The History of the Soviet Bloc 1945–1991
Péter BENCSIK, Péter VUKMAN
Babak ARZANI, Diego BENEDETTI, Martyna BOJARSKA, Ádám BALOGH, Shira BORZAK,
Florian BRINK, Vanessa BUFFRY, David CATALAN, Sonya COWELL, Susan COOPER, Lauren CRYSTAL, Laura CSEKE, Botond CSELLE, Péter DARÁK, Nico DEGENKOLB,
Kati DEPETRILLO, Emanuele DI BELLO, Jacob FEYGIN, Lilla FÖDŐS, Katarina GABIKOVA,
Kristyna GABIKOVA, Evelina GELEZINYTE, Laura GOUSHA,Zsófia GÖDE, Brianna GREENWALD, Gyöngyi GYARMATI, Zoltán HERKUTZ, Ágnes HEVÉR,Neala HICKEY, Jennifer OLLAND, Connie IP, Alin IVASCU, Kitti Eszter JAKAB, Dean JOLLY, Victoria JONES, Annastiina KALLIUS, István KASZTA, Tomas KOLAR, Roman KOZIEL,Annamária KÓTAY-NAGY, Réka KRIZMANICS, Andrej KROKOS, András Máté LÁZÁR, Karina LEGRADI, Thomas KOLLMANN, Sára LAFFERTON, Marja LAHTINEN, Joseph LARSEN, Zsófia MADÁCSI, Cynthia MANCHA, Mike MANTZAVINOS, Csaba Zsolt MÁRTON, Anikó MÉSZÁROS, Viktor NAGY, Tímea OKOS, Balázs OLTVÖLGYI, Jennifer OTTERSON, Roland PAPP, Orsolya PÓSFAI, Dominika PROSZOWSKA, Rashid RAHIMLI, Linda RICHTER, Martin ROMAIN, Lili SIKLÓS, Bobbie SCHOEMAKER, Anett SZŰCS, Sabine TOPOLANSKY, Dóra VERESS, Aniello VERDE, Zita Bettina VASAS, Patrick Stephen WAGER, Jonathon WOODRUFF, Maciek ZAWADA, Kristóf ZSIDI
© Cold War History Research Center, Budapest 2013
At the Cold War History Research Center we have been working on an extensive chronology of the Soviet Bloc for a number of years. The second part of the timeline contains information dealing with the period from 1953 to 1968. The years 1969–1980 will be available by the end of 2014.
The entries were compiled using mainly secondary sources so far, nevertheless, we are determined to further improve and continuously extend the chronology by including information from archival documents in the years to come.
The chronology also presents data dealing with Austria, Finland and Yugoslavia. Although these countries were obviously not part of the Soviet Bloc, we still wanted to involve them since they maintained special relations with the Soviet Union and its Eastern European allies.
List of Sources
© Cold War History Research Center, Budapest 2013
Romania – 1968 (RUR)
Ceauşescu eliminates the Hungarian Autonomous Region, this action is part of a nation-wide territorial reorganization.
Finland – 1968 (LJF)
The USSR refuses to no longer recognize Finland as a neutral country. The Soviets reason that they could take advantage of the present student radicalism and the Left’s growing influence to effect a gradual transition to Communism in Finland. The Soviet’s also fear that their satellites could drift into the Western sphere or become neutral in Cold War.
Romania – January 1968 (RFP)
Romania expresses concern about the situation in Czechoslovakia. The Romanian embassy in Prague sends a telegram to Romania including the information about plenum of the Czechoslovak Communist Party, held on January 3-12, which approves Novotný’s resignation and replaced him by Dubček.
Romania – January, 1968 (RFP)
Plenum adopts the principle of the separation of functions at all levels.
Romania – January, 1968 (RFP)
The Romanian Communist Party renews the demand for convocation of the Political Advisory Committee of the Warsaw Pact. Czechoslovakia and East Germany object to this claim, Moscow agrees.
Yugoslavia / Middle East / Africa – January-February 1968 (RYN/KCA)
President Tito visits Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Ethiopia and U.A.R in an effort to generate interest in another conference of the nonaligned states.He also obtains agreement from the 'Third World' on the Israeli/Arab problem.
Hungary – January 1, 1968 (PLC/HC)
Limited economic reforms take place in Hungary (“New Economic Mechanism”). A new consumer price system comes into effect. According to the announcement, the overall price level decreases by 1%.
Czechoslovakia – January 3-5, 1968 (PSC/PLC/KCA)
The so-called January meeting of the Czechoslovak Communist Party’s Central Committee takes place. An elite refinement occurs, which is the start of a reform process. The posts of First Secretary and President of the Republic are separated. Dubček is elected First Secretary, Novotný remains president. Many other dismissals of government posts follow. The Prague Spring ensues, eventually prompting the Soviet-led invasion of August 1968.
Romania /Soviet Union – January 4-12, 1968 (RFP)
The Soviet-Romanian negotiations are held in Bucharest. A new treaty of friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance is reached.
Romania – January 4, 1968 (RCW)
Ivan Bashev presents a report on the CPSU-organized meeting in Warsaw, where Eastern European government officials exchanged views on the situation in the Middle East. Among the discussed topics were the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Yemeni Civil War, and recent developments in Iraq.
Yugoslavia / Italy – January 9-11, 1968 (KCA)
A joint communiqué is issued after Yugoslav representatives, Mika Špiljak and Marko Nikezić, President of the Yugoslav Federal Executive Council and Federal Executive of Foreign Affairs respectively, visit Italian Prime Minister, Aldo Moro. Talks conclude with both countries agreeing upon U.N. action in the Middle East and for mutual cooperation, within the EEC framework.
Soviet Union / France – January 11, 1968 (KCA)
A joint communiqué is issued after a meeting between Soviet and French Scientific and Economic Ministers. A treaty on mutual cooperation in space research and exploration is signed.
East Germany – January 12, 1968 (KGD)
A number of new measures are announced in order to punish the opponents of the SED regime.
Finland – January 15, 1968 (LKS)
President Urho Kaleva Kekkonen is reelected to his third term in office.
Hungary – January 16, 1968 (HC)
The reelection of the People’s Front committees begins.
Soviet Union – January 16, 1968 (KCA)
Jacob Malik is announced the new Representative for the Soviet Union at the United Nations.
Soviet Union / U.S. – January 17, 1968 (KCA)
In U.S. President Johnson's State of Union Address, he recognizes the continual thawing of hostilities between the U.S. and Soviet Union but stresses the importance of maintaining a high level of defense.
Soviet Union / U.S. – January 18, 1968 (LBC/KCA)
The Soviet Union and the U.S. present the revised, full text of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty to the U.N. Disarmament Commission in Geneva. This version now includes the “Third Article” concerning international supervision.
Soviet Union / U.K. – January 19, 1968 (KCA)
An agreement for mutual cooperation in science and technology agreement is signed in London between the United Kingdom and Soviet Union.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – January 20, 1968 (PSC)
Upon Dubček’s request, János Kádár meets him in Topolčianky, Slovakia.
Czechoslovakia – January 22-23, 1968 (PSC)
At a plenary session of the CC of the Communist Party of Slovakia, Vasil Bil’ak is elected First Secretary.
Soviet Union / U.K. – January 22-24, 1968 (KCA)
A joint communiqué is issued after British representatives visit Moscow to meet with the Soviet leaders. Among the topics discussed, Vietnam and the Middle East are high priority as well as European security issues. Wilson also brings up the issue of Jewish rights in the Soviet Union.
Czechoslovakia – January 24, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak Writers Union elects Eduard Golstücker its chairman. The Union decides to publish Literární Listy as its own new weekly magazine.
Romania / Yugoslavia – January 24, 1968 (RFP)
A Romanian delegation consisting of Ceauşescu, Maurer and Mizil travel to Yugoslavia for a short friendly visit.
West Germany – January 28, 1968 (PLC)
The student movement begins in West Germany.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – January 29-30, 1968 (PSC)
Dubček meets Brezhnev and Podgorny in Moscow.
Soviet Union / India – January 31, 1968 (KCA)
Kosygin visits India on an official visit. A communiqué that is issued states the hope for increased trade cooperation. Kosygin and Mrs. Gandhi also discuss Indo-Pakistani relations.
Yugoslavia / West Germany – January 31, 1968 (KCA)Yugoslavia and West Germany announce the resumption of their diplomatic ties. Ties were originally broken in accordance of the Hallstein Doctrine after Yugoslavia recognized the state of the German Democratic Republic in 1957.
Bulgaria / Sudan – February, 1968 (KCA)
Bulgaria signs agreement to send technical military aid to the Sudan.
Cyprus – February, 1968 (PLC)
Makarious III wins Cyprian elections with 95% of the votes.
Romania / Yugoslavia – February 1968 (SRR)
The Romanians go beyond their traditional support of North Korea by endorsing the independent neutral course in the Sino-Soviet conflict. Cooperation with Yugoslavia is limited to economic matters of mutual national benefit such as the so called Iron Gates project for developing hydroelectric power through harnessing and exploiting the potential of the Danube. Ideological consultations on matters related to Soviet imperialism within the socialist camp are held periodically since 1964 and frequently, with both Romanians and Yugoslav anxious to maintain the validity of their common doctrine of equality of members in the socialist camp. Relations with Albania and Cuba are correct but in-significant; these countries do not have common problems as Romania and Yugoslavia.
Romania – February 1968 (RFP/SRR)
The Romanian power elites pay homage to Dubček and to the Czechoslovak independent course in a state visit to Prague. Romanian leadership is offered an opportunity to see the situation in Czechoslovakia during the celebration marking the 20th anniversary of the Czechoslovak Communist Party’s acquisition of power. Ceauşescu not only openly sides with Czechoslovakia, he also uses the opportunity to reaffirm some of the points in his program; the destruction of the military blocs and foreign bases in Europe and the retreat of all foreign troops within their national borders.
East Germany / Soviet Union / West Germany / France / U.K. / U.S. – February 1968 (KCA)
The Soviet Union protests the actions of West Germany to France, Britain and the United States. The Soviet Union claims that West Germany was holding illegal regular “Parliamentary Weeks” and stepping up its employment of civil servants and ministers in West Berlin. East Germany restricts West German overland movement into the GDR. The Soviet Ambassador to the GDR will criticize the West German “Parliamentary Weeks” in a press statement in March 1968.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – February 4, 1968 (PSC)
Dubček meets Kádár in Komárno. Zoltán Komócsin and Károlyi Erdélyi also represent the Hungarian side.
Czechoslovakia – February 6, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium decides that reports from the sessions of the CPCz CC Presidium and Secretariat will be published in the media.
Czechoslovakia / Poland – February 7, 1968 (PSC)
Dubček meets Władysław Gomułka in Ostrava (Northern Moravia).
Yugoslavia – February 7, 1968 (RYE)
Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito appeals during a press conference in Cairo for a new conference not only of non-aligned but also of countries supporting the policy of peaceful settlement of international conflicts. The Yugoslav press and government, who apparently are taken by surprise, hasten to agree but also interpret Tito's cautionary additional remark about the need for thorough preparation to mean that the path to this conference is naturally long, intricate and tedious. In fact, the Lusaka Conference of the non-aligned, successor to the Belgrade and Cairo conferences of 1961 and 1964, do not meet until September 1970.
France – February 7, 1968 (PLC)
Students’ movement begins in Paris.
Romania – February 8, 1968 (RFP)
The session of the Executive Committee of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party is held in Bucharest. It is decided that Mihil and Dalea will take part in the Budapest Conference. The decision is confirmed on February 14, 1968 by the plenum of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party.
Soviet Union / India – February 9, 1968 (KCA)
Talks between Indian and Soviet scientists end with an agreement on cooperation between both countries’ scientists.
Hungary / Netherlands / Venezuela – February 12, 1968 (HC)
J.M.A.H. Luns, Foreign Minister of the Netherlands, takes an official four-day visit in Hungary. He signs an economic, technical, and industrial agreement. Also Jesus Faria, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Venezuela visits Budapest.
Hungary / Soviet Union – February 14-16, 1968 (HC)
Boris Ponomarov, the Secretary of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party makes a three-day visit to Budapest.
