The Diplomatic Corps in Ethiopia to the Ethiopian Ministry for Foreign Affairs12



The Diplomatic Corps acknowledges receipt of the Ethiopian Government’s note concerning the improvement of the Mixed Court, which it received October 29th, last.13

The Diplomatic Corps is pleased to observe some progress toward betterment in Mixed Court procedure in the proposals of that note.

The Diplomatic Corps is particularly happy to observe that the Ethiopian Government attaches the greatest importance to judgments handed down and not executed. It is pleased to see that the Ethiopian Government is prepared to execute these judgments.

The Diplomatic Corps, animated by the admitted necessity of carrying out unexecuted judgments, agrees that an Ethiopian official be specially designated to confer with the various interested consuls [Page 671] in order to have the judgments in question executed. It is understood that a period of 6 months will be allotted for this execution.

In case of difference of opinion between the Ethiopian official and the consul, the Mixed commission concerned at the same time with studying rules of procedure will be called upon to decide. It is clear that this agreement is applicable only to those judgments remaining unexecuted at the date the Special Court resumes its work.

As regards the execution of judgments thereafter, the Diplomatic Corps is of opinion that this question should be considered in the work of the mixed commission designated to study the rules of procedure.

The Diplomatic Corps agrees to initiate the formulation of a draft code of civil and commercial law, on the basis of the plan presented by the Special Court on May 14th, 1929.14

The Diplomatic Corps will not fail to assign its own delegates for this commission as soon as the Ethiopian Government has approved the formation of a mixed commission to study a plan of complete reorganization of the Special Court.

The Diplomatic Corps does not in principle object to the utility of special trial hearings; it even considers them indispensable in most trials. In those cases where circumstances require it, however, the Diplomatic Corps would consider it preferable to limit the trial sessions to a previous understanding between the consul and the judge. The judgments themselves could, moreover, be drafted in these sessions. The latter should be so arranged as to permit executing the judgments at most two weeks after the last trial hearing, a proposal already contained in the plan of a six months modus vivendi.

Finally the Diplomatic Corps desires to repeat its proposal to put into force at once the provisional rules already outlined for the period of the modus vivendi.

  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the Minister in Ethiopia in his despatch No. 1092, December 3, 1932; received January 4, 1933.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Draft plan was never put into execution (884.05/19).