No. 61.
Mr. Hall to Mr. Bayard.

No. 574.]

Sir: I have the honor to transmit herewith a copy and translation of a law of Salvador, promulgated on the 29th ultimo and published in the “Diario Oficial” of the 1st instant, touching the status of foreigners domiciled or temporarily residing in that Republic. I respectfully invite the Department’s attention to its provisions concerning matriculation and especially to articles 39, 40, and 41, which define, according to the ideas of that Government, what constitutes a denial of justice and the right of appeal to diplomatic recourse.

I have, etc.,

Henry C. Hall.
[Inclosure in No. 574.—Translation.]

law of salvador relating to foreigners—national constituent assembly

The Provisional President of the Republic of Salvador to its inhabitants:

Know ye that the National Assembly has decreed the following:

The National Constituent Congress of the Republic, considering that it is of paramount importance for the conservation of the good international relations of the Republic to give due and prompt compliance with the prescriptions of article 50 of the constitution, decrees the following law relative to foreigners:

Chapter I.

Article 1. Salvadorians, by birth or naturalization, are those who are enumerated in articles 42, 43, and 44 of the constitution of the Republic.

Article 2. Foreigners are those who—

(1) Have been born outside of the national territory, who are subjects of foreign Governments, and have not been naturalized in Salvador.

(2) The children of a foreign father or of a foreign mother and an unknown father born in the territory of the state until the time when, in accordance with the law of the nation of the father or of the mother, respectively, they shall have arrived at majority. If within one year thereafter they should not have been made known to the governor of the department of their residence that they elect the nationality of their parents, they shall be considered Salvadorians.

(3) Salvadorian women who marry foreigners shall retain their foreign character during their widowhood. When the matrimony is dissolved the Salvadorian woman by birth may recover her nationality whenever, in addition to her residence in the Republic, she declares before the respective governor her determination to recover her nationality.

The Salvadorian woman who by her marriage does not acquire the nationality of her husband according to the laws of his country shall retain her own nationality.

The change of nationality of the husband, subsequent to marriage, imparts also a change of the nationality of the woman and their minor children, provided they reside [Page 70] in the country of the naturalization of the husband, respectively, saving the exception established in the foregoing paragraph.

(4) Salvadorians who are naturalized in another country and transfer thereto their residence.

(5) Those who serve foreign Governments officially in any political, administrative, judicial, or diplomatic capacity without the license of the legislative power as required by article 53 of the constitution.

Article 3. To determine the place of birth, mentioned in the foregoing articles, it is declared that national vessels, without distinction, are a part of the national territory, and that those born on board of them are to be considered as having been born within the Republic.

Article 4. In virtue of the right of exterritoriality enjoyed by diplomatic agents, the children of ministers and of the employés of the legations of this Republic shall not be held to have been born outside of the Republic (Salvador).

Article 5. The nationality of persons or of moral entities is regulated by the laws of its creation, consequently all persons who are under the laws of the Republic are Salvadorians when, in addition, they have their legal domicil therein.

Foreigners enjoy in Salvador the rights conceded to them by the laws of the domicil when such laws do not conflict with the laws of the nation.

Chapter II.

Article 6. The Salvadorian Republic recognizes the right of expatriation as natural and inherent to every man, and as necessary to the enjoyment of personal liberty; consequently, as it permits its inhabitants to exercise this right, permitting them to leave its territory and to establish themselves in a foreign country, so also it protects the right that foreigners of all nationalities have to settle within its jurisdiction. The; Republic, therefore, receives the subjects and citizens of other states and naturalizes them according to the provisions of the constitution and of the present law.

Article 7. Expatriation and subsequent naturalization obtained in a foreign country do not exempt a criminal from extradition, trial, and punishment to which he may be liable in accordance with the treaties, international practices, and the laws of the country.

Article 8. Naturalized citizens of Salvador, when in foreign countries, have an equal right to the protection of the Government of the Republic with Salvadorians by birth, both as regards their persons and their property. This does not imply that when they return to the country of their origin they shall not be subject to the responsibilities they may have incurred before their naturalization, in accordance with the laws of that country.

Article 9. The Salvadorian Government will protect, by the measures authorized by international law, Salvadorian citizens in foreign countries. The executive will adopt such measures as ho may deem most appropriate, which do not constitute acts of hostility, but if diplomatic intervention should not suffice, or such means should be insufficient, or if the grievances of the Salvadorian nationality should demand the adoption of severer measure, the executive shall then give an account thereof to the legislative power.

Article 10. The naturalization of a foreigner lapses by his residence of two years in the country of his birth, unless in the discharge of an official commission of the Salvadorian Government, or with its permission.

Article 11. Every foreigner who complies with the requisites of Article 23 of the constitution may naturalize himself in the Republic by making application in writing and consigning therein the renunciation and protest prescribed in the following article of this law.

Article 12. Every naturalization implies the renunciation of all submission, obedience, and fidelity to every foreign Government, and especially to that of which the naturalized person may have been a subject; to all protection foreign to the laws and authorities of Salvador, and to all right that treaties or international law concede to foreigners; and besides he shall protest his adhesion, obedience, and submission to the laws and authorities of the Republic.

