Paris Peace Conf. 180.03501/71


Notes of a Meeting of the Heads of Delegations of the Five Great Powers Held in M. Pichon’s Room at the Quai d’Orsay, Paris, on Thursday, October 16, 1919, at 10:30 a.m.

  • Present
    • America, United States of
      • Hon. F. L. Polk
    • Secretary
      • Mr. Ii. Harrison
    • British Empire
      • Sir Eyre Crowe
    • Secretary
      • Mr. H. Norman
    • France
      • M. Pichon
    • Secretaries
      • M. Dutasta
      • M. de St. Quentin
    • Italy
      • M. Scialoja
    • Secretary
      • M. Barone Russo
    • Japan
      • M. Matsui
    • Secretary
      • M. Kawai
Joint Secretariat
America, United States of Capt. Gordon
British Empire Capt. Hinchley-Cooke
France M. Massigli
Italy M. Zanchi
Interpreter—M. Mantoux

The following were also present for the items in which they were concerned.

  • America, United States of
    • Mr. C. Russell
    • Mr. A. W. Dulles
  • British Empire
    • General Saekville-West
    • Sir George Clerk
    • Mr. Leeper
    • Mr. Forbes-Adam
    • Capt. G. Lothian Small
  • Italy
    • M. Vannutelli-Rey
  • Japan
    • M. Shigemitsu

1. Mr. Polk said that a telegram had just been received from the Interallied Military Mission at Budapest dated the 14th October. He desired that the telegram (see Appendix “A”) should be placed before the Council and be considered before the question of Sir George Clerk’s mission was discussed. Telegram From the Interallied Military Mission at Budapest

[Page 670]

M. Mantoux then read the text of the telegram.

Mr. Polk said that he wished to call attention to the fact that the telegram expressed the opinion of the four Generals at Budapest. He thought that the question of the reply should be considered at once. The telegram was addressed, not to the American delegation, but to the Supreme Council. If the telegram required an answer, as he thought it did, the question was to decide as to the nature of the answer.

M. Pichon agreed that the telegram could not be left unanswered. It was important that the demand of the Interallied Military Mission should be fulfilled. He considered that the Generals should be given entire satisfaction.

Mr. Polk said that at the same time that the telegram had been received his attention had been called to a press despatch from Budapest, which stated that it was rumored in both Austria and Hungary, that the members of the Interallied Military Mission were on the point of resigning, because they felt that they had not received adequate support from the Supreme Council.

M. Pichon said he did not see how this demand could be made. In any event, it was important to beware of rumors. In point of fact, the Supreme Council had replied to the previous telegrams of the Interallied Military Mission and had taken the views of the Mission into full consideration. Up to the present time the Interallied Military Mission had never transmitted to the Council a telegram so precise in its statements and so far reaching in its consequences. He considered it essential to accede to the wishes of the Interallied Military Mission, namely, that the Roumanian Government should be asked to evacuate Hungary forthwith. He wished to point out, however, the grave situation which would be almost certain to result in Hungary following the retirement of the Roumanian army of occupation. The question of arming a police force of sufficient size to enforce order was not mentioned in the telegram, and the Military Mission had made no suggestions in regard to this matter. He asked whether the Military Mission had made any proposals relative to the organizing of a police force before the evacuation should take place.

Mr. Polk pointed out that the Military Mission had already asked for 10,000 rifles for the purpose of organizing a police force.

M. Pichon said that he had not been present at the last meeting of the Council where the subject had been discussed.1 He understood, however, that Sir George Clerk had already proposed the immediate evacuation of Hungary by the Roumanian forces.

M. db Saint Quentin said that Sir George Clerk had proposed the evacuation of Hungary by the Roumanians, but that he had also insisted [Page 671] upon the necessity of the establishment of a Government which could maintain order and be recognized by the Allied and Associated Powers. (SeeH.D. 67.)

Mr. Polk said that he did not understand that the report advocated that the Roumanians should remain in Hungary until a stable Government was established.

