HC Deb 13 March 1924 vol 170 cc2536-7
46. Lieut.-Colonel JAMES

asked the Prime Minister whether he will refer to the League of Nations for their arbitration a pronouncement as to the legal status of Montenegro, and as to whether this status has been outraged by Serbia; and whether, in this connection, the salient features of the de Salis and Temperley Bryce Reports will be communicated to the Council of the League, in view of the fact that M. Poincaré and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Paisley on 10th January, 1916, President Wilson in the eleventh of his Fourteen Points on 8th January, 1917, and the Conditions of Peace laid down by the Allies on 10th January and again on 16th April, 1919, insisted upon the restoration of Montenegro?


The international status of Montenegro was determined by a vote taken at the constituent elections held in 1920 in which no party or body of opinion in Montenegro expressed itself as being opposed to union with Jugoslavia and His Majesty's Government under the circumstances could do nothing but recognise the decision. I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the Bryce Report which was laid before Parliament (Command Paper 1124, of 1921). The relations between Montenegro and the Central Government is therefore now an internal question of the Serb-Croat-Slovene State and is not a matter in which His Majesty's Government can intervene either through the League of Nations or otherwise.

Lieut.-Colonel JAMES

Is it not a fact that Montenegrins dispute the conditions under which this vote was arrived at?


Is it not a fact that Montenegro was one of our first Allies in the War, and is it not a case in which the League of Nations should be consulted in the interests of Great Britain?


As I have said, I think this is a matter of internal concern for the Jugoslav State.