The Japanese Ministry for Foreign Affairs to the American Embassy in Japan74b
In considering any question in the French Concession, close attention should be drawn to a highly unnatural situation prevailing in [Page 894]and around Shanghai, i. e., that while, with the advent of the National Government headed by Mr. Wang Ching-Wei at Nanking, the vast areas in the environs and hinterland of Shanghai have come under the influence of the said Government, the Chinese courts which are the Chungking organ are still allowed to maintain their existence in the International Settlement and French Concession. The existence of such Chungking organ in the Concession has given rise to the result of affording far-reaching encouragement and assistance to the terroristic activities by Chungking Regime in the Concession and has been considerably detrimental to the ceaseless effort of the National Government to ensure the order and security in and around Shanghai. Under such circumstances, therefore, it has been the earnest desire of the National Government to obtain the control over the Chinese Courts in the Concession and as the result of satisfactory conversation between the National Government and authorities of the French Concession, the control over the said Chinese Courts were transferred to the Nanking Government on the 8th ult. This procedure by the National Government meets the full approval of the Japanese Government which are seriously concerned in the maintenance of order in and around Shanghai.
As for the function of the new Court, no anxiety is necessary as to its fairness. Moreover, as the majority of the old Courts officials appear to remain in their posts, no trouble is likely to take place in conducting the necessary functions. The Japanese Government, therefore, are convinced that the present step taken with regard to the Chinese Courts by the new National Government will contribute to the maintenance of order and security in the French Concession and consequently prove beneficial to the American residents in the Concession, despite the apprehension the United States Government seem to entertain on this matter.
That the United States Government deem it proper for the Japanese Government to obtain the permission of the Chungking Regime for altering the status of the Chinese Courts is not regarded without surprise by the Japanese Government which are as well known in hostile relation accompanied by large scale battles with the Chungking Regime. It is hardly needed to make it clear that the Japanese Government, denying all authority of the Chungking Regime and having determined not to deal with the Regime, are not in a position to agree to the above argument set forth by the United States Government.
- Statement read and handed to a member of the American Embassy in Japan by an officer of the Japanese Foreign Office on December 18, 1940.↩