Paris Peace Conf. 180.03401/22


Notes of a Meeting Held at President Wilson’s House in the Place des Etats-Unis, Paris, at 4:15 p.m. on Wednesday, May 21, 1919

  • Present
    • United States of America
      • President Wilson.
    • France
      • M. Clemenceau.
    • British Empire
      • The Rt. Hon. D. Lloyd George, M. P.
    • Italy
      • M. Sonnino.
Sir Maurice Hankey, K. C. B. Secretary.
Count Aldrovandi Secretary.
Prof. P. J. Mantoux Interpreter.

The following Members of the Polish-Ukrainian Commission were also present:—

General The Rt. Hon. Louis Botha, (President).

Dr. Lord, United States of America.
Lieut-Colonel F. H. Kisch, British Empire.
General Le Rond, France.
M. Brambilla. Italy.
Captain Brebner } Secretaries.
Captain Escoffer

There were also present the following Members of the Ukrainian Delegation to the Peace Conference:—

  • M. G. Syderenko.
  • Dr. B. Paneyko.
  • M. Lozynsky.
  • Colonel D. Witowsky.

Polish-Ukrainian Armistice President Wilson stated that the reason for the presence of the Ukrainian Delegation was the distressing circumstances existing on the Polish-Ukrainian front and stated that the Council of the Principle Allied and Associated Powers had invited the Delegates to make a statement as to their views on these circumstances. The Council would be glad if the spokesman would set forth those views.

M. Syderenko expressed in the name of the Ukrainian Delegation their gratitude to the illustrious representatives of the Great Powers for the interest they were showing in the Ukrainian people. He stated that Ukrainian territory had been devastated, the people had suffered extremely, and that they all deplored the state of war that existed between Poland and Ukrainia. They would like to live with the [Page 776] Poles in peace and harmony, and as brothers. They, however, were not the aggressors, but were only defending the country of their forefathers. They had more than once expressed their willingness to enter into an armistice and repeated that willingness again. They trusted that the Peace Representatives of the Entente would settle this question in accordance with the principles of justice and right as enunciated by President Wilson and as accepted by the Great Powers. Particularly anxious were they that the matter of the Armistice should receive an immediate settlement. The Armistice Commission had asked them to express their view and they had accepted the terms of the Armistice proposed by that Commission, but in spite of this they were informed that the Poles had made continuous attacks and had occupied further parts of Ukrainian territory. With regard to this point Dr. Paneyko the Vice President, would give further information.

Mr. Lloyd George wished to know what the attitude of the Ukrainians was toward the Bolshevists.

M. Syderenko, in reply, stated that the Ukrainians were defending their national territory, and that the Bolshevists had invaded and were ravaging their country. They regarded the Bolshevists as their worst enemies, and were doing their best to establish peace and order.

Mr. Lloyd George, to make this point clear, asked whether that statement meant that the Poles were attacking the Ukrainians on the Western side while the Bolshevists were attacking them on the East. The answer was in the affirmative.

Dr. Paneyko stated that the population of Eastern Galicia consisted of about 4,000,000 Ukranians. These had been given over by the Austrian authorities to Polish domination, and that was the reason why the Ukrainians greeted with joy the collapse of the Austrian Empire and immediately proceeded upon that collapse to establish their own national life and State. This State was founded on the principle of self-determination, as accepted by the Entente, but at the same time guaranteed the rights of minorities. From a social and economic point of view, the State is based upon the principles of democracy, and is introducing moderate reforms, chiefly with reference to the agricultural situation. The estates of the great landowners have not been declared forfeit, but a scheme has been adopted for buying out these land-owners, the object being to obtain a middle class peasantry as the backbone of the State. In spite of the rights of the Poles being guaranteed, the latter, dreaming of the old historical Polish Empire, extending from the Baltic to the Black Sea, proceeded to attack this new State. The Polish population within the borders of the State, chiefly belonged to the bureaucratic and large landowning classes, but the bulk of the population is Ukrainian.

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Mr. Lloyd George asked whether there was any substantial difference between the Polish and Ukrainian languages.

Dr. Paneyko replied that all Slavic languages are closely related, but the Ukrainian language is distinct from that of the Poles. One is not a dialect of the other. The Russian Ukrainians spoke the same language as those in Eastern Galicia. In religion the Galicians are Greek Catholics, owning allegiance to the Church of Rome.

Dr. Paneyko, continuing, stated that when the Government, established by the German Military Command in Ukrainia, was overthrown, a movement for liberating the Western Ukraine was commenced by the inhabitants.

Mr. Lloyd George put the question whether, supposing Russian Ukrainia should remain part of Russia, the Western Ukrainians would prefer to remain under Poland or under Russia as an autonomous State.

Dr. Paneyko answered that it was difficult to reply to this question. Their aim and object was complete national independence, and he expressed the opinion that an autonomous State as suggested would not solve the problem, but would only serve to create a situation corresponding to the Balkan States.

M. Syderenko pointed out that the Ukrainian people were now all united. At one time they had been divided between Russia and Austria. Now, their common object was national independence. No union with Poland was possible, as the Ukrainians counted a population of some 40,000,000, while the Poles only totalled some 20,000,000. The Russians, on the other hand, had always only used Ukrainia only for their own interests. All the Ukrainian parties from Right to Left were united in the one aim of obtaining complete independence as an indivisible State.

Mr. Lloyd George then asked if it was correct to state that whatever happened to Ukrainia as a whole, the Ukrainians would prefer to throw in their lot therewith. Did they want to be separated from the Eastern Ukrainians? The answer was, No. What they desired was a united independent Ukrainian State.

Mr. Lloyd George further enquired whether the Ukrainians were prepared to stop fighting if the Poles should do the same, and, if so, would they treat the Polish people fairly and with justice.

Dr. Paneyko stated in reply, that they had been willing to stop and had so stated several times previously. Legislation had also been passed guaranteeing to the Poles minority rights, which legislation had been much appreciated by the latter. To a further query of Mr. Lloyd George, whether, if ordered by the Delegation here in Paris, the Ukrainian troops on the front would obey such order, the reply was, Absolutely, and that the Armies under command of [Page 778] the Ukrainian Government were well-organised and under complete control of the Ukrainian Government.

