874.00/1–1246: Telegram

The Representative in Bulgaria (Barnes) to the Secretary of State

us urgent

47. Early this morning Vyshinski left for Moscow.8 I had brief talk with him at reception given by PriMin9 last night. He said that he had had no success whatever with Opposition. When I expressed regret that he was leaving so soon and said I felt that compromise could be worked out in time he replied that no such indications were apparent to him. He thought that to remain longer would be pure waste of time.

Later in evening PriMin said to me that Vyshinski had waited during whole day in hopes of some sign from opposition following talks of day before but that as Petkov and Lulchev9a had made no gesture Vyshinski had concluded that it was futile to stay longer. The rub of course, is that Opposition, in words of Govt itself, insists on Cabinet reconstruction and dissolution of National Assembly, whereas [Page 49] Moscow and Govt are determined to maintain position that Nov 18 elections were free and unfettered and that democratic and representative Govt exists.

I asked PriMin whether he did not feel that under circumstances it would be course of wisdom to hold general elections for new ordinary Assembly around first of May rather than elections for Constituent Assembly as now planned. I suggested that such a decision would go far to liquidate present impasse between Govt and opposition and thereby greatly facilitate regularization of Bulgaria’s relations with all three Great Powers. He replied at once that such course would be interpreted as admission by Govt of much that Opposition contends against it. I asked him if it was not important to give more weight to views of US Govt as expressed in note of Nov 1610 and be less preoccupied with domestic political effects of a few concessions in favor of opposition. He did not deny that perhaps present impasse had developed partially because Govt had thought too much about advantages that opposition might derive from concessions and too little about views expressed by US and UK. He said that he would think matter over and after few days we might have another talk.

Sent Dept as 47; repeated Moscow as 23 and London as 15.

  1. Andrey Yanuaryevich Vyshinsky, Assistant People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union had arrived in Sofia on January 9, 1946, and on the following day met with leaders of the Bulgarian political Opposition, urging them to participate in the Bulgarian Government, but on the Government’s conditions. Leaders of the National Agrarian Union and the Social Democratic Party refused to participate in the Bulgarian Government unless the Cabinet were reorganized, the National Assembly were dissolved, and new elections were held. Barnes reported on the negotiations between the Bulgarian Government and the Opposition parties and Vyshinsky’s role in those negotiations in telegrams 19, 20, 22, and 38, January 7, 7, 8, and 10, respectively, from Sofia (874.00/1–746, 1–746, 1–846, and 1–1046).
  2. Kimon Georgiev, Bulgarian Prime Minister.
  3. Kosta Lulchev, leader of the Bulgarian Social Democratic Party.
  4. For the text of the communication from Barnes to the Bulgarian Government, released to the press on November 16, 1945, see telegram 373, November 14, 1945, to Sofia, Foreign Relations, 1945, vol. iv, p. 376.