Memorandum of Conversation, by the Assistant Chief of the Division of Far Eastern Affairs (Atcheson)

Participants: Mr. H. Ashley Clarke, Chief of the Far Eastern Department of the British Foreign Office
Mr. George Atcheson, Jr.
Mr. Walter A. Adams
Mr. Joseph W. Ballantine23

Mr. Clarke, who had just arrived in this country by air from London on a short visit for the stated purpose of the establishment of contacts with Mr. Hornbeck and Mr. Hamilton and the discussion of various matters of mutual interest, called at the Department this morning, calling at the Division of Far Eastern Affairs after having called upon Mr. Hornbeck.

Mr. Clarke stated that one of the matters he wished to discuss was the question of the relinquishment of extraterritorial jurisdiction in China, and he went on to set forth the position of his Government along the lines of the British Embassy’s aide-mémoire of April 25, 1942, on this subject. Upon mention of that aide-mémoire by Mr. Atcheson Mr. Clarke said that he had not yet seen it. Mr. Atcheson thereupon informed him of the substance of the Department’s aide-mémoire to the British Embassy of May 6, 1942.

There followed some general discussion of the subject during which Mr. Clarke inquired whether we had obtained the impression that the Chinese might shortly request or demand the abolition of extraterritoriality. Reply was made to the effect that there had been no official intimation that such a development might be in the offing, we [Page 280] had of course taken note of Madame Chiang Kai-shek’s recent magazine and press articles published in this country, there were a considerable number of American writers and others who were exhibiting active interest in the matter, and we should not be surprised if pressure upon the Department to take action increased.

  1. Of the Division of Far Eastern Affairs.