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

No. 1942

Sir: With reference to the Legation’s despatch No. 1889, December 24, 1932,74 regarding the press law of China, I have the honor to enclose copies of the translation of a note dated January 23, 1933, received from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with a copy of the Legation’s reply thereto.75

The note of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs disregards entirely the question of registration by American nationals with the Central Party Headquarters, as well as the question of the applicability of the penal provisions of the law. It merely requests that American publishers be instructed to register with the Ministry of the Interior.

Accordingly, the Legation has replied to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs setting forth the attitude of the Department as contained in its telegram No. 356, October 24, 3 p.m.,76 and No. 373, November 21, 5 p.m.,77 and has refused to instruct American nationals to comply with the requirements of the law in question.

Should it later appear that American publications will be seriously prejudiced by a failure to register, the Department’s instructions will be requested.

Respectfully yours,

Nelson Trusler Johnson
  1. Not printed; for its enclosure dated December 16, 1932, see Foreign Relations, 1932, vol. iv, p. 667.
  2. Notes not printed.
  3. Foreign Relations, 1932, vol. iv, p. 663.
  4. Ibid., p. 665.