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dated May 12, 1954: Truce plan at Geneva

The Viet Minh delegation to the Geneva Conference on May10 proposed a ceasefire in Indo-China. Mr. Pham Van Dong, Viet Minh Deputy Premier, tabled an eight-point plan for settlement, including the proposal for ceasefire. He proposed the conclusion of an agreement on the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Viet Nam, Cambodia and Laos, general elections in the three countries, and calling of a consultative conference where both sides in each of the three countries would be represented, to prepare for elections.

He said he was ready to make a declaration of intention on the part of the Viet Minh Government to examine the question of association of the Viet Nam Government with the French Union. Mr. Dong said: "The French colonisers had deliberately frustrated negotiations with the Viet Minh, violated agreements and are desirous now of re-establishing their colonial rule by means of war. The American interventionists and the French advocates of war were trying to spread the conflict in Indo-China on a wider scale. They are the biggest obstacle to the cessation of the war and to the re-establishment of peace in Indo-China. But the Viet Minh regime was ready to settle the question of re-establishment of peace by means of negotiations and on the basis of the recognition of the national rights of the peoples of Indo-China. This would create the conditions for establishing friendly relations between the people of Indo-China and France on the basis of equality and mutual interests." A U.S. official has declared that the Viet Minh proposals would mean "unconditional surrender" by France.

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