Sir Eyre Crowe pointed out that the Allied and Associated Governments had already addressed the Roumanian Government on the subject of the evacuation of Hungary.2

Mr. Polk said that he thought that the Council had already insisted that the Roumanian military authorities form the police of Hungary and then withdraw. It was most important that the Roumanians should not await the establishment of a suitable Government.

M. Pichon asked who should give orders to the police.

Mr. Polk said that the Interallied Military Mission had already reported that the Government of M. Friedrich were prepared to organize a police force.

M. Pichon pointed out that the Council had already considered the draft of a telegram to M. Friedrich telling him that he should withdraw and permit someone else to form a government.3

Mr. Polk said that he thought it was important not to mix the two questions. So far as he was concerned, he was not in a position to accept a form of action which would enable the Roumanian forces to remain until a satisfactory Government had been established.

Sir Eyre Crowe pointed out that the Allied and Associated Governments had already told the Roumanian Government that they must withdraw their military forces from Hungary.

(He then read an extract from the Note to the Roumanian Government, (See Appendix “B” to H.D. 68) in which a definite demand upon the Roumanians to withdraw their military forces from Hungary was made.)

He said that he considered that it was most important to inform the Interallied Military Mission at Budapest that this demand had been made of the Roumanian Government.

M. Pichon said that it was of equal importance to see that the Roumanian Government carried out the measures in question.

Mr. Polk said that he hoped that the matter could be cleared up. He wished to ask whether the rifles were to be delivered to the Hungarian police at the present time, and whether the Roumanian forces were to withdraw at the present time, whatever the Government in Hungary might be.

M. Pichon replied in the affirmative.

[Page 672]

M. Scialoja asked whether the Interallied Military Mission had been informed of the telegram sent to Bucharest.

M. Pichon replied that they had not been informed, but that they ought to be informed immediately.

Mr. Polk said that he understood that a decision had been taken at the meeting of the Council on the 11th October to inform the Interallied Military Mission of the Note to the Roumanian Government.

M. Pichon said that the resolution had not been drafted in this sense, but that the decision should be communicated to the Interallied Military Mission, as it would be the best reply to their telegram.

Mr. Polk said that he wished to express the hope that the Supreme Council would not forget that possibly six weeks ago, certainly four, the Roumanian military authorities had been told to deliver the necessary rifles to the police. The Council were aware that the Roumanians had never done this. M. Misu had informed him that the Hungarians had plenty of rifles from Field Marshal Mackensen’s supply. In point of fact this was not the case. The Roumanians were unwilling to carry out the wishes of the Supreme Council.

M. Pichon said that Marshal Foch had been informed on the 10th October by Colonel Dimitrescu that the Roumanian High Command had some time before placed at the disposal of Colonel Yates for the Hungarian gendarmerie 10,000 rifles and 40 machine guns. 1,000 rifles had already been delivered and the rest was guarded by Roumanian troops until such time as they should be delivered. Colonel Dimitrescu added that Colonel Yates, the United States Military Attaché at Bucharest, had been charged by the Interallied Military Mission with the creation of a Hungarian gendarmerie. The Roumanian troops had begun their withdrawal from Hungary.

Mr. Polk said that in his opinion it was delightfully typical of the Roumanians that of 10,000 rifles, 9,000 had not been delivered.

Sir George Clerk said that on the 20th September M. Diamandi and General Mardarescu had promised to turn over the rifles and machine guns for the use of the Hungarian gendarmerie. As far as he was aware they had not delivered a single rifle or machine gun.

Mr. Polk said that they had delivered 1,000 rifles which might be useful for parade purposes, but which could not shoot.

Sir Eyre Crowe said that substantially there was no additional information in the telegram now before the Supreme Council. The point was that the Supreme Council had not communicated to the Generals the Note to the Roumanian Government; that the Generals therefore were unaware when they sent this telegram of the steps that the Supreme Council had already taken. He had no desire to doubt the evidence of the Interallied Mission, but the evidence was largely [Page 673] collected from Hungarian sources. For this reason he did not consider that their report was altogether satisfactory since the Roumanians might have some explanation to make. In their telegram the Interallied Military Mission had mentioned the names of several towns as lying in territory which was to be ceded to Roumania under the terms of the Treaty of Peace. As a matter of fact some of the towns in question would remain in Hungarian territory. He did not think that the report should be accepted as gospel.

