The Ambassador in Italy (Johnson) to the Acting Secretary of State

No. 279

Sir: In connection with my despatches Nos. 24741 and 26242 of December 20, 1920, and January 5, 1921, respectively, I have the honor to enclose herewith copy and translation of a Note Verbale (No. 4211/13) dated January 22, 1921, just received from the Italian Foreign Office, relative to the sale in China of arms and munitions from Italian sources.

I have [etc.]

Robert Underwood Johnson
[Page 542]

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the American Embassy

Note Verbale

In reply to the Note of the Embassy of the United States dated December 20th last, No. 243,43 the Royal Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the honor to state that if Italian arms were furnished to Chinese buyers, it was done in execution of contracts made prior to May 1919, and for which the Italian Government had made explicit reservation in adhering to the agreement signed at Peking the 26th of April, 1919, by the representatives of the Allied and Neutral Powers.44

In answer to an inquiry newly addressed to the Royal Legation of Italy in Peking, it confirms that no other sale in China of arms or munitions from Italian sources has been made on contracts of a later period.

  1. Not printed.
  2. Ante, p. 535.
  3. Not printed.
  4. See Foreign Relations, 1919, vol. i, pp. 669670.