725.60F/10–2447: Airgram

The Ambassador in Chile (Bowers) to the Secretary of State

A–455. In exclusive interview granted UP correspondent re motives for breaking relations with Czechoslovakia, FonMin Vergara declared, “Czechoslovakia is no longer a silver bridge between occidental democracies and Soviet Russia. We have decided to break with those nations which are the center of Communist international influence.” He said Chile based action on serious internal developments related to recent Communist revolutionary strikes. Vergara added that while Chile appreciated efforts to maintain political independence being made by certain statesmen of countries which, like Czechoslovakia, on account of geographic position are submitted to direct Soviet influence, it could not disregard fact that those efforts are annulled by predominant power exercised by respective Communist Parties in service of USSR.

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Diplomatic relations with Poland, he explained, not severed because no diplomatic representatives accredited. Had there been relations Rumania and Bulgaria, these would also have been broken. Chilean action not aimed at Czechoslovakia itself, but merely directed against Soviet influence on Chilean affairs through indirect action of its satellites. Vergara said he had told Secretary Chilean Czechoslovakian Chamber of Commerce Kocian, as unofficial representative local Czechoslovakian community, they could count on full protection Chilean laws in all legitimate activities. He terminated interview with statement, “Commercial relations with Czechoslovakia will continue as before. Chile recently purchased beet sugar refinery from Skoda in exchange agricultural products and copper.”