Mr. Lloyd George enquired whether, if the Ukrainians were relieved on this Polish-Ukrainian front, would these armies be used against the Bolshevists on other fronts.

Dr. Paneyko replied, Certainly. This army was animated with a desire to proceed against the Bolshevists in their country. The Ukrainian Delegation felt that such army would be more successful against the Bolshevists because they understood the population which was at present subject to Bolshevist rule, and would get a sympathetic reception from their co-patriots. The Bolshevists had over-run Ukrainia, because the latter’s army had to be withdrawn to defend their homes against the ravaging and pillaging of the Poles. Bolshevism would not find a rich field in Eastern Galicia, as the population there had enjoyed constitutional liberties far more than the Ukrainian population in Russia. The Ukrainians were anxious for the support by the Entente in the way of officers, supplies, munitions of war, etc. and stated that the Poles at the present time, with the assistance of the Allies, were invading Ukrainia and burning and ravaging the country. In the name of humanity, he called upon the Entente to stop the Poles. Every day he received appeals for protection from the Ukrainians.

(The Deputation then withdrew.)

President Wilson requested General Botha to read the report of the Polish-Ukrainian Armistice Commission, (Appendix 4). The report was then read by Colonel Kisch.

General Botha then pointed out that the Ukrainians had accepted the draft Armistice terms subject to some slight modification, and demonstrated on the map attached to the report,1 the various lines of demarcation suggested by the Armistice Commission, the Poles and the Ukrainians respectively. The Poles from the beginning had taken up the attitude that it was essential for them, in order to fight Bolshevism, to shorten their line and thus to join hands with Roumania and occupy a line towards the East of the Eastern boundary of Eastern Galicia.

President Wilson wished to have the opinion of General Botha and the Commission as to what effective steps could be taken to make the Poles agree to the draft Convention. As far as he understood the position from the reports that had come in, it appeared that the Poles were continuing their plans of attack regardless of the protests of M. Paderewski, and that Haller’s Army was being used on this front.

General le Rond pointed out that the telegram stating that Haller’s [Page 779] Army was being used on the Ukrainian front came from Prague, and without further reliable authority it could be hardly accepted as correct. The same remark applied to the report that the Poles had taken Beltz, well within the Ukrainian lines.

General Botha, in reply to President Wilson, stated that, as a Commission, they had not gone into the political question as to what steps should be taken to enforce the Armistice terms. The Commission had impressed upon both parties the urgent necessity for stopping bloodshed, had drafted a draft armistice attached to the report, and submitted it to both parties for their acceptance. As Chairman of that Commission, he could only refer to the unanimous conclusion of the Commission, that when the Poles refused to accept the draft armistice their mandate was at an end. He was of opinion that bloodshed should be stopped at once for he feared that if it were allowed to continue peace would never reign in this region. Furthermore, if the Poles would stop this fighting it would give the Supreme Council an opportunity of further considering the question of frontiers and thus enabling a settlement to be obtained.

President Wilson then read a draft telegram which it had been proposed to send to General Pilsudski (Appendix I), before the latest telegram had arrived from M. Paderewski (Appendix II) and asked whether this telegram met with the approval of General Botha, pointing out that the effect of the telegram might be to create starvation amongst the people and suggesting that the terms of the telegram should be restricted to withholding military supplies.

General Botha suggested omitting all reference to the kind of supplies, thus leaving it open for decision later on, but President Wilson pointed out that such a course would be inadvisable unless the Council had already decided what it would do should the Poles prove obdurate.

General le Rond pointed out that the Poles had always maintained that the continuous front from the Black Sea to the Baltic Sea was essential for their safety as against Bolshevism and had alleged that in their present line there was a gap, namely, the Ukrainian front where communications were passing through between Lenin and Bela Khun. If the Poles overthrew Paderewski and no other Government could be established, the only alternatives were either to starve the Poles or force them to become Bolshevists, and he suggested that the telegram should be confined to food supplies. Both sides were filled with ambitious aims but there certainly was some ground for the Polish desire for a continuous front, more especially when the Polish Army seemed to have the better morale.

General Botha pointed out that the Poles stood under the protection of the Supreme Council, and were receiving assistance in the [Page 780] shape of troops, munitions of war and food. The Ukrainians fighting against them had on the other hand not been recognised, were receiving no assistance from the Allies; their country had been devastated by war, and the suffering amongst the population must be great. Yet, both countries were in the same position in this respect, that both owed their present existence to the sacrifices of the Allies. He believed that it would be to the interests of the Poles to listen to the Supreme Council. They had already been told that in the matter of territory they should occupy by force of arms. Such would not be taken into consideration in deciding the ultimate frontiers. He considered the cry of Bolshevism to be a bogey and felt it was impossible for the Supreme Council to allow a small nation to be over-run by its neighbours on the ostensible pretext of a defensive, strategical measure against Bolshevism, which at this point was some hundred miles removed from the present Polish frontier. The Poles owed their very existence to the great sacrifices of the Allies and therefore the Allies had every right to demand that they should be listened to. Furthermore, if the fighting on this front were stopped, it would mean obtaining some sixty thousand men to assist in waging war against the Bolshevists. Looking at the question from the Ukrainian point of view, it must appear to the latter that they are being deceived by the Allies. Military assistance is being sent to the Poles by the Allies in the shape of Haller’s Army, and supplies, etc., are being forwarded and being used to over-run a neighbouring State which like Poland owes its existence and continuance to the sacrifices of the Allies. There was plenty of room along the Eastern frontier of Ukrainia for the Poles to fight Bolshevism side by side in agreement with the Ukrainians. He felt that the time had come for the Supreme Council to take active steps. It was impossible after the Ukrainians had expressed their willingness to accept the draft armistice terms to send them home again without a settlement having been reached.

President Wilson sympathised with this argument but expressed the fear that if strong action forced the downfall of the Paderewski Government, Poland would turn Bolshevist, as had happened in other cases. As far as he could judge the present temper of the Diet, Poland would become anarchical if any extreme measure should be adopted.

Dr. Lord pointed out that the draft Armistice Terms had as yet not been agreed to by the Supreme Council, but had only been submitted unofficially to the contending parties by the Armistice Commission. He expressed the view that if the Supreme Council should adopt the Armistice with such modifications as they thought fit and formally submit the same to the Poles and Ukrainians, the former would probably accept them.

