Page images
PDF
EPUB

“ If, in addition, Mr. IIaskell is of the Jewish faith, he would be prevented from entering Russia also by the Russian law which prohibits the Russian consular officers abroad from visaing, without authority previously obtained, the passports of Hebrews, except in the case of certain exempted classes, which are bankers and chiefs of commercial houses of known importance, and brokers, representatives, clerks and agents of said houses having papers showing authority to represent them. In these cases the consular officers are directed to notify the minister of the interior that they have visaed such passport."

Mr. Hay, Sec. of State, to Mr. Belmont, Jan. 25, 1900, 242 MS. Dom.

Let. 391. “ The Department is just in receipt of a despatch from our minister at

St. Petersburg stating that Mr. Marks Nathan, an American Hebrew, had received permission from the minister of the interior to visit certain places in Russia, his request for that permission haring been supported by the good offices of the United States legation." (Mr. Adee, Second Assist. Sec. of State, to Mr. Aarons, Nov. 9, 1897,

2:22 MS. Dom. Let. 290.) " Petitions for release from Russian allegiance should be addressed by the

applicant directly to the minister of the interior at St. Petersburg." (Mr. Hill, Assist. Sec. of State, to Mr. Monkiewicz, March 10, 18, 235 MS. Dom. Let. 382.)

(14) SERVIA.

$ 454.

“ The information given below is believed to be correct, yet is not to be considered as official, as it relates to the laws and regulations of a foreign country.

“ Ordinarily all subjects of Servia are expected to perform at least two years' military service after they attain manhood.

"If a subject of Servia emigrates before he has fulfilled his military obligations, the Servian Government does not recognize a change of nationality made without the consent of the King, and upon his return he may be subject to molestation.

“If, however, he performed his military service before emigration, his acquisition of naturalization in the United States is recognized by the Servian Government.

“ There is no treaty between the United States and Servia defining the status of naturalized Americans of Servian birth returning to Servia."

Circular notice, Department of State, Washington, April 10, 1901, For.

Rel. 1901, 455.

(15) SPAIN.

$ 155.

Referring to your enquiry of January last, I have now to inform you that, according to a note of the Spanish minister of state, enclosed in despatch No. 270, from Madrid, the provisions of the following decree of Nov. 17, 1852 (art. 45), still apply to the case of a Spaniard who becomes naturalized, without complying with the law of military service, and returns to Spain in the character of foreigner, viz:

" " A foreigner naturalized in Spain and a Spaniard naturalized in the territory of another power without the knowledge and authority of their respective governments, shall not be exempt from the obligations belonging to their original nationality, although the Spanish subject in other respects loses the quality of Spaniard in accordance with the provisions of par. 5, art. 1 of the Constitution of the Monarchy.'"

Mr. Bayard, Sec. of State, to Mr. Blanco, Nov. 23, 1887, 166 MS. Dom.

Let. 201. In a dispatch to Mr. Bayard, No. 241, Aug. 19, 1887, Mr. Strobel, chargé

d'affaires ad int. at Madrid, said: * In accordance with instructions, an official statement has been re

quested of the minister of foreign affairs of the laws of Spain now in force 'affecting the status or liabilities of former subjects, once owing military service, who have been naturalized in foreign coun

tries, should such persons visit their native country.' " It may not be improper in the meantime to give what my own exam

ination shows the law on the subject to be. "Article I. of the constitution of 1876, now in force, says: The quality

of Spaniard is lost by naturalization in a foreign country ...' "Article 14 of the conscription law of July 11, 1885, also in force, makes

the following provision: ‘Only Spaniards shall be admitted to serv

ice in the army in any position whatever.' “ It seems, therefore, that a Spaniard naturalized in a foreign country

is not only exempt, under any circumstances, from military service

in Spain, but is actually prohibited therefrom. “I have assumed that the words, once owing military service' in the

instructions referred to, mean simply liability' and not actually

drafted.' “In the latter case, the question of desertion or criminality under mar

tial law might arise." (For. Rel. 1887, 9:18.) As a matter of fact, Spain habitually recognized, in Cuba, the full effect

of American naturalization in the case of her native subjects who

had been admitted to citizenship in the United States. For an exhaustive examination of the law of Spain, see Moore, Int.

Arbitrations, III. 2601-2613. See, also, Mr. Evarts, Sec. of State, to Mr. Fairchild, min. to Spain,

No. 20, May 11, 1880, 18 MS. Inst. Spain, 471-475. H. Doc. 551-vol 3— 42

(16) SWITZERLAND.

(a) SWISS LAW OF 1878.

$ 456.

By article 6 of the Swiss Federal law of July 3, 1876, concerning the acquisition and renunciation of Swiss citizenship, a Swiss citizen may renounce his citizenship if (1) he has no domicil in Switzerland: (2) he is enjoying full civil rights under the laws of the country where he resides; (3) he has already acquired citizenship in another country, or the assurance of its being granted, for himself, his wife, and minor children, when they are domiciled or living with him.

By article 7 the declaration of renunciation must be submitted in writing, accompanied with the required statements, to the cantonal government, which will notify the proper communal authorities, in order that notice may be given to any interested parties; and a term of four weeks is allowed for the presenting of objections. If objections are made, the decision upon them is rendered by the Federal Tribunal according to articles 61-63 of the law of June 27, 1874, in regard to the organization of the federal judiciary.

By article 8, if the conditions prescribed in article 6 are fulfilled and no objections are presented, or if objections were made, but have been judicially overruled, then the authorities authorized for the purpose by cantonal law will pronounce the discharge from the cantonal and communal citizenship. This discharge includes the loss of Swiss citizenship, and takes effect from the date of its issue and delivery to the applicant; and it extends to the wife and minor children, when they are domiciled or living with the applicant, if no special exceptions were made with regard to them.

