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File No. 493.11/450.
The American Chargé d'Affaires to the Secretary of State. No. 2001.]
Peking, November 3, 1913. Sir: With reference to that part of my No. 1035 of the 3d ultimo 1 relative to the statement of the Chairman of the International Claims Commission, the Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, that after December 31, 1913, the Chinese Government would not entertain any claims for indemnity for losses incurred during the Revolution (1911-1912) which were not submitted before that date, I have the honor to enclose a copy of the Legation's note of the 29th ultimo protesting against this proposal, together with a copy in translation of the reply of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, in which it is suggested that, previous to December 30th, the Legation submit a list of the claims to be presented, the names of the claimants, the localities where the losses occurred, and the amount of the claims, and stated that the details of the claims, the proofs to be submitted, and the method of investigation might be brought up for discussion at the time of settling the claims. I have [etc.]
E. T. WILLIAMS.
Peking, October 29, 1913. EXCELLENCY: With reference to the claims submitted by foreigners on account of losses sustained in the Revolution I have the honor to observe that in the minutes of the first meeting of the International Claims Commission on September 30, 1913, it is recorded that the Chairman of the Commission, His Excellency Ts'ao Ju-lin, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, stated that all claims submitted after December 31, 1913, would fail of consideration by the Commission, and it is further recorded that the Acting American Claims Commissjoner made the statement that the American Legation was unable to agree to this time limitation.
In confirmation of the above statement I have the honor to inform your excellency that owing to the very careful scrutiny to which American claims are being submitted by the Department of State there is a possibility that these claims may not be ready for presentation to the Chinese Government until after December 31, 1913. At the same time I am unable on that account to waive their consideration, and I am compelled to insist that these claims shall receive the same attention that they would were they presented before December 31, 1913. I avail (etc.)
E. T. WILLIANS,
[Inclosure 2- Translation. )
The Minister for Foreign Affaires to the American Chargé d'Affaires.
Peking, Norcmber 1, 1913. Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note stating that 10 the matter of the claims for losses suffered by foreigners during the Revolution, it was recorded in the minutes of the first meeting of the International Claims. Commission that claims presented after December 31, 1913, would fail of consideration by the Commission; but you went on to state that owing to the very careful serutiny to which American claims are being submitted by
* Not printed.
the Department of State there is a possibility that these claims may not be ready for presentation to the Chinese Government until after December 31, 1913; you stated, however, your inability on that account to waive their consideration, and you requested that these claims should receive the same attention that they would were they received before December 31, 1913. .
I have the honor to point out that if no time limit is set within which the claims for losses as stated above must be presented, there is danger that their consideration will be unduly protracted, thus delaying indefinitely the indemnifying of foreign merchants and other citizens for their losses in the Revolution, The Ministry could not but feel great regret at such a result, and at the time of the first meeting of the Claims Commission the various Commissioners offered no objection to the plan; hence it seemed very feasible.
However, since you have on these several occasions consulted with regard to a slight modification of the procedure in your case I cannot but accede to your desires. I have the honor to suggest, therefore, that previous to December 30, 1913, the number of the claims to be presented, the names of the claimants, the localities where the losses occurred, and the amount of the claims, be set forth in writing for record. The details of the claims, the proofs to be submitted and the method of investigation can all be brought up for discussion at the time of settling the claims. This seems quite practicable, although an exception made in your favor, and it is hoped that you will realize the good faith that prompts it and do all in your power to further the plan. With my compliments,
Sun Pao KI. File No. 493.11/432.
The Secretary of State to the American Minister.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, December 3, 1913. Sir: The Department is in receipt of the Legation's dispatch No. 1035 of October 3, 1913, in regard to the representation of this Gor. ernment on the Commission for the investigation of claims arising out of the Revolution in China.
The Department approves the course of the Legation in detailing Mr. Peck temporarily to represent the Legation on the Commission and likewise approves Mr. Peck's protest against the limitation of time for the presentation of claims to December 31, 1913.
Inasmuch as Mr. Williams, Counsul at Dalny, investigated outrages on Americans in Shensi and is now engaged on American claims at Peking, the Department designates him as permanent representative on that Commission and authorizes the Legation at its discretion to demand an extension of at least six months in the time within which claims may be presented. I am [etc.]
For the Secretary of State:
J. W. FOLK.
File No. 493.11/457.
The American Minister to the Secretary of State.
Peking, December 19, 1913. The Chinese Government desires to pay each claim arising out of the revolution as soon as it is allowed. The Diplomatic Corps has not
yet reached a decision to accept immediate separate payment of the claims. It may be difficult to secure payment of claims after the sum of two million pounds sterling set aside for that purpose is exhausted. Authority is requested to present each American claim immediately upon its approval. It is further requested that the Legation be authorized to urge upon the Diplomatic Corps to give priority to such claims as are founded on direct and proximate results of the revolution.
File No. 493.11/457.
The Acting Secretary of State to the American Minister.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, December 20, 1913. Authorizes him to present each American claim upon its approval by the Department and to urge the Diplomatic Corps to give priority to claims for actual losses resulting directly from the revolution. His efforts to this end should not commit this Government to the prejudice of such freedom of action as might be necessary in case other Governments should support claims for actual but indirect losses.
SECOND INTERNATIONAL OPIUM CONFERENCE. REPORT OF THE
AMERICAN DELEGATES. RATIFICATION BY THE UNITED
STATES OF THE OPIUM CONVENTION.' File No. 511,4A1/1364b.
