The Department of State to the Chinese Embassy

Oral Statement

The Department has received information to the effect that on January 11 at 10 a.m. an American military convoy, consisting of two trucks, which was returning from Wenshan, the Headquarters of the Ninth Group Army, to Kunming, was attacked on the highway a little south of Milo by 30 uniformed Chinese equipped with rifles and Bren guns; that an American noncommissioned officer was slightly wounded during the exchange of fire which followed, and four of the attacking party were believed to have been wounded or killed; that evidence indicates that the men involved in the attack were members of the Milo District Militia; and that this attack occurred on the same highway and only about 35 miles south of the [Page 1100] place where another American convoy was attacked on October 16, 1943.

No publicity has thus far been given to this incident.

This second attack upon an American military convoy in territory controlled by the Chinese Government is a matter of very serious and urgent concern to the American Government. Such incidents serve to undermine and to jeopardize the close cooperation which we are endeavoring to promote between the Chinese and American Governments, and agencies, including armed forces. They inevitably produce a most unfavorable impression upon the War Department and other American Government agencies, upon American personnel in China and upon the American public which cannot but be injurious to China, to Sino-American relations, to China’s repute among the United Nations, and to the common war effort.

The American Government is confident that the Chinese Government will recognize the urgent necessity of preventing any recurrence of these deplorable incidents in the future and that it will immediately take appropriate measures to that end. The Embassy has reported that it is taking the matter up with the Foreign Office and the Department is directing the Embassy to inform the Foreign Office that the Embassy’s representations are being made as under instructions from the Department.8

  1. These instructions were transmitted to the Embassy in China in telegram No. 92, January 18, 10 p.m. (893.00/15232).