Sir George Clerk said that he wished to add that on the night before he had left for Bucharest M. Misu had come to see him. He had pointed out to M. Misu how impossible the conduct of the Roumanian authorities had been, as for example, in the case of the Museum at Budapest. Mr. Misu then turned to M. Vaida and asked him for the official explanation. M. Vaida had then produced a telegram from his Government stating that the Roumanian Government had only wished to recover archives belonging to them which had been carried off from [to?] Budapest. He did not vouch for the truth of this explanation, which had not been investigated: it simply went to show that such incidents might have satisfactory explanations.

Mr. Polk said that the explanation which the Roumanians had made to the Interallied Military Mission was that the material in question was Transylvanian property, and they wished to take it as they expected to acquire Transylvania. He wished to emphasize the point, however, that as the four Powers had sent four representatives to Budapest, there was no reason why the Roumanians should not make their explanations to them. He felt that the Council should either accept the statements of the Generals or else recall them. Personally he had great faith in General Bandholtz. The fact that the Roumanian Officials made their explanations outside of Budapest was decidedly unjust to the Interallied Military Mission and placed them in an impossible position.

Sir Eyre Crowe said he agreed. He said further that the Council should insist that the explanation of the Roumanian authorities should be made to the Interallied Military Mission. The point which he had wished to raise was this: a note had been despatched to the Roumanian Government and the Council had not yet heard their side. He wished to emphasize the necessity of waiting until a reply from the Roumanian Government had been received, as he did not believe that conditions were any worse than the Council already knew them to be.

M. Pichon said that the Council agreed as to the necessity of informing the Interallied Military Mission of the note to the Roumanian Government.

[Page 674]

(It was decided:

to communicate to the Interallied Military Mission at Budapest the text of the note from the Principal Allied and Associated Governments to the Roumanian Government approved by the Supreme Council on the 11th October (H. R. 68).)

2. M. Pichon said that Mr. Polk had not considered it advisable to transmit a telegram to M. Friedrich but to send a representative of the Council to Budapest. The instructions to be given to Sir George Clerk were contained in the draft telegram to M. Friedrich which had been previously discussed by the Council (See Appendix “C”, H. D. 68). Mission of Sir George Clerk to Budapest

Mr. Polk said that he wished to suggest two changes in the text. In the first paragraph it was stated that the Allies had waited in the hope that the Government of M. Friedrich, recognizing its inability to meet the conditions required by the principal Allied and Associated Powers, would either include representatives of all parties in Hungary or withdraw from office. He thought that instead of speaking of “all parties” it would be better to substitute the words, “the several parties”. In the second paragraph he wished to suggest that the words “in the view of the Allied and Associated Powers” be omitted.

M. Pichon said that it had been agreed to inform the Interallied Military Mission in regard to Sir George Clerk’s departure for Budapest.4 He thought that Sir George Clerk should be charged to inform the Generals as to the discussion which had taken place in the Council on that day and to inform them that the Council were resolved to do all that was necessary to make the Rumanian Government follow the line of action which had been decided upon.

(At this point Sir George Clerk left the meeting.)

Mr. Polk said that he wished to raise a question which he had hesitated to mention in Sir George Clerk’s presence. He understood that as Sir George Clerk was proceeding to Budapest as a representative of the principal Allied and Associated Powers the necessary expenses in connection with his mission, amounting to whatever sum Sir George Clerk in his discretion might consider necessary and proper, would be paid by the Allied and Associated Powers.

M. Pichon said that he thought that the British Government should pay the necessary expenses and that the amount in question should then be divided between the Powers interested.

Mr. Polk said that Sir George Clerk was going to Budapest as the representative of the Supreme Council and it would be unfortunate [Page 675] if the impression should obtain in Rumania or Hungary that the Council were dissatisfied with the Interallied Military Mission. He thought that a formal statement should be made to the four Generals which should contain the reasons why Sir George Clerk was going to Budapest.