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General Botha feared that delay had been the root of all the trouble, and that every day that passed without a settlement made the problem more difficult.

Mr. Lloyd George agreed that the Supreme Council had hitherto acted rather weakly in this matter. He remarked that it seemed to him that Poles were using Bolshevism as a cloak for their Imperialistic aims. From the experience in Russia he had formed the conclusion that the only way to fight Bolshevism was to use nationals of the country affected. Wherever foreign troops intervened the hands of Bolshevism were strengthened, and therefore to fight Bolshevism in Ukrainia we should rather use Ukrainians than Poles. Ukrainians may naturally say that the Poles in pretending to fight Bolshevism really were pillaging and ravaging their country and the result would be simply to force Bolshevism upon Ukrainia. We are told that the Warsaw mob would overthrow the Paderewski Government if we took strong steps. If that were so it showed pretty conclusively that the Poles were quite unfitted to govern themselves. He hoped that the draft telegram prepared by President Wilson would be sent and suggested that the word “supplies” could be interpreted later. By using the wide term “supplies” some advantage was to be gained and if a decision was necessary the word could be restricted to military supplies. He suggested that a telegram should be sent to General Haller stating that rumours had come to the ears of the Supreme Council that in defiance of their express instructions General Haller had allowed his troops to march against the Galicians.

General le Bond suggested that instead of telegraphing to General Haller the telegram should be sent to General Pilsudski of the Polish High Command.

(It was agreed that M. Clemenceau should send a telegram on the above lines to General Pilsudski and at the same time forward through the French Liaison Officer a copy to General Haller for his information.

General Le Rond and Colonel Kisch were instructed to submit a draft telegram (see Appendix III).

After further discussion as to the terms of the draft telegram, it was decided that President Wilson should re-draft the same with two additions:—

Calling the attention of the Poles to the fact that they owe their legal existence as a State to the Council and
Stating that the draft Armistice Terms had been adopted and confirmed by the Council.)

(The Meeting then terminated.)

Villa Majestic, Paris, 21 May, 1919.

[Page 782]

Appendix I to CF–22

Telegram From the President of the Peace Conference to General Pilsudski, Head of the Polish State

The Council of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers feel that it is their duty to call the attention of the Government of Poland to facts which are giving them the greatest concern and which may lead to consequences for Poland which the Council would deeply deplore. The boundary between Poland and the Ukraine is under consideration and it is as yet undetermined, and the Council has more than once informed the Polish Government that they would regard any attempt either by Poland or by the Ukrainian authorities to determine it, or to prejudice its determination, by the use of force, as a violation of the whole spirit and an arbitrary interference with the whole purpose of the present Conference of Peace, to which Poland, at least has consented to leave the decision of questions of this very sort. The Council has, therefore, more than once insisted that there should be an armistice on the Ukrainian front, arranged in Paris and under the advice of the Council itself. The Polish military authorities, while acquiescing in principle, have in effect insisted upon such conditions as would amount to a settlement of the very questions in controversy, and have continued to use forces in maintenance of their claims. This has inevitably made the impression on the minds of the members of the Council that the Polish authorities were in effect, if not in purpose, denying and rejecting the authority of the Conference of Peace. The Council feel it their duty, therefore, in the most friendly spirit but with the most solemn earnestness, to say to the Polish authorities that, if they are not willing to accept the guidance and decisions of the Conference of Peace in such matters, the Governments represented in the Council of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers will not be justified in supplying Poland any longer with supplies or assistance of any kind. If it is her deliberate purpose to set at nought the counsel proffered by the Conference, its authority can no longer it is feared be made serviceable to her.

Appendix II to CF–22

[Paraphrase of telegram from Mr. Gibson, American Minister at Warsaw, to the American Commission to Negotiate Peace, May 14, 1919, same as first telegram in appendix I to CF–18B, printed on page 711.]

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Appendix III to CF–22

Telegram From the President of the Peace Conference to General Pilsudski, Warsaw

(Approved by the Council of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers on 21st May, 1919)

The Council of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers have heard rumours from several sources to the effect that troops of General Haller’s Army have recently taken part in operations against the Ukrainian forces in Eastern Galicia, in the region of Belz or elsewhere.

The Council would be glad to receive early information from the Polish Government with regard to these reports, which the Council is reluctant to believe, since definite engagements were undertaken by General Haller not to take part in the operations against the Ukrainians.

Appendix IV

Report (with Appendices) Presented to the Supreme Council of the Peace Conference by the Inter-Allied Commission for the Negotiation of an Armistice Between Poland and the Ukraine

Formation, Terms of Reference and Proceedings of the Commission

Following upon the negotiations set on foot on the initiative of the Council of Four during March, 1919, negotiations which proved abortive (see Appendix I),2 the Council of Four at their meeting of the 2nd April,3 adopted the following proposals:—

That an Inter-Allied Armistice Commission should immediately be appointed to conduct at Paris the negotiations with Polish and Ukrainian representatives for an Armistice in Eastern Galicia;
That in order to avoid all suggestions of partiality, this negotiation should be entrusted not to the Commission on Polish affairs but to a Commission to be created ad hoc;
That the Commission is to be made up of one military and one civilian representative from each of the four Allied and Associated Powers interested in the Galician question;
That this Commission is to recommend such measures as it deems necessary for the execution of the suspension of arms in Eastern Galicia during the negotiation of the terms of the Armistice. (While [Page 784] it is not yet certain whether a formal suspension of arms has been signed in Eastern Galicia, the Polish and Ukranian Commanders-in-Chief have accepted a truce in principle, and the speedy conclusion of such a Convention seems probable.)

