WR: A CLOSING DOOR?

Created: 12/19/1969

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DIRECTORATENTELLIGENCE

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(Information as of noon EST,

Far East .

CLOSING DOOR?

The departurethe two top members of the Soviet delegation from the border talks in Peking may fore shadow an attempt by the Soviets to lower the level of their representation if the discussions remain deadlocked.

ie i WEEKLY REVIEW ec 69

A Closing Door?

departure this week for Moscow of the chief and deputy chief of the Soviet delegation to the Sino-Soviet border talks in Peking, ostensibly for the current SupremeSo-viet session, follows two months of apparently fruitless negotiations. The departure of the two Russians cameackground ofSoviet reports of lack of progress, and an apparent Soviet desire to reduce the discussionsower level. The Chineseof the move carefully reported that the delegation would be gone about one week and that the talks were "temporarily recessed in their absence." This mayhinly veiled threat that the talks will break down completely if the two Russians do not return to Peking. The Soviets have announced nofor their return. UjP^BPjM Soviet off: ing that Pirst Deputy ForeignKuznetsov will be returning, although perhaps not for long. .

Reports that the Soviets had intended to recall KU2netsov have circulated for the past month.

The Chinese are reported- to iiave refused to progressemand "that thereroop witKdra*'a'l from border areas and from Mongolia. -The Soviets may believe thatrs return to Moscow willtheir serious concern over the deadlocked issue, and they may send the deputy minister back for one more try before replacing him. In publicly announcing the departure, Moscow sought to make clear' the'inuing nature of the talks bythat the remainder of the Soviet delegation is still in Peking.

. . Continuation of the talks appears to be the one common objective of both sides and there still may be timeompromise if the level of representationrucialat this time. At theeither side wants to befor the cessation of Peking has clearly been nervous about Soviet militaryand probably feels less apprehensive while talks are in progress. The Russians know that the discussions have probablyajor factor in keeping thequiet for the past several months, and would like to see thation continued.

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