893.102S/1225: Telegram

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

961. Legation’s 651, June 14, 1 p.m.

1. On July 30, 1 p.m., American Consul General at Shanghai was instructed as follows by the Legation:

“Following for the Consul General: I am of the opinion that in regard to the matter of the negotiations about extra-Settlement roads it is highly desirable that negotiations be concluded locally. I also think that it would be well if negotiations could be limited to the authorities of the International Settlement and the Chinese municipal authorities and that as soon as an agreement is reached the document should be signed by representatives of both of these authorities, thereafter to be sent to the Consular Body and by that body to the Diplomatic Corps for information. In order to achieve this object I suggest that you alone and in cooperation with the British Consul General use all your influence to bring about an early conclusion of the negotiations and signature of the document.

The British Consul General is being instructed in the same sense.”

2. Following from American Consul General at Shanghai

“August 5, noon. Reference to Legation’s July 30, 2 [1?] p.m.

Shanghai Municipal Council forwarded on July 30th to Senior Consul draft agreement as information and for comment of Consular Body. Brenan, Fessenden and I called upon Japanese Consul General to ascertain his intentions thereabout and found that his Government is objecting to and I believe unalterably opposed to any agreement prior to round-table conference. The Japanese Consul General indicated support would be given to Feetham’s suggestion95 regarding extra-Settlement roads if a Japanese were appointed Deputy Commissioner [Page 636] of Police with a number of Japanese police. Although the draft has been circulated to extra-Settlement [extraterritorial?] consuls I am now proposing to reply to the Council that the draft has been circulated for information of interested colleagues with a request that each make his comments directly to chairman of the Council.
As American Consul General I propose to inform the chairman that the draft has been received and to express the hope that its execution will be expedited. Has this Legation’s approval?
There is some question regarding the Senior Consul’s right to reply at all without unanimous concurrence of the consuls concerned, but as the proposal is more or less routine there may be no objection. Of course, a reply from the Senior Consul is not absolutely essential.”

3. Legation replied as follows:

“August 6, 6 p.m.

Action proposed in paragraph 2 approved.
In regard to your paragraph 3 please be guided by my July 30, 1 p.m.”

4. Following from American Consul General at Shanghai:

“August 13, 10 a.m. My telegram August 5, noon. Following is summary of Japanese Consul General’s comment forwarded to Senior Consul on proposed agreement regarding extra-Settlement roads. Murai states it is feared restoration to China of administration of extra-Settlement roads may prove first step toward rendition of Settlement and negotiations therefore on this problem necessitate full consideration by powers concerned. For this reason Japanese lay much stress on importance of early holding [of] round-table conference at which this question should be brought up. Murai states that even if there is little prospect of conference [being] convened immediately he cannot accept agreement as it is; that the defect is that police authority has been transferred to Chinese side. This defect cannot be tolerated by Japan. He states that under instructions from Japanese Government he proposes following: Pending official decision of round-table conference, administrative power, including police authority, in extra-Settlement roads and adjacent areas, shall be exercised by Shanghai Municipal Council as recommended by Feetham. In case above principle is established no objection to appointment by Shanghai Municipal Council of Chinese Police Commissioner but post of Deputy Commissioner of Police to be given to Japanese. Foreign heads of police stations in Northern District only to be Japanese and also as many Japanese policemen appointed as possible. Limits of power of Chinese Commissioner and Japanese Deputy Commissioner of Police shall be generally as stipulated in agreement. On matters other than policing, such as authorizing and patrolling [of] foreign defense forces, extent of external road areas, et cetera, views of Japanese Government will be communicated as occasion demands.

Despatch follows. Department not informed [Department informed?].”

[Page 637]

5. Further details will be forwarded by pouch leaving August 19th.97

  1. Report of the Hon. Richard Feetham, C.M.G., Judge of the Supreme Court of the Union of South Africa, to the Shanghai Municipal Council, vol. iii, pt. VI (Shanghai, North-China Daily News and Herald, Ltd., 1931).
  2. Not printed.