File No. 4857/18–21.
Chargé Fletcher to the Secretary of State.
Peking,November 2, 1907.
Sir: I have the honor to transmit herewith translation of a note recently received from the foreign office, inclosing copy of the regulations governing the importation of arms and ammunition into China.
This subject has assumed added importance in the eyes of the Chinese Government since the recent assassination of Governor En Ming by a revolutionary official, and a number of seizures have been made of arms illicitly imported.
The regulations met with objection of all of the foreign representatives, and at a meeting of the diplomatic body it was decided to address a note to the foreign office on the subject, translation of which I inclose.
The regulations seem objectionable to me in the following respects: No exception is made of arms and ammunition imported for the use of the legation guards and of the volunteer corps organized in the foreign settlements at Shanghai and Tientsin, nor of sporting rifles which visitors wishing to hunt or travel for pleasure or in the interest of science in China may wish to bring with them.
I have, etc.,