At the same time, the Council of Four addressed the following telegram, dated the 3rd April, to the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs at Warsaw:—

“To the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs:

“It will be recalled that in its note of the 19th March3a the Conference suggested to both the Polish and Ukrainian Governments that a suspension of arms should be arranged in Eastern Galicia pending the discussion at Paris of an Armistice under the mediation of the Allied and Associated Governments. To further these objects the Conference has decided to appoint an Armistice Commission to hear the representatives of the two belligerents, and this Commission will begin its sittings in Paris as soon as it is informed that a truce has been concluded and that accredited Polish and Ukrainian representatives are ready to present their views. To save time, it is suggested that representatives be appointed from the Polish Delegation now in Paris. If the plan of mediation proposed by the Allied and Associated Governments is to be carried out, it is essential that the Convention for the suspension of arms which is now being arranged in Eastern Galicia should contain nothing that would prejudge the nature of the future Armistice, and the Allied and Associated Governments cannot doubt that in the negotiation for a suspension of arms the Polish Government will act upon this principle.

Woodrow Wilson. G. Clemenceau.

D. Lloyd George. V. E. Orlando.”

On the 18th April the Council of Four decided4 that the following Powers, United States of America, British Empire, France and Italy, should each nominate two representatives to sit on this Commission.

The “Inter-Allied Commission for the negotiation of an armistice between Poland and the Ukraine” was thus composed as follows:—

  • United States of America:
    • Dr. Isaiah Bowman, and later
    • Dr. Lord (as from 12th May).
    • Colonel S. D. Embick.
  • British Empire:
    • General the Et. Hon. Louis Botha (President).
    • Lieutenant-Colonel F. H. Kisch.
  • France:
    • General Le Rond.
    • M. Degrand.
  • Italy:
    • M. Brambilla.
    • Commandant Pergolani.

[Page 785]

The following also took part in the proceedings of the Commission:—

  • British Empire:
    • Captain Brebner.
    • Dr. Englenburg.
  • France:
    • Captain Escoffier (Secretariat-General).
    • M. Meyer (Interpreter).

On the 8th May the Commission appointed a Sub-Commission to draft an Armistice Convention. This Sub-Commission was composed of the military members of the Commission:—

  • United States of America:
    • Colonel S. D. Embick.
  • British Empire:
    • Lieutenant-Colonel F. H. Kisch.
  • France:
    • General Le Rond.
  • Italy:
    • Commandant Pergolani.

The following also took part in the proceedings of this Sub-Commission:—

  • France:
    • Captain de la Touche.
    • Captain Escoffier (Secretary)
  • Italy:
    • Captain Origo.

Proceedings of the Commission and Sub-Commission

The Commission held nine and the Sub-Commission two meetings.

The Polish Delegation, composed as follows, appeared before the Commission on the 29th April, and 6th, 12th and 13th May:—

  • M. I. Paderewski, Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs.
  • M. R. Dmowski, President of the Polish National Committee.
  • General Rozwadowski, representing the Polish High Command.

The following Ukrainian Representatives appeared before the Commission on the 30th April, and 8th, 12th and 13th May:—

  • M. G. Syderenko, President of the Delegation of the Ukrainian Republic.
  • Dr. B. Paneyko, Vice-President and Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.
  • M. Lozynsky, Under-Secretary of State: First Special Delegate.
  • Colonel D. Witowsky, Special Delegate.

Report Presented to the Supreme Allied Council on the Conclusion of an Armistice Between Poland and the Ukraine

In accordance with the Terms of Reference laid down for it by the [Page 786] Council of Four, the Commission decided to convoke Polish and Ukrainian Delegates.

The Commission impressed upon the representatives of the two parties still at war in Eastern Galicia, the necessity for putting an end to bloodshed, at a time when the Peace Conference in Paris was endeavouring to arrange for universal peace.

The Commission, in order to obtain information, and with a view to preparing an equitable Armistice Convention, asked the Delegations of the two parties to state the conditions on which they would agree to a suspension of hostilities.

After having taken note of the answers received, the Commission, on the 9th May, unanimously approved the draft Armistice Convention of which the text is given in Appendix II. This was presented to the two parties on the 12th May, and they were both informed that the acceptance of the conditions of the Convention would in no way prejudice the solution of the question of frontiers, which would be decided by the Supreme Council. Both parties were, at the same time, asked to submit in writing their observations with regard to the draft Armistice Convention.

These written replies reached the Commission on the morning of the 13th May. The Polish reply is given in Annex IV, and the Ukrainian reply in Annex V. These documents can be summarised as follows:

(a) On the Polish side:—

The Polish Government cannot consider the question of an Armistice with the Ukrainian forces except as a factor affecting the general military situation and the security of the whole country. Engaged on the east in the struggle against Bolshevism, of which the progress threatened the whole of the eastern frontier, and being in constant fear of a German attack from the west, the Polish Government considered it necessary to build up a continuous eastern front composed of Allied troops. The Government could not, therefore, be a party to an Armistice which did not contain clauses which would allow of Polish troops effecting a junction with the Roumanians.

(b) On the Ukrainian side:—

The Ukrainian Representatives raised several objections to the Draft Convention; the more important of their demands were as follows:—

An extension northwards, into Russian territory, of the demarcation line laid down for Galician territory in Article 2 of the Convention, with a view to avoiding hostilities between Poles and Ukrainians on the whole front.
A modification of the demarcation line so as to obtain for the Ukrainians the Sambor-Sianki railway.
That one-third of the output of the oil-fields should be assigned to Poland during the armistice, instead of one-half, as proposed by the Commission (Article 10).
That a longer time should be allowed for the withdrawal of the Ukrainian troops from the west of the demarcation line (Article 3), and that some modification should be made in Article 4, with regard to the zone in which 20,000 troops, contemplated by the Commission, should be maintained.

After examining these arguments, the Commission again heard, on the afternoon of the 13th May, the Polish Delegates and the Ukrainian representatives, when both parties were asked whether they wished to submit any further observations.

M. Dmowski declared that the written reply addressed to the President of the Commission had been based on the conviction that he was in harmony with the ideas of his Government and of the Polish High Command; that he did not believe himself authorised to adopts a different attitude; and that he had telegraphed to Warsaw on the 12th May repeating the conditions of the Armistice submitted by the Commission and expected an answer to his telegram at any moment.

M. Dmowski further added that the special question of the conclusion of an armistice with the Ukrainian forces was only part of the general military situation of Poland, and that, from this point of view, his Government would be glad to see this matter submitted for the opinion of the Inter-Allied High Command.

The Commission informed M. Dmowski that it took note of his observations, which it would report to the Supreme Council, mentioning the answer from the Government at Warsaw should this arrive in time for inclusion in the Report.

