- Project Runeberg -  A practical guide for Russian consular officers and all persons having relations with Russia /

(1916) Author: Alfons Heyking - Tema: Russia
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p. i., сн. vii. RIGHTS AND PRIVILEGES.


(e) Consuls have the right, in the exercise of the powers which
are conferred on them, to address to the authorities of their Consular
district protests against infractions of treaties or conventions existing
between Russia and the State in which they reside, and against any
abuse or injustice to which the State they represent may have been
subjected. If their claim be ignored or denied by the authorities
concerned, they may have recourse, in the absence of a diplomatic
official of their own country, to the Government of the State in which
they reside. (Art. 8.) There can be no doubt, therefore, that in
cases of this nature Consular Officers are entitled to enter their protests
directly, either in the courts of law or with the responsible State
officials, and do not need to follow the customary modes of procedure
or to be represented by lawyers or attorneys as is obligatory for private
persons. In the writer’s own practice at the Russian
Consulate-General at Berlin, he frequently had occasion to emphasise this fact
against the improper interpretation of the Consular Convention in
certain courts of that city. Even a German authority like Konig
(" Handbuch des Deutschen Konsularwesens," Berlin, 1896, page 28)
emphatically maintains the same opinion. It is obvious, therefore,
that the Consul in the course of his official duties has the right to
maintain his official character even in courts of law or before the
organs of administration.

By the complementary convention of the i5th/28th July 1904,
to the Treaty concluded between Russia and Germany on the 10th
February 1894, the rights and privileges of Russian Consular Officers
in the latter country have been extended to the agents of the Russian
Ministry of Finance and their secretaries.

(/) The Consul must be notified by the local authorities whenever
the police or Custom-house officers intend to visit a Russian ship, in
order that he may have the opportunity of being present. (Art. 10.)

In Great Britain the Rights and Privileges enjoyed by Russian
Consular Officers rest on the Convention of Commerce and Navigation
concluded between Russia and Great Britain on the 31st December/
12th January 1858-59, according to which the Russian
Consuls-General, Consuls, Vice-Consuls and Consular Agents, who have been
duly recognised in their official capacity by the British Government,
enjoy all the privileges, exemptions and immunities, which are accorded
or will be accorded to Consuls of the most-favoured nation. (Art. 15.)

A similar clause is contained in the Treaties of Commerce and
Navigation concluded by Russia with Austria on the 2nd/i5th
February 1906 (Art. 22) ; with Peru on the 4th/i6th May 1874
(Art. 20) ; with the U.S. of N. America on the 6th/i8th December
1832 (Art. 8) ; with Japan on the 27th May 1895 (Art. 15) ; with
Switzerland on the I4th/26th December 1872 (Art. 8) ; and with
Belgium on the 28th May/gth June 1858 (Art. 17). In the two latter
treaties there is the following identical restriction (Art. 9 of the treaty
with Switzerland and Art. 18 of the treaty with Belgium) : " It is
" specially understood that if Russia chooses to nominate as her Consul
"in a port or commercial city of Belgium (Switzerland), a Belgian
" (Swiss) subject, he will be regarded as a Belgian (Swiss) subject
" notwithstanding his office as Consul of a foreign country. He will


§ 22.
of Treaties.

§ 23.
of Consul by
authorities of
proposed visit of
to ship.

in Great

In Austria,
Peru, U.S.A.,
and Belgium.

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