893.102S/1756: Telegram

The Consul General at Shanghai ( Gauss ) to the Secretary of State

180. Reference my 171, March 2, 6 p.m. regarding call made by Japanese Consul General yesterday on Chairman of the Council, at [Page 14] which time he pressed for a reply by March 3 to the “understandings” mentioned in paragraph 2 of my telegram No. 168, March 1, 2 p.m. Following is summary of reply memorandum handed today by the Chairman of the Council to the Japanese Consul General:

The Council stated that it had already replied to the Japanese Consul General’s request for cooperation by its letter, dated February 25, 1939, and that discussions had already taken place between the Municipal and Japanese police with a view to the reaching immediate and effective agreement for cooperation. The Council emphasized however that it could “never agree to independent action in the International Settlement by any police organs other than the Shanghai municipal police” and pointed out that it has no power “without the consent of all the powers concerned to delegate police powers and responsibilities entrusted to it under the land regulations”. The Council stated further that “any measure of cooperation must be undertaken with the consent and under the general supervision of the Commissioner of Police”.
The Council stated that the points mentioned in paragraph 2 of the Japanese “understandings”, mentioned in my 168, were covered in its reply of February 25.
It was again pointed out that steps are being taken to bring the Japanese branch of the police force up to full strength and that when this has been done “the position will again be promptly reviewed”. The Council pointed out however that “the necessary desirable strength of the Japanese branch of the municipal police is integrally connected with the question of the effective exercise of the Council’s power and control in the area north of Soochow Creek”. With reference to the participation of senior Japanese officers of the municipal police in cases of anti-Japanese activities, it was pointed out that such officers have already taken an important part in such cases and that the Commissioner of Police is “more than anxious to make every possible use of the senior Japanese officers under his command”. With reference to the Hidaka proposals, the Council stated that these must be considered separately and that in its opinion they cannot be connected with the immediate problem of the suppression of terrorism. It was stated further that the suggestion that these proposals be implemented without reference to “any step towards the opening of the area of the Settlement lying north of Soochow Creek, necessitates reference to other interested Consuls”. The Council pointed out that it was still awaiting comment of the Japanese authorities upon the Council’s proposal in regard to the area of “E” division.

The recent exchanges of correspondence and memoranda between the Japanese Consul General and the Council have been brought to the attention of the Treaty Consuls and it is hoped that a meeting of those Consuls including the Japanese Consul General can be arranged for tomorrow.

Repeated to Chungking, Peiping and Tokyo.