740.00116 PW/2–645: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

1285. From Hodgson. At meeting Far East and Pacific Committee of War Crimes Commission held February 5 Committee decided to recommend to Commission that Chungking Subcommission be advised that it was deemed unnecessary to fix definite date for beginning of China–Japanese war and that Subcommission should consider each case on its merits and determine whether it occurred during a state of war or was incident to an act of war. Australian representative stated Australian Government now agreed that no competence of Subcommission should extend to war crimes committed before December 1941. In view of Chinese objection and the procedure followed by London Commission the Committee believed that it was inadvisable to fix July 7, 1937 as commencement of the mentioned war as proposed by myself. Commission will consider Committee’s recommendation on February 7.

Repeated to Chungking as 1. [Hodgson.]