HC Deb 11 November 1920 vol 134 cc1358-9

asked the Prime Minister whether China and Hedjaz are sovereign-state members of the League of Nations; and whether these two states will be represented at the forthcoming meeting of the assembly of the League at Geneva?


China is a member of the League of Nations; I am not, however, aware what steps she is taking to be represented at the meeting of the Assembly. The Hedjaz, not having ratified the Treaty of Versailles, is not yet a member of the League of Nations and cannot be represented at the Assembly until she has ratified.

Lieut.-Colonel J. WARD

Is it not a fact that Japan objected to China appointing delegates to the League of Nations, and suggested it should be her delegates who should represent China; and is not that the reason why China has not been able to take definite steps in the matter?


I must have notice of that.


Is it a fact that the Allied nations such as Hedjaz are refused admittance to the League of Nations unless they ratify the Peace of Versailles, and was it not agreed at the time of the Peace Conference that every Allied nation would be admitted into the League, whether they ratified the Treaty or not?

Sir J. D. REES

Can it be said that the Hedjaz is a nation? Is it not merely a section of Arabs?


It has been recognised as a Sovereign State. I think my Noble Friend is wrong. The Hedjaz is supposed to be a party to the Treaty. They have not ratified that Treaty. It is in the Treaty that the Covenant is contained, and if they have not given their consent to the Covenant, they can hardly be expected to be a member of the League.


Was not the Hedjaz definitely invited to become an original member of the League, and, if it ratines between now and the meeting of the Assembly, will its delegates be admitted?


That is a question I should like to consider. I am perfectly certain that no one wants to exclude the Hedjaz. That State took a very leading part in the War, and I have no doubt very friendly consideration would be given to its application.


Is it not a fact that the reason the Hedjaz has not ratified the Treaty is because we have not so far carried out our pledge given to the King of the Hedjaz?


I cannot agree as to that. I know the suggestion is that we have given way to the French. That is not so. So far as we are concerned, we have respected all the promises Sir Edward Grey, as he then was, gave to the Hedjaz.

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