March 22, 1962
Information Regarding the Working Conditions in the Bulgarian Embassy in Pyongyang
regarding the working conditions in our Embassy in Pyongyang
Our Embassy in Pyongyang has informed us about Korean attempts to isolate citizens of DPRK from our Embassy in Pyongyang.
Second, there is evidence of the restrictions imposed to our employees at the Embassy in Pyongyang. For example, on 26 January, a group of Korean young men who had lived in Bulgaria for 6-7 years and returned to Korea in 1960 wanted to visit our Embassy to get newspapers and journals and talk about Bulgaria led by their good feelings toward the country; however, they were returned by the militia guard. They were noticed by our Embassy employees and were invited in. Upon leaving the Embassy, they were stopped by two civilian men (who probably followed them) and their names were taken. The same happened to young men who visited the Romanian Embassy that day.
On 29 January, Comrade Kolarov, Embassy Attaché, met two Korean young men - one of them visited the Embassy on 26 January, and the other had also lived in Bulgaria. They invited Comrade Kolarov to go to the cinema with them. Before entering the cinema, they noticed two civilians who were following them.
The above-mentioned facts show that the visits of Korean citizens to fraternal embassies are not welcomed by Korean authorities.
On 26 January this year, our Embassy requested approval from the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs to visit on 1 and 2 February this year the towns of Sariwon, Guseong [Kusong] and Panmunjeom [Panmunjom], as well as some factories, people’s councils, and newspaper editing offices in these towns. The Foreign Ministry Protocol Department replied that the time was not appropriate for a visit now since all factories were under reconstruction. The Shenzhen [sic] plant was not to be visited by many people. As for visiting the people’s committees (councils) in Sariwon and Guseong, the time was not good since all comrades were away helping factories with their implementation plan preparations.
Our comrades asked when the reconstruction of the factories in Sariwon and Guseong will be completed and when they could visit them. The answer was “we don’t know.” To the question whether they could at least visit the newspaper editing offices in these towns the answer was that the time was not good. Other embassies of the socialist countries in Pyongyang are working under the same regime and conditions.
It is worth noting that until the 22nd CPSU [Communist Party of the Soviet Union] Congress Radio Pyongyang broadcast Radio Moscow daily (through Radio Khabarovsk) in Korean language. These emissions took place twice a day – in the morning and in the evening. After the CPSU Congress, Radio Pyongyang gradually limited the emissions – at first once a day, then 2-3 times a week, and in January the emissions were discontinued.
Termination happened without any preliminary coordination or notification of the Soviet side.
22 March 1962
Head of Dept. “Foreign Policy and International Relations” of CC of BCP
Dimo Dichev, Head of the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party's Foreign Policy and International Relations Department, reports on the working conditions and visitation restrictions placed on the Bulgarian embassy in Pyongyang.
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