M. Pichon said that the Council had already decided to notify the four Generals at Budapest of Sir George Clerk’s mission (see H. D. 69, minute 3).

Mr. Polk pointed out that Sir George Clerk’s mission would be known to the press.

Sir Eyre Crowe said that Sir George Clerk was being sent to Budapest because it had been thought inadvisable by sending a telegram to give the appearance of mixing in the internal affairs of Hungary.

M. Pichon said that he did not approve of giving any statement to the press. In any mention of Sir George Clerk’s mission, he would only be referred to as being charged with a special mission to Budapest on behalf of the Supreme Council.

Sir Eyre Crowe asked that Sir George Clerk’s date of departure might be fixed for the following Saturday.

(It was decided:

that Sir George Clerk should proceed to Budapest as the special representative of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers. (See H. D. 69, minute 3);
that Sir George Clerk should be directed to communicate with the several Hungarian political parties and that in his mission he should be guided by the spirit of the views of the Allied and Associated Powers as expressed in the draft telegram to M. Friedrich (See Appendix “C” to H. D. 68), with the following alterations in the text: for the words “all parties” (Line 12) the words “the several parties” should be substituted, and in lines 17 and 18 “in the view of the Allied and Associated Powers” should be omitted;
that Sir George Clerk should inform the four Generals at Budapest of the Discussion which had taken place in the Supreme Council on that day and that the Council were resolved to do all that was necessary to make the Rumanian Government follow the line of action required of them;
that such funds as Sir George Clerk might, in his discretion, consider necessary and proper for the expenses of the mission should be paid by the British Government and subsequently shared by the Principal Allied and Associated Governments;
that the Interallied Military Mission at Budapest should be notified by telegraph of Sir George Clerk’s mission;
that the only statement which should be made with regard to Sir George Clerk’s mission was that he had been despatched to fulfil a special mission at Budapest on behalf of the Supreme Council.)

3. (The Council had before it a Note of the 10th October from M. Politis to M. Clemenceau, (See Appendix “B”.))

[Page 676]

M. de Saint Quentin read and commented upon the note in question.

M. Pichon said that he thought it was a difficult matter for the Council to give instructions from Paris. If witnesses had given testimony under a promise of secrecy, he did not see how the Council could absolve the commission from the promises which they might to nave made. Protest of the Greek Delegation Against the Failure of the Inter-Allied Mission of Inquiry at Smyrna To Communicate Information to the Greek Representative

Sir Eyre Crowe pointed out that the Council had made an engagement to M. Venizelos.5

M. Scialoja said that when the Council had given the undertaking to M. Venizelos they were not aware that the Commission had promised certain witnesses that their testimony would be held as secret.

Sir Eyre Crowe said that he had just received a telegram from the British High Commissioner at Constantinople on the subject. The telegram confirmed the fact that the Commission had decided to take certain evidence in camera for the purpose of obtaining reliable information and avoiding reprisals. A definite promise had been made to certain witnesses. On the other hand, the Council had given an undertaking to the Greek Government.

M. Pichon said that the Council were not to blame for what had occurred. He thought the only possible compromise was to inform the Greek Delegation that the testimony taken after the instructions of the Supreme Council had been received would be placed at the disposal of the Greek Government. The Supreme Council were not in a position to give an undertaking as to previous promises made by the Commission of Inquiry.

Sir Eyre Crowe agreed that this compromise would seem the best means of solving the difficulty.

Mr. Polk asked as to the nature of the promise made by the Supreme Council.

M. de Saint Quentin said that the undertaking in question was contained in a resolution of the Supreme Council. (See H. D. 64, Minute 6.)

(It was decided: that, owing to pledges of secrecy given by the Commission of Inquiry at Smyrna to certain witnesses, the Commission be not obliged to communicate to the representative of the Greek Government, in its entirety, the evidence given by these witnesses before the receipt of the terms of the resolution of the 30th September (See H. D. 64).

4. (The Council had before it a Note from the British Delegation of the 15th October (See appendix “C”).)

