893.00/10–845: Telegram

The Chargé in China (Robertson) to the Secretary of State

1754. Chou En-lai called at Embassy this morning. He said Mao Tse-tung planned to return to Yenan tomorrow but that he and General Wang Jo-fei would remain here. He said that a joint Government–Communist statement was now being drawn up and would probably be made public day of Mao’s departure. Yii’s [This?] statement would set forth points of agreement. Chou said that only one main point remained on which some sort of agreement had not been reached, namely, question of government of liberated areas now under Communist control; he mentioned particularly Shantung, Hopei, Suiyuan and Chahar. Communists, according to Chou, wish [Page 473] to have governors of such liberated areas appointed by a council elected from below—villages and districts. [Government], he said, would agree to elections in villages and districts but insists that governors of provinces be appointed directly by Central Govt.

With regard to military questions, Chou repeated information given in second paragraph of Embassy’s 1696, October 2. He said no date had been set for meeting of military commission to discuss reorganization of Communist army into 20 divisions, but it was possible that Communist member might come back on plane taking Mao to Yenan.

While joint statement will probably emphasize points of agreement and infer that negotiations are progressing satisfactorily, we are of the opinion that the two sides are far apart on the basic question of political control of the liberated areas now dominated by Communists.