By article 9 provision is made for the readmission to Swiss citizenship of persons who have lost it.

Articles 1-5 of the law relate to Swiss naturalization. Article 5 declares “ persons who, in addition to being Swiss citizens, are citizens of a foreign country, are not entitled to the privileges and the protection accorded to Swiss citizens during their residence in such foreign state."

By article 10, all provisions of federal or cantonal legislation conflicting with the law of July 3, 1876, are abrogated.

Mr. Rublee, chargé d'affaires to Switzerland, to Mr. Fish, Sec. of State.

Aug. 31, 1876, enclosing a copy and translation of the law in question.

(For. Rel. 1876, 507.) “I believe that the remedy (for difficulties growing out of the detention

in Switzerland of the property of natives of the country who have been naturalized in the United States) would be best attained were every Swiss, immediately upon his naturalization in the Unitei States, to comply, so far as within him lies, with the provisions of the

Swiss federal law of July 3, 1876

and that in every case where such compliance was thwarted by the action of the communal or cantonal authorities, the legation should be instructed to intervene diplomatically, and, failing to succeed, it shoula be empowered, after reference to the Department of State, to carry the appeal to the Tribunal Fédéral.” (Mr. Fish, chargé d'affaires to Switzerland, to Mr. Evarts, Sec. of State. Oct. 18, 1879, For. Rel. 1879, 973, 974.)

(b) DIPLOMATIK DISCUSSIONS.

$ 457.

“Your dispatch No. 218, of the 18th ultimo, has been received. It relates to the detention by the Swiss local authorities of property in Switzerland claimed by natives of that country naturalized in the United States. The reasons assigned for that detention are believed to be so insufficient practically, morally, and legally that it is hoped the Federal Government of that country will lose no time in applying its authority or influence towards redressing the grievance.

“ It is noticed with regret that the Swiss local authorities, at least, are disposed to maintain the doctrine of perpetual allegiance by denying the right of a native of that country to become naturalized elsewhere without their consent.

“ This pretension has always been regarded here as extravagant, and as such has been resisted, so that several of the most important European countries with monarchial governments, which were most strenuous in supporting it, have receded from their claims, and have concluded naturalization treaties with the United States. Switzerland as yet has no such treaty, but the convention of 1850 between the United States and that country contains stipulations which seem applicable to the present case and adequate for disposing of it contrary to the views held in that quarter.

" It appears from your dispatch that one of the claims of the communal authorities is that they can recognize no native of Switzerland as a citizen of the United States who shall not have obtained their consent to his naturalization. This pretension is in direct conflict with the fourth article of the treaty, which says that in order to establish their character as citizens of the United States of America, persons belonging to that country shall be bearers of passports certifying their nationality. If, therefore, the nationality of any Swiss naturalized here, who may visit his native country with such passport, shall there be questioned, that act must be looked upon as a flagrant violation of the treaty, which could not be acquiesced in.

“Again, the fifth article stipulates in substance that the heirs of a Swiss decedent, being citizens of the United States, whether native or naturalized, shall inherit and dispose of the property of such decedent at their pleasure.

“An authenticated copy of the judgment of the court which may have naturalized a Swiss citizen must be regarded as conclusive proof of that act in regard to all such naturalized Swiss who may not visit their native country.

“As explicit abjuration of allegiance to his native country is by law required of every foreigner naturalized here, the fact of such abjuration is mentioned in the record. It is presumed, therefore, that when a duly attested copy of such record is presented to the authorities in Switzerland, the sufficiency of the proof which it contains will be acknowledged without hesitation.

"You intimate that the supreme court of the Confederation might decide the question conformably to the views entertained here, and suggest that a test case be prosecuted for the purpose of obtaining their opinion. This course it would be difficult and inconvenient for this Government to adopt, but it might be the most eligible for a claimant to sufficient property in that country to incur the hazard and expense which would attend it."

Mr. Evarts, Sec. of State, to Mr. Fish, min. to Switzerland, Nov. 12, 1879,

For. Rel. 1880, 952.
Mr. Fish, in his No. 218, Oct. 18. 1879, to which the foregoing was a reply,

referring to the refusal of recognition of American naturalization in
the case before him, said: “ This refusal of the communal authorities
was supported by the cantonal government, and appears even to have
had the sanction of the Federal Government, inasmuch as the latter
transmitted it to the legation. It was not until the diplomatic repre-
sentations of the legation had been brought to bear upon these objec-
tions that the unreasonable requirements of the commune and canton

were allayed." (For. Rel. 1879, 973.) “ There is no law of the Canton of Zurich (on nationality and military

service] referred to by Mr. Fish at p. 7.93, For. Rel. for 1879. What is referred to is the action of the communal and cantonal authorities in enforcing the federal law." (Mr. Broadhead, min. to Switzerland, to Mr. Olney, Sec. of State, No. 87, Aug. 16, 1895, 29 MS. Desp. Switz.)

Albert Meyer was born in Zurich in 1812. IIe emigrated at the age of eighteen, and in 1864, when twenty-two years old, came to the United States and settled in the city of New York, where he entered into business as a merchant and continued to reside. In due time he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. Some years later the firm of which he was a member became embarrassed and granted certain preferences to creditors. A firm in Zurich instituted civil proceedings in New York to have these preferences set aside, but the court upheld them as lawful. Subsequently, the Swiss firm brought a criminal action against Mr. Mever at Zurich, based on the same acts. The American legation at Berne was instructed, July 14, 1882, to bring the subject to the attention of the Swiss Government. In another instruction, December 19, 1882, the Department of State said:

« PreviousContinue »