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Decree to instruct Sir Robert Hart, the Inspector-General of the Imperial Maritime Customs, to apply to the allied Commanders-inchief for an escort to accompany your Excellency from Shanghae to Peking.
In obedience to the Imperial command I shall shortly leave Shanghae, and you are to request Lord Salisbury to be so good as to issue the necessary telegraphic instructions to the Commanders of Her Majesty's marine and land forces at Taku, Tien-tsin, and Peking, to afford me their protection. The Chinese Ministers at other Courts have been instructed to make communications to the Governments to which they are severally accredited in the same
The Marquess of Salisbury to Mr. Herbert.
Foreign Office, September 10, 1900. THE French Minister called at the Foreign Office to-day and showed to Mr. Bertie the telegraphic instructions which had been sent to the French Minister at Peking.
They are to the effect that the French Government adhere to the views of the Russian Government that the object of the expedition to Peking, namely, the relief of the Legation being accomplished, there is no reason to remain there.
M. Pichon is, therefore, to arrange with the Russian Minister and General to leave, as soon as possible, with the Legation staff and French troops and such native Christians as may desire to accompany the party.
The French Government are of opinion that with the large international force which there will be at Tien-tsin and Taku, there is no doubt that any return of lawlessness on the part of the Chinese can easily be repressed from those bases.
I am, &c.,
Hon. M. II. Herbert.
Sir C. Scott to the Marquess of Salisbury.-(Received September 11.) St. Petersburgh, September 11, 1900. THE statement made by the Russian General at Peking, reported in Sir C. MacDonald's telegram of the 2nd instant, must be is reference to some orders previously given him by the Russian Commander-in-chief in China. Positive instructions to withdraw were dispatched to the Russian General on the 25th August. He has not yet acknowledged their receipt, and M. de Giers, in a telegram dated the 4th September, expresses his surprise that his
numerous requests to be furnished with general instructions should have remained unanswered.
The Russian Foreign Office have already dispatched six messages to their Minister, and have caused these to be repeated to Taku, so that they should be transmitted to their Legation at Peking.
Sir C. Scott to the Marquess of Salisbury.-(Received September 11.)
St. Petersburgh, September 11, 1900. I CALLED to-day on Count Lamsdorff, and made to him the communication contained in your Lordship's telegram of yesterday's
In reply, his Excellency begged me to make it quite clear to Her Majesty's Government that the different course decided upon as regards the Russian troops was not in any way to be taken as indicating the slightest intention of separating the general action and policy of Russia in China from those of the Powers who might prefer to keep their detachments in Peking. It was, however, considered desirable to have the Russian troops as well as the Russian Minister as soon as possible in a position where communication with their Government would be easy and rapid.
He assured me that, on the contrary, the Emperor was more firmly determined than ever to continue in loyal co-operation with all the other Powers, and to abide by his agreement with them as to common aim and direction, and the Russian action and aims would be faithfully kept within the limits of the statement made in Count Lamsdorff's Circular communicated to the Powers.
He assured me, further, that there was nothing more foreign to the Emperor's mind than to entertain the selfish aims or motives for his action which certain foreign newspapers had credited him with.
The Chinese Minister in St. Petersburgh has been requested by Count Lamsdorff to impress on Li Hung-chang, as well as on the Emperor of China, a firm conviction of the entire solidarity of the views of Russia and of other Governments, and to warn them seriously against interpreting the departure of Russian forces from Peking as in any way indicating the slightest separation of her action in exerting common pressure on the Chinese Government from that of other Powers.
When doing so, however, he appears to have expressed a personal opinion that an early withdrawal from Peking of the other foreign forces would be facilitated by a prompt return of the Imperial Court to the capital.
I gather from Count Lamsdorff that, as far as had as yet been decided, the German and Japanese Governments were not prepared to withdraw their forces from Peking at present, but that the American and French Governments would withdraw their Legations and forces as soon as the Russians withdrew theirs.
Sir C. Scott to the Marquess of Salisbury.-(Received September 11.)
St. Petersburgh, September 11, 1900. THE Chinese Minister here has made a similar communication to that repeated in your telegram of 10th September to the Russian Foreign Office and to the Austrian Ambassador. It is dated the 7th September from Shanghae. Prince Ching is not mentioned in the Imperial Edict; but Count Lamsdorff has learned that he is to co-operate with Li Hung-chang in negotiating for peace, and he considers the news good. The addition of certain other names to the list of negotiators would, in his Excellency's opinion, have been satisfactory.