Romania – February 14, 1968 (RCW)
Minutes of the plenary meeting of the Romania Communist Party are issued. The Politburo suggests the following agenda of the plenary meeting: Finalizing the proposals made by the Central Party and Government Commission regarding the organization of districts and cities and discussions regarding the consultative meeting of the Communist and Workers Parties in Budapest. The present tension in the communist movement is emphasized.
Romania – February 16, 1968 (PLC/HC)
Under the first amendment to the constitution, the province system is abolished in Romania, reestablishing the county system. As a consequence, the Mures-Magyar Autonomous Region is abolished.
Romania – February 20, 1968 (RFP)
The Permanent Presidium of the Central Committee discusses the proposal and the counter proposal concerning the agenda for the Budapest conference expressed in the Central Committee plenum.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – February 21-23, 1968 (HC/PSC)
On the occasion of the anniversary of the 1948 “people’s victory”, celebrations take place in Prague. On February 22 at Prague Castle, Dubček delivers the main address at a ceremonial session of CPCz CC, the Central Committee of the National Front of the CSSR, and the government. Also speaking are Brezhnev, Gomułka, Ulbricht, Kádár, Ceauşescu, Zhivkov and Vlahovič.
Hungary – February 25, 1968 (HC)
The Presidential Council passes a decree, number 1968:5, about the regulation of the State Secretary positions.
East Germany – February 26-27, 1968 (CAC/MMS)
Deputy foreign ministers meeting in Berlin reach no agreements because of Romanian opposition to the Soviet draft of a nonproliferation treaty.
Communist countries – February 26-March 5, 1968 (KCA/MMS/SRR/RFP)
A preparatory meeting for the „great” conference of Communist parties is held in Budapest, representing 67 countries. A new agenda is imposed. China refuses to send any delegates. Romanians oppose all attempts of Soviets to restore unity in the bloc. Attacks against the Romanians are initiated immediately after the chief of the delegation, Mizil, presents the anti-Soviet views of the Romanian Communists. The Romanian delegation walks out of the meeting on February 29, after the other parties express their support of the Soviet position against China and other dissidents.
Hungary / England – February 28, 1968 (HC)
Hungary and England sign a barter agreement for five years in London.
Warsaw Pact – February 29–March 1, 1968 (CAC)
A meeting of Warsaw Pact chiefs of staff in Prague is held to
resume the project of reorganizing the alliance. The group agrees to create a
Military Council despite Romanian opposition.
Czechoslovakia – March-April, 1968 (KCA)
During these months four government and Party officials are found dead and are presumed to have committed suicide. Three of them had some involvement in the Šenja-affair or the investigation into Jan Masaryk's death.
Romania – March, 1968 (SRR)
The meeting of the Warsaw Pact is held. Since this meeting, Romania is not consulted anymore.
Romania – March 1, 1968 (RFP)
Ceauşescu says in the extraordinary plenum of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party, all the promises and attitudes concerning the Budapest congress are only aimed at avoiding distrust and were concerned with gathering as many parties as possible in Budapest.
Romania – March 2, 1968 (RFP)
An article published in Italian UNITA regrets the Romanian departure and supports Niculescu-Mizil opinions.
Czechoslovakia – March 4, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium begins the process of abolishing censorship.
Romania – March 5, 1968 (HC/RFP)
The Communist and workers’ parties hold their international convention in Budapest, without the presence of the Romanian delegation.
Warsaw Pact – March 6–7, 1968 (CAC/KCA/RFP/PLC)
A PCC meeting held in Sofia agrees, with Romanian abstention, to create a Warsaw Pact staff and a Military Council. Agenda comprises the Non-Proliferation Treaty, the Vietnamese question and military questions. Romania expresses the importance of the treaty for the Communist movement and attempts to limit the actions of the Pact and demands for a substantial reduction of its military mission in the Romanian capital. On these amendements no agreement is reached. Romania refuses to discuss the Czechoslovak situation. Consequently, Romania is not invited to
ater negotiations related to Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / U.S. – March 6, 1968 (KCA)
The U.S. State Department confirms General Jan Šejna’s defection to the United States. General Šejna had served as a member of the National Assembly and Defense Ministry of the Communist Party.
Czechoslovakia – March 8, 1968 (PSC)
For the first time, the Czechoslovak press prints a demand for Novotný’s resignation from his post as president.
Poland – March 8-25, 1968 (HPB/PLC)
On March 8 around 1200 students gather at the University of Warsaw to demonstrate against the regime. It is crashed by the police; many students are beaten and arrested. From March 9 to 25 there are demonstrations at the universities in Łódż, Poznań, Wrocław, Toruń and Cracow. In general, 2549 people are arrested during this period, including 536 students. Among the arrested leaders are Jacek Kuroń and Adam Michnik. The students` movement is supported mainly by the intellectuals and the Episcopate.
East Germany – March 10, 1968 (KCA)
The GDR prohibits members of the National Democratic Party of West Germany from entering the German Democratic Republic. Western Ambassadors refer to the agreement to free movement across the boundaries. East Germany also goes on to prohibit Ministers and Officials of the West German government from entering their territory.
Czechoslovakia – March 13-20, 1968 (PSC)
Two meetings take place in Prague between young people and political and cultural officials. With as many as 20,000 participants, discussions of formerly forbidden topics take place. Participants in the second meeting send a letter addressed to Novotný demanding his resignation.
Czechoslovakia – March 14, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium decides to accelerate the rehabilitations of citizens who were unjustly persecuted during the 1950s.
Soviet Bloc – March 14-15, 1968 (MMS)
Meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Trade in Budapest.
Czechoslovakia – March 14-15, 1968 (PSC)
The Slovak National Council presents its demand that Czech-Slovak relations be organized in accordance with the principles of a federation.
Soviet Union / U.N. / U.S. – March 14, 1968 (KCA)
The revised joint U.S.-Soviet Non-proliferation Treaty is submitted to the U.N. General Assembly.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany – March 18, 1968 (PSC)
East German journalists are prohibited from visiting the Czechoslovak Embassy and the House of Czechoslovak culture. They are forbidden from reporting information about Czechoslovakia and all private and official business trips to Czechoslovakia are prohibited.
Czechoslovakia – March 19, 1968 (PSC)
The information office of the previously prohibited Scout organization “JUNAK” opens in Prague.
Poland – March 19, 1968 (PLC)
Following the student demonstrations, Wladysław Gomułka holds a speech with anti-Semitic overtones.
Finland – March 22, 1968 (MKB)
Social Democrat Mauno Koivisto forms a government with the Centre Party, SKDL and Social Democratic Union of Workers and Smallholders (TPSL).
Czechoslovakia – March 22, 1968 (PSČZ/PSC)
Antonín Novotný resigns from the function of president.
Czechoslovakia – March 22, 1968 (PSC)
The “Action Group for the Restoration of the Social Democratic Party” formally comes into being.
Czechoslovakia – March 22-23, 1968 (PSC)
The fourth session of the CPCz CC Control and Auditing Commission takes place. Chairman Pavel Hron and the leading members of the commission resign. The commission votes for the total rehabilitation of former General Secretary Rudolf Slánský and other prominent party members persecuted in the 1950s. The commission further declares void the expulsions of writers Klíma, Liehm and Vaculík from CPCz and cancels disciplinary proceedings against Milan Kundera and Pavel Kohout.
Romania / Canada – March 22, 1968 (KCA)
A Canadian-Romanian Trade Agreement is signed, giving one another the 'most favored nation' status.
Warsaw Pact – March 23, 1968 (PSC/DCO/PLC/MMS/PSC)
Top officials of the Communist Parties and governments of Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia Hungary, East Germany, Poland, and the Soviet Union meet in Dresden. Romania is not invited. The only topic on the agenda is the “Czechoslovak question”. The situation in Czechoslovakia is defined by several participants as counter-revolution and Gomułka proposes the military intervention of the member states of the Warsaw Pact. The Soviet Union and Hungary do not agree. A senior secretary of the East German Socialist Unity Party (SED), Kurt Hager, delivers a sharp attack against the policies of the CPCz and Smrkovský.
U.N. – March 23, 1968 (KCA)
22nd meeting convenes on the Soviet-U.S. Non-Proliferation draft treaty.
Czechoslovakia / U.K. – March 24, 1968 (PSC)
A commentary on possible Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia is published for the first time in the western press (Sunday Express, London).
Hungary / France – March 25-28, 1968 (HC)
Jenő Fock, chairman of the Council of Ministers makes an official 6-day visit to France.
Bulgaria / Turkey – March 26, 1968 (KCA/PSC)
A joint communiqué is issued after Todor Zhivkov, Prime Minister of Bulgaria, visits Turkey to meet with Turkish Prime Minister Demirel. Both parties agree to allow Bulgarian nationals of Turkish descent to immigrate to Turkey if relatives have remained there from before 1952. This agreement enables 52,000 (130,000 according to other sources) Turkish Bulgarians to move to Turkey. Other issues on the table are Vietnam and the Middle East as well as non-proliferation. Notably, both Turkey and Bulgaria agree to maintain a cooperative relationship.
Czechoslovakia – March 27, 1968 (PSC)
In Prague, a preparatory committee is established for representing Czechoslovak citizens who were victims of persecution in the 1950s. On March 31, Klub 231 is formed.
Czechoslovakia – March 28, 1968 (PSC)
At a CPCz CC plenary session, General Svoboda is recommended to be president with 105 of 197 votes. Novotný’s resignation is accepted unanimously.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia – March 28, 1968 (PSC)
Bulgarian authorities block tourist travel to Czechoslovakia due to the political situation there.
Hungary – March 29, 1968 (HC)
The ashes of Leó Frankel are put to a grave in a pantheon, erected by worker movements in the Kerepesi cemetery.
Hungary / Yugoslavia – March 29, 1968 (HC)
Zoltán Komócsin, the Secretary of the Central Committee of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party holds a meeting with representatives of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia in Beograd.
Czechoslovakia – March 30, 1968 (PSC)
The National Assembly elects Svoboda president by a vote of 282 to 6.
Czechoslovakia – March 31, 1968 (PLC)
“Klub 231” is formed to become one of the biggest oppositional organizations in Czechoslovakia.
Romania – April, 1968 (SRR)
Party makes the decision to rehabilitate victims of Stalinist oppression; however the party remains the ultimate source of power and the director of all activities of the population.
Yugoslavia – April, 1968 (RYE)
Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito visits Moscow, where the situation in Prague and growing Soviet alarm over trends there are among the topics discussed.
Czechoslovakia – April 1-5, 1968 (PSC)
A CPCz CC plenary session adopts the CPCz Action Program, completes the formal rehabilitation of all persons unjustly persecuted in the 1950s, and elects a new CC Board consisting of Barbírek, Bil’ak, Černík, Dubček, Krieger, Piller, Rigo, Smrkovský, Špaček, Švestka. The Czechoslovak leadership sets "Socialism with a human face" as its goal.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – April 1, 1968 (HC)
The Irodalmi Szemle (Hungarian newspaper in Czechoslovakia) publishes the suggestion of the Hungarian section of the Slovakian Writers’ Alliance about the stabilization of the ethnic problems in Czechoslovakia. (It recommends the establishment of an independent Hungarian central committee to organize the education. It further suggests the establishment of a national Hungarian scientific institution, national Hungarian library, and an independent Hungarian publishing company.
Czechoslovakia – April 3, 1968 (PSC)
The Minister of National Defense, Army General Lomský asks to be relieved of his position.
Czechoslovakia – April 3, 1968 (PSC/KCA)
A new investigation begins into the circumstances of Jan Masaryk’s death. Since the process of liberalization has begun, Jan Masaryk's death has been opened up for public investigation with many visiting his home town and journalists enquiring into the nature of his death.
Czechoslovakia – April 5, 1968 (KCA)
Jan Beneš, who has been incarcerated for 19 months, is released.
Czechoslovakia – April 6, 1968 (PSC)
The CSSR government resigns and Oldřich Černík is asked to set up a new government.
Soviet Union / Iran – April 7, 1968 (KCA)
A joint communiqué is issued after Kosygin visits Iran to talk with the Shah and Prime Minister Hoveida. All parties agree that the Security Council measures of 1967 are required in the Middle East.
East Germany – April 8, 1968 (KGS/KGD)
A new constitution defines the GDR as a “socialist state of the German nation”. The new “Socialist constitution” comes into force on April 9.
