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SUPPRESSION OF THE SLAVE TRADE.
TREATY between Her Majesty and the Argentine Confederation, for the abolition of the Slave Trade.-Signed at Buenos Ayres, May 24, 1839.
Treaty between Great Britain and the Argentine Confederation, for the abolition of the Traffic in Slaves.
[Ratifications exchanged at Buenos Ayres, May 16, 1840.]
HER Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and the Argentine Confederation, being equally animated by a sincere desire to cooperate for the utter extinction of the infamous and piratical Traffic in Slaves, have resolved to conclude a Treaty for the special purpose of attaining this object, so far as relates to the total and final abolition of the Slave Trade in the Argentine Confederation; and have respectively named for this purpose, as their Plenipotentiaries, to wit: John Henry Mandeville, Esq., Her said Majesty's Minister Plenipotentiary to the United Provinces of the Rio de la Plata; and Señor Don Felipe de Arana, Minister for Foreign Affairs, and member of the Council; who, having duly communicated to each other their respective full powers, and found them to be in proper form, have agreed upon and concluded the following Articles :
ARTICLE I. The Slave Trade having been legally abolished throughout the territories of the Argentine Confederation, is hereby declared to be henceforward and for ever totally prohibited to all the citizens of the said Republic, in all parts of the world.
Article II. The Argentine Confederation hereby engage that immediately after the exchange of the ratifications of the present Treaty, and from time to time afterwards, as may become needful, they will take the most effectual measures for preventing the citizens of the said Republic from being concerned, and the flag of that Republic from being used, in carrying on, in any way, the Trade in Slaves; and the said Republic especially engages that, within two months after the above-mentioned exchange of ratifications, they will renew the promulgation, throughout the territory of the Republic, of the penal law, by which the Slave Trade has been declared piracy; and that the punishment attached to piracy shall be inflicted on all those citizens who shall, under any pretext whatever, take any part whatever in the Traffic of Slaves.
Article III. In order more completely to accomplish the object of the present Treaty, the two High Contracting Parties mutually consent that those ships of their navies respectively, which shall be provided with special instructions for that purpose, as hereinafter mentioned, may visit such merchant vessels of the two nations as may, upon reasonable grounds, be suspected of being engaged in the Traffic in Slaves, or of having been fitted out for the purposes thereof, or of having, during the voyage in which they are met with by the said cruizers, been engaged in the Traffic in Slaves, contrary to the provisions of this Treaty; and that such cruizers may detain, and send or carry away such vessels, in order that they may be brought to trial in the manner hereinafter agreed upon.
Article IV. In order to regulate the mode of carrying the provisions of the preceding Article into execution, it is agreed: First, that all ships of the navies of the two nations, which shall hereafter be employed to prevent the Traffic in Slaves, shall be furnished by their respective Governments with a copy, in the English and Spanish languages, of the present Treaty: of the Instructions for cruizers annexed thereto, letter A; and of the regulations for the Mixed Courts of Justice, annexed thereto, letter B; which Annexes shall be considered as integral parts of the Treaty.
Secondly. That each of the High Contracting Parties shall, from time to time, communicate to the other the
names of the several ships which have been furnished with such Instructions, the force of each ship, and the names of their several commanders.
Thirdly: That if, at any time, there shall be just cause to suspect that any merchant vessel, sailing under the flag of either nation, and proceeding under the convoy of any ship or ships of war of either of the Contracting Parties, is engaged, or is intended to be engaged, in the Traffic in Slaves, or is fitted out for the purposes thereof, or has, during the voyage on which she may be met with, been engaged in the Traffic in Slaves, it shall be lawful for the commander of any ship of the Royal Navy of Great Britain, or of the navy of the Argentine Confederation, furnished with such Instructions as aforesaid, to communicate his suspicions to the commander of the convoy, who, accompanied by the commander of the cruizer, shall proceed to the search of the suspected vessel; and in case the suspicions appear well founded, according to the tenor of this Treaty, then the said vessel shall be conducted or sent to one of the points where the Mixed Courts of Justice are stationed, in order to undergo the sentence applicable to the case.
Fourthly; It is further mutually agreed, that the commanders of the ships of the two navies respectively, who shall be employed on this service, shall adhere strictly to the exact tenor of the aforesaid Instructions.
Article V. As the two preceding Articles are entirely reciprocal, the two High Contracting Parties engage mutually to make good any losses which their respective subjects or citizens may incur by the arbitrary and illegal detention of their vessels; it being understood that this indemnity shall invariably be borne by the Government whose cruizer shall have been guilty of such arbitrary and illegal detention. It is further agreed, that the visit and detention of vessels specified in the IIIrd Article of this Treaty, shall be effected only by those British or Argentine ships which may form part of the navies (royal and national) respectively of the two High Contracting Parties to this Treaty; and by such ships only of those navies as shall be provided with the special Instructions annexed to the present Treaty.
The compensation for damages mentioned in this Article shall be made within the term of one year, reckoned from the day on which the Mixed Court of Justice pronounces sentence on the vessel, for the detention of which such compensation is claimed.
Article VI. In order to bring to adjudication, with as little delay and inconvenience as possible, vessels which may be detained according to the tenor of the IIIrd Article of this Treaty, there shall be established, within the space of a year at furthest from the exchange of the ratifications of the present Treaty, two Mixed Courts of Justice, formed of an equal number of individuals of the two nations, named for this purpose by the two High Contracting Parties respectively.
These Courts shall reside, one in a possession belonging to Her Britannic Majesty, the other within the territories of the Argentine Confederation; and the two Governments, at the period of the exchange of the ratifications of the present Treaty, shall declare, each for its own territories, in what places the said Courts shall respectively reside; each of the two High Contracting Parties reserving to itself the right of changing, at its pleasure, the place of residence of the Court held within its own territories; provided, however, that one of the two Courts shall always be held upon the coast of Africa and the other in the territory of the Argentine Confederation.
These Courts shall judge the causes submitted to them according to the provisions of the present Treaty, without appeal, and in conformity with the Regulations and Instructions which are annexed to the present Treaty, and which are considered as forming an integral part thereof.
Article VII. If the commanding officer of any of those ships of the navies of Great Britain and of the Argentine Confederation respectively, which shall be duly provided with Instructions according to the provisions of the IIIrd Article of this Treaty, shall deviate in any respect from the stipulations of the said Treaty, or from the Instructions annexed to it, the Government which shall conceive itself to be wronged thereby, shall be entitled to demand reparation; and, in such case, the Government to which such commanding officer may belong, binds itself to cause