The Secretary of State to the American Minister.

No. 126.]

Sir: The Department has read with interest your dispatch No. 200 of March 9, 1911, dealing with the levy in the Manchurian provinces of certain illegal taxes upon foreign goods after they have passed into Chinese hands.

The memorandum by the Japanese consul general at Mukden, which you inclosed, appears to supply adequate grounds for strong representations to the Chinese Government upon this subject by the diplomatic body at Peking.

The Department is glad to learn from this memorandum that the situation in Fengtien is somewhat more satisfactory than in Kirin. At the same time it must not be forgotten that the consul at Antung has reported illegal taxation of American goods in that district.

Your action in suggesting to the American consular officers in Manchuria that they cooperate with their colleagues in attempting to effect local settlements of the complaints is approved by the Department, but it is hoped nevertheless that the diplomatic body at Peking will not delay to bring the matter to the attention of the foreign office also and endeavor to secure such action by that office as will tend to remedy the abuses of which complaint is made and prevent their recurrence.

I am, etc.,

P. C. Knox.