Article 13. No certificate of naturalization shall be granted to the subjects or citizens of a nation with which the Republic shall be in a state of war.

Article 14. Neither shall a certificate of naturalization be given to persons declared judicially in other countries, or reputed to be, pirates, slaves, incendiaries, coiners of base money, forgers of bank notes or paper money, assassins, kidnappers, and thieves. The naturalization obtained by a foreigner in violation of this law is null and void.

Article 15. Letters or certificates of naturalization shall be issued gratuitously. No charge shall be made for costs, registration, stamps, or under any name whatsoever.

[Page 71]

Article 16. The act of naturalization being personal, only with a special and ample power of attorney can the applicant be represented when the naturalization is not effected by ministry of the law, but in no case shall the power supply the want of the actual residence of the foreigner in the Republic.

Article 17. The quality of citizen or foreigner is intransmissible to third persons. The citizen can not enjoy the rights of a foreigner, nor can the latter enjoy the prerogatives of the former by reason of either capacity.

Article 18. The change of nationality produces no retroactive effect. The acquisition and rehabilitation of Salvadorian rights shall have elect only from the day upon which the certificate of naturalization is obtained.

Article 19. Colonists who come to the country on their own account, or for account of private enterprises, and emigrants of every class may become naturalized according to the constitutional prescriptions. Colonists already in the country are also subject to the same prescriptions in whatever does not conflict with their acquired rights under their contracts.

Article 20. The naturalized foreigner shall become a Salvadorian citizen when he complies with the Conditions required by Article 51 of the constitution, and his rights and his duties shall be placed, on an equality with those of native Salvadorians, but he can not discharge those duties and offices which, according to the constitution, require the nationality of birth.

Chapter III.

Article 21. The matriculation of foreigners consists of an inscription of their names and nationalities in a book opened for this object in the department for foreign affairs of the Republic.

Article 22. The foreigner who desires to be registered and is in the capital of the Republic must present himself to the department of foreign relations, and if away from the capital to the governor of the respective department, and prove his nationality by one of the following documents:

The certificate of the respective diplomatic or consular officer expressing the fact that the party is a native of the country which he, the agent, represents.
The passport upon which the applicant has entered the Republic, legalized in due form.
The certificate of naturalization, also legalized, and only when it shall have been satisfactorily shown that it has been lost or destroyed, or that the document is not essential according to the laws of the country where it was issued, can other proofs of equal value, that the interested party legally acquired such naturalization, be admitted.

Article 23. The proof of nationality with the classification of the applicant having been forwarded by the respective authority to the department of foreign affairs the inscription shall be made and a certificate thereof given to the foreigner, through the medium of the same authority, upon the payment of 5 francs to the national treasury, the only charge for the matriculation.

Article 24. The matriculation constitutes Only prima facie proof of the attributed nationality of the foreigner, consequently proof in rebuttal can be admitted.

Article 25. The matriculation is established by the certificate thereof, issued and signed by the minister for foreign affairs, who alone has the fight therefor.

Article 26. No authority or public functionary can recognize an individual of a determined nationality who does not present his certificate of matriculation.

Article 27. The certificate of matriculation shall not serve its owner to enforce any right or action, if the pretended right or action is anterior to the date of the matriculation.

Article 28. The national character which distinguishes one class of foreigners from another, established by the matriculation, concedes privileges and imposes special obligations. These privileges, in a strict sense, are called by the laws of the Repulic “the rights of foreigners.”

Article 29. The rights of foreigners are:

To appeal to the existing treaties or conventions existing between Salvador and their respective nations.
To have recourse to the protection of their own sovereign through the medium of diplomatic representation.
The benefit of reciprocity.

Article 30. The juridical status of the matriculated foreigner, determined by the before-mentioned privileges, will be changed by the renunciation thereof by the interested party, and by a state of war between Salvador and the country of the foreigner.

Article 31. The renunciation maybe tacit or express; express when stipulated between the Government and the foreigner; tacit when the foreigner deliberately executes an act by which he subjects himself to the laws of Salvador which concede to him any favor upon the condition or supposition of renunciation.

[Page 72]

Chapter IV.

Rights and obligations of foreigners.

