Anglo-Japanese Alliance

The Rise of Japan

East Asia 1902.013

Anglo-Japanese Alliance

The Rise of Japan, the Spanish-American War, and the Boxer Rebellion (30 January 1902)

Historical Map of East Asia & the Western Pacific

During the Boxer Rebellion, Russia had occupied Manchuria. Suspicious of Russian intentions in the region and wary of its alliance with France, Britain and Japan signed a defensive agreement, promising to come to each other's aid should either of them get involved in a war with two or more powers.


Treaty Ports

Treaty ports - the small unlabelled circles on the map - were towns opened to foreign trade by unequal treaties in China, Japan, and Korea. Foreigners operating within treaty ports enjoyed extraterritoriality, being subject to their home country's laws. Unlike concessions such as Hong Kong, these territories were not directly leased by the foreign powers and did not have sizable foreign garrisons.

Only treaty ports that were opened by treaty and used are shown on the maps. Treaty ports are also not generally shown in places which are already covered by concessions or under occupation. Treaty ports are not shown after the 1911 Chinese Revolution, although they continued on into the 1940s.

Yangtze River

By the terms of the Treaty of Tientsin (1858), foreign vessels including warships had the right to free navigation on the Yangtze River. In practical terms, this right extended only as far as Yichang until 1900, when advances in steam navigation allowed access as far inland as Chongqing.

Main Events

Allied withdrawal from China

By 17 September 1901, the Eight-Nation Alliance of Austria-Hungary, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, and the United States had completed its withdrawal from Peking (Beijing) following the imposition of the Boxer Protocol on the Chinese Empire. In August 1902, they restored Tientsin (Tianjin) to China, ending their Provisional Government there. Remaining Allied forces withdrew from Shanghai later that year.

Anglo-Japanese Alliance

The United Kingdom and the Empire of Japan signed the Anglo-Japanese Alliance in London, promising that they will support each other if either country became involved in a war with more than one Great Power. The Alliance was announced on 12 February 1902 and marked the end of Britain's Splendid Isolation.

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