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28, 1890, Her Britannic Majesty engaged to recommend to Parliament a reduction of 5s. per cwt. in the duty on imported currants." In the important general treaties of commerce and navigation, which stipulate on the part of Great Britain for most-favored-nation treatment rather than for special tariff concessions, concluded December 5, 1876, with Austria-Hungary, July 23, 1862, with Belgium, May 30, 1865, with Germany, June 15, 1883, with Italy, July 16, 1894, with Japan, and January 12, 1859, with Russia, no such reservations are found. With respect to the convention signed at Brussels March 5, 1902, for the abolition of bounties and the limitation of the surtax on sugar, the House of Commons, by a resolution adopted November 24, 1902, approved the policy embodied in the convention, and declared that in the event of its receiving the ratification required to make it binding, the House was prepared to adopt the necessary measures to enable His Majesty to carry out its provisions. The House thus pledged itself to execute the convention.
Blackstone wrote more than a century and a quarter ago, “Natural allegiance is therefore a debt of gratitude which cannot be forfeited, cancelled or altered by any chance of time, place or circumstances, nor by anything but the united concurrence of the legislature."3 In the negotiations leading up to the naturalization treaty of May 13, 1870, with the United States, recognizing the right of expatriation, the British government maintained that legislation by Parliament should precede the signing of the treaty, or else its validity should be made depend
"Art. I. Ibid., vol. Ixxxii, p. 11. See 53 & 54 Vict., c. 8, sec. 3. ? Parliamentary Debates (4th series), vol. cxv, pp. 271, 371. 3 Commentaries, vol. i, p. 369.
ent upon such legislation. No act for this purpose having passed Parliament, when the protocol of October 9, 1868, embodying the substance of what was afterwards incorporated in the treaty, was signed by Mr. Johnson and Lord Stanley, it was expressly stipulated that, since it would not be practicable for Great Britain to carry into operation the principles laid down in the protocol until provision had been made by Parliament for a revision of the laws, the protocol should not take effect until such legislation had been accomplished.' The treaty as signed May 13, 1870, contains no such reservation, since an act of Parliament of May 12 recognized the principles of the treaty and enacted them into law.” A supplemental convention was signed February 23, 1871, and, to remove all doubts as to whether the act of 1870 provided for the full execution of it, the additional act of July 25, 1872, was passed.3
In matters usually subject to uniform international regulation, provision is often made by a general law for the execution of agreements concluded in conformity thereto. The extradition act of 1870, as supplemented by the acts of 1873 and 1895, provides (sec. 2) that "Where an arrangement has been made with any foreign state with respect to the surrender to such state of any fugitive criminals, Her Majesty may, by order in council, direct that the said act shall apply in the case of such foreign state." Under these acts Her Majesty, by orders in council of February 22, 1896, November 27, 1896, August 9, 1898, and October 20, 1898, made ef
'Bril. and For. State Papers, vol. lix, pp. 29, 30, 32. ' Ibid., vol. Ix, p. 267. • Ibid., vol. Ixii, p. 1208. See act of 1895, ibid., vol. Ixxxvii, p. 944. • Ibid., vol. 1x, p. 145; vol. Ixiii, p. 391; vol. Ixxxvii, p. 957.
fective respectively the treaties of extradition of February 13, 1896, with France, August 27, 1896, with Belgium, January 26, 1897, with Chile, and February 22, 1892, with Bolivia.' Prior to the passage of the act of 1870, special statutes were required to make such treaties effective. Article X of the treaty of August 9, 1842, with the United States, which related to extradition, was not effective as a law of the land until the passage, August 22, 1843, of an act for that purpose.' Another act of the same date, for the execution of the treaty of extradition with France of February 13, 1843, failed to give full effect to the treaty. During the period between 1843 and 1852, out of fourteen fugitives claimed by France only one was secured under the treaty.3 In each of the extradition treaties signed May 28, 1852, with France, April 15, 1862, with Denmark, and March 5, 1864, with Prussia, an article was inserted * in which the operation of the treaty was expressly made dependent upon the passage by Parliament of the necessary laws for its execution. In the first of these treaties the Crown engaged only to recommend to Parliament the passage of an appropriate act; and, Parliament having refused to provide the requisite legislation, the treaty remained inoperative, although the exchange of ratifications had taken place.5 Section 238 of the general merchant shipping act of August 25, 1894, authorizes the Crown to apply by order in council the provisions of the act for surrendering
'Brit. and For. State Papers, vol. lxxxviii, pp. 179, 180; vol. xc, pp. 231, 235.
