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November 27, 1985

Hungarian Embassy in Ethiopia, Ciphered Telegram, 27 November 1985. Subject: Ethiopia’s relations with the DPRK.

This document was made possible with support from ROK Ministry of Unification

From a recently published speech of Mengistu, who is still touring the country in the companionship of the Korean vice-president, it has become clear that now he actually harbors even more grandiose dreams of industrialization than before the congress. It seems that this speech illuminates what has been hitherto incomprehensible in [Ethiopia’s] relationship with Korea. They probably cannot expect the Soviet Union to support these plans, and thus the propaganda also occasionally alludes that as far as industrialization is concerned, they rank Korea ahead of the Soviet Union. It is unlikely that they can easily launch these plans, since under the conditions created by the famine, many sensible and realistic conceptions for agricultural development were conceived. However, there is a danger that in the next year, the Western counties—if they become aware of this new line—will be reluctant to provide food for the famine-stricken people, whose number is expected to be, even in the government’s estimate, close to six million.


115 – B.


North Korean-Ethiopian relations are further discussed. The increasingly obvious sway North Korea holds over the country in its attempt to aid industrialization is not expected to bode well with the Soviet Union.


Document Information


MOL, XIX-J-1-j Ethiopia, 1985, 56. doboz, 41-10, 004776/3/1985. Translated for NKIDP by Balazs Szalontai.


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ROK Ministry of Unification and Leon Levy Foundation