H. Dọc. No. 33, G31 Cong, 1st sess.
Message from the President to the Congress transmitting a communi
cation from the Secretary of State.? TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES:
In transmitting the accompanying report from the Secretary of State. I most strongly urge not only the immediate appropriation of the sum of $20,000 which is asked, the absolute necessity for which is so apparent, but also the enactment of the requisite anti-drug legislation to which this Government is pledged internationally.
It is a source of gratification to me personally, and it will always be, I am confident, a subject of gratification to the nation, that this Government, realizing the extent of the opium and allied evils, should have initiated the world-wide movement towards their abolition. At this vital period of the movement, to fail to take the few final steps necessary definitively and successfully to conclude the work would be unthinkable, and I therefore trust that there may be no delay in the enactment of the desired legislation, and the consequent mitigation if not suppression of the vice which has caused such world wide misery and degradation.
WOODROW WILSON. THE WHITE HOUSE, April 21, 1913.
I continued from For Rel. 1912, pp. 182-224 ; see also in that volume the Annual Afssage of the President, p. xix.
• Referred to the Committee on Appropriations.
The Secretary of State to the President.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington. [Not dated. THE PRESIDENT:
Since the early days of our relations with China and other Oriental countries it has been a constant policy of this Government to aid such countries in their efforts to prevent the development of an opium evil within their borders, or to assist them towards the eradication of such an evil where it already existed. In conformity with this established policy, and as early as 1833, in the various treaties negotiated with China, Japan and Siam, American citizens were absolutely forbidden either directly or indirectly to engage in the opium trade, or were permitted to engage in the trade only in conformity with the laws of those countries.
In the autumn of 1906, when this Government learned that China had set on foot earnest efforts to crush out the opium evil within her boundaries, it initiated an international movement which aimed to secure on behalf of the Chinese effort the cooperation of those Western Powers having territorial possessions in the Far East and who were concerned therefore in the economic, diplomatic and other controversies arising from the Far Eastern opium traffic. The international movement inaugurated by this Government was not only fully justified by the fact that it had since its earliest contact with the Orient forbidden American citizens to engage in the opium trade, but because it was found necessary to protect the population of the Philippine Islands against the effects of the traffic. In furtherance of its purpose this Government in September, 1906, entered upon a correspondence' with the Governments of Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands and China to ascertain if the time had not arrived for the interested Governments to determine if the entire Far Eastern opium traffic could not be brought to an end. The above mentioned Governments willingly offered to cooperate with the United States, and agreed to a joint investigation of the question. Thereupon six other nations, namely Russia, Austria-Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Persia and Siam, particularly interested in the Orient, were also invited to join in the investigation, and in February, 1909, there met at Shanghai, China, the International Opium Commission. That Commission thoroughly examined the opium question in all its bearings, and arrived at nine unanimous conclusions which in substance condemned the evils associated with the production and use of opium and morphine, and contained recommendations as to the measures to be taken to bring such abuses to an end.
But the International Opium Commission was not empowered to negotiate a convention binding the participating powers. It was a commission for the purpose of study, consideration and recommendation. To obtain a more positive result, a further step was necessary: an international convention to be agreed upon in conference by delegates of the interested Governments, such a convention to provide not only international rules under which opium should be produced and the traffic therein conducted, but also the general rules by which opium
should be confined to strictly medicinal purposes in the territories of the different countries. Accordingly, in the autumn of 1909 this Government issued a proposal 1 to those Governments which had been represented in the International Commission that there should be a conference composed of delegates with full powers to meet at The Hague or elsewhere to conventionalize the conclusion arrived at by the International Opium Commission and the essential corollaries derived therefrom. The proposal contained a tentative programme which proved to be generally acceptable.
The Netherlands Government very promptly and courteously requested that the Conference meet at The Hague, and on December 1, 1911, on invitation of the Queen of the Netherlands, a conference of the powers represented in the Shanghai Commission, assembled there, and the delegates thereto were authorized by their Governments to formulate and sign an international convention. In the correspondence between the United States and the several Governments which led to the assembling of the Conference the necessity for the consideration not only of the opium evil, but also of the morphine, cocaine and Indian hemp drug evil was developed, and it was agreed by the interested Governments that those questions were to be included in the programme of work, and by convention were to be placed under the same limitations as opium.
On the 23rd of January, 1912, the delegates to The Hague Conference signed a Convention composed of strict stipulations as to the production and the international and national traffic in opium, morjhine and cocaine; and, an important point, it confirmed to China all that had been agreed upon between that country and Great Britain by virtue of their agreement of May 8, 1911. (See Senate Document No. 733, 62 nd Congress, 2nd Session.")
That the questions dealt with by the Shanghai Commission were not only humanitarian and moral but also questions of great economic importance, had been partly realized and was steadily developed during the sittings of The Hague Conference. Since it was found that they affected not only the revenue and economic interests of the twelve powers with Oriental relations whose representatives had assembled at The Hague but also the major part of the other nations of the world, the Conference came to the conclusion that to make its Convention effective it was necessary to secure adherence thereto by the other nations of the world. Therefore the Convention was so drafted that it was not to become effective until thirty-four other nations named in Article 22 of the Convention should add their signatures to the instrument by means of a Protocol of Supplementary signatures to be opened at The Hague.
The necessary supplementary signatures to the Convention were to be secured by December 31 last, the Netherlands Government and the United States cooperating to that end. In the event of failure to secure all thirty-four signatures the Netherlands Government engaged immediately to call a final conference of all signatory powers, that conference to determine upon the deposit of ratifications of the Convention. Up to the 31st of last December, the two Governments had secured the signatures, or been assured of the signatures,
· For. Rel. 1909, pp. 107-111. * For. Rel. 1911, p. 56.
. For. Rel. 1912, p. 188 et seq.
"Id., 193 et seg.