Czechoslovakia – April 9, 1968 (PC)
The new government under Černík is sworn in.
Czechoslovakia – April 8, 1968 (PSC)
František Kriegel is elected chairman of the CC of the National front of the CSSR.
Poland – April 9, 1968 (HDP)
Marian Spychalski replaces Edward Ochab as Chairman of the State Council.
Czechoslovakia – April 9, 1968 (KCA)
Czechoslovakia's Road to Socialism is published. Amongst the ideas put forward, the Czechoslovakian Communist Party proposes a weakening of security police powers. The document outlines the process of democratization and the liberalization of the economy and political system.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – April 9-10, 1968 (PSC)
At a hastily summoned session, members of the CPSU CC consider the situation in Czechoslovakia promulgating the resolution: “We will not give up Czechoslovakia”.
Poland – April 11-18, 1968 (HDP)
Wojciech Jaruzelski becomes Minister of National Defense.
Czechoslovakia / U.S. – April 12, 1968 (LBC)
American officials inform Czechoslovakia that the U.S. will not return the 18.4 tons of Czechoslovak gold that the Germans took in World War II, now in U.S. possession, until Prague pays compensation for American property nationalized in 1948. According to U.S. estimate the claims are worth 72 million dollars.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – April 14, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Ambassador to Czechoslovakia Chervonenko hands Dubček a letter from Brezhnev, dated April 11, which expresses dissatisfaction with developments in Czechoslovakia. In a telephone conversation on the same day, Brezhnev proposes to Dubček that both sides meet for talks.
Czechoslovakia – April 16, 1968 (KCA)
After releasing a document outlining the subjugation of the Roman Catholic Church in Czechoslovakia, Bishop Tomášek praises the Czechoslovak government for its improved attitude towards the church.
Hungary – April 17-19, 1968 (HC)
The 4th Congress of the Patriotic People’s Front takes place in Budapest. (Chairman: Gyula Kállai, general secretary: Ferenc Erdei)
Czechoslovakia – April 18, 1968 (PSC)
At the 22nd meeting of the National Assembly, Smrkovský is elected chairman of Parliament.
Yugoslavia – April 18, 1968 (PLC)
Yugoslavia rejects participation of the planned 1969 Moscow World Congress of Communist Parties.
NATO – April 18-19, 1968 (LBC)
The seven members of the Nuclear Planning Group of NATO announce that the present conditions do not justify the deployment of an ABM system in Europe. Secretary Of Defense Clark Clifford expresses his “sincere anxiety” that the European allies do not cover the major part of the cost of American troops in Europe despite the fact that the U.S. faces continuous balance of payment deficit.
Warsaw Pact – April 19-27 1968 (PSC)
Warsaw Pact’s Commander-in-Chief Yakubovsky negotiates with Polish military and government officials in Warsaw. He holds further negotiations on April 21-22 in Berlin, on April 23 in Sofia, and on April 27 in Budapest.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia – April 20, 1968 (KCA)
The Czechoslovakian and Bulgarian First Secretaries sign a Mutual Cooperation and Friendship treaty.
Poland – April 21, 1968 (KCA)
The Warsaw Daily cites that nearly 7,000 members have been expelled from the Communist Party in 1968 so far. Most of them are Jewish.
Soviet Union / Pakistan – April 21, 1968 (KCA)
Kosygin visits Pakistan for talks. A joint communiqué states that the talks took place in a convivial air and that the two nations would increase cooperation particularly concerning oil and gas.
Romania – April 22-25, 1968 (PLC)
The Romanian Communist Party’s leadership exercises partial self-critique about past offences against the law and the old elite – most notably Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej. The old elite is gradually removed from the Party leadership. Ceauşescu formally breaks away from the old party leadership.
Czechoslovakia – April 23, 1968 (PSC)
The T.G. Masaryk Association is founded in Prague.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – April 23-25, 1968 (PSC)
During an official visit to Czechoslovakia Commander-in-Chief Yakubovsky requests that the training for the Šumava military exercises will be held from June 20 to 30, not in September as was originally planned.
Hungary / United Arab Emirates – April 23-25, 1968 (HC)
The foreign minister of the UAE makes an official three-day visit to Budapest.
Hungary – April 24-28, 1968 (HC)
The session for the preparation of the International Convention of the Communist and Worker Parties takes place in Budapest.
Romania – April 29, 1968 (RFP)
Confrontation between Basov, the ambassador of the Soviet Union and Mizil occurs. Committee of the Romanian Communist Party receives an invitation from the Central Committee of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party to take part in the session of the committee preparing the International conference which will be held in Budapest at the end of the year. Romania agrees but because of “lack of conditions to unify the international Communist movement”, the Romanian Communist Party does not attend the working group session held in Budapest on April 24-28.
Romania – May, 1968 (RFP)
Indirect pressure from the Poles is imposed towards Romania. The text is probably the outcome of the secret meetings held by the SIX in Dresden and Budapest. The text will be talked on by the First Secretaries and Prime Ministers of the Central Committees on June 20-25, 1968.
Soviet Union / U.S. – May, 1968 (PLC)
The USSR notifies the U.S. that potential Soviet actions in Czechoslovakia do not interfere with American interests in Europe.
Hungary / Austria – May 1, 1968 (KCA)
An electric power line between Győr and Vienna is completed.
Czechoslovakia – May 2, 1968 (PSC)
Literární Listy publishes an appeal to the National Assembly to abolish the People’s Militia.
Czechoslovakia / Italy – May 2, 1968 (PSC)
The First Secretary of the Italian Communist Party Luigi Longo visits Prague.
Czechoslovakia – May 3, 1968 (PSC)
About 4,000 Prague citizens take part in an open discussion in the Old Town Square voicing demands for the establishment of an opposition party and expressing support for Polish students.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany – May 3, 1968 (PSC)
Radio Prague announces that East German authorities have begun jamming its German broadcasts.
France – May 3-June 27, 1968 (PLC)
Mass student movements reach their peak in Paris.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – May 4-5, 1968 (PSC/KCA)
The Moscow meeting of top Party and state officials from the USSR and Czechoslovakia, most notably Brezhnev, Kosygin and Černík, takes place. The Soviets characterize the situation in Czechoslovakia as a counterrevolution and declare that they are ready to take even the “most far-reaching steps”. However a communiqué is issued declaring the intention of cooperation between the two Communist parties.
Soviet Union / U.S. – May 4, 1968 (KCA)
The Supreme Soviet ratifies the consular convention with the U.S. which was signed four years earlier.
Czechoslovakia – May 7, 1968 (PSC)
The Minister of the Interior Josef Pavel announces that the jamming of western radio stations has been stopped.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – May 8, 1968 (PSC/ MMS/PLC)
At a secret meeting in Moscow, top party and state officials from Bulgaria, Hungary, East Germany, Soviet Union and Poland (“the Five”) discuss the situation in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – May 8-14, 1968 (PSC)
Without an official invitation, a Soviet army delegation led by Marshal Konyev and Moskalenko visits Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – May 10, 1968 (PSC)
In a letter to Černík, Soviet Premier Kosygin points out “the completely abnormal and dangerous situation” which is occurring on Czechoslovakia’s borders with West Germany and Austria [comes] as a result of the lenient policy of Czechoslovak authorities toward western tourists.
Czechoslovakia / NATO – May 10, 1968 (PSC)
At the NATO defense ministers’ session in Brussels, General Secretary Manlio Brosio declares that the organization considers direct Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia improbable.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union / Poland – May 10-23, 1968 (PSC)
Military maneuvers take place in Southern Poland. One Soviet and one Polish tank army participate, with a total force of more than 80,000 troops and 2,800 tanks.
Czechoslovakia – May 13, 1968 (PSC)
KAN (Club of Engaged Non-Party People) issues its policy manifesto.
France / Romania – May 14-18, 1968 (KCA/PLC)
During De Gaulle’s demonstrative visit to Romania a joint communiqué is issued declaring that both parties agree to increase future trade, economic, scientific, cultural and technological cooperation.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – May 15, 1968 (PSC)
Dubček writes to Soviet Ambassador Chervonenko asking him to inform Brezhnev about Czechoslovak concerns of not being included in the meeting of “the Five” held in Moscow on May 8.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany – May 15, 1968 (PSC)
According to a report from the Czechoslovak ambassador to East Germany, the situation in Czechoslovakia is on the agenda of the Politburo of the SED. According to the report, “A struggle is going on between the forces of capitalism and socialism. If the balance of powers changes to the detriment of socialism, the GDR will regard it as its duty to intervene in the CSSR, because this affects the defense of socialism.”
Hungary / Poland – May 15-16, 1968 (HC/KCA)
Led by W. Gomułka, First Secretary of the Polish United Workers’ Party, and Prime Minister J. Cyrankiewitz, a Polish party and governmental delegation visit Hungary. A 20-Year Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between Hungary and Poland is signed.
Czechoslovakia / Romania – May 16-21, 1968 (RFP)
The bilateral negotiations with Czechoslovakia are held in Bucharest. The goal is to draft the final version of the treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance. During the negotiations, the countries express different positions concerning the Warsaw Pact.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – May 17-22, 1968 (PSC/KCA)
Kosygin is in Czechoslovakia “for a short term visit and treatment.” During his stay negotiations take place in Prague and Karlovy Vary with Svoboda, Dubček, Černík and other Czechoslovak officials. In the same period Soviet Defense Minister Grechko and Chief of the central political department of the Soviet Army and Navy, General Yepishev visit Prague. The aims of the visit are portrayed in a communiqué for the Soviets to become familiar with the new Cabinet in Czechoslovakia.
Yugoslavia / U.S. – May 17, 1968 (LYE)
An agreement is signed between the American firm, Printing Development International (a Time-Life subsidiary) and Beogradski Grafički Zavod for color printing as one of the very first joint ventures.
Romania / Soviet Union – May 21, 1968 (RFP)
Meeting between General Gheorghe and General Romanov is held. Frozen Romanian-Soviet relations are confirmed.
Finland – May 21, 1968 (IPS)
Law on comprehensive educational system is accepted unanimously in Eduskunta and the idea of an equal educational opportunity through a 9-year-long common school becomes established. The key concept of ‘equal educational opportunity’ means a strictly uniform and highly inclusive education.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – May 22-24, 1968 (HC)
Jiří Hájek, the Foreign Minister of Czechoslovakia makes a three-day official visit to Hungary.
East Germany / Soviet Union – May 23, 1968
An agreement is made to build a pipeline from the Soviet Union to East Germany in order to supply natural gas. This deal is included in a wider ranging mutual economic deal between the GDR and Soviet Union.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – May 26, 1968, (PSC)
Brezhnev sends a letter to Dubček providing information about the meeting of “the Five” in Moscow on May 8.
Romania / Yugoslavia – May 27-June 1, 1968 (RFP)
Discussions between Romania and Yugoslavia are held. Ceauşescu and Tito express the support towards Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / U.S. – May 28, 1968 (PSC)
U.S. Ambassador Jacob Beam informs Czechoslovak Foreign Minister Hájek that the “U.S. government and the president were watching the developments in Czechoslovakia with great attention and a constructive interest.” For the time being, he states, they are avoiding active steps which could put the Czechoslovak government in an unpleasant situation.
Czechoslovakia – May 29, 1968 (PSC)
The Bishop of Prague, František Tomášek says in the Italian newspaper Il Messaggero that the position of Catholics has significantly improved in the last two months.
Czechoslovakia – May 30, 1968 (KCA)
Six high ranking officials and former President Novotný are announced suspended from the Czechoslovakian Communist Party in a purge of the past Stalinist elements of the party.
Romania – June-July, 1968 (RFP)
Bucharest emissaries travel to the United States to purchase equipment and advanced technology. Bârlădeanu emphasizes in the talks with Secretary of State Dean Rusk, that all technology obtained in the country will be used only for the national economy and there is no question of strategic application.
Czechoslovakia – June 1, 1968 (PSC)
The Governmental Expert Commission is established to solve economic problems associated with the new constitutional arrangement of the republic. Ota Šik is named chairman of the commission.
Hungary / Austria – June 1, 1968 (HC)
Franz Muhri, the Chairman of the Austrian Communist Party takes a five day official visit in Budapest.
