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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

Address by the Polish Foreign Minister (Rapacki), on disarmament, October 2, 1957,   pp. 214-220 PDF (3.2 MB)

Page 218

they will inevitably create more international tension and force States
which feel threatened to draw their own conclusions as to strengthen-
ing their security. We should not let that situation continue. We
want to help prevent such a situation. Hence I should like on behalf
of my Government to make the following statement: In the interest
of Poland's security and of a relaxation of tension in Europe, and
after consultation with the other parties to the Warsaw Treaty, the
Government of the People's Republic of Poland declares that if the
two German States should consent to enforce the prohibition of the
production and stockpiling of nuclear weapons in their respective
territories, the People's Republic of Poland is prepared simultaneously
to institute the same prohibition in its territory.
137. I am convinced that if that could be achieved, we would at
least have made the first step towards solution of a problem which is
vital not only to the Polish people and the German people and their
mutual relations, but to the whole of Europe and to all the peoples of
the world.
138. One of the great historical processes of our time is the libera-
tion of the dependent and colonial peoples, their organization and de-
velopment as independent States. That is a phenomenon that can
neither be halted nor reversed. Any such attempt would merely cre-
ate new danger spots and fresh conflicts. We are now confronted
with a dangerous situation of this kind in the Near East. Threats
and pressures being brought against Syria are causing special con-
cern. The only way to resolve this and similar conflicts is by adher-
ing to the principle of the self-determination of peoples, by recogniz-
ing fully the right of independent States to shape their internal and
external relations, and by seeking agreement on the basis of those
139. The elimination of danger spots and of threats to world peace
is one aspect of the problem. The other is the achievement of con-
structive co-operation among nations, irrespective of their structure
and levels of economic development. Poland is very anxious to de-
velop its economic relations with all countries to the full. We want
to participate as actively as possible in international economic co-op-
eration. That is why we are keenly interested in the development
of the world economic situation and in the activity of international
economic organizations. There have recently been certain develop-
ments favourable to world economic relations generally in the form
of trade between certain capitalist countries and certain socialist coun-
tries of Europe and Asia; but the progress made is still too limited
and discriminatory trade practices are still being applied to socialist
countries. At the same time, the disparity in capitalist countries be-
tween the rich economically-developed countries and the scores of un-
der-developed countries and territories, instead of disappearing, is
increasing from year to year. Nearly half the people of the world,
living in economically under-developed countries, still have no pros-
pect of a more rapid rise in their living standards.
140. A group of the richest and economically most developed West-
ern countries have thus far been able to maintain a relatively high
level of production and employment; but they have refused to partici-
pate in a broader comprehensive international programme which
would affect the whole world economy. They isolate themselves in a

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