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June 3, 1958

From the Journal of N.T. Fedorenko, Reception of DPRK Ambassador in the USSR Ri San-pal

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

[faded USSR MFA Far East

Department stamp:

Incoming Nº 1505s

6 June 1958]


Secret Copy Nº 7

5 June 1958

Nº 1569/GS




[handwritten: "copy

to N. [[Ye]]. Torbenkov"]




3 June 1958


I received Ri Sin-pal at his request.


Referring to the recent statement of Senator Mansfield, Deputy Chairman of the US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, about the need to establish economic and trade ties between North and South Korea, the Ambassador reported that Jo [Jeong-hwan], the Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Korea, had stressed that South Korea opposes the establishment of any ties with North Korea.


Ri Sin-pal expressed a desire to exchange opinions and ideas in this connection.


I told Ri Sin-pal that, as is well known, in the past the DPRK Government has repeatedly addressed proposals to the authorities of South Korea about the establishment of corresponding contacts in the areas of political, economic, and cultural relations between both parts of the country. However, until recently these proposals were invariably rejected by the South Korean authorities.


I noted that Mansfield's speech merits attention, however it ought to be kept in mind that opinion of Mansfield, a member of the opposition Democratic Party, does not reflect the official point of view of the US government. I then mentioned that the further progress of events and reactions to Mansfield's statement ought to be closely monitored. This might allow the situation to be analyzed more accurately and the necessary steps by the DPRK to be determined.


Ri Sin-pal agreed with the opinions [I] stated.


The Ambassador then said that approximately six days ago the UAR chargé in Peking visited the DPRK Embassy in the PRC and asked the opinion of the Koreans regarding the possibilities of establishing diplomatic relations between the UAR and the DPRK and at the same time asked the Koreans' opinion about the prospects for the establishment of relations between the UAR and the DRV.


[handwritten at the bottom of the first page: "Show to [[one word partially off the page]] Cde. Andreyev, Kovalev, Ognev, and Samsonov. N. Torbenkov. 9 June 1958"].


Ri Sin-pal thinks that the visit by the UAR chargé to the DPRK Embassy in the PRC with the purpose of finding out the possibilities of establishing diplomatic relations with the DPRK was undertaken at the instructions of Nasser after his visit to the Soviet Union.


The Ambassador asked our opinion about the possibilities of establishing diplomatic relations between the DPRK and the UAR.


I replied to the Ambassador that the issue of the establishment of diplomatic relations by DPRK, as an independent and sovereign state, is of course entirely within the competence of the DPRK government and should be decided by them in accordance with the interests of the state and foreign policy expediency. I then expressed the conviction that this issue obviously was the object of discussion by the DPRK government and it has a certain opinion about this.


The Ambassador said that this issue is only being studied by the DPRK government and it would like to know the opinion of the Soviet friends purely tentatively.


I told Ri Sin-pal that we might consider this issue and an appropriate reply given.


The Ambassador, however, stressed that he is not raising the issue of an official reply, but is interesting only in my personal opinion.


I replied to Ri Sin-pal to the effect that, in my view, the decision of this issue ought to be based on the advisability of both expanding DPRK foreign policy ties and with consideration for the existence of the necessary conditions for receiving foreign diplomats from capitalist countries in Pyongyang. A favorable decision of the issue about an expansion of DPRK diplomatic relations in which, it seems to me, there exists a certain interest, especially if one considers the struggle for the peaceful reunification of Korea, should however comply with the preparation of the necessary conditions for work with bourgeois diplomats in Pyongyang.


Ri Sin-pal expressed agreement with the views I stated and thanked [me] for the conversation.


V. P. Kovalev, attaché of the Far East Department, was present at the conversation.




(N. Fedorenko)


Ri San-pal responds to Senator Mike Mansfield's comments on inter-Korean relations and briefs N.T. Federenko on North Korea's diplomatic relations with Eygpt.

Document Information


AVPRF fond 0102, opis 14, delo 4, p. Translated for NKIDP by Gary Goldberg.


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