893.20 Manchuria/44: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Second Secretary of Embassy in China (Smyth), at Peiping

275. Your 591, November 18, 3 p.m., and 592, November 18, 4 p.m., registration of American citizens under Manchukuo law. The Department [Page 441] suggests that, unless you perceive objection, you instruct Mukden and Harbin to reply informally to the Foreign Office circular. If it is felt that any useful purpose would be served thereby a list of all American citizens residing in the respective consular districts might be supplied with a statement that this list is being furnished as a courtesy to assist the authorities concerned in compiling general census information. However, the replies should make clear that this Government could not recognize any claim of the authorities concerned to exercise jurisdiction over American citizens.

Mukden and Harbin should also be instructed to inform American citizens residing in their districts of the Foreign Office circular under reference and of the replies authorized in the preceding paragraph. American citizens should also be advised that should they be approached by Manchurian authorities and asked to “register” they might appropriately state that they understand that the names of all American citizens residing in Manchuria have already been furnished to the authorities of that region; but that, should they be pressed and should they consider it to their best interests to take such action, the Department would not object to their furnishing such information as might appropriately be needed in connection with a general census.

Sent to Peiping only. Peiping please air mail code text to Tokyo.