File No. 793.94/220a.
The Secretary of State to Ambassador Page.
Washington, February 2, 1915—5 p.m.
1060. You have doubtless seen newspaper reference to Japan’s demand on China. The reports are probably exaggerated but we are interested to know whether the British Government has been informed as to the nature and extent of these demands. By an exchange of notes November 30, 1908,22 it was agreed that the two Governments [United States and Japan] should communicate with each other in case any event threatened the status quo or the principle of equal opportunity in order to arrive at an understanding as to what measures they may consider it needful to take. If the demands now made by Japan are accurately described in the press despatches, it would seem that both the integrity of China and the principle of equal opportunity are threatened. Let us know what you are able to learn from the Foreign Office.