Count Lamsdorff is convinced, by the form and text of the Imperial Edict, that the Emperor himself has issued it, and granted full powers to arrange and conclude the terms of peace.
Sir C. MacDonald to the Marquess of Salisbury.—(Received
Peking, September 7, 1900. I HAVE received your Lordship's telegram of the 31st August. The Russian Minister, as stated in my telegram of the 4th September, announced his departure in two days, and leaves Peking to-morrow. There was no mention of the departure of the Russian General. I think that a general massacre of Christian converts and of all Chinese who have shown themselves friendly to foreigners would most certainly ensue if all foreign troops leave now.
I am of opinion that the departure of the Legations now would be most inexpedient, and I think that their withdrawal from the capital would hinder future negotiations. The Court would be alarmed by such a step, and it would probably cause the departure of Prince Ching, who, with some diplomacy, has been persuaded to return here.
When the Corps Diplomatique have once succeeded in persuading the high officials, and possibly the Emperor, to return here, and
* Page 1265.
Plenipotentiaries have been appointed with unrestricted powers, we might request those Plenipotentiaries to come to Shanghae to conduct the negotiations, as that place is in closer touch than Peking with Europe.
Peking would be preferable to Shanghae or Tien-tsin in which to carry on negotiations if telegraphic communication were properly restored.
In my opinion, a General would have considerable difficulty in getting into touch with the Court if unaided by the Ministers.
The Marquess of Salisbury to Sir E. Monson.*
Foreign Office, September 12, 1900. Ir is stated by the Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs that the Emperor will continue to co-operate loyally with the other Powers on the lines of the Russian Circular, notwithstanding the withdrawal of Russian troops from Peking.
This has been impressed upon the Chinese Minister at Peking by Count Lamsdorff.
Foreign Office to Consul Carles.
Foreign Office, September 12, 1900.
THE Marquess of Salisbury read with interest your despatch of the 28th June, reporting the feat performed by Mr. James Watts in riding with despatches through the Chinese lines from Tien-tsin to Taku.
His Lordship desires you to express to Mr. Watts his high appreciation of this courageous and public-spirited act, and to inform him that your report of it has been laid before the Queen. I am, &c.,
W. R. Carles, Esq.
Acting Consul-General Warren to the Marquess of Salisbury.-
Shanghae, September 13, 1900. TO-MORROW his Excellency Li Hung-chang starts for Tien-tsin. He hopes, with his colleagues, Yung Lu and Prince Ching, to begin the peace negotiations. He urges Yung Lu to see the Emperor
* Also to Sir F. Lascelles, Sir H. Rumbold, Lord Currie, Sir C. Scott, Lord Pauncefote, and Mr. Whitehead (for Shanghae and Peking).
privately, and insist on the punishment of the Prince and the others who abetted the Boxer movement as a preliminary to the peace negotiations. He fears that his mission will fail unless be can meet the foreign Ministers with an assurance that the guilty will be condignly punished.
Acting Consul-General Warren to the Marquess of Salisbury.(Received September 14.)
Shanghae, August 7, 1900. I HAVE the honour to inclose translation of two Imperial Decrees of the 2nd August, communicated to me officially by his Excellency Shêng.
Both Decrces lay the blame for the present situation on the missionaries and their converts. The first Decree provides for the escort of the Ministers to Tien-tsin, and significantly alludes to the possibility of their being attacked en route. It also allows for messages en clair being transmitted on their behalf by the Tsung-li Yamên. In view of this I yesterday sent a message to Sir Claude MacDonald, to which a reply might come within five days.
The second Decree begins with a declaration of neutrality towards civilian foreigners, but commands a campaign of extermination against native converts, unless they are willing to throw in their lot with the Imperialist side. The Boxers are called "Patriots," and the acts of violence committed in their name are provided for in advance by the allusion to robbers and banditti pretending to be "Patriots." These Decrees are considered by local Chinese to imply a certain degree of weakening in Prince Tuan's power in the capital. On the other hand, the reports-which appear to be quite authentic-of the execution of two Tsung-li Yamên Ministers, Hsu Ching Cheng and Yuan Ch'ang, clearly show that whether Prince Tuan's individual authority has or has not decreased, the capital is in a state of indescribable confusion, in which the anti-foreign party is absolutely predominant, and which renders the situation of foreigners there most dangerous. I have, &c.,
The Marquess of Salisbury.
PELHAM L. WARREN.
(Inclosure 1.)-Imperial Decree of August 2, 1900.
WHEREAS on account of the recent troubles in the capital between the populace and missionaries and their converts, war has broken out between China and the foreign Powers;
And whereas all the Ministers of foreign countries resident in