The Secretary of State to the Embassy in China
401. General purpose of Article IV of 1943 Extraterritoriality Treaty (Urtel 330, Feb. 20, 1946, 8 a.m.) is to insure that American rights and titles to real property in China existing at time of conclusion of the Treaty would be indefeasible, subject to qualification that such rights and titles would be subject to Chinese laws concerning [Page 1323] taxation, national defense and the right of eminent domain, that such rights or titles might not be alienated to the Govt or nationals of any third country without the consent of the Chinese Govt and that such rights and titles would be fully protected by any replacement deeds issued by the Chinese Govt. In other words, rights and titles existing at time of conclusion of 1943 Treaty continue in force with qualifications mentioned and word “prior” contextually refers to rights in existence at date of issuance of new deeds. The word “prior” must also be construed as covering rights in existence at time of conclusion of 1943 Treaty with exceptions already mentioned. Dept would be interested to learn purpose of inquiry.