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Documents on Germany, 1944-1959 : background documents on Germany, 1944-1959, and a chronology of political developments affecting Berlin, 1945-1956

Note from Soviet Foreign Ministry to the American Embassy, proposing German peace negotiations, September 18, 1958,   pp. 301-303 PDF (1.3 MB)

Page 302

302           DOCUMENTS ON GERMANY, 1944-5 9
notes to the same effect were addressed also to the Governments of
the United States of America, Great Biritain and the French Repub-
lic. Moreover, the G.D.R. Government made it known that it simul-
taneously proposed to the Government of the F.R.G. to create a com-
mission of representatives of both German states which would examine
from a German point of view all questions connected with the prep-
aration of a peace treaty with Germany. According to the proposal
of the G.D-.R. Government, this commission will occupy itself also
with questions relevant to the competence of the two Germans tates,
connected with the creation of a united peace-loving democratic
Taking into account that the question about preparing a peace
treaty is that part of the German problem for the decision of which
all states which participated in the war, and in the first place the
four great powers, bear responsibility, the Soviet Government would
like to express to the Government of the U.S.A. its considerations
regarding the proposals advanced by the Government of the G.D.R.
so that in the nearest future it might be possible to undertake joint
steps in the interest of a peaceful settlement with Germany. The
statement of the G.D.R. Government points out how acutely the Ger-
man people feel about that abnormal situation which already in the
course of 13 years has been preserved in Germany as result of the
absence of a peace treaty with this country. It is a new reminder
of the great powers on whom lies the main responsibility for a peace-
ful settlement with Germany about the need at least to fulfill their
duty before the German people. The proposal of the G.D.R. Govern-
ment about the creation of a commission of representatives of the
four powers and also of a corresponding German commission for the
preparation of a peace treaty with Germany takes into account the
concrete conditions which have arisen up to the present and opens the
way for a practical solution of this long since matured problem.
The Soviet Government being an advocate of the basic solution of
the German question has repeatedly come out in the past with pro-
posals, directed toward an urgent conclusion of a peace treaty with
Germany, which unfortunately have not at that time met support on
the -part of the Western powers. Recently it once more advanced this
question in connection with the preparation for the convocation of a
summit meeting considering it necessary to examine this as one of the
important problems of the agenda of such a meeting.
The indisputable fact is evident to all that the absence of a peace
treaty with Germany leaves open many questions which profoundly
disturb the whole German people and affect important interests of
the other European peoples who took part in the war with Germany,
including the interests of their security. No one has the right in the
course of such a long time to deprive the German people of a pos-
sibility of enjoying all the benefits of a peaceful situation, all the
more since the solution of analogous questions in connection with all
the countries drawn into the war on the side of Hitlerite Germany
has long since been a passed stage.
The conclusion of a peace treaty with Germany would finally draw
a line under the past war and its heavy consequences for the Euro-
pean peoples and would undoubtedly have important significance for
reducing tension and guaranteeing security in Europe. At the same

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