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After an interval of not more than two years from the day on which the Convention is signed, the Belgian Government shall place itself in communication with the Governments of the High Contracting Parties which have declared themselves prepared to ratify the Convention, with a view to deciding whether it shall be put into force. The ratifications shall be deposited at Brussels at a date to be fixed by agreement among the said Governments. The first deposit of ratifications shall be recorded in a procès-verbal signed by the representatives of the powers which take part therein and by the Belgian Minister for Foreign Affairs.
The subsequent deposits of ratification shall be made by means of a written notification, addressed to the Belgian Government, and accompanied by the instrument of ratification.
A duly certified copy of the procès-verbal relating to the first deposit of ratifications, of the notifications referred to in the previous paragraph, and also of the instruments of ratification accompanying them, shall be immediately sent by the Belgian Government through the diplomatic channel to the powers who have signed this Convention or who have acceded to it. In the cases contemplated in the preceding paragraph the said Government shall inform them at the same time of the date on which it received the notification.
Non-signatory states may accede to the present Convention whether or not they have been represented at the International Conference at Brussels.
A state which desires to accede shall notify its intention in writing to the Belgian Government, forwarding to it the document of accession which shall be deposited in the archives of the said Government.
The Belgian Government shall immediately forward to all the states which have signed or acceded to the Convention a duly certified copy of the notification and of the act of accession, mentioning the date on which it received the notification.
The present Convention shall take effect, in the case of the states which have taken part in the first deposit of ratifications, one year after the date of the procès-verbal recording such deposit. As respects the states which ratify subsequently or which accede and also in the case in which the Convention is subsequently put into effect in accordance with article XIX, it shall take effect six months after the notifications specified in article XVII, paragraph 2, and article XVIII, paragraph 2, have been received by the Belgian Government.
In the event of one of the contracting states wishing to denounce the present Convention, the denunciation shall be notified in writing to the Belgian Government, which shall immediately communicate a duly certified copy of the notification to all the other states informing them of the date on which it was received.
The denunciation shall only operate in respect of the state which made the notification, and on the expiration of one year after the notification has reached the Belgian Government.
Any one of the contracting states shall have the right to call for a fresh conference with a view to considering possible amendments.
A state which would exercise this right should give one year advance notice of its intention to the other states through the Belgian Government, which would make arrangements for convening the conference.
The High Contracting Parties may at the time of signature, ratification, or accession declare that their acceptance of the present Convention does not include any or all of the self-governing dominions, or of the colonies, overseas protectorates, or territories under their sovereignty or authority, and they may subsequently accede separately on behalf of any self-governing dominion, colony, overseas possession, protectorate or territories excluded in their declaration. They may also denounce the Convention separately in accordance with its provision in respect of any self-governing dominion, or any colony, overseas possession, protectorate, or territory under their sovereignty or authority.
This adhesion contains the declaration related to article XIX of the Convention.
“The Italian state reserves the right not to bring its international law into line with the aforementioned Convention where this law currently:
—extends preferential rights in question in article II of the Convention to all those dependent on the ship as well, instead of merely to those “accessories” set out in article IV;
—establishes, after the second category of preferential rights set out in article II of the Convention, a scale of preferential rights covering debts advanced by the Mercantile Marine Adminstration or by internal sailing bodies or even by consular Authorities, for looking after and repatriating crew members.”
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