'6 & 7 Vict. c. 76.
* Art. XV, Art. IV and Art. III respectively. Brit. and For. State Papers, vol. xli, p. 20; vol. lii, p. 30; vol. liv, p. 20.
• Hansard's Debates, vol. cxxi, p. 1370; vol. cxxii, pp. 192, 561, 1278.
deserting seamen to any foreign country that guarantees similar facilities for the recovery of deserters from British merchant vessels. By order in council of February 3, 1898, these provisions were made applicable to Japan.'
Section 103 of the general patent and trade-marks act of 1883, as amended by the act of 1885, gives similar power to the Crown as to patent and trade-mark agreements. By orders in council of October 15, 1894, November 20, 1894, and October 7, 1899, privileges under these acts were extended to Greece, Denmark and Japan respectively.' In the preamble of the international copyright act of 1886 is the following recital with respect to the draft of a convention agreed to at the Berne conference of 1885, “And whereas, without the authority of Parliament, such convention cannot be carried into effect in Her Majesty's dominions and consequently Her Majesty cannot become a party thereto, and it is expedient to enable Her Majesty to accede to the convention: Be it therefore enacted * * *”3 If the stipulations of a copyright convention do not transcend the provisions of the general international copyright acts they may be made effective by an order in council. An order of April 30, 1894, gave effect to the special convention with Austria-Hungary of April 24, 1893. The act of August 2, 1883, to carry into effect the North Sea fisheries convention, signed May 6, 1882, and to amend the laws relating to
'Brit. and For. State Papers, vol. Ixxxvi, p. 724; vol. xc, p. 201. See similar provision in foreign deserters act of 1852, ibid., vol. xli, p. 680.
*46 & 47 Vict. c. 57. Brit. and For. State Papers, vol. Ixxxvi, pp. 118, 122; vol. xci, p. 1130.
* 49 50 Vict. c. 33.
*7 & 8 Vict. c. 12; 15 & 16 Vict. c. 12; 38 & 39 l'ict. c. 12. Brit. and For. State Papers, vol. Ixxxvi, p. 97.
British sea fisheries, authorized Her Majesty to apply the act in whole or in part to conventions that might be made with foreign powers respecting sea fisheries.' The postal-union convention signed at Berne, October 9, 1874, was carried into effect by the act of June 14, 1875. By section 2 of this act the Treasury is authorized to make such regulations as may seem necessary for carrying into effect arrangements made by Her Majesty with any foreign country with respect to the conveyance by post of any postal packet between the United Kingdom and places outside; and by section 14 of the act of August 18, 1882, to modify or except, on the recommendation of the Commissioners of Customs and the Postmaster-General, for the purpose of carrying into effect any treaty or agreement with a foreign state, the application of any of the customs enactments to foreign parcels.
By a treaty with Belgium of February 17, 1876, packetboats employed in the conveyance of postal matter between certain ports were to be considered as having the immunities and privileges of ships of war. A collision occurred between a ship owned by British subjects and a packetboat, the “Parlement Belge,” running in accordance with the treaty between Dover and Ostend, a ship moreover the property of the King of the Belgians and carrying the royal pennon.
Acts of Parliament conferred a statutory right on owners of vessels damaged at sea by collision to obtain in the Admiralty Court redress by proceedings in
Such proceedings having been instituted against the “Parlement Belge,” the case came before Sir Robert
146 & 47 Vict, c. 22, sec. 23.