493.11 Ekvall, Henry/112

Memorandum by the American Minister in China (Johnson) of a Conversation With the Chinese Political Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs (Hsu)65

Among other representations made at the time of my call on Dr. Hsu Mo this morning,66 I called his attention to the unsatisfactory progress made in the Ekvall murder case since January 21, 1933, on which date the Foreign Office transmitted a formal note to the Legation to the effect that the Shensi Provincial authorities had been urgently instructed to exert greater efforts to search out and bring to justice, Chen Te-lu, the ringleader of the actual murderers and the other members of the murder band. I informed Dr. Hsu that the American Government has patiently awaited further reports from the Chinese Government but in spite of the lapse of these many months, has received no information to indicate that any success has attended the measures taken to apprehend the remaining murderers, or that the search has been vigorously pressed by the Chinese authorities.

It was further called to Dr. Hsu’s attention that the Chinese Government has also failed to pay the indemnity of $25,000. U. S. currency demanded as exemplary damages for this atrocious murder of an American citizen by Chinese Government troops, and that this matter has not been pressed, pending a report from the Shensi authorities as to the results of their presumably unremitting search for Chen and the remaining murderers.

Dr. Hsu observed that the Chinese Government had already informed us that the matter is being investigated and in reply was informed that a reiteration of this statement, which was first made many months ago, was not satisfactory, and that I was desirous of learning of concrete results obtained in the matter. Dr. Hsu stated that he would make prompt inquiries into the case and would make reply as to the most recent developments in the case.

  1. The First Secretary of Legation in China was also present. A copy of the memorandum was transmitted to the Department by the Counselor of Legation in his despatch of November 17 from Nanking; received December 18.
  2. See supra.