Papers Relating to the Foreign Relations of the United States, With the Annual Message of the President Transmitted to Congress December 6, 1910
The Japanese Ambassador to the Acting Secretary of State.
Washington, August 24, 1910.
Sir: Under instructions of my Government I have the honor to communicate to you herewith a copy of the English translation of the treaty annexing Korea to the Empire of Japan, which was signed on the 22d instant by Viscount Terauchi, Japanese resident general in Korea, and Mr. Ye Wan Yong, Korean minister president of state, together with a declaration of my Government on matters relating to foreigners and foreign trade in Korea.
declaration of japanese government.
Notwithstanding the earnest and laborious work of reforms in the administration of Korea, in which the Governments of Japan and Korea have been engaged for more than four years since the conclusion of the agreement of 1905, the existing system of government in that country has not proved entirely equal to the duty of preserving public order and tranquillity, and, in addition, the spirit of suspicion and misgiving dominates the whole peninsula. In order to maintain peace, and stability in Korea, to promote the prosperity and welfare of the Koreans, and at the same time to insure the safety and repose of the foreign residents, it has been made abundantly clear that fundamental changes in the actual régime of government are absolutely essential. The Governments of Japan and Korea, being convinced of the urgent necessity of introducing reforms responsive to the requirements of the situation and of furnishing sufficient guaranty for the future, have, with the approval of His Majesty the Emperor of Japan and His Majesty the Emperor of Korea, concluded through their respective plenipotentiaries a treaty providing for the complete annexation of Korea to the [Page 682] Empire of Japan. By virtue of that important act, which shall take effect on its promulgation on the 29th of August, 1910, the Imperial Government of Japan undertake the entire government and administration of Korea and they hereby declare that matters relating to foreigners and foreign trade in Korea shall be conducted in accordance with the following rules:
- Treaties hitherto concluded by Korea with foreign powers ceasing to be operative, Japan’s existing treaties will, so far as practicable, be applied to Korea. Foreigners resident in Korea will, so far as conditions permit, enjoy the same rights and immunities as in Japan proper, and the protection of their legally acquired rights, subject in all cases to the jurisdiction of Japan. The Imperial Government of Japan are ready to consent that the jurisdiction in respect of cases actually pending in any foreign consular courts in Korea at the time the treaty of annexation takes effect shall remain in such courts until final decision.
- Independently of any conventional engagements formerly existing on the subject, the Imperial Government of Japan will for a period of 10 years levy upon goods imported into Korea from foreign countries or exported from Korea to foreign countries and upon foreign vessels entering any of the open ports of Korea the same import or export duties and the same tonnage dues as under the existing schedules. The same import or export duties and tonnage dues as those to be levied upon the aforesaid goods and vessels will also for a period of 10 years be applied in respect of goods imported into Korea from Japan or exported from Korea to Japan and Japanese vessels entering any of the open ports of Korea.
- The Imperial Government of Japan will also permit, for a period of 10 years, vessels under the flag of powers having treaties with Japan to engage in the coasting trade between the open ports of Korea and between those ports and any open ports of Japan.
- The existing open ports of Korea, with the exemption of Masampo, will be continued as open ports, and in addition Shinwiju will be newly opened, so that vessels foreign as well as Japanese will there be admitted and goods may be imported into and exported from those ports.
treaty between japan and korea, signed on the 22d of august, 1910.
His Majesty the Emperor of Japan and His Majesty the Emperor of Korea, having in view the special and close relations between their respective countries, desiring to promote the common weal of the two nations and to assure the permanent peace in the extreme East, and being convinced that these objects can be best attained by the annexation of Korea to the Empire of Japan, have resolved to conclude a treaty of such annexation, and have for that purpose appointed as their plenipotentiaries, that is to say:
His Majesty the Emperor of Japan, Viscount Masakata Terauchi, his resident general, and His Majesty the Emperor of Korea, Ye Wan Yong, his minister president of state;
Who, upon mutual conference and deliberation, have agreed to the following articles:
- Article I. His Majesty the Emperor of Korea makes the complete and permanent cession to His Majesty the Emperor of Japan of all rights of sovereignty over the whole of Korea.
- Art. II. His Majesty the Emperor of Japan accepts the cession mentioned in the preceding article and consents to the complete annexation of Korea to the Empire of Japan.
- Art. III. His Majesty the Emperor of Japan will accord to Their Majesties the Emperor and ex-Emperor and His Imperial Highness the Crown Prince of Korea and their consorts and heirs such titles, dignity, and honor as are appropriate to their respective ranks, and sufficient annual grants will be made for the maintenance of such titles, dignity, and honor.
- Art. IV. His Majesty the Emperor of Japan will also accord appropriate honor and treatment to the members of the imperial house of Korea and their heirs other than those mentioned in the preceding article, and the funds necessary for the maintenance of such honor and treatment will be granted.
- Art. V. His Majesty the Emperor of Japan will confer peerage and monetary grants upon those Koreans who on account of meritorious services are regarded as deserving such special recognitions.
- Art. VI. In consequence of the aforesaid annexation, the Government of Japan assume the entire government and administration of Korea, and undertake to afford full protection for the persons and property of Koreans obeying the laws there in force, and to promote the welfare of all such Koreans.
- Art. VII. The Government of Japan will, so far as circumstances permit, employ in the public service of Japan in Korea those Koreans who accept the new regime loyally and in good faith, and who are duly qualified for such service.
- Art. VIII. This treaty having been approved by His Majesty the Emperor of Japan and His Majesty the Emperor of Korea shall take effect from the date of its promulgation.
In faith whereof, etc.