File No. 4002/223–225.

Chargé Fletcher to the Secretary of State.

No. 1198.]

Sir: Confirming the telegrams recently exchanged with the department and continuing Mr. Kockhill’s No. 1154, of May 19 last, I have the honor to inclose copy of the note which I have addressed to the Wai-wu Pu, under date of June 23, on the subject of municipal organizations on the lands of the Chinese Eastern Railway Co.

I have, etc.,

Henry P. Fletcher.

Chargé Fletcher to the Prince of Ching.

Your Imperial Highness: Copies of the notes exchanged on the 11th of May last between your highness’ board and the Russian minister recognizing the full sovereignty of China over the land leased to the Chinese Eastern Railway in the three eastern provinces, and pledging the two Governments to maintain therein all the rights and privileges enjoyed by subjects of other powers under the treaties between China and said powers, and the text of the preliminary arrangement signed on the same date, have been submitted by this legation to the Government of the United States, which [Page 213] has now instructed me to convey to your highness an expression of the gratification it feels in the terms of the notes exchanged on May 11.

As regards, however, the preliminary arrangement signed on the same date, inasmuch as numerous provisions of it appear to conflict with the said treaty rights, the Government of the United States finds it impossible to accept this preliminary arrangement as binding upon it or its citizens, and I am instructed to point out, with reference to the said preliminary arrangement and the detailed regulations to be elaborated as mentioned in Article XVII thereof, that rules for the government of international municipalities in China must receive the approval of the treaty powers before they can be made applicable to foreign subjects.

I have the honor to suggest, therefore, that these regulations should be drawn up in consultation with the diplomatic and consular authorities of the treaty powers.

I avail, etc.,

Henry P. Fletcher.