HC Deb 22 June 1900 vol 84 cc781-2
MR. HERBERT LEWIS (Flint Boroughs)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has any official information from China to the effect that the Foreign Legations at Peking are safe; and whether there is any further news from Tientsin or from the expeditionary force.


We have no news from Peking, or from the expeditionary forces. A runner from Tientsin, 18th June, arriving at Ta-ku yesterday, gave information of the situation at Tientsin that several attacks had been made and repulsed. On 17th Chinese shelled foreign settlement. The Chinese Military College was then attacked by a mixed force of 175 Austrians, British, Germans, and Italians, who destroyed the guns, burnt the college with considerable store of ammunition, and killed the defenders. The Russians with their four heavy field guns did excellent service. The British loss was 1 killed, 5 wounded; the Germans, 1 killed; the Italians, 2 wounded; the Russians, 7 killed, 5 wounded. Chinese during night of 17th tried to seize bridge of boats, but were repulsed with loss, including, it is reported, a Chinese General. The Rear-Admiral at Ta-ku telegraphs last night that information has been received from Tientsin by runner up to 20th June, to the effect that fighting was going on, and that reinforcements were required. We have heard further by telegram from the Rear-Admiral, dated Ta-ku, last night, Chefoo this morning, as follows— I am hoping that Tientsin may be relieved to-night, 21st June. No news from Commander-in-Chief. Her Majesty's ship "Terrible'' landed this morning 382 officers and men of the 2nd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers and Royal Engineers. It is believed that various other bodies of troops will arrive within a day or two, if, indeed, they have not arrived already. Arrangements have been made by Her Majesty's Government to supplement very considerably the force already placed under orders for China.