§ 58. Lieut.-Colonel HOWARD - BURY
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether, in view of the recent developments at Hankow and the protests from Tientsin, he will consider the advisability of adopting a similar policy to the Japanese Government, which has stated that it has no intention of returning any concessions to China in the present unpropitious circumstances?
Mr. LOCKER - LAMPSON
His Majesty's Government have no intention of going back on their proposals regarding arrangements for the concessions, which were communicated to the Chinese authorities at Peking and Hankow in January last, and published in the Press on 3rd February. These proposals were made after a careful examination of all the circumstances.
§ Lieut.-Colonel HOWARD-BURY
Is my hon. Friend aware that fear has been expressed in Tientsin and Shanghai that we have landed over our rights without having exacted sufficient safeguards from the Chinese authorities?
That question does not quite arise out of the answer, but negotiations are now going on with the Chinese authorities in regard to Tientsin, and I hope that an amicable arrangement may be arrived at.
Sir F. HAUL
May I ask whether, in entering into the agreement with regard to Hankow, any arrangements were made with the Chinese authorities asking them to assist in stopping all this anti-British propaganda?
§ Mr. THURTLE
Does the hon. Gentleman accept the statement in the last part of the question with regard to Japanese policy in China as being well-founded?
As a matter of fact the information we have received from Japan shows that there is a good deal of divergence of opinion. I believe the Japanese Consul-General in Hankow is prepared to sign a similar agreement to ourselves?
When the agreement was signed it was certainly understood between ourselves and the Southern Government that everything possible would be done to safeguard the interests of both side?.
§ Mr. LOOKER
May I ask whether it is a fact, as stated in the Press, that Baron Shidahari has stated that the Japanese have no intention of returning their concessions at present?
§ 59. Mr. LOOKER
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether any negotiations with the Nationalist (Cantonese) Government are in progress or in contemplation in respect of any other British concessions in China situate 29 within the area controlled by the Nationalist Government regarding which no agreement has yet been entered into?
No negotiations are at present in progress regarding British concessions in the area under the control of the Nationalist Government. His Majesty's Government have, in their proposals communicated to the Chinese authorities at Peking and Hankow on 27th and 28th January last and published in the Press on 3rd February, declared their willingness to discuss and enter into arrangements for the modification of the municipal arrangements of all British concessions.
§ Mr. LOOKER
Is it not a fact that the Nationalist Government have failed to respect British rights, and have failed to restrain their followers from acts of violence in the British concessions at Wuhu and Ning Po, and does the hon. Gentleman not think it desirable, in these circumstances, to defer any further negotiations with the Nationalist Government?
I think my hon. Friend is under a misapprehension. At the two places he has mentioned there are no British concessions at all.
I agree that they are, but they are not British concessions in respect of which any negotiations such as those referred to are being undertaken.
§ Sir J. NALL
Notwithstanding that fact, are we to understand that the British Government will do their best to protect British rights?