893.00/5–1045: Telegram

The Ambassador in China (Hurley) to the Secretary of State

751. Following is a summary of recent telegrams from Ward in Tihwa:

Arrests made in connection with the shooting of a member of the secret police have uncovered a widespread conspiracy to seize Tihwa and set up a Turki Government. The conspirators are said to be well supplied with hand grenades, rifles and machine guns. Over a hundred arrests have been made and large caches of arms have reportedly been discovered.

On May 1 a fire, alleged by police to have been set by these plotters, broke out on the military airfield, destroying three planes. Tihwa is now under strict although unannounced martial law.

Disturbances are spreading throughout the province. The [Hami road] has been mined. Part of the Mongol garrison at Yenki has deserted to the insurgents who, numbering about 1500, threaten the city from the northwest. Plainclothesmen from Ining are crossing the passes into the Tarik, threatening Kashgar where Ward says serious trouble may develop. Insurgents in the Ining valley are forcing conscription.

Although apparently the Tihwa’s police have extracted from prisoners “confessions” implicating the Soviet Consulate, General Chu Shao-liang has informed Ward that he does not believe it. The General also considers without foundation a rumor that Soviet planes have dropped men and supplies on the Soviet side of the border near Kashgar.

Sent to the Department, repeated to Moscow.