(Handed to Mr. Fish by Admiral Polo de Bernabé
November 15, 1873.)
- The Virginius had no crew’s roll, and was wanting in the usual papers required of merchant-vessels.
- The order from the government could not reach Santiago de Cuba in time, owing to the destruction of the telegraph-wires by the insurgents. On the 12th the captain-general received a telegram from Santiago de Cuba dated the 6th, and this was the date of the first instructions from the government. On the 14th the admiral received the news of the executions of the 9th. Ordinary communications have been quicker than those sent by telegraph.
The case of the Virginius is equal or similar to those of the Guanaham and Margaret Jersey, and the admiral assures that in the record of the proceedings, of which he already has possession, the act of piracy is fully proved, and that the crew made no secret of the truth of their hostile intent and purpose.
The government is not in receipt of sufficient particulars in reference to the case of the Virginius. It will act in strict conformity with international law.