The Soviet President, Leonid Brezhnev, ended three days of talks with West German leaders on Saturday (6 May) by signing a joint declaration calling for international steps to slow down the arms race.
The Soviet President, Leonid Brezhnev, ended three days of talks with West German leaders on Saturday (6 May) by signing a joint declaration calling for international steps to slow down the arms race. The four day visit ended informally on Sunday (7 May) with Mr. Brezhnev apparently failing to narrow differences over the subjects of the neutron bomb and Berlin. It did, however, produce renewed Soviet and West German commitments on disarmament and detente....and increased speculation over Mr. Brezhnev's state of health. Throughout the stay Soviet officials and West German hosts often had to give Mr. Brezhnev help to support him.
SYNOPSIS: The declaration ceremony was made in the office of the West German Chancellor, Helmut Schmidt, in Bonn. It ran to eight pages, and also included an economic agreement. Mr. Brezhnev later said on West German television that he was completely satisfied with the talks. But, according to Reuters, general opinion in West Germany is that the visit of the Soviet leader was of limited value. It aroused little public enthusiasm, despite official cordiality, and there were anti-Soviet demonstrations on all three days of his visit.
One of the most valuable gains for the Soviet Union in the declaration, signed here by President Brezhnev, was a 25 year agreement on industry and commerce. West Germany will co-operate in these areas and also provide long and medium-term credits. West German officials said this pact was intended as a framework, and added that it would be up to West German firms to negotiate specific projects. Mr. Brezhnev ended his visit with informal talks at the home of Chancellor Schmidt in Hamburg, on Sunday (7 May).