« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
any indemnity I must address myself to whether she is responsible for the rent of the ambassador of my own nation. I am ber apartments during their occupation the widow of an English clergyman, of by the Prussians. very limited means, and have, with my Your Excellency, it appears, has ansisters, occupied for the last seventeen swered Mrs. Ashburnham's application years an apartment, 8, Avenue de Paris, on the last point; but as regards the Versailles. We had been absent some general question of her being compensated time before the occupation of that city for the other losses sustained by her, I by the Prussians, and, being ladies alone, can only request your Excellency to exit was impossible for us to return. And press to her the regret of Her Majesty's now, upon making inquiries, I find that Government at the occurrences in quesduring the six months that my apart- tion, and to explain to her that Her ment has been occupied, the larger por. Majesty's subjects resident in France, tion of the furniture has been wantonly whose property has been destroyed during destroyed and burnt, and boxes of plate, the war, cannot expect to be compensated wearing-apparel, household linen, &c., on the ground of their being British subpillaged. In fact, at the lowest compu- jects, for losses which the necessities of tation, we have been robbed of effects to war have brought upon them in common the value of 3001. Will you kindly in- with French subjects. form me whether, as the subject of a
I am, &c. neutral Power, I have not a claim to
(Signed) GRANVILLE. some indemnity, and what steps I ought to take ? Also, am I responsible for the
No. 18. maintenance of the Prussians during their occupation of my apartments ? And,
EARL GRANVILLE TO LORD LYONS. thirdly, can my proprietor enforce the
Foreign Office, March 23, 1871. payment of the last six months' rent, as I am only Locataire ?
My Lord,- I have thought it desirable I beg to apologize for this intrusion,
to ascertain the opinion of the law but the case is to me very serious, and I
officers as to the liability of the French shall feel most grateful for a reply to
Government to compensate British subthis application, though I am aware that
jects resident in France for loss and you must have many calls of a similar
damage to their property during the late nature to attend to, but attention to this
war, and I have been advised by them will be very gratefully received.
that British subjects resident in France (Signed) HARRIET ASHBURNHAM.
would, in their opinion, have no just ground of complaint against the French
authorities in the event of their property No. 17.
having been destroyed by the invading EARL GRANVILLE TO LORD LYONS.
armies. Their losses, under such circum
stances, would be amongt the inevitable Foreign Office, March 18, 1871.
consequences of war raging in a State with. My Lord,—I have received your Excel. in which they have chosen, as foreigners, lency's despatch of the 15th instant, en- to take up their residence, and with regard closing a copy of a letter from Mrs. to such losses, British subjects would not Ashburnham, complaining of the destruc- be entitled to claim any compensation tion and pillage at Versailles by the from the French authorities. Germans, and inquiring whether she has
I am, &c. not some claim to indemnity, and also
V. CORRESPONDENCE RESPECTING THE PECUNIARY
DEMANDS OF PRUSSIA ON FRANCE.
Foreign Office, Feb. 24, 1871.
i Copies of this despatch were communicated on the 24th of February to Count Bernstorff and to Mr. Odo Russell.
without being informed of the other proposed terms of peace, understand from the Ambassador of France that the war indemnity demanded by Germany is six milliards of francs (210,000,0001.) to be paid almost immediately, and subject to some deductions not yet settled.
His Excellency has represented to the Government of Her Majesty that it would had been a disappointment as to our nonbe impossible for the Government of recognition of the Republic, and at our France to pay such a sum, and that it indifference whilst France was suffering would be dishonest on their part to enter so much; but that any questions of this into an engagement for a payment which nature were now resolved, and that he they know it would be absolutely beyond wished only to talk to me of the present their power to fulfil, and they urge the and future. Government of Her Majesty to represent Her Majesty's Government had been to the German Government the impossi- told that M. Favre knew the terms of bility of such a payment. |
peace; this, the Duke added, was not Her Majesty's Government feel the the case; M. Havre did not know them difficulties which arise from their igno- at the time this was said. rance of the offers made on the side of The Duke said he was not well informed France, and they bear in mind that this about them. He had seen M. Thiers after country is one only among the neutral his first interview with Count Bismarck this Powers, all bound by the obligations of week. It had turned exclusively upon friendship to both parties.
the prolongation of the armistice which But Her Majesty's Government are was absolutely necessary, and which had willing, in consideration of the extreme to be extracted from the Emperor and pressure of time, to make representations his Minister. He had also seen M. Thiers to Germany on the amount of this indem- after his second int iew. M. Thiers nity, and to tender their good offices in had thought it right to be reticent to him the spirit of friendship to both parties, on the political and territorial questions, under the conviction that it is the interest but he had mentioned the financial claim of Germany, as well as of France, that the of six milliards, and had spoken of the amount of the indemnity should not be absolute impossibility of meeting it, adding greater than that which it is reasonable that it would not be honest to promise to expect could be paid.
what could not be fulfilled. I am, &c.
