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PRÉCIS OF THE PROVISIONS OF TWO AGREEMENTS SIGNED IN LONDON ON DECEMBER 13, 1906, BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENTS OF GREAT BRITAIN, FRANCE, ITALY, AND ABYSSINIA.
IN the first mentioned agreement the three contracting Powers undertake, in Article I., not to make any change in the political or territorial status quo in Ethiopia, or in the present state of affairs, in so far as it depends on various conventions which are duly enumerated. It is also affirmed in Article I. that there shall be no infringement upon the sovereign rights of the Emperor of Abyssinia.
Article II. lays down that agricultural, commercial, and industrial concessions granted to any one of the three contracting Powers shall not prejudice the interests of the other two.
In Article III., France, Great Britain, and Italy undertake to observe a neutral attitude and to abstain from any intervention, in the event of internal complications, except to protect the Legations, the lives and property of foreigners, or the common interests of the three Powers; but no such action shall be taken for the above purposes until after a common understanding has been arrived at.
Article IV. provides for the eventuality of circumstances arising to disturb the status quo in Abyssinia, as recognised in Article I. Should events of this kind arise, the three Powers undertake to do their utmost to maintain the integrity of Ethiopia, and they will confer with one another with a view to safeguarding (1) the interests of Great Britain and Egypt in the basin of the Nile, particularly in so far as the control of the waters of that river is concerned; (2) Italy's interests in Ethiopia with respect to Eritrea, Somaliland, and Benadir, and especially as regards the Hinterland of her possessions and the territorial union between them to the west of Addis Abeba; (3) French interests in Ethiopia with respect to the French Somali coast protectorate, the Hinter
land of that protectorate, and the zones necessary for the construction and working of the Jibuti-Addis Abeba Railway.
By Article V., the French Government communicates the text of the French railway concession in Ethiopia of March 9, 1894, together with a second document dated August 8, 1894, in which the Emperor Menelek invited the company holding the concession to construct the second section from Dire Daoua to Addis Abeba.
Article VI. states that the three contracting Powers are agreed that it shall be a French company, approved by the French Government, that shall construct the line from Dire Daoua to Addis Abeba, and eventually a branch to Harar.
The same Article provides equal treatment for the subjects of the three Powers regarding trade and traffic on the railway and at the port of Jibuti; it further provides that no transit dues shall be imposed.
Article VII. provides that the Board of Administration of the French railway company or companies shall include an Englishman, an Italian, and a representative of the Emperor of Abyssinia.
The same Article also provides for reciprocity in regard to questions of equality in commerce and traffic and as regards French representation on the Board of Administration of future British or Italian railways. The concluding paragraph of this Article further declares that equality of treatment in commerce and transit shall be extended to the subjects of all countries.
By Article VIII. France abstains from taking any further action regarding the concessions which have already been accorded her beyond Addis Abeba.
Article IX. lays down that railways in Abyssinia west of Addis Abeba shall be constructed by Great Britain, and that connecting Benadir with Eritrea by Italy. The article also recognises Great Britain's right to construct a railway from British Somaliland across Ethiopia to the Sudanese frontier; but the three contracting Governments agree not to construct railways penetrating Abyssinian territory without previously
coming to an agreement. In Article X. the three Powers agree to co-operate for the protection of their respective interests.
By Article XI. (the last) it is agreed that, apart from the arrangements mentioned in Articles I. and V., no arrangement made by any one of the three contracting Powers shall be of a nature objectionable to the two other signatory Powers.
On signing the agreement the Italian Ambassador added a statement bearing upon certain points to be settled between Italy and the Emperor Menelek.
The agreement for the suppression of the traffic in contraband arms contains nine articles. In Article I. the three Governments adopt the provisions of the General Act of Brussels of July, 1890. They undertake to exercise a strict supervision over the importation of arms-France at Jibuti, Obock, and in French Somaliland; Great Britain in British Somaliland and the ports of Zeila, Berbera, Aden, and Perim ; and Italy in Eritrea, Italian Somaliland, at Massuah and Assab.
Article II. provides for certain exceptions to the regulations in the case of arms consigned to the Abyssinian Government, recognised Abyssinian chiefs, and private individuals.
In Article III. the contracting Governments undertake to request the Emperor of Abyssinia to enforce the Brussels Convention in his dominions.
Article IV. makes provision for dealing with the contraband traffic carried on by small coasting vessels that fetch arms from the above-mentioned ports to convey them to places outside the area protected by the Brussels Convention.
In Article V. the three Powers maintain the principles of their respective laws regarding the right of search, but they agree that the measures of supervision taken by each of them at points under their respective especial surveillance shall be applied without distinction to vessels flying the flag of any one of the three Powers.
Article VI. provides that each year a list of coasting vessels
and dhows authorized to carry the flag of any one of the three Powers shall be communicated to the other two.
By Article VII. these coasting vessels or dhows are required to carry marks enabling them to be distinguished at a distance.
By Article VIII. the respective authorities of the three contracting Powers are to make arrangements with each other to carry out the provisions of this Agreement.
Finally, Article IX. fixes the duration of this Agreement at twelve years from the date of signature. At the end of that period the convention shall remain in force for successive periods of three years, subject to six months' notice of discontinuance being given.
REGULATIONS GIVING EFFECT TO THE IMPERIAL DECREE
THE regulations are eleven in number, and are as follows:
2. Some 30 to 40 per cent. of the Chinese use opium. Everyone who uses it must be registered either at the Yamên or with the village headman. The amount consumed must also be registered. No one No one can buy opium unless he is registered. No one will be permitted to begin the use of opium after the issue of these regulations.
3. This provides for the method of decreasing the use. Those above sixty years of age are leniently treated; those under sixty must decrease their use 20 per cent. per annum. If this regulation is evaded, punishments will be inflicted. For example, magistrates will be cashiered and scholars
deprived of their degrees. Those who, at the end of ten years, are still addicted to the use of opium, will have their names posted in public places.
4. Shops selling opium will be closed gradually. All opium dens where opium is smoked will be compulsorily closed within six months. Neither wine-shops nor inns can allow smoking on the premises. Persons who sell smoking requisites-pipes, lamps, etc.-must cease to do so within one year. The taxes now collected on opium lamps must not be collected after one month from the date of issue of these regulations.
5. All opium shops and everything connected with the trade must be officially registered and gradually closed, and no new shops will be allowed to open. No one can buy opium without presenting a ticket of registration. Shops must present an annual statement showing a decrease of sales. If this regulation is evaded the shops can be confiscated with all their contents, and their owners punished.
6. Officials must arrange to distribute among people addicted to the use of opium either prescriptions or medicines counteracting the use at cost price or gratuitously. No prescription thus given shall contain opium, morphia, or opium ashes.
7. Anti-opium societies must be established to exhort the discontinuance of the use of the drug. Such societies, if already working, must receive official encouragement and support.
8. Officials and gentry are ordered to give mutual help in enforcing the regulations. Reports must be furnished to the Council of State Affairs. Officials who have fully carried out the regulations will be rewarded.
9. Officials must set an example. Officials above sixty years of age whose cravings are great must be treated leniently. All high officials, Princes, Dukes, Viceroys, and Tartar Generals under sixty must not screen themselves, but must inform the Throne that they are willing to cease their use of the drug within a certain time. During that time