Page images
PDF
EPUB

Firstly, as regards Constantinople. It is an open secret that the question whether the possession of this Imperial City, fitted by its geographical position to be the capital of a mighty State, should be left to the Turks, remained undetermined until a very short period before the draft was finally settled. It is greatly to be regretted that no better solution could be found in present circumstances. The notion that the Ottoman Sultan is the recognised head of Mohammedanism, and that his seat, if he be such a head (it is well known that the Mohammedans of Morocco have never recognised him in that capacity), must necessarily be at Constantinople and nowhere else, is as devoid of foundation as the corresponding imagination that the Head of the Roman Catholic Church must be permanently and unalterably established at Rome. The presence of the Ottoman Turk on the northern side of the Bosphorus since 1453 has been the provocative cause of all the wars that have been waged in that part of Europe ; and the pacification of the Balkan Peninsula has been despaired of as long as he remains there. It is useless for his partisans to descant upon his social virtues. Every nation has the government that it deserves; and, if he is such a virtuous person as they maintain, how comes it that he has produced such a succession of tyrannical, sanguinary- minded, and corrupt rulers ?

Art. 36 provides that: Subject to the provisions of the present Treaty, the High Contracting Parties agree that the rights and title of the Turkish Government over Constantinople shall not be affected, and that the said Government and His Majesty the Sultan shall be entitled to reside there and to maintain there the capital of the Turkish State.

Nevertheless, in the event of Turkey failing to observe faithfully the provisions of the present Treaty, or of any treaties or conventions supplementary thereto, particularly As regards the protection of the rights of racial, religious or Enguistic minorities, the Allied Powers expressly reserve the right to modify the above provisions, and Turkey hereby agrees to accept any dispositions which may be taken in this connexion.'

The frontiers of Turkey in Europe are defined by the Black Sea from the entrance of the Bosphorus to a

point about four and a half miles north-west of P and thence an irregular line terminating on thd of Marmora about 25 miles west of Constantin thus including an insignificant portion of subu territory.

The Southern limits, marked on Map No. 2, run point Karatash Burun, nearly opposite to Alexand approximately along the parallel of latitude of 37° wards to the Persian frontier, and cut off the He Mesopotamia, Syria, and Palestine. Armenia is dec independent, the frontier between Turkey and Arm in the vilayets of Erzerum, Trebizond, Van, and I with access to the Black Sea, being reserved for arb tion by the President of the United States. The rig independence of the Kurdish areas east of the Euphr south of Armenia, and north of the Turkish fror with Syria and Mesopotamia, is placed under the tection of the League of Nations. Smyrna and adjacent territory remain under Turkish sovereig but Turkey transfers to the Greek Government exercise of her rights of sovereignty over the city its territory. Thrace outside the boundary of Consta nople and up to the southern frontier of Bulgaria defined in the Peace Treaty with that Power fall: Greece. This acquisition of territory, it will be no includes Adrianople. Turkey renounces in favour Italy all rights and title to the islands mentioned Art. 122 (the Dodecanese and Castellorizzo), which inhabited by Greeks.

In favour of Greece Tur renounces her rights over the islands of Imbros, Tenec Lemnos, Samothrace, Mytilene, Chios, Samos, Nikaria.

During the recent war and for many years before Turkish Sultan had exercised the power of closing Bosphorus and the Dardanelles to the ships of ot nations, and especially to war-vessels, on the pretext later times of 'an ancient rule of the Ottoman Empi never before described in those terms until the conclus of the Anglo-Turkish Treaty of Jan. 5, 1809. By Art. it is provided first, that

'the navigation of the Straits, including the Dardanelles, Sea of Marmora and the Bosphorus, shall in future be op oth in peace and war, to every vessel of commerce or of war und to military and commercial aircraft, without distinction

i flag.

Second, that 'these waters shall not be subject to blockade, nor shall any belligerent right be exercised nor any act of hostility be committed within them, unless in pursuance of a decision of the Council of the League of Nations.'

By Arts. 38 and 39 the Turkish and Greek Governments, so far as they are respectively concerned, delegate to a Commission to be called the Commission of the Straits,' the control of all the waters between the Mediterranean mouth of the Dardanelles and the Black Sea mouth of the Bosphorus, and the waters within three miles of each of these mouths; and the authority of the Commission may be exercised on shore to such an extent as may be necessary for this control.