In the name of the Ukrainian representatives M. Lozynsky declared, after discussion, that he accepted in principle the armistice conditions as they had been formulated by the Commission.

M. Lozynsky was informed that the Commission could in no way modify its attitude with regard to the demarcation line which had been fixed, nor with regard to the provisional distribution of the output of the oil-fields; on the other hand, the Ukrainian demands with regard to an increased allowance of time for the withdrawal of their troops, and with regard to the number and disposition of these troops, might be taken into consideration.

M. Lozynsky declared his acceptance: at the same time he asked the Commission to take into consideration certain points raised in the Ukrainian declaration, viz., the number and disposition of the troops to be maintained respectively on the two sides of the demarcation line: the subsequent extension of the demarcation line northwards beyond the northern frontier of Galicia; and lastly, the neutralisation of the Sambor-Sianki railway line.

M. Lozynsky was informed that the Commission took note of his declaration which would be reported to the Supreme Council.

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Conclusions of the Commission

The Armistice Convention drawn up by the Commission having been submitted to and examined by the two parties, the Commission has the honour to report as follows to the Supreme Council:—

That the Commission is unable to discuss the conditions demanded by the Polish Delegation, since these raise questions of general policy, which are beyond the competence of the Commission.
Should the Draft Armistice Convention (Appendix II) be taken as a basis for subsequent negotiations, the Commission considers that due account should be taken of the requests made by the Ukrainian Representatives relative to—
An increased allowance of time for the withdrawal of their troops east of the demarcation line, and
With regard to the number and disposition of these troops.

As the Armistice Convention unanimously adopted by the Commission has not been accepted by one of the two contending parties, the Commission regard their mandate at an end, and can only report to the Supreme Council the proposals which they have put forward with a view to bringing the two parties to an agreement, and the causes which prevented the success of their efforts.

  • Louis Botha
  • R. H. Lord
  • S. D. Embick
  • F. H. Kisch
  • H. le Rond
  • Degrand
  • G. Brambilla
  • M. Pergolani

Appendix I

Previous Negotiations

Several previous attempts had been made to bring about a cessation of hostilities between the Poles and Ukrainians, but of these the only negotiations which need be mentioned in this report were those conducted towards the end of February by an Allied Mission. This mission met with a certain measure of success in that it succeeded on the 24th February, 1919, in concluding a truce which was duly signed by delegates representing the two parties. The Armistice Commission further drew up Armistice terms which it presented to the Polish and Ukrainian Delegations on the 28th February, on which date the suspension of hostilities was revoked by the Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief for military reasons (pour les raisons d’un ordre purement [Page 789] militaire). The resumption of hostilities followed automatically and the Armistice negotiations were necessarily suspended.

On the 19th March the Supreme Council of the Peace Conference despatched the following telegram to the Polish and Ukrainian Commanders of the forces opposing each other at Lemberg:—5

In the course of its sitting of the 19th March the Supreme Council of the Peace Conference has decided to request both parties now opposing each other at Lemberg to conclude a truce immediately on receipt of the present telegram.

“In consequence, the Chiefs of the Allied and Associated Governments apply to General Rozwadowski (or; to General Pawlenko) to acquaint him with the request from the Supreme Council of the Peace Conference immediately to stop hostilities, as far as he is concerned, in front of and in the region of Lemberg; this request is simultaneously being sent to General Pawlenko, commanding the Ukrainian forces before Lemberg (or; to General Rozwadowski, commanding the garrison of Lemberg).

“Throughout the duration of the truce, the troops of both parties shall remain on their positions; the communications by rail between Lemberg and Przemysl must, however, remain open strictly in so far as is necessary for the daily revictualling of the town.

“The Supreme Council adds that it is ready to hear the territorial claims of both parties concerned, and to approach the Ukrainian and Polish Delegations in Paris, or whatever authorised representation the parties may select, with a view to changing the suspension of arms into an armistice.

“The hearing of the Ukrainian and Polish representatives with regard to their respective claims, is morever, made subject to the formal condition of an immediate suspension of hostilities.”

The following reply was received on the 24th March from General Pawlenko, the Ukrainian Commander:—

“With all my heart I accept the proposal of the Supreme Council of the Peace Conference, dated the 20th March, in order to give fresh proof that I and the Ukrainian army are at all times disposed to put an end to bloodshed.”

The absence of any definite reply from the Polish authorities led to the telegram, dated the 3rd April, quoted above, and to the appointment of the present Commission.

Appendix II

Draft for an Armistice Convention Between Poland and the Ukraine, Concluded Under the Mediation of the United States of America, the British Empire, France and Italy

Instructions shall be issued forthwith for the cessation of all military action between the Polish and Ukrainian forces with effect from 6 a.m. on . . . . . . . . .

[Page 790]

2. The military line of demarcation separating the Polish and Ukrainian armed forces for the duration of the Armistice will be as in Annex A, and is shown on the attached map.6

3. All Polish troops east of the above line will be withdrawn to the west of it, and all Ukrainian troops west of it will be withdrawn to the east of it within five days of the cessation of hostilities.

4. The number of Polish troops and of Ukrainian troops respectively in East Galicia on either side of the demarcation line shall be reduced within fifteen days of the cessation of hostilities to 20,000. It will be the duty of the Armistice Commission appointed under Article 5 to decide whether it is possible subsequently to reduce the above effectives.

The importation to Eastern Galicia of munitions of war during the period of Armistice shall be limited to the quantities approved by the Armistice Commission.

5. An Inter-Allied Armistice Commission formed of representatives of the mediating Powers shall supervise the execution of the clauses of the present Armistice. This Commission may delegate to Sub-Commissions the duty of settling special or particular questions.

The Armistice Commission shall fix the positions of the troops of the two parties in such a way as—

To avoid all friction between Poles and Ukrainians.
To ensure the maintenance of order throughout the whole country.

The Polish and Ukrainian authorities in Eastern Galicia will accept all arrangements made by the Commission and will afford the Commission every facility in the execution of its duties.

6. All Polish and Ukrainian prisoners of war held by the two parties will be returned under arrangements to be concluded between them within seven days of the cessation of hostilities.

