693.0031/1: Telegram

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


338. Legation’s telegram 745, October 3, 7 p.m. On September 27 there was read to me by Minister Sze, who was accompanied by Dr. Wu, a telegram in which the hope was expressed by C. T. Wang that the Government of the United States will be prepared to begin negotiations immediately at Washington for the conclusion of a new treaty relating to general subjects other than tariff matters. Wang’s telegram requested further that I use my influence in an effort to induce other powers to take steps at once to meet the “policy for treaty revision” of the Nationalist Government.

Sze and Wu were informed by me that we could not first negotiate independently of the other powers and then request that our example be followed by them, and that although the other powers most concerned would be canvassed by me as to their attitude, this did not signify that a conference would be called or that proposals would be put forward. It was urged By Wu that the United States Government designate plenipotentiaries and open negotiations. It was positively stated by me that I would not undertake to do this, because the situation did not warrant such action, but that conversations with officers of the Department would be authorized by me. Such conversations, however, were not to be confused with negotiations. As to the time and manner of approaching the other Governments in this connection, the question is being studied by me.