Mr. D. W.
Stevens to Mr. Evarts.
Tokio, Japan, September 9, 1878. (Received December 6, 1878.)
Sir: On the 23d ultimo his excellency the minister for foreign affairs forwarded to Mr. Bingham a copy of regulations whereby the Japanese Government seeks to control the importation of opium and its sale by foreign apothecaries in this empire.
The several articles of the regulations provide for the vending of medicinal opium by the imperial Japanese laboratories to licensed apothecaries in quantities not to exceed five ounces upon each application; for the resale of such opium by apothecaries only upon physicians’ certificates or prescriptions; for the examination of such certificates and prescriptions by Japanese officials: and for the refusal to sell opium to any apothecary who shall fail to observe the conditions of the regulations.”
The Japanese Government, on the 24th ultimo, and for several days thereafter, caused these regulations to be published in the foreign newspapers at Yokohama. I have the honor to inclose herewith duplicate-copies of such publication as it appeared in the Japanese Daily Herald.
The regulations have given rise to considerable comment in the foreign press here, generally of an unfavorable nature. It is said the regulations, especially article 6, are a violation of the ex-territorial rights of foreigners. I understand that this is the view taken by the British and French ministers, who are directly interested, as of the four apothecaries in this city and Yokohama three are English and one French.
I have, &c.,