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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • June 09, 1954

    Telegram, Li Kenong to the PRC Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regarding the Chinese Delegation’s Meeting with the Delegations of Various Popular French Organizations

    Li Kenong reports to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Chinese delegation liaison team with the French delegations. Li describes the attitudes of most of the delegates as pro-Chinese and anti-American. The North African delegation, whom Li also meets, is described as anti-French government. Additionally, Li reports on propaganda materials (e.g. literature, buttons, etc) distributed during these meetings.

  • June 10, 1954

    Telegram, Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong and Others, Regarding Zhou’s Conversation with Bidault (Excerpt)

    Zhou reports on his discussion with Bidault on the Indochina issue. The two discuss French relations with the Associated States and the NNSC.

  • June 14, 1954

    Telegram, Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi and the CCP Central Committee (excerpt)

    Zhou Enlai writes that the French concern for their troops has made them more willing to negotiate. Additionally Zhou assures Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi and the CCP Central Committee that their side has maintained a positive attitude and the world will be left with the impression that their side has consistently pursued negotiations for reaching an agreement, whereas the US is merely attempting to sabotage the conference.

  • June 14, 1954

    Minutes, Meeting between Wang Bingnan and French Delegation Member Jean Paul-Boncour (Summary)

    Paul-Boncour and Bingnan discuss the Korean issue. Paul-Boncour states that the US is joining 15 other countries to "sabotage" the conference on the issue of international supervision of Korean unification.

  • June 18, 1954

    Telegram from Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong and Liu Shaoqi and the Central Committee on His Conversation with Georges Bidault

    Zhou reports on his meeting with Bidault. Bidault expresses his desire to see the conference continue, and says there is still a week until Eden and Smith leave to reach some agreement. Zhou also speaks of the Cambodia and Laos issues.

  • June 22, 1954

    Minutes, Zhou Enlai’s Meeting with Jean Chauvel

    Chauvel confirms a meeting for Zhou with the French Prime Minister, and suggests that both countries announce the meeting at the same time to thwart distorted media coverage of the two countries. The two agree that the conference must continue. Also, Chauvel hands Zhou a proposal for a special committee to decide the composition of the supervisory committee.

  • June 23, 1954

    Record of Conversation between Zhou Enlai and Pierre Mendès-France

    Mendes-France and Zhou discuss the Indochina issue during their first meeting together. Both men feel they are in agreement with each other regarding several points (establishing a cease-fire before discussing political issues, that no US military bases should be established in Indochina, elections in Cambodia and Laos, cooperation between France and Vietnam and between the two sides in Vietnam). They end on a positive note, both certain that their few differences of opinion will be worked out.

  • June 28, 1954

    Record of the First Meeting between Premier Zhou and Prime Minister U Nu

    Zhou Enlai and U Nu first talked about the decision made on the Geneva Conference regarding the armistice in the Korean Peninsula and the role of the US in it. Then they talked about the elements that complicated the Sino-Burmese relations and the need for building mutual trust and signing a non-political agreement. They also discussed the principles they would have in a joint statement before the signing of this potential agreement.

  • July 05, 1954

    From the Journal of V. V. Vaskov, 27 August 1954: Top Secret Memorandum of Conversation with Comrade Mao Zedong on 5 July 1954

    Soviet Charge d’Affaires in Beijing V.V. Vaskov and Comrade Mao Zedong discuss the Soviet plans to take advantage of the changing situation in France. Mao mentions that Zhou is meeting with Ho Chi Ming and Vo Nguyen Giap in Guanxi and won't be able to come to Geneva until July 12-13. The topic of conversation then shifts to the US and a recent meeting between US President Eisenhower and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. Mao notes that there is a diverge between Eisenhower and Churchill regarding the desirability of a dialogue with the Communists. Mao says that the US has dispersed its forces far and wide, so they are trying to resurrect West Germany and Japan.

  • July 10, 1954

    From the Journal of Molotov: Secret Memorandum of Conversation at Dinner in Honor of Mendes-France, French Prime Minister and Foreign Minister

    Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav M. Molotov and French Prime Minister Mendes-France discuss the upcoming Geneva Convention at a dinner in honor of Mendes-France. The two then discuss Vietnam and Mendes-France’s planned meeting with Vietnamese (DRV) foreign minister Pham Van Dong, as well as a possible redefining of the demarcation line between North and South Vietnam.

