125. Telegram From the Embassy in Romania to the Department of State1



  • Cesusescu’s Response to President Reagan’s Letter of May 24.2
(C—Entire text.)
This evening (June 26) Foreign Minister Stefan Andrei summoned the DCM to the Ministry (the Ambassador being in Constanta [Page 346] with the Commander of the Sixth Fleet) to request that the Embassy transmit the text of a letter from Ceausescu to President Reagan in response to a letter from the President dated May 24. Andrei said that Romanian Ambassador Mircea Malitza would be delivering the original signed copy to the Department upon his return to Washington early next week, but added “his President” wanted the text sent now.
Andrei asked that particular attention be paid to the wording—the formulation—of that portion of the letter which deals with Ceausescu’s conversations in Moscow with Chernenko concerning conditions for resuming the Geneva INF talks.
The Foreign Ministry’s English-language translation of the Romanian text (which we have checked against the Romanian text and adjusted as required) follows:


His Excellency

Mr. Ronald Reagan

President of the United States of America

Dear Mr. President,

I have received your message conveyed to me on 24th of May, 1984 and, for my part, I wish to emphasize the importance and usefulness of our continuing exchange of messages in recent years.

I consider, as would you, that the state of the Romanian-American relations is good. Indeed, in the spirit of understandings convened between us, exchanges of ministerial-level visits have continued, economic relations have been positively developed, and consultations between our two governments regarding the main issues of international life have intensified. I appreciate, however, that there are still many possibilities which should be exploited for expanding economic relations and, especially, for production and technical-scientific cooperation. Therefore, I consider it necessary to find ways for encouraging the American firms and companies to cooperate with Romania and to facilitate licensing agreements in the field of technology that would enable Romanian products, including those destined for export to the United States of America, to be at a higher technical level.

I avail myself of this opportunity to express my profound concern in connection with the extremely grave tension reached in the international life. The intensification of the arms race, especially nuclear arms, has led to an increase of the danger of a world war which would inevitably become a nuclear war, endangering the very conditions of life on our planet. Of especial gravity is the situation created in Europe as a consequence of the beginning of the deployment by the United States of America of medium range nuclear missiles in some West European countries and the beginning of the application of announced nuclear counter-measures by the Soviet Union.

[Page 347]

Under these conditions, I regard with satisfaction the importance you pay to the maintaining close contacts with the leadership of the Soviet Union and to the resuming of the Soviet-American negotiations in Geneva. Indeed, the only rational alternative to this dangerous course in international life and to the policy of confrontation and armament is dialogue and negotiations.

Following the talks I have recently had in Moscow with the President of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR K. U. Chernenko, I am left with the impression that there are possibilities and that the Soviet Union desires to resume (Lit.: arrive at a resumption) the dialogue with the United States and the Soviet-American negotiations at Geneva for coming to an understanding on a suitable solution. Therefore, I consider it would be essential that the United States take an initiative that would permit overcoming the present situation. In this respect one could have in mind that the USA would stop deployment of medium range missiles in Europe and the USSR would stop applying nuclear counter-measures and, on this basis, that negotiations between the Soviet Union and the USA be resumed which would lead to the total elimination of the medium range nuclear missiles and then of all nuclear arms in Europe and in the world.

As in the past, Romania wishes to collaborate with the USA and with the other states for a successful conclusion of the conference on confidence building measures and disarmament at Stockholm, for reaching an agreement in the negotiations at Vienna, for the adopting of effective disarmament measures at the conference at Geneva, and for putting a stop to the arms race and beginning disarmament, and, first of all, nuclear disarmament.

Under present international circumstances it is necessary to act more actively for a durable and just settlement of the conflict in the Middle East. I consider that the only real solution that could bring a global settlement of this conflict should be the convening of an international conference, under the auspices of the United Nations Organization, with the participation of all interested parties, including the organization for the liberation of Palestine.

Similarly, I would like to refer to some international economic problems, and especially to the grave situation of the developing countries, as a consequence of the increase of their foreign debts and to the deepening gap between the rich and poor countries. I regard as especially important the resuming as soon as possible of the global negotiations within the United Nations Organization to solve these problems and for setting up a new international economic order, based on equality and equity, an essential condition for economic and political stability in the world.

First, I consider that there be a global and not a selective solution, as a new approach, regarding the problem of foreign debts of the [Page 348] developing countries, that would assure the cancellation of these debts for the poorest countries, the reducing of an important proportion for other countries, rescheduling of debts on a long term without interest or with low, symbolic interest and providing new credits under favorable conditions for developing countries to help their efforts for economic and social development.

In this regard a special dialogue should be organized at least between the developed and the developing countries for reaching an agreement on general principles regarding dealing with the foreign debts of developing countries and, proceeding on this basis, to solve the problems for each country. In my view, the developing countries should consider providing 10–15 per cent of the total value of their exports for paying foreign debts, including interest and, in this way, to retain the necessary means for their economic development and for solving some of their social problems.

I express my conviction that we will also act in the future to expand Romanian-American relations, to promote a policy of peace, detente, disarmament and collaboration of respect for the national independence of all peoples.


Nicolae Ceausescu


Embassy comment: On the surface—and probably below it as well—most of the letter is vintage Ceausescu, the points having been made before in numerous speeches. Andrei, however, made a point of calling attention to the language used by Ceausescu when suggesting how INF talks might be resumed (“one could have in mind that the U.S. halt the deployment of medium range missiles . . .”). This language indeed is different than Ceausescu’s—and, for that matter, Soviet—demands that the U.S. halt INF deployment (and withdraw missiles already deployed) as a prerequisite for the resumption of INF talks and suggest other proposals might be considered. This may be merely typical Ceausescu. He could be reading more into Soviet thinking than is merited. He could be fabricating. He may also be trying to add some luster to his own credentials as a useful go-between. Nevertheless, on the chance that there may be something there we suggest that Under Secretary Armacost—who, we understand, is scheduled to meet with Romanian Ambassador Malitza July 53 (note: MFA informed the Embassy that Malitza will be there)—explore this with Malitza thoroughly.
  1. Source: Department of State, Central Foreign Policy File, no film number. Confidential; Immediate; Nodis.
  2. See Document 124.
  3. A memorandum of conversation for this meeting was not found.