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the world, and to employ jointly any force which may be agreed upon to accomplish that object. The Contracting Powers also undertake to unite in coming to the assistance of the Contracting Power against which hostile action has been taken, and to combine their armed forces in its behalf.


In case of a dispute between states not parties to this Covenant, any Contracting Power may bring the matter to the attention of the body of Delegates or the Executive Council, who shall thereupon tender the good offices of the League with a view to the peaceable settlement of the dispute.

If one of the states, a party to the dispute, shall offer and agree to submit its interests and cause of action wholly to the control and decision of the League, that state shall ad hoc be deemed a Contracting Power. If no one of the states, parties to the dispute, shall so offer and agree, the Body of Delegates shall through the Executive Council or of its own motion take such action and make such recommendation to the governments as will prevent hostilities and result in the settlement of the dispute.


Any Power not a party to this Covenant, whose government is based upon the principle of popular self-government, may apply to the Body of Delegates for leave to become a party. If the Body of Delegates shall regard the granting thereof as likely to promote the peace, order, and security of the World, they shåll act favorably on the application, and their favorable action shall operate to constitute the Power so applying in all respects a full signatory party to this Covenant. This action shall require the affirmative vote of twothirds of the Body of Delegates.


The Contracting Powers severally agree that the present Covenant is accepted as abrogating all treaty obligations inter se which are inconsistent with the terms hereof, and solemnly engage that they will not enter into any engagements inconsistent with the terms hereof.

In case any of the Powers signatory hereto or subsequently admitted to the League shall, before becoming a party to this Covenant, have undertaken any treaty obligations which are inconsistent with the terms of this Covenant, it shall be the duty of such Power to take immediate steps to procure its release from such obligations.


To the colonies formerly part of the German Empire, and to those territories formerly belonging to Turkey which include Armenia, Kurdestan, Syria, Mesopotamia, Palestine and Arabia, which are inhabited by peoples not able to stand by themselves under the strenuous conditions of the modern world, there should be applied the principle that the well-being and development of such peoples form a sacred trust of civilization and that securities for the performance of this trust should be embodied in the constitution of the League.

The best method of giving practical effect to this principle is that the tutelage of such peoples should be entrusted to advanced nations who by reason of their resources, their experience or their geographical position, can best undertake this responsibility, and that this tutelage should be exercised by them as mandataries on behalf of the League.

The character of the mandate must differ according to the stage of development of the people, the geographical situation of the territory, its economic conditions and other similar circumstances.


Certain communities formerly belonging to the Turkish Empire have reached a stage of development where their existence as independent nations can be provisionally recognized subject to the rendering of administrative advice and assistance by a mandatory power until such time as they are able to stand alone. The wishes of these communities must be a principal consideration in the selection of the mandatory power.

Other peoples, especially those of Central Africa, are at such a stage that the mandatary must be responsible for the administration of the territory subject to conditions which will guarantee the prohibition of abuses such as the slave trade, the arms traffic and the liquor traffic, and the prevention of the establishment of fortifications or military and naval bases and of military training of the natives for other than police purposes and the defense of territory, and will also secure equal opportunities for the trade and commerce of other members of the League.

There are territories, such as South-west Africa and certain of the Islands in the South Pacific, which, owing to the sparseness of their population, or their small size, or their remoteness from the centres of civilization, or their geographical contiguity to the mandatory state, and other circumstances, can be best administered under the laws of the mandatary state as if integral portions thereof, subject to the safeguards above-mentioned in the interests of the indigenous population.


In every case of mandate, the mandatary state shall render to the League an annual report in reference to the territory committed to its charge.

The degree of authority, control, or administration to be exercised by the mandatory State or agency shall in each case be explicitly defined by the Executive Council in a special Act or Charter which shall reserve to the League complete power of supervision, and which shall also reserve to the people of any such territory or governmental unit the right to appeal to the League for the redress or correction of any breach of the mandate by the mandatory State or agency of for the substitution of some other State or agency, as mandatory.

