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Other Countries

By mid-1989, Mongolia had diplomatic relations with 104 countries. From 1921 until 1948, Mongolia had only one significant diplomatic tie, that with the Soviet Union. The schedule followed by Mongolia in recognizing, and being recognized by, other states demonstrated the general character of its foreign policy and relations. The first states to be recognized were those run by communist parties and established after World War II. In 1955 India became the first noncommunist state to be accorded diplomatic recognition. By 1965 nine Asian states, along with twenty-four from Europe and Africa, had been recognized. The decade of the 1970s was the most active diplomatic period; forty-six countries established relations with Mongolia.

In mid-1989 only seventeen countries, however, maintained missions in Ulaanbaatar. They included Britain, Japan, India, China, the Soviet Union, and East European nations. France closed its mission because of difficulties in staffing and expenses. Most of the other countries with continuing diplomatic relations concurrently accredited their ambassadors to the Soviet Union - resident in Moscow, or their ambassadors to China - resident in Beijing. In a similar fashion, Mongolian diplomats were responsible for diplomatic affairs with several countries: the ambassador to Japan - resident in Tokyo, also handled matters concerning Malaysia and Australia. The Mongolian ambassador to Britain, resident in London, was concurrently the ambassador to Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, and Sweden.

Mongolia established diplomatic relations with Japan in 1972. Modest economic and cultural ties existed between the two countries in 1989, although Batmonh occasionally expressed interest in expanding relations. The Mongolian minister of foreign affairs visited Japan in May 1987, seeking exchanges in scientific, technical, and political areas. Agricultural biotechnology was identified as a key field for cooperation. The chairman of the People's Great Hural went to Japan to attend the February 1989 funeral of Emperor Hirohito, Mongolia's wartime enemy (see Economic Gradualism and National Defense, 1932-45).

After diplomatic ties had been established in 1955, Mongolian-Indian relations were strengthened by India's strong support for Mongolia's candidacy in the UN. During the 1970s, bilateral relations were friendly; they were circumscribed only by differences in the domestic and the social systems of the two countries and by the absence of substantial people-to-people contact. In 1981 an Agreement on Cooperation in the Fields of Culture and Science was signed, followed by the establishment in 1981 of a Center for Indian Studies in the Mongolian Academy of Sciences. Batmonh's state visit to India in March 1989 further strengthened bilateral ties. He and Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi discussed Asia-Pacific security issues. The visit produced an agreement on cooperation in science and technology.

Last Update: 2010-12-07