13 Convention (VII) relating to the Conversion of Merchant Ships

13 Convention (VII) relating to the Conversion of Merchant Ships

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Convention (VII) relating to the Conversion of Merchant Ships into War-Ships. The Hague, 18 October 1907. State parties (32) / State signatories (16) General title: Second Peace Conference of The Hague, 1907. Forum of adoption: International Peace Conference 1907 Entry into force: 26.01.1910 When during the Franco-German war of 1870 the King of Prussia, as President of the North German Confederation, ordered the creation of a volunteer navy by inviting the owners of private German vessels to make them part of the German navy, the question was raised whether this scheme violated the Declaration of Paris by which the signatories had engaged themselves not to employ privateers. While in the following decades the principle was generally admitted that merchant ships might be incorporated into the regular navy, several questions remained unsolved. The signatories of the present Convention, concluded at the Second Hague Peace Conference, although agreeing on the general principle, were unable to settle all the questions which gave rise to controversy. In particular, they could not agree on the question whether conversion might be performed in a harbour of the converting State only or also on the high seas (see preamble). Nor could they solve the question whether or not it was permissible to reconvert into a merchantman, before the end of war, a vessel which during the war had been converted into a warship. Meetings of forum: 15.06.1907 - 18.10.1907, The Hague Date of adoption: 18.10.1907 Depositary: Netherlands Number of articles: 12 Authentic text: French SourceD.Schindler and J.Toman, The Laws of Armed Conflicts, Martinus Nihjoff Publisher, 1988, pp.798-800. Whereas it is desirable, in view of the incorporation in time of war of merchant ships in the fighting fleet, to define the conditions subject to which this operation may be effected; Whereas, however, the Contracting Powers have been unable to come to an agreement on the question whether the conversion of a merchant ship into a war-ship may take place upon the high seas, it is understood that the question of the place where such conversion is effected remains outside the scope of this agreement and is in no way affected by the following rules; Being desirous of concluding a Convention to this effect, have appointed the following as their Plenipotentiaries: (Here follow the names of Plenipotentiaries) Who, after having deposited their full powers, found in good and due form, have agreed upon the following provisions: Article 1. A merchant ship converted into a war-ship cannot have the rights and duties accruing
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13 Convention (VII) relating to the Conversion of Merchant Ships

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