CYIL vol. 12 (2021)
CYIL 12 (2021) THE MECHANISM OF THE PROTECTION OF RACIAL, NATIONAL, AND RELIGIOUS… regarding Czechoslovakia. One case is sometimes mentioned in this context which related to the minorities issues in Czechoslovakia in the beginning of the 1930s, but in fact it dealt with the restitution of property of Péter Pázmány University. The case was not in consequence of the breach of minorities obligations, but as a result of the interpretation of the Trianon Treaty and compensation for property left by that university (recognized as a Hungarian legal entity) on the territory of Czechoslovakia. The Czechoslovak Government itself lodged an appeal to the Court as they disagreed with the decision of the mixed Hungarian-Czechoslovak arbitration tribunal of 1931; the judgment was issued on 15 December 1933. 81 The destiny of minorities agenda within the League of Nations in the second half of the 1930s was not determined by the quality or efficiency of the procedure or case law, but by the real international political situation. The withdrawal of Germany and Italy from the League of Nations, as well as Poland’s decision of September 1934 to no longer collaborate with the League of Nations organs in matters of minority protection 82 resulted in its suspension, and mechanisms of the protection of minorities rights were fatally weakened within the league of Nations. When Germany commenced to use their minorities on other territories for their international political aims a new dimension was added to the minorities question, thus endangering not only the Versailles Peace system but also international legal arrangements as such. As for the Czechoslovak issue, it was obvious since dealing with the petitions of the Sudeten-German party against Czechoslovakia that the real strength of that international organization radically declined, not only in general matters but particularly in the determination of minorities conflicts. The Powers, namely Great Britain, Germany, and Italy followed by France in 1938, finally found an international, legal, and political answer to the inter-war system of the protection of minorities in the Munich Agreement and subsequent Vienna arbitration awards. The Powers thereby supported the surrendering of a territory with minorities to their home states as the mode of solution thus negating the inter-war system. This resulted not only in the termination of the system under the auspices of the League of Nations, but to the Second World War and subsequently, in reaction to WWII, to the new stage of the international and legal protection of minorities rights.
Upper Silesia, Advisory Opinion, Series A./B. No. 40, 15 May 1931; Minority Schools in Albania, Advisory Opinion, Series A./B. No. 62, 6 April 1935. 81 https://www.icj-cij.org/public/files/permanent-court-of-international-justice/serie_AB/AB_61/01_Pazmani_ Arret.pdf. 82 Erpelding, M.: Mixed Commission for Upper Silesia, In: Max Planck Encyclopaedia of International Law , Oxford University Press, 2015, http://www.mpi.lu/fileadmin/mpi/medien/research/MPEiPro/Upper Silesia_ law-mpeipro-e2911.pdf, item n. 36.
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