7. All Poles or Ukrainians who may have been interned or seized as hostages by the Ukrainian or Polish Authorities respectively since the 11th November, 1918, for political reasons will be released forthwith.

Similarly, no obstacle will be placed in the way of the return to their former place of residence or to the enjoyment of full rights and liberty of all such persons, and of nationals of the Allied and Associated Powers, even if they have participated in the present war.

All property which has been confiscated belonging to persons in the territory under the occupation of the Polish and Ukrainian forces respectively will be returned to the persons entitled thereto, or where that is impossible compensation will be paid.

[Page 791]

8. No person will be molested or injured in respect of his rights or property on account of his nationality or his participation in the war.

9. In the territory under the military occupation of the Polish and Ukrainian forces respectively in accordance with Article 2, the principles laid down in the regulations annexed to the Land War Convention of 1907 (the Hague Convention)7 will be strictly observed by the two parties, and due regard will be paid to the desires of the inhabitants whose nationality differs from that of the forces in occupation. Local Authorities, representative of the majority of the inhabitants of the several districts concerned, will be granted the maximum possible facilities.

10. The disposal of the output of the oilfields shall be on the basis that one-half of the output of the oil-fields shall be delivered monthly on rail to the Polish authorities against payment in cash or in kind. The price charged shall be assessed by the Armistice Commission on the basis of the cost of production inclusive of administrative and transportation expenses.

11. All transactions relative to the property, rights and interests (biens, droits et intérêts) appertaining to the enemies of the Allied and Associated Powers in the territories placed under the control of the parties are prohibited for the duration of the present Armistice and will be treated as null and void. The above provision does not, however, prevent transactions which are necessary for the exploitation of such properties.

12. During the present Armistice no concessions shall be granted for the rights of exploitation on the oil-fields lying on State land on the territory of either party.

13. The provisions of the present Armistice must not be taken in any way as deciding the definitive status of the territory of East Galicia which will be determined in due course by the Allied and Associated Powers in treaties or conventions to be concluded by them at a later date. This Armistice will expire when such definitive status is so determined.

Annex A

Reference Austrian Staff Map 1/200,000

The proposed Armistice Line—

leaves the Bug at its confluence with the Kozloroice and follows the course of this river to its confluence with the Warezanka, passing west of Uhrynow;

thence taking a line southwards through the trigonometrical points 246, 258, 208, 210 to a point on the course of the Blotnice river immediately north of point 207 (passing east of Lubow and Waniow and west of Siebieczow and Zabcze); [Page 792] thence taking a direct line to the confluence of the Rata and Zeldec rivers and following the course of this river upstream to the apex of the salient it makes at point 252 north of Dzibulki;

thence in a south-easterly direction to the points 240, 238 (south of Zottance), and thence eastwards to the point in the administrative boundary between the districts of Lemberg and Kamionka immediately west of point 262;

thence follow this boundary and the boundary between Lemberg and Przemyslany to the extremity of the re-entrant 1,500 metres southwest of point 276 north of Peczenia;

thence the southern boundary of the district of Lemberg to meet the Dniester;

thence the Dniester upstream, then the Bystrzyca upstream to Mokrzany where it meets the western administrative boundary of the district of Drohobycz;

thence the latter boundary southwards to point 1,001 (Bukowska);

thence by the water-parting south-south-westward to point 1,132 (Szymoniec), then following a stream south-westwards passing Radycz to meet the river Zawddka;

thence the river Zawddka downstream to its confluence with the Stryj;

thence the river Stryj upstream to its confluence north-west of Matkow with a tributary flowing from Krywka; thence the course of the latter tributary southwards and continuing so as to meet the old boundary between Hungary and Galicia at point 831 (Jaszenowa).

Appendix III

Draft for an Undertaking To Be Made by the Ukrainian Representatives, Supplementary to the Armistice Convention Between the Polish and Ukrainian Forces

In signing the Armistice Convention of even date, the undersigned is authorised to undertake in the name of the Ukrainian authorities de facto in power in Eastern Galicia that the said authorities will take all necessary measures to ensure that the forces to be maintained in Eastern Galicia shall not include any officers who belonged to the German or Austro-Hungarian Armies, or who belong to the German, Austrian and Hungarian Armies other than natives of Galicia.

Appendix IV

Reply of Polish Delegation


Mr. President: In the draft terms made by the Commission under your chairmanship, the Armistice between the Polish and Ukrainian [Page 793] forces is looked upon from the point of view of being a question which exclusively concerns the relations between the Poles and Ukrainians in Eastern Galicia.

When summoned before the Commission, the Polish Delegates had the honour of explaining that in view of the dangerous situation in which their country at present was placed, military action in Galicia should be determined by the demands of the general military situation of Poland.

While whole-heartedly associating themselves with the desire of the Commission to put an end to bloodshed as soon as possible in this territory, the political future of which will be decided by the Peace Conference, the Polish Government is bound to view the question of an Armistice from the standpoint of the military security of their country as a whole, which unfortunately still finds herself in a state of war along her whole eastern boundary.

The Polish Supreme Command had accepted without reserve the draft Armistice of the 28th February, because at that time this portion of our front was not so directly menaced by the Bolsheviks. The tentative suggestions of an Armistice made towards the end of March had no result, because it became necessary to obtain adequate safeguards against the danger of Bolshevism, which was increasing amongst the Ukrainian forces. To-day this danger has become much greater, as the Bolshevik troops have advanced to the frontier of Galicia, and the Bolshevik movement is making rapid progress amongst the Ruthenian troops of Galicia. The disorganisation amongst these troops is proceeding rapidly to-day.

On the other hand, the reports received by the Polish Government as to the German preparations against Poland, and an entente between the Germans and the Bolshevik Government of Russia, give ground to the fear of a simultaneous attack upon Poland from the east and the west. If, at the moment of such attack, Eastern Galicia were exposed to an easy invasion by the Russian Bolshevik armies, the military situation of Poland would become hopeless—threatened on the west by German troops, pressed on the east by Russian Bolshevik armies, she would find herself soon enveloped in the southeast, and thus be separated from Roumania, from whom she is awaiting military co-operation.

