January 26, 1969
Memo from Bulgarian Ambassador in Pyongyang, Misho Nikolov, to Bulgarian Communist Party's Foreign Policy and International Relations Department
from Misho Nikolov – Ambassador of PR Bulgaria to DPRK
On 25 January 1969, I was summoned to the [North Korean] Ministry of Foreign Affairs. By request from “above,” the Head of Second Department, Comrade Park Seo Quhn [sic] presented the Korean official attitude towards Park Chung Hee’s puppet government in South Korea. Comrade Park Seo Quhntalked for an hour and a half about the separation of Korea and the US role in the occupied southern part of the country. Finally, he formulated four problems the Korean government is asking our government to consider:
1. The government of DPRK believes that socialist countries shall not recognize Park Chung Hee’s clique as a government. The southern part of Korea shall not be recognized as a separate country under the name “Korean republic”; it shall be regarded as a Korean territory occupied by the United States. The sole legal representative of Korea is DPRK and its government led by Comrade Kim Il Sung – the beloved leader of 40 million Korean people.
Socialist countries shall not raise the flag of the US South Korean agents. They shall not have any relations (political, economic or cultural) with South Korean authorities since the American imperialists are full masters and dictators in all social spheres in South Korea.
2. The Government of DPRK requests that the press, radio, television and other propaganda institutions correctly refer to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Geographical maps, posters, drawings, textbooks and other publications shall not mention the existence of North and South Korea. The demarcation line shall not be identified as a state border between two independent states. Drawings, diagrams, etc. shall not be colored in different colors referring to North and South Korea. The island of Dokdo is not to be identified as part of the “Korean republic.”
3. The Korean government believes that the South Korean “government” shall be prevented from participating in international organizations, and their membership in those shall be terminated. Organizations involving South Korean representatives shall be boycotted.
4. The Korean government believes that South Korean representatives shall not be invited to international meetings and other events in socialist countries. International events with participants from South Korea shall be boycotted. We shall not take part in events organized by the South Korean government.
Finally, the Head of Second Department stated that the DPRK government, taking into consideration the principles of Marxism-Leninism, proletarian internationalism and class struggle, will expose the United States and their puppets and will use all means to achieve peaceful, independent unification of their fatherland. In this struggle, they rely on the support of all socialist countries.
I asked Comrade Park Seo Quhn – Which socialist country is maintaining or looking for a contact with South Korea? He replied: One socialist country has allowed a South Korean basketball team to participate at an international competition in its capital city. Other socialist countries publish geographic maps with the truce line as a state border between South and North Korea.
I thanked for the information and pointed out that Bulgaria has always been on the side of DPRK and has defended its interests against the aggressive plans of American imperialists and their agents in the southern part of Korea. We do this in United Nations, its structures and organizations and where it is necessary and possible.
Similar information was presented to the diplomatic representatives of all socialist countries in DPRK.
Judging from the way of raising questions and their nature, it is clear that Korean comrades correctly see and assess the situation in Korea after the US occupation in the south. As far as the forms and methods of denunciation of the US and their ousting from Korea are concerned, as well as the unification of the country, our Korean comrades are quite impatient and they lack the right assessment of the situation and force ratio. Their proposed events shall be carefully considered and decision shall be made. Furthermore, the Korean comrades tend to purposefully increase the already existing tensions in the Far East, which is not in the interest of our common struggle against imperialism, headed by American imperialism. It is not in the interest of DPRK either.
I request that the press, radio, television, Sofia-Press, etc. are notified of the correct name of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea since even during the festival the signs on the buses read “North Korea.” We receive articles from Sofia-Press which refer to DPRK as “North Korea.” This provokes discontent and protests on the Korean side.
Pyongyang, 26 January 1969
/ Misho Nikolov /
Classified Information Service
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Copy: CC BCP [Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party]
15 February 1969
Report by Bulgarian Ambassador to Pyongyang, Misho Nikolov, outlining Pyongyang's requests to discontinue all political recognition, in both imagery and name, of South Korea.
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