but I no longer dare to do so.” Yudin and some others were not chosen for [membership in] the new Central Committee (of the CPSU) and this happened because they (Khrushchev) do not have faith in these people. There are also those who praise Khrushchev but do not believe in him. Yudin himself has done something: At the meeting of the 81 communist and worker parties, he tried to get the Indonesian delegation to go against China but did not achieve this.”

Comrade Abdyl: says that the revisionists are in a very weak position with the popular masses. Explains the episode of a group that organized a rally in front of our embassy in Moscow, where they were declaring slogans in favor of the friendship of the Soviet people with the Albanian people.

Comrade Mao: “The people have begun to make distinctions in the Soviet Union.” Then, comrade Mao speaks about the opinions of Yudin and [philosopher and former Central Committee member Mark Borisovich] Mitin, and says that both of these are students of [Abram] Deborin who is an idealist. Deborin was a proponent of subjective idealism. On the occasion of his 80th birthday, the Soviet government sent a greeting to him. Over there (in the Soviet Union) idealism is out in the open now. Yudin and Mitin have criticized Deborin and therefore cannot be in the leadership of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.”

Comrade Liu Shaoqi: “Recently, four members of the Communist Party of the United States have been expelled from the party as dogmatic. They were expelled because they were not afraid of the devil. They said openly that the Communist Party of the USA is revisionist.”

Comrade Mao: “The Communist Party of the USA is in a very tough situation. They are asked to register it as an agent of the Soviet Union. The Communist Party of China will publish, tomorrow, on 15 January 1962, a declaration in support of the Communist Party of the USA. The position of the US government has its good aspects too, because it forces people to go to the mountain.” After this, comrade Mao Zedong speaks about the working class struggle, and how this has developed throughout history from its birth to our current time. He underlined the role of healthy Marxists, who despite being in the minority, managed to secure a victory against all opportunistic currents within the international communist and worker movement. “Within the 81 communist and worker parties,” comrade Mao Zedong continued, “we are only 11 parties. They are the majority, but the largest number within their ranks keeps a neutral position. The ones in the middle are the largest in number—some 40-50 parties. They are afraid of the division. The Communist Party of India also belongs to this group. If those of us from the 11 parties keep insisting, Khrushchev cannot do anything to us. Khrushchev cut off diplomatic relations with you, and this was a big mistake. He made it so that you had the right to unmask him out in the open. Insistence is victory. He swears at you, and you swear back at him. One must speak equally.”

After this conversation, [we] moved to a different room where comrade Mao Zedong hosted a dinner for the delegation. During the dinner, he said that they have translated comrade Enver’s speech, held on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Party of Labor, in English, French, Japanese, German, and Spanish. Laughing, comrade Mao Zedong says that the Soviets had complained about this. They have said to the Chinese comrades: “It’s one thing that you read it yourselves, but why do you give it to others?”

During dinner, comrade Mao also spoke briefly about the increasing growth of the healthy Marxist-Leninist forces, saying that “None of us here have known Marx, Engels, and Lenin, but this does not prevent to get to know their ideas, the truth.”

Comrade Lu Shaoqi added that “before the 22nd Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Albania was not well known in Birmania, but now it is not only known there, but there is also a Birmania-Albania friendship society. This is a good thing.”[3]

As dinner continued, comrade Mao Zedong asked comrade Abdyl: “after Khrushchev’s attacks, does the grass still grow in the mountains of Albania?”[4]

Comrade Abdyl responded that “the grass grows even taller than before.”

After this, laughing, comrade Mao Zedong added: “After Khrushchev’s attacks, not a single blade of grass has fallen on the ground in Albania.”

At the end of the dinner, comrade Abdyl thanked comrade Mao Zedong for the heartfelt reception. At departure, comrade Mao and the other Chinese leaders walked with the delegation outside to the cars. There they greeted all the comrades of the delegation, hugging them in a very warm and friendly way.

We are attaching three copies of the book “Do not be afraid of ghosts”, in French (two copies for the Central Committee, and one for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs), which was mentioned by comrade Mao Zedong and comrade Liu Shaoqi. The introduction in the book is very important.


The Ambassador

Reis Malile



[1] Translator’s note: The romanization of Chinese terms, places, and names in Albanian-language documents is often inconsistent, complicating translation into English. One Albanian variant might apply to different Chinese equivalents.

[2] Translator’s note: The book, Bu pa gui de gushi (Stories About Not Being Afraid of Ghosts, 1961), was prepared under the guidance of Mao Zedong, who corrected parts of it and explained the proper way to think about ghosts. Three copies were sent by the Albanian embassy in Beijing to Tirana. Two were for the Central Committee and one for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Albanian embassy in Beijing to Tirana (Top Secret), 4 February 1962, AQSH, F.14/AP, MPKK, V. 1962, Dos. 31, Fl. 1.   

[3] Translator’s note: Myanmar (formerly Burma) was referred to as Birmania.

[4] Translator’s note: Soviet party boss Nikita Khrushchev spoke at length against the Albanian party at the Twenty-Second Soviet Party Congress in October 1961. In response to that attack, Enver Hoxha famously declared, in November, that regardless of what might happen, “we say to Nikita Khrushchev that the Albanian people and the Party of Labor will survive by eating grass—if necessary—rather than sell themselves for thirty pieces of silver, because they prefer to die standing and honorably rather than live with shame and on their knees.” Njëzet vjetë jetë dhe luftë revolucionare,” printed in Enver Hoxha, Vepra, vol. 22 [October 1961–December 1961] (Tirana: 8 Nëntori, 1976), p. 127.

Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, and Abdyl Kellezi discuss revisionism, relations with the Soviet Union, and the Communist Party of the USA.

Document Information


Arkivi Qendror Shtetëror (Central State Archives, Tirana, Albania), Fondi 14/AP, Marrëdhëniet me Partinë Komuniste të Kinës, V. 1962, Dos. 31, Fl. 2-5. Contributed and translated by Elidor Mëhilli.


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