It is these considerations which have influenced the Polish Commander-in-Chief to aim at an effectual junction in Eastern Galicia of the Polish and the Roumanian armies, in order to establish an uninterrupted front with Roumania against Bolshevik invasion from the east. The Polish General Staff hope that this junction will be effected during the current month.

[Page 794]

I take the liberty of expressing the opinion that the conclusion of an Armistice between the Polish and Ukrainian forces must not stand in the way of the realisation of this aim. If we should be obliged to accept the proposed Armistice drafted by the Commission, having a front which makes such a considerable curve towards the west, our troops would find themselves exposed to dangerous surprises, and at the same time the realisation of a continuous Polono-Roumanian front would become impossible.

In order to safeguard Poland’s safety, the conditions of the Armistice should contain the following clauses:—

The occupation by the Polish or Roumanian troops of the railway lines Lemberg-Halicz-Stanislawow-Czernowitz, and Stanislawow-Koromego [Körosmezö].
The right to introduce into the territory of Eastern Galicia a number of Polish or Roumanian troops sufficient for the establishment of a common front on the line of the Dniester, of the Zlaota-Lipa and of the Styr, in order to be able efficiently to protect the above-named railway lines.

An Armistice, in which these clauses are not stipulated, would not, I am convinced, meet the necessity of the safety of my country; and I should not deem myself authorised to accept it on behalf of the Polish Government.

Please accept, Mr. President, the assurance of my high regards.

Roman Dmowski

Appendix V

Reply of Ukrainian Delegation

Statement concerning the Proposition of the Armistice Conditions between the Polish and Ukrainian Forces, as presented through Mediation of United States of America, Great Britain, France and Italy, to the Ukrainian Delegates on May 12, 1919*

The proposition of the Armistice conditions as handed over to the Delegates of the Western Ukraine (Ukrainian territory of the late Austro-Hungary) imposes upon Ukrainians great sacrifices. It abandons to Poles not only the Ukrainians ethnographic territory, occupied by them contrary to the principle of the self-determination of nationalities through abuse of the Allies’ help, but compels Ukrainians to cede that part of the territory which since the beginning of the Polono-Ukrainian conflict remained under the control of the Ukrainian Government and its army. This proposition abandons to the Poles 18,000 square kilom., with a population of 2,000,000 (according [Page 795] to 1910 census), which has an overwhelming Ukrainian majority, excluding the Jews who have given an incontestable proof of their unwillingness to be subjects of the Polish State on account of pogroms perpetrated on them and who have manifested their desire to be included in the Ukrainian State. The Ukrainian population constitutes 70 per cent, of the population of the whole territory on the basis of their mother-language and 65 per cent, on the basis of their religion (Uniate); it forms the indigenous and productive population. The Poles, on the other hand, constitute the immigrated, movable, bureaucratic part of the population, concentrated for the most part in Lemberg. (They form here the maximum 50 per cent, of all the inhabitants.)

The predominance of this Polish population till November, 1918, was based exclusively upon the Secret Conventions entered into in 1865 and 1867 between the Polish aristocracy and the dynasty of Haps-burgs, which resulted in the formation of a German-Magyar-Polish triolism in the whole of the monarchy, in a Polish absolutism in Ukrainian Galicia; this is the reason why the Ukrainian population is rejoicing at the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian empire, as it had afforded it an opportunity to free itself from the Polish bureaucratic bondage.

In the name of the principle of free self-determination of nationalities the Ukrainians have organised themselves into a national State under the name of the Western Ukrainian Republic, based on the democratic principles which have no relation to social Utopias. They have guaranteed the liberty of person and property, granting an autonomy to each of its national minorities. Constituted by the will of the people, the Government (State Secretariat) has organised a national army. (A lack of officers has compelled the general staff to accept into the ranks of its army a few non-Ukrainian officers in insignificant numbers, Czechs, Croats, Roumanians, subjects of former Austria and few Austrians of German speech. These officers have all belonged to the ranks of the former Galician regiments recruited in the Ukrainian territory. On this occasion we affirm most categorically that not a single German officer ever entered into our army.)

The latter, comprising 100,000 men at the beginning of hostilities, was obliged to oppose enemies on two fronts:—

Western front against the Poles, who, desiring to force their supremacy over the Ukrainian territory, had decided to destroy at any price Ukrainian sovereignty. With this object in view, they began on the 11th November, not without a participation of non-Polish officers of the Austrian army, an organised campaign.
The Eastern front against the Bolsheviks, who had vast forces with which they made an invasion of the territory of the Ukrainian Republic, which had been already proclaimed in the Ukrainian territories [Page 796] of the former Russian empire, and this compelled the State Secretariat of the Ukrainian Republic to extend its aid to the Government of Eastern Ukraine with which Galician Ukraine had formed a federative union. Reinforcing continuously the anti-Bolshevik front from Roumania to Pripet marshes, the Government of the Western Republic has fulfilled a part of the mission that had been imposed upon it by history; while the Ukrainians under the old Czarist regime were deprived of the conditions which might have developed their social and political life, their brethren in Galicia and Bukovina, thanks to their work, developed their own institutions, and were enabled since the middle of the 19th century to create some appreciable amount of social experience and spirit of initiative, qualities indispensable in the life of an independent State. This is the reason why Western Ukraine and its Government believe that their most important task, in the very interests of the European culture, is to be the Piedmont of the whole Ukraine by supplying same with military and civic forces. Only these creative internal forces are able to achieve the pacification and organisation of liberated Ukraine. With this object in view the principal task is the struggle against the Bolshevik imperialism, against that expansion of civic and political experiment.

If this task is not achieved yet as it should have been, if a part of Ukrainian territories has been subjected to Bolshevik ravages, the reason is that the Ukrainian army, instead of expelling the Bolsheviks from its country and building foundations for law and order, is obliged to defend its territory against Polish invasion. That is how the Poles are working hand-in-hand with the Red Guards in order to crush this Ukrainian Piedmont, while the Ukrainians have prevented a junction of the Russian Bolsheviks with the Hungarians, preparing thus the fall of the latter.

