893.102S/1246: Telegram

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

1202. My 1091, September 13, 9 p.m. Shanghai written despatches 7336 of September 29 and 7338 of October 5.5

1. On September 29 newly appointed Japanese Consul General informed Cunningham that agreement regarding extra-Settlement roads would be accepted by Japanese provided:

(a) That a joint statement be issued by the other powers concerned to the effect that “the modus vivendi regarding the extra-Settlement roads will in no way affect the status i. e. station, patrolling, drilling, disarming of the defense forces of the respective powers in the extra-Settlement roads”.

(b) Agreement must be referred for prior approval consular and diplomatic bodies as Japanese consular officers [apparent garbled group] will effect treaty rights of the powers.

(c) Japanese will demand certain amendment[s] to the agreement. Japanese Consul General did not furnish Cunningham with memorandum of these amendments but I am able to quote them below from copy given to me unofficially by my British colleague:

(1) Policing.

An item couched in the following terms shall be added to clause (b) of article 1:

‘The Deputy Commissioner shall be the foreigner whose nationals constitute the largest in number of foreign residents of different nationalities residing in the extra-Settlement roads.’

The following items shall also be added to clause (c) of the same article or shall be provided for in detailed agreement:

‘The municipality of Greater Shanghai has to appoint as many Japanese policemen as possible and to let them take charge of police affairs especially in the areas where Japanese subjects reside in large numbers and where Japanese manufacturing factories are located.

A Japanese subject shall be made the senior officer of the police administration in charge of extra-Settlement roads in the Northern District while the senior [Page 648] officer in charge of the extra-Settlement roads in the Western District shall be of the nationality which enjoys extraterritoriality in China.

In the latter district the police officer next in rank to the senior officer shall be appointed from among Japanese nationals.

All foreign members of the police administration of the districts above alluded to shall be appointed by the municipality of Greater Shanghai upon recommendation by the Municipal Council. Those who have once been appointed shall not be arbitrarily discharged without just reasons.’

Clause (f) of the same article has to be modified as follows:

‘Any regulations or orders issued by said police administration regarding matters concerning foreigners having extraterritorial rights shall not become operative unless it is approved by the consular body and the Diplomatic Corps.

In applying regulations or orders which have already gone through the above procedure to certain specific matters consent of the Deputy Commissioner is required by his counter-signature or some other appropriate form of government.’

[(2)?] The following reservation is made in article 3 of the agreement:

‘Conditions of franchise to be granted by the city government of Greater Shanghai shall be similar to those granted by the Municipal Council. They shall not be of such a nature that they will unwarrantably interfere with business or allow any discriminating treatment.’

(In case a satisfactory understanding is effected between the city government of Greater Shanghai and the Municipal Council the above reservation may be withdrawn).

(3) The following reservation is to make article 6:

‘Rates to be collected by the city government of Greater Shanghai shall be lower by at least 2 percent than rates which are collected within the Settlement.’

(In case an understanding is effected between the city government of Greater Shanghai and the Municipal Council the above reservation may be withdrawn).

(4) The following item is to be added to article 7:

‘The present arrangements shall not be allowed to impair the rights of the powers having extraterritoriality.’

(5) In a standing order to the Commissioner that portion in the middle part of the whole article which begins ‘and foreigners’ and ends ‘to the Deputy Commissioner’ shall be modified as follows:

‘and when foreigners having or claiming extraterritorial rights were arrested in the act of violating the police regulations they shall immediately be handed over to the Deputy Commissioner who in turn shall without delay hand over such offenders to the Consulate having jurisdiction over them’.”

2. In regard to point (a) both British and American Consuls Generals agree that a statement so worded would completely alienate Chinese and prevent consummation of agreement. Both, however, appear to be of the opinion that some such declaration would be of value to forestall interpretation of agreement as eliminating foreign armed forces now quartered in the extra-Settlement roads (the British in Western District and Japanese in Northern District). Both suggest that formula might be modified to a simple declaration to the [Page 649] effect that “Agreement does not affect the defense forces maintained by the respective powers in Shanghai” and that before agreement is signed this declaration should be communicated to Chinese who should be persuaded to accept it. I see no objection to this proposal although I see no real necessity for it. I am opposed to text of declaration as suggested by Japanese.

As regards (b) neither Brenan nor Cunningham appear to consider that Japanese will press this point.

As regards (c) I am of the opinion that the amendments suggested would not be acceptable to the Chinese and would effectively prevent the consummation of the agreement if injected into the discussions. While the extra-Settlement roads are the property of the ratepayers, there exists so far as I can determine no right under the land regulations for the municipality and the ratepayers to police those roads and for us to join with Japanese in demanding that Chinese employ 61 [foreign?] police in those roads would, in my opinion, be to turn clock back in our policy. Matter now stands as above with no prospects of immediate settlement.

Shanghai informed.

  1. Telegram in four sections.
  2. Neither printed.