793.003/524b: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Dawes)

35. Your 34, February 3, 1 p.m., and previous.

[Paraphrase.] In deference to the suggestions and views of the British Foreign Office, the Department’s proposal for procedure respecting extraterritoriality has been modified, and the Department has proceeded as follows:

A written statement was read and handed to the Chinese Minister on February 7.31 Reference was made in this statement to the Department’s proposals of October 28, 1930, to the Chinese counterproposals, to their memorandum of December 19, and to the Department’s December 27 memorandum in reply. There followed an outline, in summary, of the manner in which and the points on which the Department in preparing a new draft would be willing to deviate from and to make changes in its October 28 draft proposals. There was then reaffirmed the stand which has been taken throughout by the Department that a transitional period must be provided in any agreement concluded, and the hope was expressed that the Chinese would be ready soon to enter into the actual drafting of a treaty. This statement was orally supplemented by a statement which emphasized the seriousness attached to this matter by the Department and which pointed out that no assent could be given a plan which does not provide for an evolutionary transition.
No draft of proposals is being submitted for the time being. The Department is working upon a new draft, in which the proposals regarding co-judges are being retained as in article 2 of the October 28 draft. Likewise, as in article 9, provision regarding excluded areas. Likewise, as in article 6, provision regarding personal status matters. Likewise, as in article 13, provision regarding rights of residence and trade.
However, the Department would be prepared, if and when actively resuming its negotiations, to make concessions as to these matters. Both the suggestions already submitted by the Department and the counter-suggestions of the British Foreign Office and its officials in China (about which the American Minister there has informed the Department) will be kept in mind. [End paraphrase.]
Text of written statement follows:
[Here follows text of the Department’s statement read and handed to the Chinese Minister on February 7, 1931, printed on page 726.]
You may advise the Foreign Office of the above and give them, in confidence, text of written statement, explaining that this statement [Page 733] is to be regarded as a statement from one negotiator to another and not as a communication between Governments. You may state in addition that the Department now awaits such reply, if any, as the Chinese Minister may make and that the Department will keep you informed of developments.

  1. Ante, p. 726.