The Ambassador in China (Johnson) to the Secretary of State
[Received April 11—10:40 a.m.]
“It is the intention of the Chinese Government to acquiesce in the progress of arrangement only on condition that (1) every one of the four Chinese members of the new Council shall be a member of the present Council, no matter how they are to be chosen—whether they are to be elected or appointed and that (2) the proposed arrangement shall be operative for not more than 2 years.
Not until the unqualified acceptance of the above two conditions (has) been assured by Great Britain and the United States can the Chinese Government communicate its intention of acquiescing in the general plan to any public organization.
If the choice of the four Councilors is to be left to the Chinese Ratepayers Association exclusively the result might be contrary to the wish of the Chinese Government for it is feared that the puppets and the Japanese might use undue influence over the Chinese ratepayers.
Should the Shanghai municipal authorities proceed with the plan in disregard of the two conditions above mentioned the Chinese Government would be constrained to consider the conditions as having been rejected and make known its position vis-à-vis the whole question.”
Sent to Shanghai. Repeated to Department and Peiping.