HC Deb 25 March 1901 vol 91 cc1098-9
SIR E. ASHMEAD-BARTLETT (Sheffield, Ecclesall)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs whether the Russian Government have presented to the Government of China a somewhat modified form of the agreement signed between the Russian and Chinese local representatives at Port Arthur; whether this last agreement reserves for Russia exclusive privileges in regard to all mines, railways, and industrial developments in Manchuria, and binds China to construct a railway from the Trans-Siberian Railway to the Great Wall, such railway to be under Russian military guardianship; and whether Russia has withdrawn from the so-called Concert of Europe.


We understand that the terms of the proposed agreement are still under discussion, and I am unable to make any positive statement on the subject. The Russian Government have informed us that they have no intention of withdrawing from co-operation with the other Powers in the affairs of China.


Do the other Powers accept the principle that the agreement should be made behind their backs?


I am afraid that that is a question of which I must ask for notice.