The United States paid money and gave other benefits to former members of a Japanese germ warfare unit two years after the end of World War II to obtain data on human experiments conducted in China, according to two declassified U.S. government documents.

It has been known that the Allies offered to waive war crime charges at the tribunal for officers of the Imperial Japanese Army's Unit 731 in exchange for experiment data.

But the latest findings reveal Washington's eagerness to obtain such data even by providing monetary rewards, despite the horrific nature of the unit's activities, in an attempt to beat the Soviet Union in the arms development race.

Historians believe that some 3,000 people died in the experiments conducted in China by the unit led by military doctor Shiro Ishii before and during the war.