Yugoslavia – June 2-10, 1968 (PLC/JVJ)
In the wake of students’ riots in France, students demonstrate in Belgrade and other university towns.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – June 4-15, 1968 (PSC)
A National Assembly delegation led by Smrkovský visits the Soviet Union. Brezhnev and Podgorny receive the delegation on June 14.
Czechoslovakia – June 4, 1968 (CAC)
A memorandum to Dubček by 30 research associates of the Military Political and Military Technical Academies outlines principles of Czechoslovakia’s military doctrine. On July 2, it is published in the press.
Czechoslovakia – June 6, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak government agrees to abolish the censorship.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – June 6, 1968 (PSC)
In a report to the Hungarian Party’s Politburo, Komócsin denies that there is a counterrevolution underway in Czechoslovakia and requests support for Dubček.
East Germany / West Germany – June 10-11, 1968 (KGD)
The GDR introduces an obligatory passport and visa system for travel between the FRG and West Berlin.
East Germany / France / U.K. / U.S. – June 11, 1968 (KCA)
The restrictions tighten on flow of citizens and goods into East Germany. U.S., France and Britain, in response, remind the Democratic Republic that the stipulations on traffic between the two territories are in opposition to detente. Dr. Kiesinger receives full support from Britain, U.S and France.
Poland / Romania – June 11, 1968 (RFP)
Polish proposal is discussed and rejected by the Executive Committee of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party. The plenum of the Executive Committee planned for June 20-25 is postponed.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – June 12, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Ambassador Chervonenko hands Dubček a personal letter from Brezhnev, which includes an invitation to a bilateral, confidential and unofficial meeting on June 15-16, “somewhere along the Soviet-Czechoslovak border”. Dubček declines due to his work load and asks instead whether the meeting could be held after the regional party conferences, i.e. after July 14, at the earliest.
Soviet Union / U.S. / United Nations – June 12, 1968 (LBC)
The U.N. accepts the final text of the nuclear non-proliferation draft treaty. China and France refrain from accepting the resolution. The U.S. President calls on the Soviet Union to enter into negotiations on the control and reduction of offensive and defensive nuclear arms.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – June 13-15, 1968 (PSC)
During an official visit to Budapest, Czechoslovak leaders sign the Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance between Hungary and Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany – June 17-18, 1968 (PSC)
The CSSR and the GDR Foreign Ministers hold talks in Berlin on the development of mutual relations. Ulbricht unofficially receives Hájek.
East Germany / West Germany – June 18, 1968 (KCA)
Brandt meets with East German Ambassador Abrassimov, no resolutions are reached.
Czechoslovakia – June 19, 1968 (PSC)
Dubček addresses 10,000 participants at a nationwide rally of the People’s Militia.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – June 19-30, 1968 (PSC/ CAC)
The Šumava command and staff exercise take place on Czechoslovak territory. About 27,000 Soviet troops, along with small units of the Polish, Hungarian, East German and Czechoslovak armies participate under the supervision of Marshal Yakubovsky. The exercise is aimed at pressuring the Czechoslovak leadership into rolling back its reform program.
Czechoslovakia – June 20, 1968 (PSC)
At a Communist Party of Slovakia CC plenary session in Bratislava, members decide to convene an extraordinary congress of the CPS in October 1968.
Czechoslovakia – June 21, 1968 (PSC)
The State Statistical Bureau reports that 21,117 people applied for permission to open private business.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – June 21, 1968 (PSC)
Pravda publishes a letter to the Soviet people from participants of the June 19 nationwide rally of the People’s Militia. (Rudé Právo publishes the letter only on July 13.) Over the Next 14 days, Pravda publishes letters and resolutions from Soviet workers informing their Czechoslovak counterparts that they are ready to provide help in the common defense of socialism.
Romania / Israel – June 21-23, 1968, (KCA)
After visiting Israel, acting Romanian Minister for Foreign Trade Ciaro signs a technological cooperation agreement with Israeli Minister for Commerce and Industry Sharef.
Hungary – June 22, 1968 (HC)
H. Boerma, chairman of the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) makes a five-day official visit to Hungary.
Czechoslovakia – June 24-28, 1968 (PSC)
The National Assembly adopts a law on preparing the federative arrangement of the republic. (As part of the law, the Czech National Council is established as the country’s representative body.) The assembly also adopts a law on judicial rehabilitation, and incorporates the abolition of censorship into an amendment to the law on the press.
Poland – June 24, 1968 (PLC)
The Party adopts an anti-Semitic position in Poland, resulting in the dismissal of 700 intellectuals. 15,000 people leave the country within a year.
Czechoslovakia – June 27, 1968 (PSC/PLC/PSČZ)
The “2000 slov” (Two Thousand Words) Manifesto, authored by Ludvík Vaculík, is published in Literární Listy, Práce, Zemědelské noviny and Mladá Fronta to support the process of democratization in the country. On the same day, the CPCz CC Presidium releases its negative reaction to the document, followed on June 28 by similar statements from other official bodies. This does not stop 34,000 people in Czechoslovakia to sign the document within two weeks.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary / Soviet Union – June 27-July 4, 1968 (PSC)
A Hungarian delegation consisting of Kádár, Fock and Aczél meets Brezhnev and Kosygin in Moscow. Their separate assessments of the situation in Czechoslovakia are coming closer together.
Soviet Union – June 27, 1968 (LBC)
Gromyko announces that the USSR is ready to exchange views on the mutual control and reduction of strategic nuclear delivery vehicles.
Czechoslovakia – June 28-30, 1968 (PSC)
A series of extraordinary CPCz district and regional conferences are held. About one-third of them support the “Two Thousand Words” proclamation, one-third considers the reaction to the proclamation inappropriate, and one-third agrees with the CPCz leadership’s negative assessment of the document.
Yugoslavia – July 1968 (RNF)
Yugoslavia applies to the World Bank for assistance in financing a highway construction program. A World Bank appraisal mission visits Yugoslavia in October and November and agrees to finance three projects – one each in Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia.
Soviet Union / England / USA – July 1, 1968 (HC/PLC)
The agreement on nuclear disarmament and preventing the spread of nuclear weapons (Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty) is signed in Moscow, Washington and London.
Czechoslovakia – July 1, 1968, (PSC)
As of this date, the CPCz has 1,677,565 members. Within 6 months in 1968, 18,282 new members join the party and 6,956 members are expelled.
East Germany / West Germany – July 1, 1968 (KCA)
The GDR is notified that no East German barges may enter through West German waterways.
Soviet Union – July 1, 1968 (LBC)
The Soviet Union’s new disarmament plan: an international agreement banning nuclear arms; the cessation of the production of nuclear arms, the reduction of arsenals followed by the ban and destruction of nuclear arms under international control; the mutual control of nuclear delivery vehicles, later their reduction; the immediate ban on the flight of planes armed with atomic bombs beyond national boundaries and the halting of the patrol of submarines armed with nuclear missiles on waters where the other side is within striking distance; ban on underground nuclear tests with national supervision, working out means to inspect the fulfillment of the ban of chemical and biological weapons; the liquidation of foreign bases; nuclear free zones. – 62 nations sign the non-proliferation treaty, France and China do not sign.
Czechoslovakia – July 2, 1968 (PSC)
The magazine Lidová armáda publishes a memorandum from researchers at the Klement Gottwald Military-Political Academy recommending changes in Czechoslovak military doctrine.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 4, 1968 (PSC)
The CPSU CC Politburo sends a letter to the CPCz CC Presidium. During the next two days, the GDR, Bulgaria, Hungary and Poland send similar letters.
Soviet Union / Egypt – July 4, 1968 (KCA)
President Nasser visits Moscow. Brezhnev pledges Soviet support now and in the future, to the Arab states and recognizes Palestinian rights.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 5, 1968 (PSC)
In a telephone conversation, Brezhnev tells Dubček that it is urgent that the Communist Parties of six socialist countries meet. Dubček writes to Brezhnev inquiring about the subject of the meeting.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 6, 1968 (PSC)
Brezhnev sends Dubček a letter including an invitation to a meeting of six Communist Parties in Warsaw, scheduled for July 10 or 11, to discuss the situation in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – July 8, 1968 (PSC)
The 83rd session of the CPCz CC Presidium discusses the letters sent recently by the Communist Parties of Bulgaria, Hungary, East Germany, Poland and the Soviet Union.
Romania / U.S – July 8, 1968 (KCA)
After Bârlădeanu, Romanian Politburo member, finishes his three week tour of the United States, a joint communiqué is published. A mutual agreement is signed to cooperate on matters of science and technology, particularly the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
Czechoslovakia – July 9–11, 1968 (CAC)
A Czechoslovak army conference in Bratislava urges elaboration of a national
doctrine within the Warsaw Pact framework and “internationalization”
of the alliance’s command.
Czechoslovakia – July 10, 1968 (PSC)
The National Assembly elects the 150-member Czech National Council (85 members for the CPCz, 22 members for the Czechoslovak People’s Party, 22 members for the Czechoslovak socialist party, and 21 non-partisan members). Čestmír Císař is elected chairman.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – July 11, 1968 (PSC).
The Šumava exercises conclude. In the next two days, the first foreign units leave the country.
Soviet Union / Sweden – July 11-13, 1968 (KCA)
Kosygin visits Prime Minister Erlander and King Gustav VI of Sweden. Both parties agree to cooperation in the future.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 12, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium declines the invitation to meet “the Five” communist countries in Warsaw, proposing instead to hold bilateral talks with each party’s representatives.
Czechoslovakia / Romania – July 12, 1968 (RFP)
The situation in Czechoslovakia is the subject of a session of the Executive Committee of the Romanian Communist Party. Before the meeting of the Executive Committee, Ceauşescu talks with Kurka, the Czechoslovak ambassador. Negotiations confirm cordial and friendly relations between the countries.
Romania – July 12, 1968 (RCW)
Summary of the Ministry of Armed Forces Council is issued. Topics covered in the summary are: the establishment of regional commands and military maneuvers in Poland and Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – July 13, 1968 (PSC)
At Dubček’s request, he and Černík meet Kádár and Fock in Komárno, on the Hugarian-Czechoslovak border, just after 5.00 p.m. Kádár says that “the refusal of the CPCz to go to Warsaw was the biggest mistake that the CPCz leadership has made since January”.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact / Yugoslavia – July 13, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak Army Commanders hand a letter to the military attachés of the Warsaw Pact countries and Yugoslavia expressing the army’s unconditional support of Dubček’s leadership of the CPCz.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 14-15, 1968 (PSC/KCA/DCO/PLC)
The Warsaw meeting of “the Five” takes place. The CPCz CC Presidium sends a letter to the Czechoslovak ambassador in Warsaw requesting that it be handed to Brezhnev and to the delegations of the other Communist Parties taking part in the meeting. The attending parties declare the events a “counter-revolution” sponsored by imperialists. After the negotiation the Warsaw Letter is issued, warning against anti-socialist and revisionist forces and adressed to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia. letter states the good intentions of socialist camaraderie behind the meeting and discussion of Czechoslovak internal affairs. However, the joint letter advises the Czechoslovak government to maintain strong Socialist practices in the face of the real threat of growing right wing agitators. In defense of Czechoslovak Socialism, the letter urges the government to crush any criticism or opposition to the Communist party of Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – July 15, 1968 (PSC)
At a press conference General Prchlík, the head of the State Administrative Department of the CPCz CC, makes critical remarks on the military and security policies of Czechoslovakia and the Warsaw Pact.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union / Italy – July 15, 1968 (PSC)
In a visit to Moscow, an Italian Communist Party delegation (Galuzzi and Pajetta) express their support for the “Czechoslovak experiment”.
Romania – July 15-16, 1968 (RFP)
Ceauşescu declares in Brăila and Galaţi his trust in the Czechoslovak communist movement.
Romania – July 15, 1968 (RFP)
The Romanians send a letter expressing the support to Czechoslovakia is sent to the European Communist parties.
Soviet Union / U.S. – July 15, 1968 (CWC)
The Soviet Union and the United States sign an agreement on cultural, scientific, educational and technological exchange.
Soviet Union / U.S. – July 15, 1968 (LBC)
The first direct air link is opened between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 16, 1968 (PSC)
The 87th session of the CPCz CC Presidium discusses the joint letter of “the Five” from the Warsaw talks, and adopts a resolution to propose to the leadership of the CPSU to hold bilateral talks on July 20-21.
