Skip to main content

Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

See other formats

" The attitude of Czechoslovakia to these events is a matter
of general interest, and in this connection I can give the House
the following information. The Czech Government have
officially informed His Majesty's Government that though it is
their earnest desire to live on the best possible neighbourly
relations with the German Reich, they have followed with
the greatest attention the development of events in Austria
between the date of the Austro- German Agreement of July,
1936, up to the present day. I am informed that Field-
Marshal Goering on nth March gave a general assurance
to the Czech Minister in Berlin—an assurance which he
expressly renewed later on behalf of Herr Hitler—that it
would be the earnest endeavour of the German Government to
improve German-Czech relations. In particular, on I2th
March, Field-Marshal Goering informed the Czech Minister
that German troops marching into Austria had received
the strictest orders to keep at least 15 kilometres from the
Czech frontier. On the same day the Czechoslovak Minister
in Berlin was assured by Baron von Neurath that Germany
considered herself bound by the German-Czechoslovak
Arbitration Convention of October, 1925,
" The House may desire me to repeat what our position
in regard to Austria was. We were under no commitment to
take action vis-a-vis Austria, but we were pledged to consul-
tation with the French and Italian Governments in the event
of action being taken which affected Austrian independence
and integrity, for which provision was made by the relevant
articles of the Peace Treaties. This pledge arises from
agreements reached between the French, Italian and United
Kingdom Governments, first in February, 1934, then in
September of the same year, and finally at the Stresa Con-
ference in April, 1935, in which the position was reaffirmed,
to consult together in any measures to be taken in the case of
threats to the integrity and independence of Austria. We have
fully discharged the pledge of consultation with both the
French Government and the Italian Government, to whom
we made an immediate approach when Austrian independence
seemed to be threatened by recent events. As a result of that
consultation with the French Government, His Majesty's
Government and the French Government addressed similar