Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin arrived in Bucharest on Monday (6 July) to sign a long-delayed treaty of friendship with President Nicolae Ceausescu's independently-minded Communist government.
Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin arrived in Bucharest on Monday (6 July) to sign a long-delayed treaty of friendship with President Nicolae Ceausescu's independently-minded Communist government. Mr Kosygin was greeted at Bucharest's new Otopeni Airport by Rumanian Premier Ion Ghorghe Maurer. The Soviet Premier was a last-minute replacement as head of the Soviet delegation for Party chief Leonid Brezhnev who, according to a Moscow announcement, had a catarrhal infection. A feature of the treaty's terms is a recognition of territorial inviolability of the state frontiers established after the Second World War.
The 20-year pact has remained unsigned for two years following disagreement between the two countries over the Warsaw Pact intervention in Czechoslovakia in 1968, which Rumania condemned from the outset.
According to reports, the Soviet Premier received a highly correct and forma welcome, but one which lacked the enthusiasm and spontaneity shown to President Nixon and Former French President de Gaulle. The Soviet delegation includes chief Party ideologist Michael Suslov.
In a speech Monday evening, Mr Maurer repeated his country's insistence on national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. Other features the Rumanian Premier reiterated included fraternal assistance, mutual advantage and equal rights.
The treaty was officially signed on Tuesday (7 July) in a move which was confidently expected to put the stamp of legality on Rumania's independent views in its dealings with Moscow.