23 FEBRUARY 1901, Page 1

The China news is still far from satisfactory. As far

as can be ascertained, the course of recent events has been as follows. General Waidersee, finding that the Chinese were not going to carry out the demands of the Allies in regard to the punishment of the chief officials, ostentatiously began to make preparations for an expedition into the interior of China,—an expedition which it was rumoured had for its objective Sian, the new capitaL This had the desired effect, and on Thursday Prince Ching and Li Hung Chang are said to have received telegraphic instructions from the Court to notify to the Ministers that an Edict had been issued ordering punishment in conformity with the demands of the Powers. "General 'rung-fuh-siang is to be degraded and deprived of his rank ; Prince Than and Duke Lan are to be disgraced and exiled; Prince Chuang, Ying-nien, and Chao Shu-chiao are to commit suicide ; and Hsu Cheng-yu, Yu Hsien, and Chi-hsiu are to be beheaded." It is further stated that though Tung-fuh-siang is too power- ful to be touched at present, there is a private understanding that he will be executed as soon as possible. Renter's agent adds that European and Chinese Secretaries of Legation and others who have lived in China for years consider that China. has gained a victory, as none of them believe that Tung-fuh- sing, the chief offender, will ever suffer punishment. It WWndd be noted that though the Chinese have nominally

yielded, the preparations for the proposed expedition still con- tinue. We have dealt with the Chinese problem as a whole elsewhere, and can only say here that the position does not change for the better, but gets worse. If we look back over the period between the relief of the Legations and the present time, can it be said that any real progress has been made as regards a final settlement?