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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • June 08, 1956

    Memorandum of Conversation with Choe Chang-ik

    Deputy Prime Minister of DPRK, Choe Chang-ik, discuss the unhealthy situation in the Korean Worker's Party and the North Korean government. Choe argues that there is nepotism within the personnel selection process and that a cult of personality exists within the KWP. Choe also expresses concern regarding the difficult economic situation in the DPRK.

  • June 21, 1956

    Memorandum of a Conversation with DPRK Ambassador to the USSR Ri Sang-jo on 16 June 1956

    Conversation between DPRK Ambassador to the USSR Ri Sang-jo and Kurdyukov of USSR Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Ri is concerned about personality cult in DPRK, and argues that KWP leadership needs serious ideological help from CPSU CC; that is to say, help is needed from outside.

  • July 24, 1956

    Memorandum of Conversation with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK, Nam Il

    Nam Il speaks to Soviet Charge d'Affairs about the dangers of recent Soviet-Korean criticism of Kim Il Sung. They fear that Kim Il Sung would misinterpret the criticisms and create international tension.

  • August 04, 1956

    Memorandum of Conversation with Charge d’ Affaires of the Chinese Embassy Qiao Xiaoguang

    A memorandum of conversation between Qiao Xiaoguang of the Chinese Embassy and Petrov of Soviet Embassy in North Korea about the DPRK government delegation's visit to the USSR.

  • August 29, 1956

    Memorandum of Conversation with Pak Ui-wan

    Pak Ui-wan discusses Kim Il Sung's draft report on his visit to the Soviet Union, the economic situation of the DPRK, party and government measures for the Five-Year Plan, the intra-party situation and the tasks of the Korean Worker's Party. During the conversation, Kim Du-bong notes his concerns over the personality cult, the shortcomings in the work of the Central Committee, and the serious economic situation in DPRK.

  • August 30, 1956

    Speech by Kim Il Sung at the August Korean Workers' Party Central Committee Plenum

    Kim Il Sung reflects upon the delegation he led to the USSR and other socialist states, and speaks about solidarity in the socialist bloc and peaceful reunification on the peninsula. He discusses the Three-Year Plan and the blueprint for the Five-Year Plan.

  • September 01, 1956

    Diary of Ambassador of the USSR to the DPRK V.I. Ivanov for the period from 29 August to 14 September 1956

    Kim Il Sung, in conversation with Ivanov, expresses his concerns about assignment of personnel and the cult of personality in North Korea.

  • September 03, 1956

    Letter from Ri Sang-jo to N.S. Khrushchev

    Ri Sang-jo urges Khrushchev to send a Sino-Soviet delegation to intervene in the aftermath of the August KWP CC Plenum.

  • September 05, 1956

    Report by N.T. Fedorenko on a Conversation with Ri Sang-jo, Ambassador of the DPRK to the USSR

    The Ambassador of the DPRK to the Soviet Union reports on the mishandling of critics during the August and September Plenums, and testifies "to the existence of the most negative consequences of the cult of personality in the DPRK."

  • September 08, 1956

    Resolution of the August Plenum of the Korean Workers' Party Central Committee on the DPRK Representatives' Trip to Allied Countries and Other Pressing Issues concerning the Korean Workers' Party

    The resolution discusses economic growth in North Korea and the promises of fraternal aid, and warns of the dangers of factionalism to the preservation of Marxism-Leninism.

  • September 10, 1956

    Memorandum of a Conversation with DPRK Ambassador to the USSR Ri Sang-jo

    Ri Sang-jo expresses to Shcherbakov his concerns about the problems within the Korean Workers' Party and indicates that external help is needed.

  • September 15, 1956

    Telegram from V. Ivanov to A.I. Mikoyan

  • September 16, 1956

    Cable from Cde. Mikoyan from Beijing concerning the 8th CCP Congress and Conversations with the Chinese Comrades

    Mikoyan reports on a conversation with Mao Zedong concerning purges within the Korean Workers' Party and Kim Il Sung's leadership style.

  • September 17, 1956

    Telegram from A. Mikoyan to the CPSU Central Committee

    Mikoyan reports on an unsuccessful meeting with a number of Korean delegates, who had clearly been prepped for the conversation, making them reluctant to go beyond instructions and provide more detailed responses about the August Plenum Incident.

  • September 18, 1956

    Conversation records between Chairman Mao Zedong and the Soviet Communist Party Delegation, 18 September 1956

    Mao Zedong and the Soviet Community Party Delegation exchanged views on Korean issues and a potential visit by Kim Il Sung to the PRC.

  • September 19, 1956

    Draft of Record of a Meeting between the Soviet and Chinese Delegations

    Mao Zedong reveals that several Korean Workers' Party members have been placed under arrest, including Pak Il-u, who is looked favorably upon by the CCP. Sino-North Korean relations have become strained as a result of Kim Il Sung's handling of the August incident. Mao admits to Mikoyan that the KWP leadership may not heed their advice, but they decide to send a joint delegation to Pyongyang the next morning.

  • September 21, 1956

    Telegram from A. Mikoyan to the CPSU Central Committee

    A meeting with Kim Il Sung reveals the main goals of the Sino-Soviet delegation: to convince the Korean Workers' Party to move away from policies of repression and to repeal the order to expel the group of accused party officials. Kim agrees on repealing the expulsion order, but not for those who fled to China. Mikoyan asks that Sino-Soviet delegation be allowed to sit in on the presidium meeting the next day.

  • September 23, 1956

    Telegram from A. Mikoyan to the CPSU Central Committee

    Mikoyan once again assures Kim Il Sung that the Sino-Soviet delegation's only motive in intervening is to help and advise the Korean Workers' Party. Kim vows to include the delegation's suggestions and the content of their discussions in the September Plenum. Mikoyan notes that Kim kept his promise at the plenary meeting that was held the next day.

  • October 05, 1956

    Letter from Ri Sang-jo to the Central Committee of the Korean Workers Party

    Letter from Ri Sang-jo to CPSU Central Committee in which Ri writes about his disagreement with the decisions made at Korean Workers' Party Central Committee Plenum in August 1956.

  • October 12, 1956

    Letter from Ri Sang-jo to the Korean Workers' Party Central Committee

    Ri Sang-jo seeks to redress the issue of aid from the Soviet Union by reminding party members of the CPSU's friendship and assistance to the North Korean people both before and after the Korean War. Ri discloses Soviet criticism of Kim Il Sung's economic policies and the cult of personality during meetings held in Moscow in the summer of 1956 and insists that the DPRK learn from the experiences of the fraternal communist parties in economic planning and in their struggles against cults of personality.