Soviet Bloc – July 16-20, 1968 (MMS)
Meeting of the Ministers of Agriculture in Moscow.
Soviet Union / France – July 16-18, 1968 (PSC)
A French Communist Party delegation, led by Waldeck Rochet, meets Brezhnev in Moscow.
Soviet Union / U.S. – July 16, 1968 (KCA)
The expired cultural exchange agreement between the Soviet Union and the United States is resumed once again.
Czechoslovakia / France – July 17, 1968 (PSC)
The Politburo of the French Communist Party proposes to call a meeting of all European Communist Parties as soon as possible to deal with the situation in Czechoslovakia. The proposal receives the support of the Italian, Austrian and Belgian Parties.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 17-18, 1968 (PSC)
The CPSU CC Politburo discusses the situation in Czechoslovakia.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 17, 1968 (KCA)
The presidium of the Czechoslovak Central Committee replies to the Warsaw Letter issued on July 15, stating that Czechoslovakia will maintain its reforms and remain tied strongly to the Warsaw Pact. The letter continues to state that the majority population wanted reform and liberalization and so it is being granted.
Warsaw Pact – July 18, 1968 (CAC)
Warsaw Pact Supreme Commander Marshal Ivan Iakubovsky accuses Gen. Václav Prchlík, head of the Czechoslovak army’s political administration, of revealing Warsaw Pact secrets in a conversation with journalists.
Czechoslovakia – July 18, 1968 (PSC)
A special edition of Rudé Pravo publishes the letter from “the Five” and the CPCz CC Presidium’s response. At the same time, the letter is debated by the National Assembly and the CSSR government, the Presidium of the CC of the National Front, the CPS CC, and the Central Councils of Trade Unions. All express the approval of the presidium statement.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – July 18, 1968 (PSC)
Commander-in-Chief Yakubovskii sends Dubček a letter in which he accuses General Prchlيk of unjustly criticizing the activity of the Political Consultative Committee of the Warsaw Pact at the July 15 press conference, and of disclosing strictly confidential information about the structure and the circumstances of the Warsaw Pact joint command.
Czechoslovakia / U.S. – July 18, 1968 (PSC)
U.S. Secretary of State Rusk denies rumors that the United States has warned the USSR against using military forces against Czechoslovakia.
Soviet Union – July 19-22, 1968 (PLC)
The CPSU’s leadership opts for a military solution in the Czechoslovak crisis (the final political decision is made on August 17).
Czechoslovakia – July 19, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC plenary session unanimously approves the presidium’s response to the letter from “the Five”.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 19-21, 1968 (PSC)
The CPSU CC Politburo proposes that the CPCz CC attend a bilateral meeting in the Soviet Union. The CPCz CC Presidium rejects the Soviet proposal two days later. On July 21, TASS announces that the talks will be held in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / France – July 19-20, 1968 (PSC)
In Prague, leaders of the French Communist Party (Rochet and Kanapa) discuss development in Czechoslovakia over the last six months with Dubček, Černík, Lenárt, Císař and others.
Warsaw Pact – July 20, 1968 (CAC)
A Soviet note to the Czechoslovak government criticizes it for allegedly insufficient protection of the country’s Western borders and for tolerating activities that undermine the alliance.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 20, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak government receives a Soviet note expressing concerns over the discovery on July 12 of weapons in the Sokolov region. Czechoslovak authorities had found five backpacks containing 20 Thompson submachine guns, 1,600 cartridges, and 30 Walther pistols with 11 reserve cartridges.
Hungary / Turkey – July 22, 1968 (HC)
Foreign Minister János Péter arrives in Turkey for a six-day official visit.
Soviet Union / U.S. – July 22, 1968 (PLC)
The U.S. notifies the USSR that it will not intervene in Czechoslovakia.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 23, 1968 (PSC)
The Presidium of the Union of Czechoslovak Films and Television Artists sends a letter to related organizations in Bulgaria, Hungary, GDR, Poland and USSR including an invitation to visit Czechoslovakia in order to learn about what is really happening in the country. The Czechoslovak Writers Union, the Union of Czechoslovak Composers, and the Czechoslovak Academy of sciences send similar letters.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 23 - August 10, 1968 (PSC)
The “Nemen” logistical training exercises take place in western Russia and the republics of Belorussia, Ukraine, and Latvia. It is reported to be the largest training event for rear-guard troops in the history of Soviet Armed Forces.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 23, 1968 (KCA)
Soviet military reservists are called to training exercises in Czechoslovakia. Under the conditions of the Warsaw Pact, a Soviet military presence still remains in Czechoslovakia.
Albania / Bulgaria – July 23, 1968 KCA
The Bulgarian government expels the Albanian Ambassador as well as other members of the Embassy in Sofia. It is alleged that the expelled have breached Bulgarian security.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union / France – July 24, 1968 (PSC)
The French party Politburo adopts a resolution to publicly denounce the Soviet Union if it takes any military action against Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / France – July 24, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium declares in a letter to the French Party Politburo that it considers a call for a meeting of the European Communist Parties inappropriate.
Czechoslovakia – July 25, 1968 (PSC)
The 90th session of the CPCz CC Presidium deals with the preparations for the 14th Extraordinary Party Congress. The Presidium decides to abolish the State Administrative Department of the CPCz CC and to transfer General Prchlík to a different position. On the same day, the Military Council of the Ministry of National Defense backs up Yakubovsky’s criticism of Prchlík.
Czechoslovakia – July 25, 1968 (PSC)
Literární Listy publishes a “Message from the citizens to the Presidium”, written by national literary figures, expressing confidence in the leadership in their negotiations with the Soviet Union and the hope in maintaining the January reforms.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 25-31, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Air Defense forces under the command of Marshal Baticky take part in the “Sky Shield” exercises. More Soviet air power is transferred to the GDR in the course of the operations.
Poland / Soviet Union – July 25, 1968 (KCA)
With no warning, Poland and the Soviet Union prohibit the traffic of citizens into Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 29, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak embassy in Moscow is handed a letter from five Soviet Communists expressing agreement with the CPCz’s new direction, and denouncing Soviet pressure on Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – July 29-August 1, 1968 (CAC/DCO/PSC)
The Čierna nad Tisou discussions take place between the CPCz CC Presidium and the CPSU CC Politburo. The Soviet leadership alleges a NATO threat to Czechoslovak borders, and claims a common Warsaw Pact responsibility for their defense Among other things, the joint communiqué notes that both sides agree to hold multilateral talks on August 3 in Bratislava.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – July 30-August 1, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak embassy in Warsaw reports high concentrations of Soviet tanks in Poland moving towards the Czechoslovak border. The Czechoslovak embassy in Berlin is informed about the presence of heavy tank and missile units at the Czechoslovak border. Also three years of reserve soldiers have been summoned for training. On August 1, the Czechoslovak embassy in Budapest reports that Hungarian and Soviet troops have been moving towards the Czechoslovak border for two days.
Romania – August, 1968 (RUR)
Ceauşescu eliminates a number of his party rivals. Ceauşescu’s refusal to provide troops for the Warsaw Pact invasion is a turning point in his leadership. It provides him more legitimacy in Romania and it is considered as the ultimate expression of nationalism. Ceauşescu effectively uses foreign policy to mobilize his domestic constituency. Shortly before the invasion, Ceauşescu signs a treaty of friendship with Dubček. During the invasion, he continues denouncing the Soviet actions.
Soviet Union / U.S. – August 1968 (LBC)
From the election platform of the Democratic Party: the U.S. must “continue to accept its world responsibilities – not turn inward and isolate ourselves from the cares and aspirations of mankind.” At the same time “it must resist the temptation to try to mold the world or any part of it our own image, to become the self-appointed policeman of the world.” “The reimposition of Soviet tyranny [in Czechoslovakia] raises the specter of the darkest days of the Stalin era” and increases the danger of war in Central Europe, “a war could become a nuclear holocaust.”
Soviet Union – August, 1968 (PLC)
At the end of the month, seven Soviet opposition leaders protest against the intervention of Czechoslovakia on Moscow’s Red Square. They are arrested and five of them are forced to emigrate.
Finland – August 1968 (SFF)
The Finnish government calls for the withdrawal of troops from Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – August 2, 1968 (KCA)
Dubček announces the decision to continue adhering to the reforms.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – August 3, 1968 (PLC/PSC/DCO/CAC)
The Bratislava meeting of “the Six”, the leaders of the Warsaw Pact’s including the leaders of the Czechoslovak Communist Party, takes place. Among other things, the joint proclamation emphasizes that the protection and strengthening of socialist achievements in individual socialist countries are “the common international obligation of all socialist countries”. During the talks, Radko Kaska, aide to Drahomir Kolder, hands Shelest a draft “letter of invitation” appealing for assistance in the face of counterrevolution.
Warsaw Pact – August 5, 1968 (PSC)
General Sergei Shtemenko, an expert on offensive operations, replaces Mikhail Kazakov as Chief of Staff of the Joint Armed Forces of the Warsaw Treaty Organization.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 7, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Ambassador Chervonenko meets Dubček and Černík.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – August 7, 1968 (PSC)
At a meeting of the CC of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party, Kádár reports on the disscusions at Čierna nad Tisou and Bratislava: “if this is not achieved by political means, the use of other means is not excluded.”
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 9, 1968 (PSC)
In a telephone conversation, Dubček and Brezhnev discuss the fulfillment of agreements from Čierna nad Tisou and Bratislava.
Czechoslovakia – August 9, 1968 (PSC)
A petition is begun in Prague calling for the dissolution of the people’s militia. Investigators later discover that more than 50 undercover state police agents have infiltrated the activist groups.
Czechoslovakia / Yugoslavia – August 9-11, 1968 (PSC/PLC/KCA)
Tito leads a party delegation in a demonstrative visit to Prague to declare his support for the democratization.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – August 11, 1968 (PSC)
TASS announces that “liaison units and staff of the Soviet Army, the National People’s Army of the GDR, and the Polish People’s Army have begun joint training on the western borders of Ukraine and in the southern parts of Poland and the GDR.
Romania – August 11, 1968 (RUR)
Ceauşescu claims in a graduating speech at the Bucharest Military Academy that nothing would justify the use of armed force to intervene in the internal affairs of a member country of the Warsaw Pact.
Czechoslovakia / East Germany – August 12, 1968 (PSC)
SED leaders, including Ulbricht and Honecker meet Czechoslovak leaders in Karlovy Vary.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary / Soviet Union – August 12-15, 1968 (PSC)
At Yalta, Kádár debates with Brezhnev, Kosygin and Podgorny on developments in Czechoslovakia. Kádár is asked to talk once more with Dubček.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 13, 1968 (CW/PSC)
The telephone conversation between Brezhnev and the Czechoslovak leader Dubček is recorded. Brezhnev expresses anxieties about the anti-Socialist ideas dominating in Czechoslovakia and his dissatisfaction with the lack of fulfillment of the agreements reached at Čierna and Bratislava. He appeals to Dubček to solve the situation in the country as soon as possible.
East Germany / Soviet Union – August 13, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Minister of Defense Grechko and Chief of the Main Political Administration of the Soviet Army General Yepishev arrive in Dresden.
Czechoslovakia – August 14, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC publishes opinion polls held among delegates to the CPCz district conferences (held at the end of June): 88% welcomed the extraordinary congress; 90% consider the personnel changes made at the May CPCz CC plenary session to be insufficient; 52% believed the CPCz was capable of carrying out the changes it had undertaken; 75% were convinced that the party’s direct management of state and economic entities was detrimental.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 14, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Ambassador Chervonenko hands Dubček a CPSU CC declaration expressing dissatisfaction with the failure to fulfill agreements from Čierna and Bratislava.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 15-17, 1968 (PSC)
An extended session of the CPSU CC Politburo ends with the decision to intervene military in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Romania – August 15-17, 1968 (HC/PLC)
Ceauşescu visits Czechoslovakia. During this demonstrative visit a treaty of friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance is signed on August 16.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 16, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Deputy Minister of Defense Pavlovsky is appointed commander of the intervention troops.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – August 17, 1968 (PSC)
As proposed by the Soviet leadership, Kádár meets Dubček at Komárno.
