The Geneva Conference

2009-09-11 16:22 BJT

At the initiative of the USSR, the Four-power Conference of Foreign Ministers in Berlin reached agreement on 28 February 1954, decided to convene in April 1954 a Geneva Conference on Korea and Indo-China. In addition to the USSR, the United States, France, the United Kingdom and the People?s Republic of China as participants throughout the whole conference, the other countries concerned with the two questions were also to be represented respectively at the discussions of their own questions.

On 19 April, the Chinese Government appointed Zhou Enlai, Premier and Foreign Minister, as Chief Delegate and Zhang Wentian, Wang Jiaxiang and Li Kenong as Delegates of the Chinese Delegation to the Geneva Conference. The Geneva Conference was an important conference on international issues in which the PRC participated with the status and in the capacity of the Big Five.

The Geneva Conference opened on 26 April 1954 and the first issue to be discussed was the Korean question. At the outset of the conference, the DPRK Foreign Minister Nam Il advanced the proposal for restoring Korean unity and organizing free elections for the whole of Korea. Foreign Minister Zhou Enlai expressed total support for the proposal made by Foreign Minister Nam Il.

However, the South Korean delegate proposed at the conference that an all-Korean elections be held according to the ROK constitutional procedure under the UN supervision; that the Chinese forces should be totally withdrawn from Korea one month before such elections, whereas the UN forces would leave Korea after the elections and the realization of reunification of Korea etc.. It was very obvious that the South Korean proposal was in essence an attempt to impose the ROK legal system on all the Korea people and to annex North Korea. The U.S. delegate gave instant support to these proposals.

Foreign Minister Zhou Enlai pointed out at the Conference: The withdrawal of all foreign forces from Korea is a prerequisite to free expression of will by the Korean people in the absence of any outside interference during their national elections; the elections in Korea should not be placed under the supervision of the United Nations which is a belligerent party to the Korean War; nevertheless, China agrees to international supervision over the elections; he proposed that in order to assist the all-Korean council in holding all-Korean free elections in accordance with the all-Korean electoral law without any foreign interference, a neutral nations supervision commission be set up to supervise the elections.