  • Article 32. Foreigners are subject to the provisions of Title IV of the constitution and to the law of the 3d March, 1877. They enjoy the guaranties conceded in Title II of the same without prejudice to the right of the executive to expel pernicious foreigners. The proceedings in this case shall be simply gubernative.
  • Article 33. Foreigners also enjoy the civil rights of Salvadorians, but the legislative power may modify and restrict such rights upon the rule of reciprocity, so that foreigners in the Republic are subject to the same restrictions that the laws of their country impose on Salvadorians who reside therein.
  • Article 34. Foreigners may, for all legal purposes, without losing their nationality, domicile themselves in the Republic. The acquisition, change, or loss of domicile are governed by the laws of Salvador.
  • Article 35. The suspension of personal guaranties being declared as permitted by the law of a state of siege, foreigners will be on the same looting with Salvadorians, subject to the restrictions of the law that decrees the suspension, saving only the stipulations of pre-existing treaties.
  • Article 36. Domiciled foreigners, the same as Salvadorians, are obliged to pay personal taxes, both general and local, ordinary and extraordinary, unless excepted by international treaty stipulations. In regard to taxes upon their real estate, they are subject to the provisions of Article 47 of the constitution.
  • Article 37. Transient foreigners are exempt from all merely personal tax, ordinary or extraordinary, of whatever class, but they are not exempt from taxes upon real estate nor from the contributions and imposts upon property, industry, professions, or commerce.
  • Article 38. Every foreigner is obliged to obey and to respect the institutions, laws, and authorities of the Republic as prescribed by Article 45 of the constitution, and to submit to the decisions and sentences of the tribunals without resorting to other recourses then those that the same laws concede to Salvadorians.
  • Article 39. Only in the event of a denial, or of a voluntary retardation in the administration of justice, and after having resorted in vain to all the ordinary means established by the laws of the Republic, may foreigners appeal to the diplomatic recourse.
  • Article 40. It is to be understood that there is a denial of justice only when the judicial authority refuses to make a formal declaration upon the principal subject or upon any incident of the suit in which he may have cognizance or which is submitted to his cognizance; consequently the fact alone that the judge may have pronounced a decision or sentence, in whatever sense it may be, although it may be said that the decision is iniquitous or given in express violation of law, cannot be alleged as a denial of justice.
  • Article 41. Retardation in the administration of justice is not to be considered voluntary when the judge alleges any legal motive of physical impediment therefor which he is unable to prevent.
  • Article 42. Foreigners do not enjoy the political rights that appertain to Salvadorian citizens, consequently they can not vote nor receive votes for any office of popular election, nor be appointed to any office or commission invested with civil or political authority or jurisdiction; nor to associate themselves for the discussion of the apolitical affairs of the state, nor to take any part therein, nor to exercise the right of petition in that class of public affairs.
  • Article 43. The foreigner who voluntarily makes use of the rights expressed in the foregoing article shall, in virtue of the fact itself, like every Salvadorian, be held responsible for his acts and the consequences, without being considered as a naturalized citizen, except in the case named by Article 48 of the constitution.
  • Artice 44. Foreigners are exempt from military service, but domiciled foreigners are subject at all times to municipal duties with Which neither authority, jurisdiction, nor deliberative vote are connected, and they are to lend personal aid to the armed police in cases involving the security of property and the preservation of public order in the places where they reside.
  • Article 45. Every foreigner is obligated not to violate neutrality against the Republic or against the Government of the same in the event of a foreign war.
  • Article 46. Foreigners shall take no part in the civil dissensions of the country; those who contravene this prohibition may be expelled gubernatively, by the executive, from the territory as pernicious foreigners, besides becoming liable for the offenses they may commit against the laws of the Republic; their rights and duties during a state of war will be governed by international law and by treaties.
  • Article 47. With respect to the crimes enumerated in Article 20 of the criminal code, foreigners who are the authors, accomplices, or harborers of crime are subject to the prescriptions of Article 20 of the same code.
  • Article 48. Continuous crimes previously committed in a foreign country and repeated in the Republic shall be punished in accordance with its laws, whether its delinquents are citizens or foreigners, and if apprehended in Salvadorian territory.
  • Article 49 Crimes committed outside of Salvador by foreigners against foreigners, shall not be prosecuted in the Republic, but the Government may expel delinquents as pernicious persons, from the country.
  • Article 50. Crimes committed in the territory of the Republic by foreigners or native citizens shall be prosecuted and punished in conformity with the laws of Salvador.
  • Article 51. Crimes committed as follows will be considered as having been committed in the territory of the Republic:
    On the high seas on board of national war or merchant vessels.
    On board of a Salvadorian vessel of war in foreign ports or waters.
    On board of Salvadorian merchant vessels in foreign ports or waters, when the crime shall not have been tried in the country to which the port or waters belong.
  • Article 52. When a foreigner commits a crime against the exterior security of the Republic, or the crime of sedition or rebellion, the Government may expel him at once from the country in gubernative form or subject him to trial in the ordinary form.
  • Article 53. In crimes of rebellion and sedition, the foreign character of the delinquent shall always be considered as an aggravating circumstance in imposing the penalty.
  • Article 54. This law does not concede to foreigners rights that are denied them by international law, by treaties, or by the laws of Salvador now in force.
  • Article 55. Notwithstanding that Spanish Americans are not held to be foreigners in Salvador, they shall be subject to the present law until the formation of the great Latin-American confederation referred to in article 151 of the constitution.
  • Article 58. Central Americans shall not be held to be foreigners for the effect of the present law.

  • D. Jimenez,
  • Maximo Mancia,
  • Jeremias Guandique,
    Pro. Secretary.

Let it be published.

  • Francisco Menendez
  • Manuel Delgado,
    Secretary of State in the Department of Foreign Affairs, Justice, and Worship.