Face in Shadow

52 x 34 cm
Oil & acrylic, canvas on hardboard
February 2013

In September 1955, the USSR recognized the FRG, and Adenauer arrived in Moscow to sign an agreement on the establishment of diplomatic relations and the release of 38 thousand German prisoners of war.

On September 9, 1955, the first chancellor of Germany Konrad Adenauer) visited Moscow at the invitation of the Soviet government. The new leadership, represented by Bulganin and Khrushchev, decided to launch a diplomatic offensive under the slogan "peaceful coexistence."

The aim of the Soviet Union was to establish diplomatic relations with Germany in order to avoid isolation. For Bonn, it was important not only to normalize relations between the two countries, but also to free German prisoners of war still held in Soviet camps. Without fulfilling this condition, "the establishment of diplomatic relations is impossible" - this was the position of the German side.

The difficulty of negotiations between the two countries lay in the insistence of the USSR to conclude diplomatic relations and exchange representations between the two countries. Khrushchev delivered an ultimatum: the release of prisoners of war is impossible without the conclusion of diplomatic relations.

Only on the fourth day of negotiations a breakthrough was outlined: Adenauer made concessions - diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union in exchange for a verbal promise to release the prisoners of war. At the request of the Chancellor, this promise was repeated by Prime Minister Bulganin and Party Secretary Khrushchev in front of the press.

On October 7, 1955, the last prisoners of war returned to their homeland. In total, until the beginning of 1956, 39,628 prisoners returned.
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