893.00/7–2946: Telegram

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

1217. Following message has been received from Kunming, 71, July 27, 5 p.m., from Sprouse.5

Accompanied by Foreign Office special delegate, Melby,6 McGeary and I, in accordance with arrangements made last evening, called this morning on garrison commander General Ho Kwei-chang. We were received by General Ho Shao-chou, deputy commander, who stated garrison commander absent from city. Ho extended oral assurances of full protection for refugees and stated guards would be placed at three places of residence (chosen by refugees) to which he desired refugees proceed. He explained guards would be used for purpose of protection and in no sense for purpose of surveillance but that refugees would be required to inform guards if they left such places. Permission for departure from these three points would not be required. Ho also stated he would facilitate departure from Kunming of those refugees wishing to leave. He sent [apparent [Page 1418] omission] to accompany McGeary and Huang of Consulate staff in order to locate places chosen by refugees. General Ju of Foreign Affairs section of garrison headquarters subsequently informed McGeary that headquarters referred [preferred] refugees postpone their departure from Consulate until tomorrow. He explained it is not felt “safe” for them to proceed to places until maps of area had been prepared and all arrangements made for protection. He said formal note would be sent to Consulate tomorrow informing us of completion of necessary preparations.

Garrison command informed Consulate last Tuesday and Wednesday that formal note confirming above guarantees of protection, which had been given orally by garrison commander to McGeary and Roser7 July 20, had been forwarded to Consulate through Foreign Office delegate, but Foreign Office advises that note so far not received.

Refugees state Minister of Education has sent representative to Kunming who has made arrangements for departure by Tuesday plane with him en route to Nanking of three Lienta professors, permission for such travel having been given by garrison commander and local police chief. Remaining refugees are Yunta or non-university personnel. McGeary [Sprouse].

  1. Philip D. Sprouse, Second Secretary of Embassy in China.
  2. John F. Melby, Second Secretary of Embassy in China.
  3. Harold C. Roser, Vice Consul at Kunming.