File No. 761.94/105
Ambassador Francis to the Secretary of State
Petrograd, July 14, 1916, 3 p.m.
653. Had conference with Sazanoff re Japanese treaty. Asserts America has no occasion for fear or suspicion in that connection, in fact will be beneficiary therefrom as treaty will prevent Germany from competing as in past with America, England and France for Chinese trade. Profuse in expression of friendship for America. Announced willingness making a statement through Associated Press to allay all suspicion in America. Sent Associated Press representative immediately for interview which was promised to-day. Unable to learn details of protocol * * *.
* * * I shall advise you if further developments. Treaty criticized by many Russians who distrust Japanese preferring closer American commercial relations. Minister claims treaty will maintain and strengthen the open door of China as evidenced by England’s approval thereof. Impression prevails Russia forced to execution of treaty now which it preferred to defer until war terminated but Japan insisted on immediate necessity consummation.