Art. 40 stipulates for the composition of the Commission of representatives appointed respectively by the United States (if and when that Government is willing to participate), the British Empire, France, Italy, Japan, Rassia (if and when Russia becomes a member of the League of Nations), Greece, Rumania, and Bulgaria and Turkey (if and when the two latter states become members of the League of Nations), each Power appointing one representative. The representatives of the Great Powers are each to have two votes, the other four Powers one vote each. The Commission will be completely independent of the local authority, having its ons flag, budget, and separate organisation. Art. 43 enumerates the duties of the Commission, other articles define its powers and rights. Arts. 57 to 61 lay down regulations respecting belligerent warships and prizes passing through the aforesaid waters.

In order to ensure maintenance of the freedom of the Straits, Art. 179 defines the zone of operation of the Commission, as shown on Map No. 1. Briefly speaking, it comprises Constantinople and the adjacent Turkish territory, the coast districts of Thrace ceded to Greece of the Treaty, including the peninsula of Gallipoli, and the coastal districts of Turkish territory in Asia Minor, starting from the Gulf of Adramyttium and

[ocr errors]

extending eastwards and then northwards to a poi the Black Sea, two kilometres east of the mouth o Akabad River. Again, from the mouth of the l Dere on the Black Sea, the line runs in a south-wes direction to Karachali on the Gulf of Saros. All w fortifications, and batteries within this zone and o islands of Lemnos, Imbros, Samothrace, Tenedos Mytilene are to be disarmed and demolished within months of the Treaty coming into force. There are certain important provisions regarding roads and ways in the above-mentioned zone, which are p under the authority of France, Great Britain, and 1 These three Powers also have the right to mainta the said territories and islands such military and forces as they may consider necessary. In the e of the Commission finding that the liberty of pas is being interfered with, it will inform the diplon representatives of the three Allied Powers, who concert with the naval and military commanders of occupying forces such measures as may be necessary

a

The Treaties with Poland, the Serbo-Croat-Slov State, Czecho-Slovakia, and Rumania, may be regar as subsidiary to the Peace Treaty with Germany, v Austria and Bulgaria respectively; and

series treaties of similar import will, it is to be expec be concluded with Greece as receiving a large access of territory, and with other States which are for out of the remaining sacrifices of territory made Turkey, The basic principles of such Treaties explained in the covering letter of M. Clemenceau M. Paderewski, dated May 24, 1919, which was ! sented to Parliament together with the text of Treaty; and it is pointed out that it is the est lished procedure that, when a State is newly crea or receives large accessions of territory, it may required, as a condition of recognition, to underta compliance with certain principles of governme Accordingly, an article was inserted in the Peace Trea with Germany, to which Poland was to be a par whereby the latter State agrees to embody in a Trea with the Principal Allied and Associated Powers p visions for protecting the interests of racial, linguistic,

are

religious minorities, and for the protection of freedom of transit and equitable treatment of the commerce of other nations.

Such stipulations will be perceived to form an important section of the Peace Treaties. They are to be found in the Treaties with Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Turkey. Consequently, Art. 2 of the treaty with Poland, 'guarantees to all inhabitants the elementary rights that

secured in every civilised State.' Clanses 3 to 6 are designed to ensure that all the genuine residents in the territories now transferred to Polish sovereignty shall be assured of the full privileges of citizenship. Arts. 7 and 8 assure equality of rights to racial, linguistic, or religious minorities. Art. 9 provides for education of the children of a linguistic minority through the medium of their own language, and for the enjoyment of an equitable share of public educational funds by such minorities. Arts. 10 and 11 confer special protection on the Jews of Poland. Art. 12 places the foregoing stipulations under the guarantee of the League of Nations, and may not be altered without the consent of a majority of the Council of the League.

Chapter II contains economic clauses designed to facilitate reciprocal diplomatic and consular representation, for ensuring freedom of transit of persons, goods, and of postal, telegraphic, and telephonic services. Poland by Art. 18 agrees to apply to the river system of the Vistula the régime applicable to international waterways set out in the Peace Treaty with Germany, and Art. 19 provides for the adhesion of Poland to certain international conventions.

The remaining three subsidiary treaties are framed on the same model, with certain necessary modifications. Thas in the Treaty with the Serbo-Croat-Slovene State, .Art. 10 provides for the special interests of Musulmans. Art. 12 recognises as binding on the new State all treaties, conventions, and agreements between Serbia and any of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers which Tere in force on Aug. 1, 1914. In the Treaty with CzechoSlovakia, Arts. 10 to 13 provide for the fullest degree of self-government of the Ruthene territory south of the Carpathians, compatible with the unity of the CzechoSlovak State. The Treaty with Rumania has an Art. 7

« PreviousContinue »