The Duc de Broglie said, in these (Signed) GRANVILLE. circumstances, that however much the old
principles of European right were laid
aside, the French Government thought No. 2.
they had a right to ask England whether EARL GRANVILLE TO LORD LYONS. she had no proposal to make. Speeches
had been made in Parliament stating that Foreign Office, February 25, 1871.
Her Majesty's Government would not My Lord, -I transmit to your Excel- neglect a favourable opportunity of prolency herewith a copy of a letter from M. moting a permanent peace, and the time Jules Favre, with reference to the Duc de was pressing. Broglie's appointment as Ambassador for He reserved to himself the right of France at this Court, and which was bringing before us the territorial and placed in my hands by his Excellency. political questions, but the financial
I expressed to the French Ambassador subject was simple, and a matter almost my thanks for the friendly tenor of this of fact. Could we do nothing in this ? communication, but I observed there was I explained to the Duc de Broglie the one phrase in it, namely, that which, difficulties of the situation. I pointed whilst referring to the friendly relations out that our non-recognition of the Gowhich have so long existed between vernment arose from the late Government England and France, implied some dis- declining to call an Assembly to sanction appointment that in the hour of her it, a refusal which I knew M. Thiers had present trial England had withheld her
disapproved. support, which I could not on our side There is, moreover, a want of agreement admit. That I perfectly understood that among all of the Powers of Europe even France should have felt some irritation, to examine any proposal which France whether reasonable or not, at an old ally might make, and we were not prepared to not coming actively to her asssistance; use stronger language than that to which but that we decided upon neutrality as the we intended to adhere; that individually line which this country felt bound to adopt I doubted whether any friendly advice in a struggle which they had vainly which the Germans were adverse to attempted to prevent; but that in that neu- receiving would not weaken whatever trality we had been actuated by the most party there might be at Versailles in friendly feeling compatible with its im. favour of moderation; that with regard partial duties.
to any proposals which the Duc de Broglie The Duc de Broglie replied that France might make, I could answer for their felt our conduct to be cold ; that there being considered by my colleagues in the most friendly spirit, and with a strong that he had made to me as to the impordesire to do whatever might be practically tance of time, that, as his Excellency had useful.
only arrived in the morning of the 24th, I begged his Excellency to state in that I saw him at half-past ten, and prewhat way he thought we could be useful sented him to the Queen at half-past one, in the financial question.
after which it was necessary for me to The Duc de Broglie said that what he consult my colleagues, in a
cabinet asked us to do was to demand from Ger- specially summoned for that purpose, on many that the armistice should be pro- the statements he had made to me, longed in order that the negotiations and thereupon took measures at once for should not be withdrawn from all cogni- making a representation to the German zance on the part of Europe; and that, Government, I considered that I had shown in the second place, we should offer that Her Majesty's Government, no less arbitration with respect to the amount than his Excellency, were fully sensible of indemnity, which was an object of of the importance of acting without importance to the conquerors and the delay. conquered, and a matter of deep interest
I am, &c. to all commercial countries to whom
(Signed) GRANVILLE. the financial perturbation caused by an excessive sum might be of great detriment.
(Inclosure in No. 2.) I promised to bring the matter before my colleagues, and the Duc de Broglie
M. JULES FAVRE TO TIE DUC DE reserved his right of appealing to us with
BROGLIE. respect to the territorial and political con
(Communicated to Earl Granville by the ditions.
Duc de Broglie, February 25.) Your Excellency is already aware that a cabinet having been immediately sum.
Paris, February 22, 1871. moned on the sul ject of the Duc de M. le Comte,-I feel much satisfaction Broglie's communications to me, I in- in entrusting to the Duc de Broglie the formed him that, with regard to the first mission of Representative of France 'to proposal, that Her Majesty's Government the Government of Her Majesty the should urge Germany to prolong the Queen of England. The assent which armistice for the object stated by his your Excellency has been so good as to Excellency, the Cabinet was of opinion give to this selection is a sure pledge to that such a step would not promote the me that it will fulfil the sincere desire of object which his Excellency bad in view, the Chief of the Executive Power of the but that Her Majesty's Government had French Republic and of his whole cabinet, embodied in the despatch to Lord Augus. to renew with your nation the relations tus Loftus (of which I communicated of friendship which have so long consticopies both to your Excellency and to tuted our mutual strength, and have the Duke) the substance of the second greatly contributed to the maintenance proposal which the French Ambassador of peace in Europe. I cannot conceal from had conveyed to me in order to arrive at your Excellency that I should have been a satisfactory arrangement as to the glad, in the days of our cruel trials, if this amount of indemnity to be paid by long-standing tradition had not appeared France.
