Fighting Erupts at Langfang Between Chinese and Japanese Troops Despite Recent Truce
By 25 July, Japanese reinforcements in the form of the IJA 20th Division arrived and fighting re-erupted first at Langfang, a city on the railroad between Beijing and Tianjin, between companies of Japanese and Chinese troops.
A second clash occurred on 26 July, when a Japanese brigade attempted to force its way through Guanghuamen Gate in Beijing to “protect Japanese nationals”. The same day Japanese planes bombed Langfang.
The Japanese then issued an ultimatum to General Sung demanding the withdrawal of all Chinese forces from the outskirts of Beijing to the west of the Yungding River within 24 hours. Sung refused, ordered his units to prepare for action, and requested large reinforcements from the central government, which were not provided.
On 27 July, as the Japanese laid siege to Chinese forces in Tungchow, one Chinese battalion broke out and fell back to Nanyuan. Japanese planes also bombed Chinese forces outside Beijing and reconnoitered Kaifeng, Zhengzhou and Luoyang.
On 28 July, the IJA 20th Division and three independent combined brigades launched an offensive against Beijing, backed by close air support. The main attack was against Nanyuan and a secondary attack against Beiyuan. Bitter fighting ensued with both General Tong Linge Deputy Commander of Chinese 29th Route Army and General Zhao Dengyu commanding Chinese 132nd Division being killed, and their units suffering heavy casualties. However a brigade of Chinese 38th Division under General Liu Chen-san pushed back the Japanese in the Langfang area and a brigade of the Chinese 53rd Corps and a portion of the Chinese 37th Division recovered the railway station at Fengtai.
However, this was only a temporary respite, and by nightfall General Sung admitted that further combat was futile and withdrew the main force of Chinese 29th Route Army south of the Yungging River. Tianjin Mayor General Zhang Zizhong was left in Beijing to take charge of political affairs in Hebei and Chahar provinces with virtually no troops. General Liu Ruzhen's New Separate 29th Brigade was left in Beijing to maintain public order.
On 25 Jul, Japanese 20th Division arrived at the city of Langfang, which was on the railroad between Beijing and Tianjin, where the first major battle took place. On 26 Jul, a Japanese brigade attacked the Guanghua Gate of the Beijing city wall, supported by aircraft bombardment. On 27 Jul, as the Japanese laid siege to Chinese forces in Tungchow, one Chinese battalion broke out and fell back to Nanyuan.