Romania – August 17, 1968 (RCW)
On the meeting of the Executive Committee of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party, Ceauşescu informs about the talks with Dubček held in Prague.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – August 18, 1968 (PSC/MMS)
In Moscow, Polish, East German, Hungarian and Bulgarian leaders unanimously approve the Soviet stance on intervention in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 19, 1968 (PSC)
A large group of KGB officers, disguised as “tourists” arrive in Czechoslovakia. They go to the Soviet embassy as well as to Czechoslovak army headquarters.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 19, 1968 (PSC)
In the evening Chervonenko hands, at Prague Castle, over the final letter of warning from the CC CPSU Politburo to President Svoboda in the presence of Dubček and Černík.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 19-20, 1968 (PSC)
During the night Warsaw pact forces move into position to begin the intervention.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union / U.S. – August 20, 1968 (CW/PSC)
At his requests, Soviet Ambassador Dobrynin meets U.S. President Johnson. Dobrynin presents the statement of the Soviet Government and informs Johnson that the Soviet Military units will enter the territory of Czechoslovak Socialist Republic in order to keep European peace and world security. According to Dobrynin, the Czechoslovak party and the government’s highest representatives have requested the intervention. Johnson expresses his appreciation that the Soviet Union informs him about the steps that will be taken.
Czechoslovakia – August 20, 1968 (PSC)
The 93rd meeting of the CPCz CC Presidium takes place.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – August 20, 1968 (PSC)
Černík, attending a session of the CPCz CC Presidium, is informed at 11.00 p.m. by telephone that troops of the “Warsaw Five” have crossed over state borders. He requests verification. At the time Western information services lose radar contact with Prague and its environs, and long-range signals begin to be jammed.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 20, 1968 (PSC)
Chervonenko arrives at 11.30 p.m. at Prague Castle and informs president Svoboda that “allied troops have entered Czechoslovakia”. During the Soviet Ambassador mission, the president receives a telephone call from Smrkovský asking him to attend a session of the CPCz CC Presidium.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 20, 1968 (PSC)
At 11.40 p.m., Černik informs the members of the Presidium about a report received from the Minister of National Defense Martin Dzúr concerning the invasion of Czechoslovakia by “allied troops”.
Czechoslovakia – August 20, 1968 (PSC)
After 11.00p.m. the CC CPS Presidium meets in Bratislava. The text of “the letter of invitation” is presented along with the comment that the document was accepted by virtually all members of the CPCz CC Presidium in Prague, including Dubček. Only Smrkovský and Kriegel were said to be opposed. Six out of ten members of the CC CPS vote to accept it, while four vote against.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 20-21, 1968 (DCO/LBC/PLC/UNW/KCA)
Czechoslovakia was occupied by 200,000 soldiers of the armies of members of the Warsaw Pact. Romania and, of course, non-aligned Yugoslavia do not participate in the invasion. International railroad and air links are cut by Warsaw Pact forces. Brno, Bratislava and Prague are all occupied. Tanks and gun placements are positioned in the streets, and it is reported that Soviet troops open fire on protesters. The forces will stay to support the process of “communist normalization.”
Soviet Union / U.S. – August 21, 1968 (LBC)
Johnson convenes the NSC because of the invasion. After the meeting Secretary of State Rusk talks with Soviet ambassador Dobrynin.
Czechoslovakia – August 21, 1968 (PSC)
General r Dzúr issues an order that all Czechoslovak army troops are to remain in their barracks to avoid armed resistance to the intervention. He also states that Czechoslovak units are to provide the intervening troops “maximum all-around assistance.” Air force commanders are to ban all take-offs by Czechoslovak aircraft. Safe landing has to be provided for Soviet aircraft at the Prague and Brno airport.
Czechoslovakia – August 21, 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium adopts by a 7 to 4 vote, the text of a proclamation “To all the People of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic.” (Barbírek, Černík, Dubček, Piller, Smrkovský, and Špaček are in favor; Bil’ak, Kolder, Švestka, and Rigo against). The statement condemns the intervention as an act that “not only contravenes all principles governing relations between socialist states, but also violates the fundamental provisions of international law.”
Czechoslovakia – August 21, 1968 (PSC)
The CC CPS Presidium, after receiving the authentic text of the CPCz CC proclamation, revokes its earlier resolution and accepts a new proclamation supporting the CPCz CC position.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (1:30 a.m.-2:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Two Soviet military aircrafts land at Prague’s Ruzyně airport. Several dozen Soviet soldiers on board occupy the main airport building and disarm airport personnel. This is the begin of the airborne operation. After 2.00 a.m., at interval of less than one minute, a total of 120 AN-12 aircraft land at Prague’s Ruzyně airport. The operation is covered from the air by 200 MIG 19s and 21s. By morning, one airborne division has landed. Acting under instructions from General Dzúr, the supreme command of the Czechoslovak Air Force ensures that the runways are well lighted and that the Soviet Commanders have been contacted.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (1:50- a.m.-2:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Czechoslovak radio repeatedly broadcasts the text of the CPCz CC Presidium proclamation.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (approx. 2:15 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
The CPCz CC Presidium session comes to an end. Černík returns to the presidium offices, Švestka leaves for the Rudé Právo office, and Bil’ak and Indra leave for the Soviet Embassy in Prague. The other presidium members remain in Dubček’s office.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (approx. 3:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Černík is arrested by Soviet airborne troops at the presidium offices.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 21 (approx. 3:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Soviet Marshal Grechko orders General Pavlovsky, the Commander-in-Chief of the intervention operation, to move his staff from Legnice, Poland, to Prague.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (approx. 3:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
In an altercation between the occupying forces and the local citizenry of Liberec (in northern Bohemia) several Czechs are seriously wounded. They become the first casualties of the invasion.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 21 (4:30 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
TASS publishes an official statement to the effect that Warsaw Pact forces have entered Czechoslovak territory upon the request of the Czechoslovak Party and various state officials whose names are not mentioned.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (approx. 4:30 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
The first Soviet armored cars, led by a Prague Soviet embassy limousine, arrive at the CPCz CC building and begin occupying it.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (approx. 5:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
A special Soviet plane carrying Kirill Mazurov, a member of the CPSU CC Politburo, lands in Prague. Mazurov, alias General Trofimov, has been assigned to oversee the political direction of the intervention.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (approx. 5:50 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Dubček, Smrkovský, Kriegel, Špáček and Šimon remain in Dubček’s office.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (approx. 8:30 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
The initial battle for control of the Czechoslovak Radio building erupts between Soviet occupiers and Czechs. 17 people are shot; 52 of the most seriously wounded are transported to the hospitals.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (8:30 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Czechoslovak Radio broadcasts President Svoboda’s first address to the nation, in which he calls on the people to stay calm. He neither condones nor condemns the invasion.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 21 (approx. 9:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Two Soviet officers and three members of CSSR State Security arrive at Dubček’s office and lead him away, along with Smrkovský, Kriegel and Špáček, informing that they are under arrest pursuant to orders from the revolutionary tribunal headed by Alois Indra.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 21 (10:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
An emergency session of the Presidium of the National Assembly is convened. In an appeal addressed to leaders of Warsaw Pact countries, the Presidium protests the invasion and requests that all foreign troops be withdrawn immediately.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (12:00 noon), 1968 (PSC)
A general strike is called in Prague.
Czechoslovakia – August 21, 1968 (PSC)
At 1.00 p.m. President Svoboda leaves the CPCz CC Presidium and returns to the Prague Castle.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (2:35 p.m.), 1968 (PSC)
An extraordinary plenary session of the National Assembly condemns the occupation, and demands that all arrested constitutional representatives be released and that all occupying forces be withdrawn.
Czechoslovakia – August 21 (7:00 p.m.), 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak government publishes its declaration “to all the People of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic,” condemning the invasion.
Romania – August 21, 1968 (RCW/KCA)
Protocol No. 5 of the Meeting of the Executive Committee of the Communist Party on the situation in Czechoslovakia is issued. The Romanian leadership decides to publicly express its astonishment at the actions of the five Warsaw Pact member states participating in the invasion of Czechoslovakia. In addition Ceauşescu and the Communist party of Romania, the Government and Grand National Assembly denounce Soviet actions in Czechoslovakia.
Romania – August 21, 1968 (RUR)
Ceauşescu talks in Bucharest about the invasion as a great error and serious danger. The Hungarian Magyar Hirlap accuses him of over-nationalism. Because of concern over the reaction of Budapest and ethnic Hungarians in Romania, the Hungarian regions of Harghita and Covasna are granted higher levels of investment in the last years of the Fourth Five-Year Plan. Ceauşescu creates a National Council for both ethnic Hungarians and ethnic Germans that would address minority problems.
Czechoslovakia / Yugoslavia – August 21-22, 1968 (KCA/JVJ)
President Tito expresses his concern and condemns Soviet aggression in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / France / Italy / U.K. / U.S. – August 21, 1968 (KCA)
The British and American governments condemn Soviet actions against Czechoslovakia, as do the Italian and French Communist parties.
Peru / Interparliamentary Union – August 21-September 6, 1968 (HC)
The Interparliamentary Union holds its congress in Lima. (Lajos Cseterki, the secretary of the Presidential Council of the Hungarian People’s Republic leads the Hungarian delegation.)
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union / Warsaw Pact – August 22 (11:00 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
President Svoboda meets Soviet Ambassador Chervonenko and the commander of the intervention forces, General Pavlovsky; he requests a meeting with the Soviet leaders in Moscow.
Czechoslovakia – August 22 (morning), 1968 (PSC/PLC/PSCZ)
The hastily organized 14th Extraordinary Congress of the CPCz is convened at ČKD, the largest heavy industry factory in Prague. 1,192 of the 1,543 regularly elected delegates take part. A new CC of the CPCz and a new Presidium are elected; the latter unanimously elects Dubček to the post of First Secretary. Delegates also express their condemnation of the invasion and approve the general strike in protest against the occupation. Later the congress will be ruled invalid.
Czechoslovakia – August 22 (12:00 noon), 1968 (PSC)
The general strike in Prague begins.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – August 22, 1968 (KCA)
Czechoslovak citizens gather in Prague, despite being ordered home under threat of gunfire. The Soviets finally fire and seven people are reported dead. Pravda attacks Dubček under the charge of leading Czechoslovakia too far to the right of the political spectrum.
Czechoslovakia – August 22, 1968 (PLC)
Soviets unsuccessfully attempt – following the Hungarian Kádár government’s example in 1956 – to introduce a Czechoslovak “workers-peasants” government. (Future party leader Miloš Jakeš participates at the negotiations.)
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact / U.N. / U.S. – August 22, 1968 (LBC/ PSC)
The U.N. Security Council votes on a draft resolution condemning the interventions: 10 votes for, 2 against (USSR and Hungary), and 3 abstentions (Algeria, India and Pakistan). On the same day, delegates from Brazil, Great Britain, Denmark, France, Canada, Paraguay, Senegal and the U.S. submit a draft resolution asking the U.N. general secretary to send an emissary to Prague to insist upon the release of arrested Czechoslovak officials and guarantees for their personal safety. According to the American representative in the U.N., George Ball, the intervention is directed at “imposing by force a repressive political system which is plainly obnoxious to the people and leadership of Czechoslovakia.” Ball does not accept the “feeble and futile self-justification” of the Soviet Union. In his view the decision underlines that the aggressors committed “an inexcusable international crime,” the Czechoslovak people have the right to control its own affairs without external intervention. The occupational troops must be pulled out immediately. The Security Council must call on the occupational countries to “refrain from further murders and tortures.”
Czechoslovakia – August 22, 1968 (PSC)
Petitions circulate throughout Prague demanding the withdrawal of occupying troops, the release of arrested Czechoslovak leaders, and support for legal state authorities.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 22, 1968 (PSC)
The conservative faction of the CPCz spends the entire day in meetings at the Soviet Embassy. At about 5.00 p.m. an agreement is reached on the personnel structure of a “provisionary revolutionary government” headed by Indra. A delegation headed by Piller arrives at 9.15 p.m. at the castle, where they present this arrangement to President Svoboda, who rejects it for tactical reasons and insists on visiting Moscow.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 22 (11:00 p.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Svoboda meets Chervonenko again to discuss his demand to be allowed to hold talks with Soviet leaders in Moscow.
