740.00119 (Potsdam)/8–845

No. 1142
Memorandum by the Executive Secretary of the Central Secretariat (Yost)1
top secret

Berlin Conference


Soviet Policy

The principal interests of the Soviets at the Berlin Conference in connection with Poland were (1) the liquidation of the London Government and (2) establishment of the Polish Western frontier.

In regard to the first the aim of the Soviets was clearly to see to it that all the assets of the London Government were transferred immediately to the Warsaw Government and that the former was thereby estopped from continuing any of its activities, particularly those in the field of propaganda. They were not willing to state that the Polish Provisional Government would assume the liabilities of the London Government. The Soviets also appeared to be ready to further the return to Poland of as many as possible of the Poles abroad. They were not willing that the Polish Government should be asked to give returning Poles specific “assurances” in regard to freedom of their person and property but were willing to state, as recorded in the communiqué,3 that returning Poles should be accorded personal and property rights on the same basis as all Polish citizens.

As to the holding of elections in Poland, the Soviets were unwilling to go beyond the Yalta Declaration on this matter4 and the communiqué therefore merely repeats the language of that Declaration. The Soviets did agree after considerable discussion to the inclusion in the communiqué of a reference to the right of Allied press representatives to report to the world upon developments in Poland.

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  1. Printed from an unsigned carbon copy. For the minutes of the discussions summarized in this memorandum, see ante, pp. 9194, 187194, 204207.
  2. For the other sections of this memorandum, see document No. 1154.
  3. See document No. 1384, section ix.
  4. See document No. 1417, section vi.