740.00119 PW/3–1146

The British Embassy to the Department of State


A communication was made by His Majesty’s Chargé d’Affaires in Moscow to the Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Eepublics on March 9th on the lines of the following:

“His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom are disturbed at reports which have reached them to the effect that Soviet forces have been engaged in removing from Manchuria Japanese-owned machinery and equipment from factories in Mukden and elsewhere.

2. These reports compel His Majesty’s Government to reserve all their rights and to place on record their view that the disposal of Japanese assets is a matter for discussion and settlement between the Allied Nations having claims to Japanese reparations.

3. In the absence of an agreement resulting from such discussion His Majesty’s Government regard it as appropriate that the State in whose territory they are located should retain such assets on a custodian basis to be debited against that State’s eventual share of Japanese reparations. But they cannot acquiesce in the unilateral removal of these assets by a third party nor can they recognise any agreement between individual Governments which purports to arrange for the final disposal and ownership of Japanese property, rights, interests and assets.

4. A copy of this note is being communicated to the Chinese Government.”