Mr. Conger to Mr. Hay.

No. 1522.]

Sir: Referring to my No. 1509 of February 23, in regard to the reply of the Russian Government to the United States concerning the neutrality of China and the limitation of the zone of hostilities, and inclosing copy of the note communicating the information to the Chinese Government, I inclose herewith translation of the reply received this day from the foreign office, and have, etc.,

E. H. Conger.

The Foreign Office to Mr. Conger.

We have the honor to acknowledge the receipt on the 7th instant (February 22) of your excellency’s note, saying that you were in receipt of a cablegram from the Department of State to the effect that the Russian Government had replied to the note of the United States, declaring that Russia was as desirous as other powers for the preservation of peace in China, and was quite willing to enter into arrangement with other countries to secure the neutrality of China and the avoidance by the belligerents of transgressing the borders of China’s neutral territory, provided that the obligations of a neutral power should be carefully fulfilled by the Chinese Government, but that Manchuria could not but be included in the area of hostilities, and that it could not therefore be regarded as within the neutral boundaries; that the Department of State had replied to this that China had already agreed to the principles of said note, and that it would have much pleasure in announcing to the Chinese Government this reply of the Russian Government.

We, prince and ministers, have carefully noted the contents of your dispatch. [Page 127] China must, of course, carefully observe the laws of neutrality so as to support the admirable purpose of your honorable Government, by which it has placed China under obligation.

As in duty bound we send this reply that your excellency may transmit it for the information of your honorable Government.

We avail ourselves, etc.,
Cards inclosed.