[Page 677]

Sir Eyre Crowe said that the question was not one great importance. The Austrian Delegation had asked that the Austrian Prisoners of war held in Great Britain should be repatriated. There were only 36 officers and 135 others in Great Britain and the British Government saw no reason for refusing the request of the Austrian Delegation. It would probably be possible to repatriate the prisons in question with German prisoners. There was also a small number of Hungarian prisoners in Great Britain and the British Military Authorities were anxious that these should be repatriated at the present time. Repatriation of Austrian and Hungarian Prisoners in Great Britain and Japan

M. Matsui asked whether the Council had any objections to the Japanese Government repatriating the small number of Austrian and Hungarian prisoners in their hands.

(It was decided:

that there was no objection to the immediate repatriation of the Austrian and Hungarian prisoners of war in Great Britain and Japan.)

5. Sir Eyre Crowe said that the Council had just addressed a stiff note to the Rumanian Government which asked them, in effect, whether or not they were prepared to accept the guidance of the Supreme Council.6 He desired to call attention to the fact that the Serb-Croat-Slovene Government had not signed the Treaty of Peace with Austria or the Minorities Treaty. At the present time there was a ministerial crisis at Belgrade. He had hoped that the moderate element would come into power, but at the moment it looked as if the intransigeant element were about to come into power. If the matter were brought to a head at the present time the effect would be to strengthen the hands of the elements in Yugo-Slavia who were most anxious to cooperate with the Allied and Associated Powers. He suggested that at an early date a communication be addressed to the Serb-Croat-Slovene Government inquiring whether or not they were prepared to sign the Treaties. Relations With Serb-Croat-Slovene Government

M. Pichon said that he agreed with the opinion of Sir Eyre Crowe and thought that action should be taken at once.

Sir Eyre Crowe said that he had prepared a rough draft of a note to the Serb-Croat-Slovene Government.7 He did not mean that the draft should be accepted as final but he simply wished to refer it to his colleagues for their consideration as a possible basis of discussion.

[Page 678]

6. Mr. Polk said that at the meeting of the Council of the 11th October Marshal Foch had raised the question of two Commissions to deal with subjects relating to Russian prisoners of war Germany. With reference to the resolution in the Minutes of the meeting in question (H.D. 68, Minute #4),8 he desired to make it quite clear that the United States could not be committed to incur any expense. No American representative on the Commissions in question, or on any other Commission, could commit his Government to a financial obligation. The matter would first have to be brought before the Council and receive his approval. Russian Prisoners of war in Germany

The Council took note of Mr. Polk’s remarks with reference to Resolution No. 4, H.D. 68, to the effect that the American representative on the Commissions dealing with questions relating to Russian prisoners of war, and American representatives on all Commissions, could not bind their Government to financial obligations unless the subjects in question had been brought before the Supreme Council and received Mr. Polk’s approval.

(The meeting then adjourned.)

Appendix A to HD–71

[The Interallied Mission at Budapest to the Supreme Council]

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From Budapest October 13–14–1919

To Supreme Council Peace Conference. Paris.

