Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

League Council Compromises on Minorities Protection Procedure

June 16, 1929
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Council of the League of Nations, in session here, faced with the problem of making real the protection of the rights of the national minorities, one of the League’s functions, reached a compromise and averted what threatened to be a serious difference of opinion which might have affected the prestige of the League in Europe.

Following several private sessions when the report of the Committee of Three was considered, the Council, without acrimony but rather with something approaching enthusiasm, adopted the compromise offered by Baron Mineichito Adatchi, Japanese delegate and one of the Committee of Three. The original report of the Committee of Three, consisting of Sir Austin Chamberlain, Baron Adatchi and Senor Quinones de Leon, recommended to the Council to reject the plan sponsored by Senator Raoul Dandurand of Canada and Foreign Minister Stresemann of Germany to give the minorities more direct access to the League Council in the presentation of their grievances and to assure speedy and public handling of the problems.

Under the compromise, the Council agreed to empower its president, in exceptional cases, to increase the membership of the sub-committee to investigate minorities’ complaints from three to four. Under the same plan more frequent meetings to deal with the minorities’ grievances are to be held by the committee and the publication of the major part of its decisions, thus providing greater publicity, is to be insisted upon. In six points of a minor nature, the procedure was changed by the compromise. No decision was taken on the other proposals, their sponsors being free to bring the matter up at a later date.

Senator Dandurand of Canada recommended the acceptance of the Adatchi compromise plan, although admitting that it did not go nearly so far as he would like to have seen it. Dr. Stresemann went on record as accepting the Adatchi plan merely in the character of a temporary substitute for some plan whereby minorities either would have direct access to the Council with their grievances or a plan whereby any complaining minority should be guaranteed a representative present wherever its complaint came up. Nicholas Titulescu, former Foreign Minister of Roumania, August Zaleski, Polish Foreign Minister, and Sir George Grahame, British Ambassador to Belgium, all endorsed Baron Adatchi’s proposal.

Nicholas Titulescu, in endorsing the compromise stated that his acceptance is based on the understanding that the principles set forth in the London report of the Committee of Three have been recognized. The Council avoided (Continued on Page 4) (Continued from Page 3)

Recommended from JTA