893.00/11220: Telegram

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

852. Following from Reuter, Shanghai, September 25th:

“Marshal Chang Hsueh-liang, interviewed by a representative of the North China Daily News at Mukden, stated that his intention was vigorously to maintain the integrity of the customs and to secure that service from military interference.

He added: I have telegraphed to the Inspector General of Customs to take full control and to appoint his own commissioner and staff at Tientsin.

Marshal Chang announced that he was assuming control in North China for the purpose of protecting that region. His intervention he said had been delayed owing to the necessity of first arranging details with Nanking. He was working for an early cessation of hostilities [Page 38] [in the] hope that with peace Nanking would take the necessary steps to inaugurate changes satisfactory to all classes and all shades of political opinion.”

For the Minister: