Foreign Powers during SS.doc

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Nhung Tuyet Tran

Foreign Threats During Self-Strengthening 1. Japanese occupation of Taiwan 1874 a) The status of Ryukyu had been ambiguous for some time. It had long been a tributary state of China. However for over two centuries it had also secretly paid tribute to Japan. In 1871 54 shipwrecked Ryukyuan sailors were killed by aborigenes on Taiwan. In 1873 the Japanese Foreign Minister raised this issue with China, claiming the right to speak on behalf of Ryukyuans. The initial Chinese response was that Ryukyu was a Chinese tributary state and Taiwan part of China – therefore this incident had nothing to do with Japan. The Japanese rejected this argument and in 1874 a Japanese army landed on Taiwan. b) Chinese response: The director of the Fuzhou dockyard was ordered to defend the island. However, he then discovered that the guns made in the arsenals could only fire salutes. c) Negotiations then took place, with British mediation. China paid an indemnity of half million taels and agreed not to condemn Japan’s action. 2. Russian Occupation of Ili 1871-81 a) The Ili valley was in the northwest of China and bordered Russian Turkestan. The valley was economically valuable and strategically important. Russia had been gradually expanding in central Asia. However, in 1862 the Tungan rebellion against the Chinese government began and by 1864 the Qing government had lost control over parts of the area. The rebellion was finally suppressed by 1873. But whilst it was still going on, in 1871, Russia occupied the Ili valley. The Russians said they would return it once China had restored control in the region. By 1877 this had b
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