Ambassador Wright to the Secretary of State.

No. 96.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the department’s instruction No. 32, of September 27, 1906,a transmitting a copy of a letter [Page 364] addressed to the President by Bishop Brent, of Manila, concerning the relation which the Government of the United States now bears to the question of the opium traffic in the East, and also the department’s instruction No. 35, of October 13, 1906, transmitting a copy of another letter from Bishop Brent on the same subject.

Following the department’s instructions, on November 5 I had an interview with the Viscount Hayashi, minister for foreign affairs, informing him that my Government was of the belief that the time had come when a general and impartial investigation of the conditions of the opium trade and habit by those powers directly affected would have beneficial results, and had instructed me to ascertain the views of the Japanese Government upon the question, since Japan, besides occupying an influential position in the East, is the nearest neighbor of the Philippines, whose possession by the United States gives our Government a new and peculiar interest in the opium trade. I mentioned also the fact that a preliminary inquiry was being made of Great Britain through the American ambassador at London.

The viscount stated in answer that he would bring the matter to the attention of the privy council and would give me an answer as soon as possible.

I have, etc.,

Luke E. Wright.
  1. See Instruction No. 297 to Ambassador Reid (p. 360).