to be momentarily weakened; and yet I subsequently pointed out to the Duc I do not forget the kindness your Excelde Broglie that, in directing Her Ma. lency has shown me, and for which 1 jesty's Ambassador at Berlin, as stated in remain personally grateful to you, nor the my despatch, to make representations to regard which you have shown for France Germany on the amount of indemnity in postponing for her the labours of the demanded of France, and to tender their Conference in terms by which I am good offices, in the spirit of friendship, to deeply touched. I venture to hope that both parties, Her Majesty's Government the communications which the Duc de had been guided by the wish which his Broglie is instructed to make to your Excellency had so strongly expressed on Excellency will confirm those sentiments, behalf of the French Government; and I and may give rise to a course of said that I had moreover asked Count effective action, which I do not fear Bernstorff in the evening of the 24th to to solicit in the name of my country, telegraph to Count Bismarck, as I had believing it, moreover, to be in conformity myself telegraphed to Mr. Odo Russell at alike with the interests and the feelings Versailles the substance of my despatch to of the English people, calculated to be Lord Augustus Loftus.
usefully subservient to their policy, and at I added, with reference to a remark the same time to lay the foundation of a peace which is desirable for the sake of all home from a visit to the Crown Prince's Europe.
head-quarters, where I learnt that the I have, &c.
war indemnity of six milliards had been (Signed) JULES FAVRE. reduced to five milliards, and bad been
agreed to by M. Thiers. No. 3.
I conclude that your lordship's teleMR. ODO RUSSELL TO EARL GRANVILLE.
gram, through Count Bernstorff, must
have reached yesterday morning early, (Received March 6.)
but I have not been able to see the Versailles, February 26, 1871.
Chancellor myself, who is too much en
gaged with the French negotiators to (Extract.)
receive any one to-day. Your lordship's telegram of the 24th The negotiations must be concluded instant, 11.45 p.m., respecting the war before midnight, when the armistice ends, indemnity, was delivered to me at eleven and hostilities will be resumed if the prep.m. last night, soon after I had come liminaries are not accepted.
DIPLOMATIC PAPERS RELATING TO LUXEMBURG.
A CORRESPONDENCE was presented (20th France; and of the French vice-consul in Feb.) to Parliament respecting the al. Luxemburg having established a regular leged violation of the neutrality of the office at the railway station, where the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg. A remon- fugitives have been provided with means strance on this subject by Count Bismarck and vouchers to enable them to continue was made public shortly after the appear- their march into France to join the army of ance of the notorious Russian Circular. the North. More than 2000 men, he asserts, It attracted the more attention from its have thus been added to the French forces. seeming assertion of a similar claim by He concludes that there has thus been a one of the parties to a treaty to renounce “flagrant violation of the neutrality of the its obligations without the consent of the Grand Duchy; "and he announces, accordother signataries. It must be owned that ingly," that the Royal Government can no Count Bismarck's despatch, which opens longer consider itself bound to any conthe series of papers, does not warrant so sideration of the neutrality of the Grand unpleasant an interpretation, and the more Duchy, in the military operations of the important portion of the correspondence German army, and in the measures for consists of explanations on this point be. the security of the German troops against tween the Prussian and English Govern- the injuries inflicted on them from Luz. ments, ending in mutual expressions of emburg.” At the same time, he reserves satisfaction.
