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receive compensation because some other foreign cable company, viz., La Compagnie française des Câbles télégraphiques, working cables between the United States of America, Haiti and Cuba, received from the United States Government compensation for the cutting of its cables. It is urged that, when acts of war by a belligerent have resulted in personal injury to individuals in certain territory or in damage to their property in that territory, if the Government of that territory pays the claims of the nationals of one country, it must also pay the claims of the nationals of other countries without discrimination (Oral Argument, pp. 261 and 262); and further, as the argument would seem to imply (Oral Argument, p. 264), that, if it be established that a Government has paid compensation to its own citizens, then it is bound to pay compensation to foreigners whose person or property was damaged ; and authority is said to be found for the last proposition in cases arising out of the Mexican insurrection.
Whether viewed as a general principle, or in its particular application to the facts of this claim, such a proposition appears to us to be impossible of acceptance. It is perfectly legitimate for a Government, in the absence of any special agreement to the contrary, to afford to subjects of any particular Government treatment which is refused to the subjects of other Governments, or to reserve to its own subjects treatment which is not afforded to foreigners. Some political motive, some service renilered, some traditional bond of friendship, some reciprocal treatment in the past or in the present, may furnish the ground for discrimination. We do not know that the provisions of the French or Belgian law, reserving to their
foreigners, any more than could the fact that, by special agreement, the Belgians in France and the French in Belgium have been reciprocally admitted to the same treatment in their respective countries. An instance of such discrimination is furnished by the Proclamation of Lord Kitchener of Khartoum, dated May 31, 1902, on the final surrender of the Boer forces. In that instrument it is provided (paragraph 10) that a commission would be appointed for the purpose of assisting the restoration of the people to their homes and helping those who, owing to war losses, were unable to provide for themselves ; and that for that purpose a sum of money should be placed at the disposal of the commission. The final clause of that paragraph provides as follows:
“No foreigner or rebel will be entitled to the benefits of this clause.'
It appears from the documents in this case that the repairs of the French cables in question had been effected with all expedition and at the express request of the United States authorities and for American strategic purposes (Senate Document, No. 16, 58th Congress, 2nd Session, pp. 22 and 23); that, unlike the British cables, the French cables were used by the American naval authorities and had afforded them direct communication with President McKinley (Ibidem); and that the French cable company had rendered the United States valuable services during the operations of 1898 (Letters from the French Embassy at Washington, November 15, 1901; November 28, 1902; February 19, 1903; March 12, 1903).
There is no evidence that the Eastern Extension Company can avail itself of a similar plea. The French case rounds of equity and comity, which did not exist in the British case.
From these considerations it does not appear that the contention of the British Government on this point is in any way justified.
As to the contention of the British Government that,
article 7 of the Special Agreement, is not to lay
riving its authority from only two Governments; Secondly, in any case this Tribunal, as has been
already stated, is of opinion that the principles of
Now THEREFORE :
The Tribunal decides that the claim of His Britannic
Dated at London, November 9, 1923.
The President of the Tribunal,