The best proof that the Ukrainian Government does not entertain any imperialistic plans is in the fact that it conducts the war against the Poles exclusively under compulsion, and that it has protested through diplomatic channels only against the partial occupation of the Ukrainian Bukovina by Roumanians and Hungarian Ruthenia by the Czecho-Slovakia; believing that the Peace Conference will settle these differences in the spirit of national equity, in the same manner, in order to give proof of our moderation and our confidence in the Allied Powers, we declare in the name of our Government our acceptance in principle of the proposition which has been given to us. But we believe that it is indispensable, both in our interest and in the interest of all concerned, to make in some articles of this proposition the following modifications which we shall endeavour to expound in the following lines:—

article i.

Accepted without reservation.

article ii.

We request to alter the demarcation line on two points: [Page 797]

In the north it should begin from the Dnieper, then follow the river Pripet as far as Pinsk, then run along the course of the river Pine, follow the Dnieper-Bug Canal, return along the river Mouk-havetz up to Brest-Litowsk, from there along the Bug up to the confluence with the river Kozlovice, &c.
In the south the line should start from the point where the administrative borders of the districts of Lemberg, Premyselany and Bobrka (village Peczenia) meet and follow the administrative borders between the districts of Lemberg and Bobrka, up to the point 375, whence it is to follow Lemberg approximately, from Szczerzec to the administrative border of the district of Grodek near the station Stawceany, then the administrative borders between the districts of Orodek-Rudki, Mosciska-Rudki, Mosciska-Sambor, Przemysl-Sambor, Przemysl Stary Sambor, Dobromil-Stary Sam-bor, Lisko-Stary-Sambor, Lisko-Turka up to the old Hungarian frontier (vide the line traced on the map).


  • Ad. I.—If the demarcation line ended at the Bug River, the old Austro-Russian frontier, the Western Ukrainian Republic, occupying only the territory of former Austria, would be placed in a precarious strategic position, at the moment when Polish armies would appear in the north and in the east at the same time.
  • Ad. II (a).—The alteration proposed by us on this point corresponds better to the present military situation; and as compared with the situation at the moment of the appeal made by the Supreme Council on the 19th of March our line offers even considerable advantages to the Poles.
  • Ad. II (b).—But the most important reason for this modification is found in consideration that, foreseeing an Armistice of long duration, we Ukrainians would be connected by a single railway line (Stryj-Lawoczne-Munkacs) with the Czecho-Slovaks, Hungarians, Yugo-Slavs, Italians and Austrians, with most of which our Government has already concluded commercial treaties. The Stanislau-Körömezö-Sziget line is devoid of all commercial value; moreover, it leads into the territory occupied by the Roumanians, with whom we have more convenient ways of communication through Bukovina.

It would be disastrous for the economic life of Ukraine, considering that Poles would have six double-track railways communicating with the above-named countries, therefore, our request for the Sambor-Sanki line does not appear unreasonable.

article iii.

As to the term of evacuation of the Ukrainian troops from beyond the demarcation line, which concerns practically only Ukrainians, we propose to extend same, on account of the inconvenient railway net and bad condition of our rolling-stock and locomotives, so much more so as Article 4 imposes already upon our railroad administration very trying obligations.

[Page 798]

article iv.

The maximum of the Ukrainian troops prescribed by this article seems to us prejudicial for the following reasons:—

1. Under Ukrainian administration will remain more than twice the extent of territory and population than under Polish administration, consequently the relation of the two territories demands twice as large an Ukrainian contingent as is proposed by the plan.

2. As it has been already indicated in the introduction, our principal national task consists in the organisation of our forces for the struggle against the invaders of Eastern Ukraine—the Bolsheviks. This organisation is not possible except in the territories remaining under the legitimate power of the Government of the Ukrainian Western Republic, viz., Eastern Galicia.

If the contingent does not surpass the figure of 20,000 men, which number is hardly sufficient to maintain order in the country, such a military preparedness would be entirely impossible, while Poles will have every facility for organisation and concentration of their troops in Western Galicia, in former Russian Poland, Poznania, &c. …

3. Consequently we propose a modification of Article VI in this direction, that on the east of the demarcation line which is to be fixed, a zone should be created more or less equal in width to the part of the territory in Eastern Galicia occupied by Poles.

Only there the Ukrainians should be obliged not to raise their contingent above the number fixed for Poles in Eastern Galicia (in this instance the number of 20,000 would be exaggerated). We propose that east of this zone the Ukrainians should be at liberty to organise forces against the Bolsheviks.

article v.

Accepted without reserve.

article vi.

See Article III.

articles vii and viii.

Accepted without reserve.

article ix (according to English text).

It would be just that part of East Galicia occupied by Poles should be subjected to a special military and administrative jurisdiction, the same as the territory occupied by our armies.

article x (according to English text).

As the production of petroleum represents practically the only article of export for East Galicia and otherwise Poles possess rich oil-fields in Western Galicia amply sufficient to satisfy their wants, we consider that portion of oil demanded by Poles should be limited to their needs but not become an object of export. Therefore we [Page 799] propose to limit the quantity of oil apportioned to Poles to one-third of the total production.

article xi.

Seeing that the Armistice may last a long time, we propose to supplement this Article in the following manner: that the prohibition as foreseen in this Article should not be applicable except at the moment when such prohibitions are in force with the Allied and Associated Powers.

articles xii and xii.

Accepted without reserve.

In case more explicit information should be necessary, we are prepared to supplement the above modifications by verbal explanations.

additional engagement.

We propose to alter it in the sense that only those officers of German tongue shall be dismissed who are not natives of Galicia and Bukovina and to the extent of their being replaced by Allied or neutral officers.

Dr. Paneyko
, State Secretary of Foreign Office.
Dr. M. Lozynsky
, Under-Secretary of State.
First Special Delegate.
Dmytro Witowsky
, Special Delegate.
  1. The map of Eastern Galicia which forms part of the report has not been reproduced.
  2. The reference is to appendix I to this report, infra.
  3. No minutes of this meeting of the Council of Four appear in Department files.
  4. See telegram of the Supreme Council, quoted on p. 789.
  5. No minutes of this meeting of the Council of Four appear in Department files.
  6. See BC–53, vol. iv, p. 412.
  7. Map not reproduced.
  8. Foreign Relations, 1907, pt. 2, p. 1204.
  9. The English text of the proposition has been used as basis for our answer, as the Article 10 of the French text has not been delivered to us and Article 9 appears incomplete. [Footnote in the original.]