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United States Department of State / Papers relating to the foreign relations of the United States, with the annual message of the president transmitted to Congress December 3, 1894

Nicaragua,   pp. 432-479 PDF (19.4 MB)

Page 433

Mr. Baker to Mr. Gresham. 
Managua, Nicaragua, November 1, 1893. 
(Received November 23.) 
SIR: Since my dispatch No. 121, of October 24, there has been quiet 
in the politics of Nicaragua. The persons who were imprisoned on the 
night of the 22d, as reported in said dispatch, have been assigned 
respectively to close confinement in Leon, Chinendega, and El Viejo, but
no new arrests or banishments have taken place. 
The constituent assembly has continued its sessions and has spent 
the last four days in rather heated debate on the articles of the new 
constitution relating to the rights of foreign residents in this Republic.
I beg to send you inclosed a copy and translation of the articles which 
were finally adopted on the 31st ultimo. 
Article 12 created the greatest amount of discussion and was finil1y 
approved yesterday by a vote of 15 to 14. 
Considerable excitement has prevailed among the foreign residents 
of this city on account of the new measures taken, and much irritation 
has been felt by them at their intended subjection to the extraordinary 
taxes, as well as to the provisions of the above-mentioned articles 10 
and 12. 
But I have not felt called upon to take any official notice of the action
taken by the assembly. I have had, however, two personal interviews 
with President Zelaya, during which the question came up. One of 
them has been reported in my dispatch No. 121; the other I had yes- 
terday morning, a short while before article 12 was definitely approved.
In the latter, President Zelaya and Vice-President Ortiz both assured. 
me that while a number of njembers wanted to place the provision 
mentioned in the new constitution, on account of former instances in 
which foreigners had made unjust claims, the more enlightened element 
thought it might prove a menace or hindrance to immigration, and they 
both believed there would be ultimately a majority against the article. 
In this, however, they were mistaken, as the same morning it passed 
the assembly with a majority of one vote. 
I am still in the hope that, before the constitution will be adopted as 
a whole, some changes may be made to the articles in question. 
I beg, etc., 
[Inclosure 1 in No. 132.--Translation.] 
Article relating to foreigners in the new confltitution of Nicaragua, now
under discussion. 
NOVEMBRP 1, 1893. 
ART. 9. Foreigners shall enjoy in Nicaragua all the civil rights of Nicaraguans.
ART. 10. They may acquire all kinds of property in the country, but they
shall be 
subject, in regard to this property, to all ordinary and extraordinary charges
to which 
F R 94-  28                                        433 

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