  • July 13, 1954

    Minutes of Zhou Enlai’s Meeting with Jean Chauvel

    Chauvel presents Zhou with a draft agreement for a cease-fire in Indochina. Chauvel notes that the issue of armed forces limitation should be discussed by the entire conference, and that the draft has been handed out to all the delegations for suggested additions and corrections.

  • July 13, 1954

    Minutes, Zhou Enlai's Meeting with Mendès-France (Excerpt)

    The minutes of the meeting between Zhou Enlai and Pierre Mendès-France. The topic of the discussion mostly revolves around the question of the demarcation line in Vietnam and the progress of the Geneva Conference.

  • July 14, 1954

    Telegram, Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, and the CCP Central Committee (excerpt)

    In this telegram Zhou Enlai informs Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, and the CCP Central Committee that Mendès-France hopes to reach an agreement by July 20 and insists that concessions be made in regards to the demarcation line.

  • July 15, 1954

    From the Journal of Molotov: Secret Memorandum of Conversation at Dinner in Honor of French Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mendes-France

    The discussion between Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav M. Molotov and French Prime Minister Pierre Mendes-France begin with talk of the draft and revisions of the French delegation’s proposal for the Geneva Convention. Elections in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia and the line of demarcation between North and South Vietnam are discussed as well.

  • July 16, 1954

    From the Journal of Molotov: Secret Memorandum of Conversation with Zhou Enlai and Pham Van Dong

    Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav M. Molotov describes his earlier conversations with British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden and French Prime Minister Pierre Mendes-France to Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai and Vietnamese Vice-Premier Pham Van Dong. Eden told Molotov in their conversation that he preferred military issues to be primarily in the cease-fire agreement between Vietnam and France, rather than in France’s draft of its Geneva Conference declaration. Molotov’s discussion with Mendes-France dealt with elections in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia, the line of demarcation between North and South Vietnam, and the withdrawal of foreign troops from Vietnam.

  • July 17, 1954

    Minutes, Zhou Enlai’s Conversation with Mendes-France (Exerpt)

    Mendes-France and Enlai discuss the Indochina issue during their first meeting together. Both men feel they are in agreement with each other regarding several points (establishing a cease-fire before discussing political issues, that no US military bases should be established in Indochina, elections in Cambodia and Laos, cooperation between France and Vietnam and between the two sides in Vietnam). They end on a positive note, both sure that their few differences of opinion will be worked out.

  • July 17, 1954

    From the Journal of Molotov: Top Secret Memorandum of Conversation with Zhou Enlai and Pham Van Dong

    Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav M. Molotov, Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai, and Vietnamese Vice-Premier Pham Van Dong discuss various topics relevant to the Geneva Convention, including the construction of foreign military bases in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia, the line of demarcation between North and South Vietnam, the establishment of regrouping zones in northeast Laos, the withdrawal of foreign troops from Indochina, and the possible formation of an international supervisory commission.

  • July 19, 1954

    Minutes of Conversation between Zhang Wentian and Harold Caccia, First Meeting

    Zhang and Caccia discuss three points. First Caccia mentions the French are primarily concerned with Route 9, and makes suggestions for this. Secondly, Caccia notes the French do not see elections occurring for another couple of years. Finally, Caccia makes clear that if an agreement is reached at the conference, there is no need for the Indochina countries to join military alliances.

  • July 19, 1954

    Telegram, Zhou Enlai to Mao Zedong and Others, Regarding the Situation at the Twenty-third Restricted Session

    Zhou reports on the 23rd restricted session on Indochina. The delegates of the conference hope to make an agreement on the 20th. Zhou notes that both the Chinese/Russian side and the other side have begun to make compromises, however Bao Dai's Vietnamese delegation refused to the division of Vietnam.

  • July 19, 1954

    Minutes of Conversation between Zhou Enlai, Pierre Mendes-France, and Eden

    Zhou, Mendes-France, and Eden discuss regrouping areas and French troops in Laos. The three are close in their opinions, but there are still points of division. Mendes-France agrees to limit the number of French troops, but insists a specified time limit is unreasonable. Mendes-France also insists that some regrouping areas are needed in the south. This last point, the three agree to leave to military experts.