China – August 23, 1968 (PLC)
The PRC condemns the Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – August 23 (8:45 a.m.), 1968 (PSC)
Czechoslovak Radio broadcasts Svoboda’s speech in which he informs the public of his departure to Moscow.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 23 (afternoon), 1968 (PSC)
From a prison in Ukraine, Dubček is taken to Moscow, where he meets Brezhnev, Kosygin and Podgorny. Černík is also present at the meeting.
Czechoslovakia – August 23-26, 1968 (KCA/PSCZ)
During the negotiations in Moscow between the Czechoslovak Communist Party and Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the agreement on normalization of situations in Czechoslovakia is concluded. On August 26, the Moscow protocol and a joint communiqué are signed. Kriegel, a member of the CPCz CC Presidium, refuses to sign the documents. The communiqué states Czechoslovak intentions to move forward with socialism, Soviet commitment to military withdrawal from Czechoslovakia, and an agreement that Soviet forces would abstain from involvement in internal Czechoslovak affairs. Upon arrival back in Czechoslovakia, Dubček addresses the nation stating that foreign forces will move to a reserved area and that there would need to be a temporary restriction on the freedom of expression shown since the January reforms. Dubček is forced by the Soviet Politburo to reinstate media censorship.
Czechoslovakia / U.N. – August 24, 1968 (PSC)
At a session of the U.N. Security Council, Hájek, the Czechoslovak Minister of Foreign Affairs, states that neither the Czechoslovak government nor any of its constitutional officials had requested military assistance from the states of the Warsaw Pact, and that the government considers the occupation of the country as an act of violence.
Czechoslovakia – August 24-25, 1968 (PSC)
In Bratislava, a plenary session of the CC CPS demands the immediate withdrawal of the intervention forces and decides to convene an extraordinary congress of the CPS.
Romania / Yugoslavia – August 24, 1968 (KCA)
Tito and Ceauşescu meet to discuss bilateral relations.
Soviet Union – August 24-27, 1968 (HC/MMS)
The communist party delegations of the socialist countries (not represented: Czechoslovakia, Romania) hold a summit meeting in Moscow to talk about the situation of Czechoslovakia.
France – August 24, 1968 (PLC)
France detonates its first hydrogen bomb.
Czechoslovakia – August 26, 1968 (PLC)
Following previous unsuccessful attempts at forming a government, the restoration of the Communist dictatorship begins in Czechoslovakia. The process is based on a “treaty” (Moscow Protocol) and is lead by the previous reform leadership. According to the treaty, Warsaw Pact troops leave the country, but Soviet forces remain.
Czechoslovakia – August 26, 1968 (PSC)
A nationwide work stoppage takes place.
Czechoslovakia / U.K. – August 26, 1968 (LBC)
British Prime Minister Wilson condemns the occupation of Czechoslovakia but adds that this cannot dissuade the Western world from realizing détente with the communist world. He rejects returning to “the frozen immobilism of the Cold War.” Earlier he declares that the invasion “dealt a serious blow” to East-West relations.
Czechoslovakia – August 26-29, 1968 (PSC)
The 14th Extraordinary Congress of the CPS is held in Bratislava. A new CC of 107 members is elected. Husák, who had reported to the delegates on the negotiations in Moscow, is elected First Secretary, replacing Bil’ak.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 27, 1968 (PSC)
Early in the morning, the Czechoslovak delegation returns to Prague from Moscow. In a radio broadcast, Dubček and Svoboda report on the meetings in Moscow. The information they provide is general, leaving the public unsatisfied.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 27, 1968 (PSC)
Soviet units begin withdrawing from the center of Prague and from the area around the Prague Castle.
Czechoslovakia – August 28, 1968 (PSC)
A plenary session of the National assembly issues a proclamation classifying the occupation as an illegal act in contravention of the U.N. Charter as well as of the statutory norms of the Warsaw Pact.
Czechoslovakia – August 28, 1968 (KCA)
Prime Minister Černík declares on a radio broadcast that the troops should not interfere with internal affairs and calls for calm.
Czechoslovakia – August 29, 1968 (PLC)
Special Congress of the Slovak Communist Party demands the federal reorganization of Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 29, 1968 (PSC)
The Czechoslovak government initiates talks with Soviet commanders on the withdrawal of all military units from Prague and from all press, radio, and television buildings.
Czechoslovakia – August 30, 1968 (PSC)
Deputies to the National Assembly unanimously declare that they did not invite either in writing or orally, the government of the Warsaw Pact to intervene military in the CSSR.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – August 30, 1968 (PSC)
Soviets occupation units begin distributing Zprávy (“News”), a journal edited by the “Editorial council for Soviet troops” and printed in Dresden.
Soviet Union / U.S. – August 30, 1968 (LBC)
President Johnson’s speech in San Antonio: there are rumors that the Soviet Union is preparing to repeat its military action in Czechoslovakia “elsewhere in the days ahead in Eastern Europe.” The President warned the “would-be aggressor” “not to misjudge American policy during this administration.”
Czechoslovakia – August 31, 1968 (PSC)
A CPCz CC plenary session is held in Prague at which CC members are informed of the wording of the Moscow Protocol, and a new Presidium of the CPCz CC is elected. Dubček, Smrkovský, Černík, Bil’ar, Piller, Špáček are all reelected. Newly elected members include Svoboda, Erban, Husák, and ٹŠimon. During the session, a very well informed Brezhnev telephones Dubček to criticize the “undemocratic methods by which the CC was elected”, i.e., the inclusion of some delegates to the extraordinary congress in the new CC.
Czechoslovakia – August 31, 1968 (PSC)
Josef Pavel, Minister of the Interior, is recalled from his post. Jan Pelnár is named as his replacement.
Czechoslovakia / NATO – August 31, 1968 (PSC/LBC)
In Washington, NATO ambassadors meet representatives from the State Department. Their communiqué notes that invasion represents “the largest presence of Soviet military forces since W.W. II”, and that the situation “poses a menace to the security of the U.S. and its allies”. According to the State Department the military balance between East and West is upset as a result of the Warsaw Pact’s intervention against Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – September 1, 1968 (PSC)
A comprehensive report on the occupation of Prague states that 25 people were killed and 431 seriously wounded. Additionally, many buildings were heavily damaged by gunfire.
Czechoslovakia – September 1, 1968 (KCA)
A communiqué is issued after a plenary session of the Central committee is held. It states Czechoslovak commitment to building a Socialist nation and finding a resolution to current relations with Warsaw pact countries. A new Presidium is elected.
Warsaw Pact – September 2, 1968 (CAC)
Marshal Grechko, at a meeting with four other Warsaw Pact defense ministers in Legnica, Poland, discusses options for occupation forces in Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia – September 2, 1968 (PSC)
Ota Šik is removed from his post as deputy prime minister and reassigned as economic adviser to the Czechoslovak embassy in Belgrade.
Soviet Union / France – September 2, 1968 (LBC)
French foreign minister Debré meets Soviet ambassador Zorin and demands that the Soviet Union withdraws from Czechoslovakia without delay. Later he declares: only détente could lead to the normalization of the European situation but Moscow must prove with deeds that it did not give up the policy of détente.
Romania / Soviet Union / U.S. – September 3, 1968 (LBC)
According to the State Department’s spokesman Soviet ambassador Dobrynin reassured Secretary of State Rusk that the rumors about a potential Soviet aggression against Romania lack all foundation.
Czechoslovakia – September 5, 1968 (PSC)
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs refuses to approve the status of KAN and of K-231.
Czechoslovakia – September 6, 1968 (PSC)
Kriegel resigns his post as chairman of the CC of the National Front of the CSSR.
Czechoslovakia – September 6, 1968 (PSC)
In the presence of Dubček and Černík, President Svoboda receives Foreign Minister Hájek and informs him it will be impossible for him to remain in his position. On September 14, Hájek will resign as Foreign Minister.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – September 6, 1968 (LBC/PSC)
Soviet First Deputy Foreign Minister Kuznetsov arrives in Prague as plenipotentiary of the Soviet government. An agreement is made on the partial withdrawal of Warsaw Pact troops, the recall of Soviet secret police and intelligence personnel, on the guarantee of the personal security and protection of Czechoslovak citizens and the improvement of the conditions of consultation between Prague and Moscow. He remains until early December, becoming a key figure in asserting Soviet control over the “normalization” process in the CSSR.
Poland – September 8, 1968 (UNW)
Ryszard Siwiec commits suicide by self-immolation in protest against the invasion on Czechoslovakia.
Soviet Union / France – September 9, 1968 (LBC)
De Gaulle declares that he condemns the Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia but he will continue the policy of détente with the USSR nonetheless.
Romania / U.K. – September 9 – 10, 1968 (LBC)
British Secretary of Foreign Affairs Stewart visits Bucharest. According to Pravda Stewart’s visit “is an impermissible interference in the internal affairs of Eastern Europe.” Stewart earlier canceled his visits to Hungary and Bulgaria.
Czechoslovakia – September 10, 1968 (KCA)
Prime Minister Černík signs a guarantee for the protection of citizens' rights.
Czechoslovakia – September 10, 1968 (PSC)
Svoboda, Dubček, Smrkovsk, Černík and Husák publish a proclamation to the Czechoslovak people, in which they express their determination to continue with the policy of reforms that was begun in January 1968.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – September 10, 1968 (PSC)
Černík leads a delegation meeting with Brezhnev, Kosygin, and Podgorny in Moscow to discuss economic cooperation between the CSSR and the USSR. Issues such as the presence of Soviet troops in Czechoslovak territory and the problems surrounding normalization are discussed.
Czechoslovakia / Warsaw Pact – September 11-12, 1968 (KCA)
Soviet tanks withdraw from Prague and reposition in rural areas.
Warsaw Pact – September 12–17, 1968 (CAC)
At a Moscow meeting, deputy chiefs of staff prepare final documents for the reorganization of the Warsaw Pact.
Albania – September 12, 1968 (KCA/PLC)
Due to the intervention in Czechoslovakia, Albania formally announces that it leaves the Warsaw Pact.
East Germany / Mongolia – September 12, 1968 (KCA)
East Germany and Mongolia sign a 20-Year Mutual Friendship Treaty.
Czechoslovakia – September 13, 1968 (KCA)
Limitations on freedom of media are reinstated.
Albania / Warsaw Pact – September 13, 1968 (CAC)
Albania formally withdraws from the Warsaw Pact in protest against the invasion of Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – September 16-17, 1968 (PSC)
In Mukachevo (USSR), Ministers of Defense Dzúr and Grechko meet to discuss problems connected with the number of Soviet troops temporarily remaining on Czechoslovak territory.
Czechoslovakia – September 17, 1968 (PSC)
The Presidium removes Jiří Pelikán from the position of director of Czechoslovak Television and Suk from the post of director of the Czechoslovak Press Office.
Czechoslovakia – September 19, 1968 (KCA) –» September 6. („Hájek resigns on Sept. 14.”)
Foreign Minister Hájek, resigns and Černík appropriates the responsibilities of the Foreign Minister as well as his own responsibilities as Premier.
West Germany – September 26, 1968 (PLC)
Twelve years after its ban, the Communist party is again legalized in West Germany.
Soviet Union – September 26, 1968 (LBC/PLC)
The Brezhnev doctrine of limited sovereignty is promulgated in Moscow.
Bulgaria / Czechoslovakia / East Germany / Hungary / Poland / Soviet Union – September 27, 1968 (PSC)
The leaders of “the Five”, Brezhnev, Zhivkov, Gomułka, Kádár and Ulbricht meet in Moscow to discuss the Czechoslovak situation. On the same day, Svoboda receives Warsaw Pact Chief Marshal Yakubovsky in Prague.
Czechoslovakia – September 28, 1968 (PSC)
Defense Minister Dzúr expands the number of military areas accessible to Soviet troops.
Romania – September 28, 1968 (RCW)
Marshal of the Soviet Union, Jakubovsky talks with Ceauşescu and the Romanian leadership about changes that were being made to the Unified Command structure.