the prosecution of Prussian claims against Count Bismarck, in his despatch of the the Grand Duchy for damages thus in3rd of December, recalls the declaration flicted. A despatch from Mr. Lumley at made by the Prussian Government at the Brussels, announcing the receipt of this outset of the war, that it would respect circular by the Belgian Minister, ex. the neutrality of the Grand Duchy on presses the interpretation which was the presumption that it would also be re- immediately affixed to it. “The Prussian spected on the part of the French, and, Government,” he reports, “declares it as a matter of course, that it would be considers itself no longer bound by the maintained with earnestness and good. Treaty of May, 1867.” In Luxemburg will by the Grand Duchy itself.” He itself the declaration of the Chancellor states, however, that “neither on the part was instantly understood in this sense. It of France nor on that of Luxemburg" was received as a menace to the indepen. have these presumptions been verified. dence of Luxemburg, and our representaHe complains specifically of “the provi- tive at the Hague reports numerous sioning of Thionville by railway trains at patriotic protests by the inhabitants of the night from Luxemburg, so long as the Duchy and the Chamber of Representatives. fortress remained in the hands of the Lord Granville answers the circular French ;” of the transit of French sol- on the 17th of December. In the expec. diers and officers “in masses through tation of explanations from France and the Grand Duchy after the surrender of Luxemburg he abstains from giving any Metz, for the purpose of again entering opinion on the particular charges alleged,
but there are observations which the He declares that the wording of his Government feel constrained to make. circular "afforded no occasion” for any He notices that these charges are now, for such supposition as that he intended a the first time, brought before Her Majesty's denunciation of the Treaty of 1867. “For Government, “and yet they are accom- us,” he says, “the question is as to the panied at once by a declaration of their military defence against military injuries ; validity” and by the announcement that every Power engaged in waralready quoted from Count Bismarck: “It fare is entitled to such a defence has is obvious that principles of a wide ap- hitherto been uncontested by international plication are involved in this statement. law, and that the defence, if it is to be À pressing military emergency might effectual, must take place at the proper possibly justify in some degree measures time, lies in the nature of war.” They of prevention or repression; but no such have, however, abstained from such å emergency has been alleged. Count defence; but if Lord Granville expresses Bernstorff, though speaking without in- the opinion that even in such a case the structions, believed that the circular was course to be taken was to appeal to the not intended to contain a denunciation of co-signatary Powers, the Count disputes the Treaty of 1867 ; and Her Majesty's the justice of the demand, and begs him Government gladly accept this construc- "just to consider an hypothesis which tion. “But even on this assumption it was once very near becoining a reality.” appears to Her Majesty's Government that Suppose Marshal Mac-Mahon, checked the regular course would have been that before Sedan, had resolved to cross the the North German Confederation should Belgian frontier, and proceed thence have in the first place required from the through Luxemburg to Metz, “does the Grand Duke of Luxemburg explanations Royal English Government consider that on the whole of the charges which they in such a case we should have applied to had to make, and then communicated the the Treaty Powers, and have settled with result to the other co-signataries with a them by diplomatic negotiation what was representation of the necessity that they to be done, and in the meantime exposed should take into consideration the effect our troops at Metz to the attack of the of a state of facts so signified.” The acts enemy's forces, doubled by the breach of complained of, however, have ceased to neutrality ? Could any English General have any practical bearing on the issue of be in doubt as to what he was to do in the war, and Her Majesty's Government such a case ?" He observes that the assume that the circular is intended “as enemy of the North is still recruited by an indication of the displeasure of Prussia French refugees, and that the siege of at the disregard which she alleges has Longwy is imminent; that the danger been shown to her remonstrances, when, is not past. He thinks, however, these if attended to, they might have led to observations will prove “the perfect some practical result," and that, satisfied legality as well as necessity of our declawith this caution, Prussia will abstain ration," and will remove any doubt as to from giving effect to her declaration. our views which are only directed to our At the same time, Lord Granville had own security, in a way beyond that, and directed Mr. Odo Russell to ascertain not against the Grand Duchy." “ whether there could be any present Lord Granville, in acknowledging this intention on the part of the Prussian despatch, accepts this disclaimer with satisGovernment ofacting on Count Bismarck's faction, and observes that Count Bismarck circular.” Sir A. Buchanan also writes accepts in substance the interpretation he from St. Petersburg that Prince Gortscha. had placed on the circular, as being “an koff had declined expressing any opinion evidence of displeasure.” Lord Granville on the circular until he had taken the had already recognized the possibility of Emperor's orders on the subject. The a pressing military emergency; but any Prince said, however, he had written im- such phrase must be judged on its own mediately to the Hague, “suggesting that merits. On the 27th of December Mr. the King should cause an inquiry to be Odo Russell states the result of the inheld without delay into the case, and that quiries Lord Granville had instructed him if the conduct of any subordinate officer to make at Versailles. He says that “both of the Luxemburg Government justified His Majesty the King and the Chancellor the complaints of Prussia, they should be of the North German Confederation have held responsible for it, and every possible assured me that the circular is a military satisfaction given to the Prussian Govern. measure for the security of the German ment."
army, and not a denunciation of the Count Bismarck, on the 24th of De- Treaty of 1867 ; nor is there any wish or cember, answered Lord Granville's despatch intention on the part of Prussia to annex with even more than his usual vigour. the Grand Duchy." “ These assurances,"