By a C.H. Reporter On November 29, the following
challenge was sent to the Duchess of Atholl, who is at present fighting for re-election in the Kinross and West Perthshire constituency.
"In view of importance of question of Belligerent Rights and necessity of public being competently advised thereon hereby offer £50 to any charity if you can produce a written opinion by any recognized legal authority on International Law in Great Britain to the effect that, according to the principles governing the doctrine of Belligerent Rights as enunciated by the leading text books in use in British Universities, General Franco's Government fails to satisfy requisites prescribed as essential to successful maintenance of claim for recognition. If challenge accepted, wire reply."
The challenge, to which, at the time of going to press, no reply has been received, was sent by Mr. John
J. Campbell, B.L., J.P.
Mr. Campbell, a solicitor, is honorary secretary and legal adviser to the Catholic Union of the Archdiocese of Glasgow and the Catholic Advisory Bureau, and a former member of the Glasgow Education Authority.
" I sent this challenge," Mr Campbell told the CATHOLIC HERALD, " because the question of Belligerent Rights is not only an important feature of Her Grace's appeal to the electorate but is also importient to our future relationship with Spain and all foreign countries.
"The code of International Law, an.d particularly the doctrine of Belligerent Rights has, in the past, been accepted as the basis governing relations with a country involved in Civil War. This is the first
occasion on. which cot organized world-wide attempt has been made to prevent recognition of this rule of law, and success would undoubtedly be a severe blow to International Law.
"Despite numerous public challenges. no one has stated any grounds on which recognition can validly be refused, It is therefore safe to conclude that there is no answer to General Franco's claim."
Mr Campbell then commented on the fact that, lacking legal argument, the anti-Franco party are not lacking in activity in the attempt to sabotage the operation of International Law.
" It is amazing," he said, " that such a motley crowd, composed of Liberals, Communists, Socialists, Youth and Peace Movements and International Societies of all kinds, can find common ground for uniting in this attack. International Law may rapidly become, not a safeguard for peace, but a weapon of war.
"It may be noted that, on the question of Belligerent Rights, Her Grace has rallied to her support in Britain all the most subversive elements, e.g., the Cornmuniet Party have unanimously decided to support Her Grace with all the strength of their organization."
500 Catholics Fight Mexican Police
Five hundred Catholics engaged in a hand-to-hand fight with the police at Queretaro, Mexico, where they had been evicted from a church which they had opened in defiance of the anti-Catholic hews.
One policeman was injured by a stone, it is reported.
The Twenty-Sixth Annual Conference of the Catholic Teachers' Federation will be held in St. Mary's Training College, Fenham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, on Wednesday, December 28, 1938.