HC Deb 08 February 1881 vol 258 cc343-4

asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether he can give any information with regard to the action of the French Consul General at Tunis, in forcibly ejecting the agents of a British subject, Mr. Levy, from the Enfida estate in that Regency, and his taking possession of that estate for a French Company, the Société Marseillaise, although, according to the laws of that Country, Mr. Levy has a right to become the proprietor of that estate, in accordance with International Treaties of 1803, which allowed British subjects to acquire real property in Tunis, on condition of such property being exclusively subject to the operation of the local laws and the jurisdiction of the local courts, which Treaty was subsequently adopted in its entirety by France and other European Powers, and has been hitherto strictly adhered to; and, whether Her Majesty's Government have received any communications on the subject from Her Majesty's Representative at Tunis; and, if so, he will lay the Papers connected with this question upon the Table of the House?


Sir, the French Government have given instructions to their Consul General not to intervene in this case. We had anticipated that action by instructing Her Majesty's Agent and Consul General not to take any steps with regard to it without orders from home. I am unable to add anything else to the statement which I made yesterday upon the subject, for a correspondence is still going on between the Governments, and a further Report, which I told my hon. Friend a few days since we had called for from Mr. Reade, has not yet reached us.