(Per Press Association.)
Auckland, February 26. Admiral Fairfax was Interviewed to-day by a Press Id reply to enquiries the Admiral stated that be had enjoyed his trip South very muoh ; he bad Inspeoted all the harbours, and he had visited the Sounds. These latter he considered magnificent, and expressed hlraeelf highly delighted with his fornigbVo visit to them. Politic* were then touched upon, and the reporter endeavored to obtain Admiral Fa'rfax'a views on the Satnoan Qaestlon. Oh this sabjeor, how* ever, he was to at all intents and purposes dumb, He was very rotloont indeed on the matter. He bad received a repot t from Captain Hand, of the Royalist, and he had cabled Home the particulars of the disturbance at Samoa As for all the faats, he wbb not In receipt of them, certain reports asked for by him not htvlog been as yet received. As for international qaettions, and question* relating to the oondoot of bis officers, whether good, bid, or Indifferent, he must decline to have anything to say on them. He said that the declaring of war and of martial law gave a belligerent nation tremendous powers, even over nautical parties j but it seemed • question whether war bad been deolared by Germany at Samoa when tbe disturbance with reaped to the Richmond arose. Certainly as the Germans were, not m occupation of the country at the time, they were not justified m proclaiming martial l«w.
Captain Hand, of H.M.S. Royalist, was interviewed with the obj/ot of ascertaining what part bs played In the reoent disturbacce at Samoa, more particularly dealing with the German outrage oo Me Gelling ' and the oirgo of the steamer Richmond, Captain Hand gavo his aooount of Mr Gelllng's arrest, and release as follows :— '• Information was brought to me on bo.-rd the Royallat of what had been done, and 1 weat at once to the BritUh Consul, and we both laid that Mr Geliing muafa be Immediately released, ■■ by bin arrest ar» outrage had undoubtedly been committed. I then went on board the Adler and told Clqmmander P^ltz that Mr QjlMng wan to be sent back to tfye Richmond m a German bgat. The British Consul at the »me time demanded Mr Gelling* release from tbe German Consul. The Getmans gave Mr Gelling breakfast on board the Adler, and treated him very hospitably (ao he said) ; and In tbe course of the forenoon he was sent baok to the Richmond, I do not know what oqQurred at tho courtmartial. % believe that the captain of the Adler «ppke to Me Uelling on the quarterdeck, but Mr GeMng did not complain of anything/ o>ptain Hand wii aoked whether ho had to use threap before he Induced the commander of the Adler to aelease Mr Gelling, and whether It was trne that the Royalist and the American man-of-war Nelpalo ran out their guns to compei the Germans to refrain from Interterference with the cargo on board the Richmond. Captain Hand said that no •uoh demonstration was made on the Royallat, »nd that he knew of nothing of the kind having taken plaoe on board the Neipslo. Ho said that what took plaoe between himself and the captain of the Adler was only known to themselves so f«r } he had yet to forward his report to his superior offioer, Admiral Fairfax, and did not consider it right to make the par-« tloulars publio through the Press. He said— '' Immediately I knew that the Ger mans were breaking cargo on board the Richmond, I sent an officer on board and stopped It.' "Then you do not anticipate a repetition pf the Richmond affair?" queried the reporter, " No, Ido not," replied Captain Hand. "The Germans had the law laid down to them pretty clearly before I left, and I do not believe that Captain Kane vrill have any trouble on that score. As for the search of goods after they have been landed, I oannot speak for oertain, The lawyers ashore gave it as their opinion that the Germans could have the goods landed at a certain plage and searched. The Germans, however, will not be permitted to search the Richmond on her present trip as they did before. Their right is to look at the ship's papers, and see tbat she is a merchant ship. They were not allowed to look at moie than the papers of the steamer Wainui w^en she wont down. 1 sent an officer on board, and when. the. German officer visited th,e steamer he was told that he could look at tbe Walnui's paporß : but tbat was all, and he did no more," Concerning the part that the Neipßic was reported to have played Captain Hand said that the arrest of Mr Gelling was a matter that did not concern tbe AmeiioanH, Mr Gelling be ? ng a'firitieh eubieot. He (Captain Hand) told the Germans that Mr Gelling was to be sent baok to the Richmond, and he wrs e©'.t back. As for tbe breaking of British cargo, he stopped that immediately he heard of it. It was true tbat owing to representations made by the captain of the Neipsic, the seized, to break open, American consignments j but he beHoved that ttyis was only for a time, and that the order was subsequently countermanded.
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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2074, 27 February 1889
SAMOAN AFFAIRS Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2074, 27 February 1889
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