190. Telegram From the Embassy in Finland to the Department of State0

166. Now clear Soviets are engaged in many-faceted pressure campaign against present Finnish Cabinet. Within last few days Embassy has been reliably informed: 1) Soviets have not responded to Finnish proposal that new trade talks begin on October 7; 2) Soviets are currently issuing no visas to Finnish nationals; 3) Soviets broke precedent and did not inform GOF that Lebedev would not return as Ambassador (Finns learned of his release from a press announcement). These developments came on top (A) Soviet failure to respond to Finnish request to begin negotiations re loan agreed to “in principle” during Kekkonen’s visit last May; (B) Soviet failure take notice 4 week old Finnish request for signing of Virolahti fishing agreement concluded in August in Moscow; (C) Soviet silence re Finnish proposals on use Saimaa Canal; (D) Soviet interruption in development of arrangements for US Finnish labor in construction hydroelectric plant on Tulamo River in Murmansk provinces; (E) Soviet studied indifference to Finnish willingness consider Soviet assistance in construction Communist favored Otanmaki steel plant.

Finnish officials while privately admitting possible seriousness Soviet tactics are maintaining calm and are following a wait and see policy. Finnish concern centers primarily on possibility Soviet curtailment of trade which would of course significantly contribute to already serious unemployment. Other actions (dragging of feet on loan, fishing agreement, Saimaa Canal and Otanmaki) of little import, perhaps even welcomed by many responsible officials. Also diplomatic snubs and hold-up visas only of nuisance importance. Embassy will report further.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 660E.61/10–1358. Confidential. Repeated to Moscow.