761.93 Conference, 1930/13

Memorandum by the Minister in China (Johnson)59

In the course of a call today I inquired of the Minister for Foreign Affairs as to the present status of the negotiations between China and the Soviet Government on the subject of the Chinese Eastern Railway.

Dr. Wang told me that the situation today was the same as it had been before the incident occurred in May. He said that the Chinese Government had accepted the terms signed at Habarovsk, except for those provisions concerning the restoration of diplomatic intercourse, that Moh Teh-hui60 was about to proceed to Moscow for the purpose of taking up negotiations with Russia for a complete settlement of the points of controversy.

In the course of this conversation Dr. Wang made one or two rather interesting statements. He said that the situation might have been different had it not been for the fact that internal difficulties prevented the Central Government from giving to Chang Hsueh-liang61 any proper support in this matter. He said also that if Chang Hsueh-liang could have waited only a week or two before signing the Habarovsk settlement, the situation would have changed by reason of the identic communications sent by the American, British, French and Italian Governments to China and to Russia … but that, unfortunately, Chang and his delegate, Tsai, had gone ahead. He said that Tsai had exceeded his powers at Habarovsk and that the Government could not recognize that part of the agreement which concerned itself with the restoration of diplomatic relations and that apparently the Government at Moscow had accepted his statement to that effect, made about a week ago.

  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the Minister in China in his despatch No. 86, March 14, 1930; received April 23.
  2. President of the Chinese Eastern Railway and chief Chinese delegate to the conference at Moscow.
  3. Head of the Mukden Government and commander of the armed forces in Manchuria and Jehol.