The Minister in China (Schurman) to the Secretary of State

No. 1689

Sir: With reference to the last paragraph of my telegram No. 46 of February 9, 6 p.m.,54 regarding the arms embargo and the proposal to withhold naval assistance to China, I have the honor to transmit herewith for the Department’s information a copy of Dean Circular No. 187 of July 13th regarding the agreement of the Netherlands [Page 618]and Japanese Ministers to the formula proposed by the American Government regarding the question of withholding naval assistance to China.

I have [etc.]

Jacob Gould Schurman
[Enclosure 1]

Circular by the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps in China (De Freitas)

Circular No. 187

The Dean has the honour to circulate herewith for the information of his Honourable Colleagues, a letter from H. E. The Netherlands Minister55 regarding a proposal submitted on January 23, 1923, by H. E. the American Minister to the effect that the Representatives of the Treaty Powers in Peking should recommend to their respective Governments the withholding of assistance from China in connection with the construction of naval vessels, arsenals, and dockyards, etc. H. E. The Netherlands Minister has been authorized by his Government to concur in this proposal on condition that it be agreed by other Governments represented in Peking.

Monsieur de Freitas would be glad to learn whether his Honourable Colleagues have received similar authorization.

[Enclosure 2]

Observation by the Japanese Minister in China (Yoshida) on Circular No. 187 by the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps at Peking (De Freitas)

At the Diplomatic Body Meeting of February 9th last, I had an occasion to mention that the latter part of the formula reading “… nor shall these Governments give any support or countenance to their respective nationals in securing such concessions, etc.” differed in substance from the wording “… should not be undertaken by foreign Governments or by their nationals etc.” which formed the corresponding part of the understanding proposed by the American Government and agreed to by several Governments in July 1922. H. E. The American Minister was then so good as to explain to me that this discrepancy was due to a certain legal difficulty which had been found afterward by his Government and which, he believed, the other Governments concerned had already been informed of.

[Page 619]

Having reported the above to my Government I have been in receipt of a communication to the effect that my Government are willing to accept the proposal which, so far as I understand, has not as yet been made to them by the American Government.

Isaburo Yoshida
  1. Ante, p. 606.
  2. Not printed.