15 SEPTEMBER 1883, Page 1


rE French papers are still full of Tonquin, and the negotia- tions do not advance, though the Figaro declared them com- pleted. The stumbling-block appears to be this, that the French Government want to avenge their defeat in Tonquin, and also to possess control over the Songkoi, the great river which runs up to Yunnan, and the Chinese are determined not to have them there at all. There is, therefore, no true meeting-point, for the French, if they persist, must at once send reinforcements to Hanoi; and the Chinese Ambassador says that if they do, the war party at Pekin will at once send troops into the adjacent provinces, and there will be fatal consequences." There are rumours of mediation both by England and America, and though both are -untrue, it is believed that, although Great Britain will not "I' mediate" unless asked by both Powers, Lord Granville will press upon the French Foreign Office the danger which arises from the existing tension, and the necessity of agreement, especially upon the burning question of reinforcements.