§ The SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir Austen Chamberlain)
Sir M. Lampson reports that the situation is at present nebulous. In Shantung, Chang Tsung-chang has been reinforced by the revolt to him of several thousands of ex-Northern troops who had been incorporated in the forces of the National Government, but no serious fighting has taken place. Fighting took place at Changsha in the last week of February, when a general belonging to the Kwangsi group forcibly displaced one of his colleagues. As the latter was the nominee of Nanking, the incident gave rise to rumours of an impending recrudescence of civil war, but 1100 according to the latest report from His Majesty's Consul-General at Shanghai the situation appears easier, and Marshal Li Tsungjen, the head of the Kwangsi party, who is at present in hospital in that town, has published a statement declaring his allegiance to the National Government and stating that the Changsha affair is of local significance only. The position may become clearer after the meeting of the Party Congress of the Kuomintang, which is due to open at Nanking on 15th March.