No. 368.
Mr. McLane to Mr. Bayard.

No. 554.]

Sir: Referring to your No. 287 of January 12, 1888, instructing me to obtain from the French foreign office a statement of the relations now subsisting between the French Republic and the King of Johanna (or Anjouan), one of the Comoro Islands, I inclose a copy and a translation of a note from Mr. Flourens, stating that the French Republic has assumed the protectorate of that island by virtue of two treaties, signed April 21, 1886, and October 15, 1887. A copy and a translation of those treaties are also herewith inclosed.

I have, etc.,

Robert M. McLane
[Inclosure 1 in No. 554.]

Mr. Flourens to Mr. McLane.

Sir: You were good enough by your letter of the 30th January last to point out to me the interest that your Government would have in knowing the exact state of the relations which the Government of the Republic entertain at present with the Sultan of Anjouan, and you expressed the desire of having communicated to you the treaties concluded by France with that native chief, with the view of being exactly informed as to the rights reserved by these arrangements to American citizens residing in the Comoro Islands.

In order to respond to the desire which you were good enough to bring to my notice on this subject, I hasten to send you herewith copies of the text of the two treaties which were concluded with the Sultan of Anjouan the 21st April, 1886, and the 15th October, 1887, for the purpose of placing that island under the French protectorate

Accept, etc.,

[Inclosure 2 in No. 554.]

Convention of April 21, 1886, between the Sultan of Anjouan and the French Republic.

The Government of the French Republic, duly represented by Mr. Gerville-Réache, commandant of Mayotte, and His Highness Aballah ben Sultan Salim, Sultan of Anjouan, intervening directly, anxious for the development and for the prosperity of the Sultanate of Anjouan, have decided to consecrate by the following conventions the relations of friendship which have existed for a long time between them and to assure the preponderance of France at Anjouan.

  • Art. 1. His Highness, together with his council of ministers, declares that he places the Island of Anjouan under the protection, of France. He binds himself and his successors never to make a treaty with any other nation and to grant no privileges to foreigners without the consent of France.
  • Art. 2. The subjects of his highness shall with entire freedom reside, travel, and trade in France or in French colonies on the same conditions as French colonists; on the other hand, Frenchmen shall enjoy the same freedom in the States of his highness.
  • Art. 3. The Sultan agrees to furnish to French business men who might desire to establish themselves at Anjouan the lands of which they shall have need for their operations within the limit of the domain over which he has power of disposal.
  • Art. 4. Difficulties which may arise between French citizens and Anjouanese shall be settled by French tribunals.
  • Art. 5. The rights of foreigners at present established in the island remain reserved without in any case the French Government being responsible for the execution of previous deeds and conventions. If there should be disputes on the subject of these deeds and conventions, the Government of the Republic shall be taken for arbitrator.
  • Art. 6. Anjouanese vessels shall be treated in French ports as French ships. The [Page 517] same advantages shall be glinted to the ships of the Republic which shall enter a port dependent upon the States of his highness.
  • Art. 7. In the view of assuring the tranquillity of Anjouan and of allowing the regular succession to the throne, in conformity to the usages of the country, the Sultan chooses for his successor the Prince Salim ben Abdallah, his eldest son, and in case of the death of the latter before his accession to the sultanate, of Abdallah ben Salim, eldest son of Salim. Finally, the French Government shall regulate the succession to the throne in case that the provisions made by his highness can not have their full effect and that there should be no direct and immediate heir in his family.
  • Art. 8. The Sultan promises to continue to assure to each of his brothers the means of existence.
  • Art. 9. To put an end to the civil wars which for long years desolated Anjouan, the French Government and his highness declare that every person who shall have taken up arms against a constituted power shall be considered as a rebel, and tried according to the laws of the country.
  • Art. 10. The Government of the Republic engages itself not to give asylum to any subject of Anjouan who, recognized by it as in state of rebellion, may come to seek refuge in France, at Mayotte, or in any other French possession.
  • Art. 11. His highness binds himself not to carry arms in any of the Comoro Islands, and not to lend aid and assistance to anybody without the approval of the commandant of Mayotte.
  • Art. 12. The Sultan declares that there “does not exist between his Kingdom and any other power any act which could vitiate the character of the present convention.
  • Art. 13. The Sultan pledges himself to take the necessary steps for the abolition of slavery in his States.
  • Art. 14. The present contract, which shall be definite after the approval of the Government of the Republic, has been signed in presence, on one side, of Messrs. Brion, naval lieutenant, commanding the Jackal; de Lestrac, sous-commissaire of the navy; Gauthier and Lesquivet, ensigns; Deslandes, physician of second class of the navy; on the other side, of Salim ben Sultan Abdallah, Mohammed ben Sultan Salim, Said Outonmani ben Sultan Salim, Said Ali ben Sultan Salim, Abdallah Mohomed, dit Diamond, prime minister. (The names of the other ministers follow.)
[Inclosure 3 in No. 554.]

Convention of October 15, 1887, between the Sultan of Anjouan and the French Republic.

The Government of the French Republic, duly represented by Mr. Edward Hibou, commandant of Mayotte, P. I. representative of the French protectorate in the Comoro Islands, and His Highness Abdallah ben Sultan Salim, Sultan of Anjouan, intervening directly, have recognized as definitive the provisional conventions agreed upon on the date of the 8th of October, 1887, between Mr. Theodore Troupel, resident of France at Anjouan, acting pursuant to the instructions of the commandant of Mayotte, and His Highness Abdallah ben Sultan Salim, the tenor of which is as follows:

  • Art. 1. The conventions signed on the 26th of March, 1887, and exchanged between Captain Dorlodot des Essarts, commanding the naval division of the Indian Ocean, and His Highness Abdallah ben Sultan Salim, are annulled and can in no case be appealed to.
  • Art. 2. The treaty of the 21st April, 1886 (French text) is definitely recognized and adopted, except article 4 of said act, which is replaced by article 4 as given below, and with the addition of articles 3 and 5 of the present treaty.
  • Art. 3. The president shall be accompanied by his secretaries, interpreters, or other employés necessary to insure his service.
  • Art. 4. Disputes of any kind which may arise between French citizens residing at Anjouan and Anjonanese shall be tried and settled by a court composed of the resident or his delegate president, of a French assessor, and of an Anjouanese assessor.
  • Art. 5. A French school directed by one or several lay instructors is founded at Montsamondou by the French Government.

The school establishment shall be provided, paid, and kept up by His Highness Abdallah ben Sultan Salim.