10 AUGUST 1907, Page 2

On Wednesday the question of the destruction of neutral prizes,

defended by the Russian delegate as the logical and legal outcome of capture, and condemned by Sir Ernest Satow as unsupported by either law or practice, was referred to the Comae d'Examen. The French recom- mendation, as an alternative to capture, to abolish prize- money and consider the possibility of indemnification, was only addressed to those Powers which maintained the right of capture, and led to a good deal of complicated cross voting. On the same day the first section of the Second Committee passed by a large majority the Belgian proposal to renew the agreement of 1899 to prohibit for five years the launching of projectiles and explosives from balloons. They also carried (1) the Russian proposal giving undefended towns and villages the same immunity from assault by balloon which the Conven- tion of 1899 has given them from land bombardment, and (2) the proposal of Italy to prohibit balloons which were not dirigible and manned by military crews. From this latter proposal the French and German delegates dissented. We may note that the Times representative severely criticises the unbusinesslike -methods of procedure adopted at the Conference, the irregular interposition of the Russian delegate, and argues that in future it will be necessary to arrange the programme by a preliminary interchange of views on the part of the Powers.