The object of all such tutelary oversight and administration on the part of the League of Nations shall be to build up in as short a time as possible out of the people or territory under its guardianship a political unit which can take charge of its own affairs, determine its own connections, and choose its own policies. The League may at any time release such people or territory from tutelage and consent to its being set up as an independent unit. It shall also be the right and privilege of any people or territory to petition the League to take such action, and upon such petition being made it shall be the duty of the League to take the petition under full and friendly consideration with a view of determining the best interests of the people or territory in question in view of all circumstances of their situation and development.


No new State shall be recognized by the League or admitted into its membership except on condition that its military and naval forces and armament shall conform to standards prescribed by the League in respect of it from time to time.

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The Contracting Powers will work to establish and maintain fair hours and humane conditions of labor for all those within their several jurisdictions and they will exert their influence in favor of the adoption and maintenance of a similar policy and like safeguards wherever their industrial and commercial relations extend. Also they will appoint Commissions to study conditions of industry and labor in their international aspects and to make recommendations thereon, including the extension and improvement of existing conventions,


The League shall require all new States to bind themselves as a condition precedent to their recognition as independent or autonomous States and the Executive Council shall exact of all States seeking admission to the League, the promise to accord to all racial or national minorities within their several jurisdictions exactly the same treatment and security, both in law and in fact, that is accorded the racial or national majority of their people.


Recognizing religious persecution and intolerance as fertile sources of war, the Contracting Powers agree, and the League shall exact from all new States and all States seeking admission to it the promise that they will make no law prohibiting or interfering with the free exercise of religion, and that they will in no way discriminate, either in law or in fact, against those who practice any particular creed, religion, or belief whose practices are not inconsistent with public order or public morals.


When the rights of belligerents on the high seas outside territorial waters shall have been defined by international convention, it is hereby agreed and declared as a fundamental Covenant that no Power or combination of Powers shall have a right to overstep in any particular the clear meaning of the definitions thus established; but that it shall be the right of the League from time to time and on special occasions to close the seas in whole or in part against a perticular Power or Powers for the purpose of enforcing the international Covenants here entered into.

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It is hereby covenanted and agreed by the Contracting Powers that no treaty entered into by them shall be regarded as valid, binding, or operative until it shall have been published and made known to all the other States members of the League.

It is further covenanted and agreed by the Contracting Powers that in their fiscal and economic regulations and policy no discrimination shall be made between one nation and another among those with which they have commercial and financial dealings.


Preliminary Peace Conference.


The Preliminary Peace Conference at the plenary session of the 25th January, 1919 (Protocol No. 2) decided to nominate a Commission to work out in detail the Constitution and functions of a League of Nations.

The terms of reference of this Commission were as follows:

“The Conference, having considered the proposals for the creation of a League of Nations, resolved that

"1. It is essential to the maintenance of the world settlement, which the Associated Nations are now met to establish, that a League of Nations be created to promote international co-operation, to ensure the fulfilment of accepted international obligations and to provide safeguards against war.

"2. This League should be treated as an integral part of the general Treaty of Peace, and should be open to every civilised nation which can be relied on to promote its objects.

"3. The members of the League should periodically meet in international conference, and should have a permanent organization and secretariat to carry on the business of the League in the intervals between the conferences.

“The Conference therefore appoints a Committee representative of the Associated Governments to work out the details of the constitution and functions of the League.

This Commission was to be composed of fifteen members, i. e. two members representing each of the Great Powers (United States of America, British Empire, France, Italy and Japan), and five members to represent all the Powers with special interests. At a meeting of these latter Powers on the 27th January, 1919, Belgium, Brazil, China, Portugal and Serbia were chosen to designate one representative each. (See Annex 6 of Protocol No. 2.)

2. CONSTITUTION OF THE COMMISSION. The Commission was therefore originally composed as follows: For the United States of America:

The President of the United States of America.

Honorable Edward M. House.
For the British Empire:

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Robert Cecil, K.C., M.P.
Lieutenant-General the Rt. Hon. J. C. Smuts, K.C., Minister of
Defence of the Union of South Africa.

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