Cold weather setting in, days delay now more serious than would have been weeks delay two months ago. Inter-Allied military mission therefore desires present Supreme Council following statement facts concerning conduct Roumanians with request for prompt action. They have so thoroughly cleaned out country of rolling-stock that there are not enough for transportation local food and fuel requirements. Their Administration reduced food reserve Budapest to one third what it was September. According report from Hungarian Food Minister [Page 679] they have by unnecessary and cruel restriction prevented food from going out Budapest to neighboring suburbs, population which estimated six hundred thousand. Reported during evacuation trans Dunabia [Danubia?] they released Bolshevists who been detained and in city Budapest have repeatedly by force without written order taken Bolshevists prisoners out of jail. At Szolnok where committee this mission obtaining information about Roumanian exportations have arrested several Hungarian railway men who were aiding our efforts. Have prevented University students from reporting for continuation their courses. September 26th their commander in Chief sent letter to mission stating that to cover needs feeding Hungary, zone between Danube and Thiess Rivers been placed at disposition Hungarian Government, no requisitions would take place that zone except those necessary for actual feeding troops, especially for city Budapest above zone be extended to East Thiess to Boundary line fixed by Commander, despite which October 5th Roumanian Colonel Rujinschi seized thirty aeroplane motors Budapest which cannot classified as food. October 10th in Budapest from firm Schmitt and Tarsai they seized removed machinery which put two thousand laborers out work. Large number of similar cases with proof on hand. In reply to letter from mission that desired that objects National Museum be not disturbed until acted upon by committee they sent reply that intended take those and that signers letters Mardarescu and Diamandi assumed responsibility for action, this being in effect insult to nations represented on interallied military mission. That they did not take objects due fact doors sealed signed by President [of] Day at time and they afraid go to extreme breaking seal. Between five and six o’clock this morning they attempted arrest Prime Minister Friedrich and did arrest two Government officials result which President of Day in Person delivered General Mardarescu memorandum from mission copy which telegraphed Supreme Council this date. They kept their commander in chief General Mardarescu and High Commissioner Diamandi absent in Bucharest week during which no representative present with whom business could be transferred [transacted?]. Although they in August acknowledged Inter Allied Military Mission as representing their superiors the Supreme Council, they have with negligible exceptions carried out none of instructions this mission and have always insisted acting as though Roumania equal or superior to nations represented on mission. They sent misleading reports Paris placing themselves attitude saviours of Hungary and have censored press in Hungary to extent that Hungarians could not refute false statement. On 19th September General Mardarescu wrote mission he taken all necessary measures make treatment of prisoners satisfactory, stating especially from sanitary viewpoint according report his surgeon general conditions very good. October 11th [Page 680] Mission receives communication from International Red Cross representatives stating his investigations at Arad resulted discover[y] conditions so opposed to conventions covering treatment prisoners war that he felt this mission should take action. This [His?] conclusions which follow concur with all reports concerning same except Roumanian reports “I find that these prisoners were not captured on field battle but many days after cessation hostilities; that lodgings of prisoners are unsanitary; that army which captured them take no care of them whatever, furnishes them neither food, clothing, medicine, covering or anything; that from date their captivity prisoners had no funds and that majority cannot purchase anything for even insufficient nourishment. That prisoners treated contrary Article Nine General [Geneva] Convention 1906;9 that all these men are exposed to serious diseases if not properly aided; that orders given Red Cross at Arad to take care prisoners’ needs entirely illegal and cannot be based upon any law or international convention.” Dr. Munro British Food Commission and Swiss Captain Burnier International Red Cross just returned from visiting following towns: Hatvan, Gyonsgyons, Miskolcz, Satoralja Ujhely, Nyiregyháza, Dedreczen, Szolnok, Magycarad [Nagykörós?, Békes, Gyula, Arad, Temesvar, and Szeged all in permanent portion Hungary but now occupied by Roumanians and have submitted statement from which following is extract “In all towns occupied by Roumanians we found oppression so great as to make life unbearable. Murder is common. Youths and women flogged. Imprisoned without trial, arrested without reason, theft of personal property under name of requisition. Condition of affairs prevails difficult for Western European realize who not seen and heard evidence. People forced take oath allegiance to Roumanian King; if refuse they persecuted. Experienced Hungarian doctors of hospitals been replaced by inexperienced Roumanian doctors. Roumanian Military authorities demand petition for every passport. Request for coal or food. Petitions must be written Roumanian language. Roumanian lawyer just been employed and charges enormous fees. Stationmaster Weber of Brad and Stationmaster Kétegyháza been fearfully flogged. Last Good Friday Roumanians advanced suddenly to Boros-Sebes and two hundred fifty Hungarian soldiers taken prisoners. These killed in most barbarous manner. Stripped naked and stabbed with bayonets in way to prolong life long as possible. Roumanians established custom house every village. Delivery permits only be obtained by payment ridiculously large sum. Commerce is impossible. People will soon starve. Deliberately for no military or political reasons apparent hospitals not allowed transport for coal and wood which already (Wire went out of commission here) paid for. Very life of hospital hangs on coal. Hospitals [Page 681] have [to be?] closed down entirely unless relieved immediately. Results be disastrous. Will be outbreaks all sorts contagious epidemic disease such [as?] typhus, typhoid, etc.” An American officer and an Italian doctor if Roumanians permit will accompany International Red Cross representative on thorough investigation prisoners war camps. In general Roumanian conduct been such that this Mission been almost wholly unable carry out its instructions and there apparently no prospect immediate improvement. It is unanimous opinion of Mission that unless Roumanians immediately evacuate Hungary and make at least partial restitution in particular of rolling stock, machinery and much other property seized here there will result in short time extreme suffering from lack food and fuel and recrudescence of Bolshevism. This Mission therefore of unanimous opinion that either Roumanians should be forced evacuate Hungary at once and make restitution outlined or this Mission should be relieved.

