893.113/1270: Telegram

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

927. 1. Consulate General at Shanghai reports that on September 9, 1930, usual notification was sent to Superintendent of Customs regarding arrival of three cases of munitions consigned to the American Legation Guard. In reply Superintendent stated he had received a telegraphic instruction from the Minister of Finance on August 22, 1930, to the effect that in future foreign garrisons, legations and consulates, as well as municipalities of various concessions, should comply with National Government’s revised regulations governing transportation permits for military use and apply for permits in conformity with these regulations. A copy of these regulations was forwarded to the Department without covering despatch June 19, 1930.89

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2. Consulate General reports that in this instance consignment in question has been passed by the customs without production of a permit on the ground that the regulations were not applicable to shipments already in transit but desires instructions as to the attitude which should be assumed in case permission to land or transship arms or munitions consigned to the American armed forces in China is refused on the ground that no permit has been obtained.

3. Article 11 of the regulations states that permits covering importations of firearms from a foreign country into China should be submitted to the Chinese Diplomatic Mission in the country of origin of the shipment for inspection and certification. The Legation does not perceive any particular objection to such procedure provided permits covering munitions consigned to United States armed forces in China are issued by Chinese Diplomatic Mission at Washington, gratis, and consignments are passed duty free by Chinese customs and other tax organizations. The Department’s instructions are requested.

  1. Not printed.