CYIL vol. 11 (2020)

JAN ONDŘEJ – MAGDA UXOVÁ CYIL 11 (2020) of International Law of Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Law. She teaches and does research in the fields of International economic relations and international security. Introduction After World War I, a new order was based on the adoption of the Covenant of the League of Nations, signed on 28 June 1919, this order was a part of the Treaty of Versailles of 1919. The Covenant was therefore not a separated treaty in the legal sense and entered into force at the same time as the Treaty of Versailles. As for the League of Nations, the prominent politicians who were concerned with securing world peace after World War I at the Versailles Conference, recognized the need for a new political order in Europe. The idea for the creation of an international organization dealing with the maintenance of international peace arose. The Covenant of the League of Nations was included on this basis as the main document into the Versailles Conference, the peace treaty with Germany. The establishment of the League of Nations meant a significant change in international relations, as it led to its democratization. Until then, world politics was dominated by a “Concert of Europe”. The League of Nations was, to some extent, a breakthrough in their dominant position, and not all of them accepted the new situation. The new international organization was open to all sovereign states, large and small, which enjoyed essentially the same rights as its members. 1 This was very interesting for small states, which, until that time had not had the opportunity to affect the international relations at all. Such a state was Czechoslovakia, which became an active member of the League of Nations. Czechoslovakia fully participated in the activities of this international organization, also because due to its location in the middle of the continent, Czechoslovakia realized that its security would always depend on the overall political situation in Europe. 2 1. The nature of the League of Nations and its role The League of Nations was founded on the idea of developing cooperation and guaranteeing peace and security among the nations. In order to implement this idea, there was the need to emphasize that the states made the commitments not to resort to war and to adhere strictly to the rules of international law recognized as binding standards of government action. The League of Nations also performed other social and cultural tasks. M. Tomášek stated that the League of Nations was once considered as an attempt of a super-state, the civitas maxima , the goal was to include all states in the future. However, as A. Hobza stated: The Covenant was a collection of approaches to the unified organization of a mankind. Above all, it was a start to the formation of a supranational union, but just a start, because there was no decisive will to establish a real supranational power of the union, as the title, i.e. League, indicated. 3

1 ORT, A. Edvard Beneš diplomat a politik . [ Edvard Beneš, Diplomat and Politician. ] Praha: IRMA, 1994, p. 19. 2 Ibid. 3 HOBZA, A. Úvod do mezinárodního práva mírového. Část I . [ Introduction to International Law of Peace. Part I. ] Praha: 1933, p. 248.


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