861a.01/6: Telegram

The Chargé in Japan (Bell) to the Secretary of State

283. My 263, May 24, 3 p.m.78 Vernacular press reports confirmation by Advisory Council of Ministers Cabinet’s decision to withdraw Fifth Division from Chita to Manchouli. It is further reported that announcement to this effect will be made prior to the convening of the Diet on June 29 which points to the possibility that the Government’s decision has been influenced by anticipation of hostility to its Siberian policy in the House of Peers.

The Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs told me this morning that in his personal opinion the Verkhneudinsk government would not develop into an effective government but that if it did the Japanese Government would be prepared to recognize it. He also said that the Verkhneudinsk government had asked the Japanese military command in Siberia to enter into negotiation with it but that up to the present no action had been taken.

  1. Not printed.