Hungary / Soviet Union – September 30, 1968 (HC)
J. A. Furceva, the Cultural Minister of the Soviet Union takes a six day official visit in Hungary.
Yugoslavia / Kosovo – October, 1968 (PLC)
Albanian anti-Serb demonstrations begin for the creation of a republic near Suva Reka, Prizren and Peć in Kosovo (riots last till December). Thirty leaders of the demonstrations are sentenced to up to five years in prison.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – October 3-4, 1968 (LBC/PSC)
Czechoslovak-Soviet talks convene in Moscow. The delegations of Dubček, Černík and Husák from the Czechoslovak side and Brezhnev, Kosygin, Podgorny from the Soviet side discuss questions of “normalization” and the billeting of intervention troops on CSSR territory. An agreement is signed to witness that Moscow will keep existing treaties and agreements and Prague will not aspire for neutrality. The Fourteenth congress of August 22 is declared null and void. The communist party will strengthen its leading position in state and economic leadership and will restore its control of the Ministry of the Interior. Press censorship is reintroduced; nobody will be persecuted for cooperation with the occupational forces. The U.N. Security Council will be called upon to remove the Czechoslovak issue from the agenda; Soviet-Czechoslovak economic relations will be expanded; no new political parties can be formed; all socialist opposition clubs will be banned; Czechoslovak foreign policy will remain in the framework the Socialist alliance; talks between the two parties will not be published in the future; friendship between the two states will be strengthened.
Bulgaria – October 6-14, 1968 (HC)
The education ministers of the Socialist countries hold their assembly in Varna. The Hungarian delegation is led by Pál Ilku.
Soviet Union / Finland – October 7-9, 1968 (KCA)
Kosygin visits President Kekkonen of Finland. Their talks are reported to be undertaken in an air of friendship.
Czechoslovakia – October 8, 1968 (KCA)
The trials are held for protesters against Soviet actions in Czechoslovakia. Dr. Litvinov and Mrs. Daniel receive five and four years respectively, in exile.
Yugoslavia – October 11, 1968 (JVJ)
An agreement on guest workers is signed between Yugoslavia and the Federal Republic of Germany.
Mexico – October 12-27, 1968 (HC)
The 19th Olympic Games take place in Mexico. (Hungarian athletes earn ten gold, ten silver and twelve bronze medals; the FRG and the GDR are represented by separate teams for the first time. East Germany wins 25 medals and finishes in fifth place in the medal tables.)
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – October 14-15, 1968 (PSC/KCA)
Negotiations commence between the CSSR and the USSR delegations on conditions of the residence of Soviet troops on Czechoslovak territory. Both parties sign a treaty allowing the Soviets to maintain a military presence in Czechoslovakia for the first time since 1945.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – October 16, 1968 (PSC/PLC)
Following two more days of negotiations in Prague, Kosygin and Černík sign a treaty on the “Temporary Presence of Soviet Troops in the CSSR.”
Czechoslovakia – October 17, 1968 (HC)
The Slovak National Assembly approves the new law, number 1968:144, about the ethnic minorities. The law recognizes the ethnic minorities as collective parts of the society.
Hungary – October 17, 1968 (HC)
The Parliament passes the law, number 1968:IV, about the railway system. (It defines the rules of the establishment, operation and demolition of railroads.)
Hungary / Uruguay – 17-21, 1968 (HC)
Led by Luis Rinon Perret, chairman of the Uruguayan Parliament, a parliamentary delegation visits Hungary.
Yugoslavia / U.S. – October 17-18, 1968 (LBC)
U.S. Undersecretary of State Katzenbach visits Belgrade. This aims at reaffirming U.S. support facing growing Soviet pressure. According to the Yugoslavs Katzenbach’s visit is the result of a remark Johnson made earlier, to which the President expressed his “very clear and continuing interest in Yugoslavia’s independence, sovereignty, and economic development”.
Czechoslovakia – October 18, 1968 (PSC)
The National Assembly approves the treaty on the “Temporary Presence of Soviet Troops in the CSSR”, by a vote of 228 to 4, with 10 abstentions. More than 50 deputies are not present. Svoboda ratifies the treaty the same day.
Warsaw Pact – October 18, 1968 (CAC)
A meeting of five Warsaw Pact defense ministers in Moscow decides to withdraw non-Soviet troops from Czechoslovakia.
Czechoslovakia / Poland – October 19, 1968 (HDP)
Polish troops leave Czechoslovakia.
Finland / Hungary – October 21—24, 1968 (LKS)
Finnish Foreign Minister Ahti Karjalainen visits Hungary despite of the invasion of Czechoslovakia only two months earlier. It is important to the Finnish government to realize the visit and to continue and be consistent in its policy of neutrality.
Hungary / Soviet Union – October 21-24, 1968 (HC)
The session of the Hungarian-Soviet economic and cooperative committee takes place in Budapest. They sign an agreement about automobile production.
Germany / Hungary / Romania – October 25, 1968 (PLC)
The Hungarian and German Ethnic Councils are created in Romania.
Soviet Union – October 26, 1968 (KCA)
Soviet Union conducts manned space missions for the first time since the death of Colonel Komarov.
Czechoslovakia – October 27, 1968 (KCA/PLC)
Czechoslovak National Assembly passes Law of Federation turning the country into a federation of the Czech Socialist Republic and Slovak Socialist Republic.
Czechoslovak / Soviet Union – October 28, 1968 (KCA)
Anti-Soviet protests take place in Prague on the 50th anniversary of founding Czechoslovakia.
Warsaw Pact – October 29–30, 1968 (CAC)
Warsaw Pact defense ministers meeting in Moscow approve agreements on new alliance structures. Romania signs on, but reserves the right to examine the provision allowing the supreme commander to deploy forces on member-states’ territories in peace time.
Soviet Union – October 29, 1968 (HC)
The defense ministers of the Warsaw Pact member countries convene in Moscow.
Hungary / Denmark – 29 October, 1968 (HC)
Knud Jespersen, chairman of the Danish Communist Party takes a 3 day official visit in Budapest.
Czechoslovakia – October 30, 1968 (PSC)
In Bratislava Castle, Svoboda signs the constitutional law on the federative arrangement of Czechoslovakia.
Finland – November 1, 1968 (SYA)
Finland is accepted to the U.N. Security Council for a two-year term of 1969—1970.
U.S. – November 5, 1968 (HC)
Richard Nixon is elected as President of the United States.
Czechoslovakia – November 7, 1968 (PSC)
Massive anti-Soviet demonstrations take place in the streets of Prague, Bratislava, Brno and České Budějovice. 176 persons are arrested in Prague.
Czechoslovakia – November 10, 1968 (KCA)
Clashes take place between pro and anti-Soviet Czechoslovak demonstrations.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – November 12, 1968 (KCA)
First Secretary Brezhnev (on the 5th Congress of Polish United workers’ Party in Warsaw) refers to the invasion of Czechoslovakia as a ‘necessity'. He cites the threat to the direction of Socialism as reason enough to intervene (second proclamation of the Brezhnev doctrine).
Czechoslovakia – November 14-17, 1968 (PSC)
At a CPCz CC plenary session, a new Executive Committee of the Presidium is elected. Mlynář is relieved of all posts at his own request.
Hungary / Soviet Union – November 14-18, 1968 (HC)
Soviet Foreign Minister Gromyko visits Budapest. He signs a cultural and scientific agreement.
Greece – November 15, 1968 (PLC)
In Greece, a forced constitution legalizes the military junta.
Yugoslavia / Austria / U.S. – November 15, 1968 (LBC)
Dean Rusk announces that if Austria or Yugoslavia is attacked by the USSR it “would clearly be related to the area of NATO security interests.” Rusk also warned that an attack on Romania would have far more serious repercussions than the attack on Czechoslovakia.
Soviet Union / NATO – November 16, 1968 (LBC)
Three-day conference of the NATO council of ministers. In its declaration it warns the Soviet Union to refrain from another direct or indirect intervention in Europe or the Mediterranean region. “The Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia has seriously set back hopes of settling the outstanding problems which still divide the European continent and Germany and of establishing peace and security in Europe and threatens certain of the results already achieved in the field of détente.”
Czechoslovakia – November 17, 1968 (PSC)
Following rejection of a request to hold a parade, Prague University students begin a 3-day strike to support their demands; students in other cities immediately join in.
Czechoslovakia – November 18, 1968 (PSCZ)
The National Assembly approves the occupation of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet Army.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – November 20, 1968
Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union sign a trade deal.
Soviet Bloc – November 21-23, 1968 (MMS)
Meeting of the presentatives of central and foreign trade banks and COMECON
secretariat in Budapest (also represented: Mongolia)
Czechoslovakia – November 23-24, 1968 (HC)
Hungarian professionals living in Czechoslovakia hold a convention in the High-Tatras. They stabilize their suggestions about the ethnic questions in a declaration.
Hungary – November 23, 1968 (HC)
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Hungarian Communist Party, the central committee holds a celebratory session.
Romania – November 26, 1968 (RCW)
Anton Moisescu, President of the Romanian Red Cross informs Ceauşescu about Czechoslovak reactions to the Soviet-led invasion and occupation of Czechoslovakia and especially of Prague.
Romania / U.S. – November 26, 1968 (LBC)
The U.S. and Romania sign a two year cultural exchange program.
Soviet Bloc – November 26-29, 1968 (MMS)
Meeting of military leaders in Bucharest.
Soviet Union – November 29, 1968 (KCA)
Ministry of the Interior (M.V.D) replaces Ministry for the Preservation of Public Order, functioning in the same capacity.
Yugoslavia – November 29, 1968, (RYE)
Celebrations of the new Yugoslavia's official twenty-fifth birthday.
Yugoslavia – November 29, 1968, (RNF)
Kosovo explodes in violence. Demonstrators numbering in the hundreds smash windows and overturn cars in Priština. The anti-Serbian demonstrations quickly spread to other towns in Kosovo, leaving thirty-seven injured (among them, thirteen police) and one dead. There are reports that some rioters demand annexation by Albania and that riotous crowds could be heard chanting „Long live Enver Hoxha!” The protestors draw up a list of demands that including dropping Metohija, a Serbian word, from the official name of the region (Kosovo-Metohija), its redesignation as a republic, the extension of the right of self-determination to Kosovo, and the establishment of an independent university in Priština. At the same time, the disturbances spread to the Macedonian cities of Gostivar and Tetovo, both with large Albanian populations.
Yugoslavia – November 30, 1968 (RYN)
At a major press conference at Jajce, Tito acknowledges that “the preparations [for a nonaligned conference] are more or less at a standstill, not because we think the conference is unnecessary, but because the present situation is such that there is no need to accelerate the preparations. It would be better to delay them a little until we see where the world is headed, and what the situation will be in the coming months.”
Hungary / Italy – November 30-December 3, 1968 (HC)
T. Vecchietti and G. Tagliazucchi, two leaders of the Unity of Italian Proletariat visit Budapest.
Soviet Union / U.K. – December 2, 1968 (KCA)
Foreign Minister Gromyko accuses the British government of using the political situation in Czechoslovakia to condemn the Soviet Union. In a note given to the British Ambassador, the Soviets accuse the British of instigating a propaganda campaign against them. Soviet Ambassador in London, Smirnovsky does not agree with the allegations.
Hungary – December 4, 1968 (HC)
Initiated by Rezső Nyers, the report about the economic reform is discussed by the Central Committee of the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party.
Czechoslovakia / Hungary – December 6-7, 1968 (HC)
František Hamouz, Deputy Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia, takes a two days official visit in Hungary. He mainly discusses the economic cooperation.
Soviet Union / U.S. – December 6, 1968 (LBC)
U.S. Secretary of State Rusk recommends high level talks on nuclear arms reduction to Soviet Ambassador in Washington, Dobrynin.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – December 7-8, 1968 (KCA/PSC)
Czechoslovak and Soviet leaders meet in Kiev. They discuss the progress and development of media representation and liberalization policies.
Czechoslovakia – December 12-13, 1968 (PSC)
At a plenary session, the CPCz CC decides on nominations for senior governmental position in connection with the new federative arrangement of the CSSR.
Hungary / U.K. – December 15, 1968 (LBC)
Ford Motor Co. in England announces that Hungary is buying 3000 automobiles for 3.6 million dollars.
Finland – December 16, 1968 (EKF)
Finland joins the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Yugoslavia – December 18, 1968 (JVJ)
Modifications are made to the Yugoslav constitution.
Czechoslovakia / Soviet Union – December 27, 1968 (PSC)
The Soviet government protests the publication of the so-called Czech Black Book, compiled by the Historical Institute of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences.
Hungary – December 27-29, 1968 (HC)
The session of the Central Committee of the Communist Youth Alliance takes place in Budapest.
© Cold War History Research Center, Budapest 2013