Interallied Military Mission

Appendix B to HD–71

greek delegation
to the peace conference

From: Mr. Politis,

To: M. Clemenceau.

You were kind enough to inform Mr. Venizelos, by your letter dated September 20th [30th?], that the Supreme Council had recognized that the Commission of Inquiry on the affairs of Smyrna could not with equity formulate its conclusions without having given full information to the Representative of the Greek Government and that, in consequence, it had decided “that the minutes of the Commission, including depositions of the witnesses, would be communicated to Colonel Mazarakis”.10

You added that instructions to that effect had been sent by you to the Commission of Inquiry.

I regret exceedingly to have to inform your Excellency that the Commission on Inquiry did not conform with those instructions. Indeed, it limited itself to sending to Colonel Mazarakis a statement of the facts established by it without communicating to him the depositions of the witnesses regarding which it informed him by a letter dated October 7th that those depositions “had been made under the [Page 682] promise of absolute secrecy and that it would be impossible for it to communicate them without breaking its promise.”

Colonel Mazarakis replied, in conformity with the instructions of the Greek Government, that it was indispensable for him to see the whole dossier as the Supreme Council had decided.

I am informed that the promise referred to by the Commission was not taken with all the witnesses: to the Greek witnesses the Commission only recommended discretion without promising anything to them. However it may be, after having deprived the Representatives of the Greek Government of the right of legitimate defense prescribed by justice, the Commission of Inquiry, in spite of the instructions of the Supreme Council, has gone as far as to surround its procedure with an absolute secrecy, even as regards Colonel Mazarakis.

In the name of the Greek Government, I feel obliged to protest against that unjust and arbitrary decision and I appeal to the equity of the Supreme Council, so that, in conformity with its decision of December [September] 30th, the Commission of Inquiry be formally invited to communicate to Colonel Mazarakis the depositions of the witnesses, even if strictly confidential.

Please accept, etc.


Appendix C to HD–71

Note by the British Delegation

The Austrian Delegation has addressed an unofficial appeal to the British Delegation with a view to obtain the release of the Austrian prisoners of war in Great Britain.

The Austrian Delegation admits that Austria has no right to claim the release of these prisoners before the Treaty of Peace comes into force but justifies this appeal on the ground that prisoners belonging to other races of the former Austrian Empire, as well as German prisoners, are actually being released.

The Delegation suggests that, if this request is granted, the Austrian Government, being unable to provide the necessary means of transport for the repatriation of the prisoners, would, with the consent of the British authorities, endeavour to arrange with the German Government that these prisoners should be sent home together with the Germans.

The number of Austrian prisoners in England appears to be no more than thirty-six officers and one hundred and twenty-five noncommissioned officers and men,

  1. HD–67, minute 7, p. 539.
  2. Appendix B to HD–68, p. 583.
  3. Appendix C to HD–68, p. 586.
  4. HD–69, minute 3, p. 603.
  5. HB–64, minute 6, p. 463.
  6. Appendix B to HD–68, p. 583.
  7. Appendix A to HD–73, p. 718.
  8. Ante, p. 579.
  9. Malloy, Treaties, 1776–1909, vol. ii, p. 2183.
  10. HD–64, minute 6, p. 463.