London Times, 20 October 1868, p. 8: PRUSSIA. (From our own correspondent.) Berlin, Oct. 17. (Excerpt)
The Russian Government have issued an important ukase on maritime police, which I subjoin in full: --
"I. Within three miles' distance of the shores of the Russian continent or Russian islands foreign ships will be liable to the superintendence of the Russian Custom-house authorities.
"II. Any Russian or foreign ship approaching the shore within the distance mentioned will be liable to be visited by the Custom-house officers. In such a case the captain on demand will be obliged to submit for inspection all the ship's papers, as well as the documents having reference to the cargo.
"III. Within the distance mentioned all ships will be required to slacken their speed on the approach of a cruiser sailing under the Russian Custom-house flag. Neglecting to do this they will be fired at with blank cartridge by the cruiser. Should the ship attempt to escape, the cruiser, after firing again with blank cartridge, will fire with ball -- first at the rigging and then at the hull.
"Note -- Clauses II. and III. have no reference to Russian and foreign men of war, respecting which existing regulations continue in force.
"IV. The giving chase to a ship if commenced within the said distance from the shore may be extended to neutral waters."
The latitude accorded to Custom-house cruisers in the last clause is by the Baltic merchants of Prussia regarded as involving an unfair and even dangerous privilege. A petition on the subject has been addressed to the Berlin authorities by the Konigsberg Corporation.
Provided by Stephen McLaughlin