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RULES OF THE PRELIMINARY PEACE CONFERENCE
AT PARIS, 1919
The Conference summoned with a view to lay down the conditions of peace, in the first place by peace preliminaries and later by a definitive Treaty of Peace, shall include the representatives of the Allied or Associated belligerent Powers.
The belligerent Powers with general interests (the United States of America, the British Empire, France, Italy, and Japan) shall attend all sessions and commissions.
The belligerent Powers with special interests (Belgium, Brazil, the British Dominions and India, China, Cuba, Greece, Guatemala, Hayti, the Hedjaz, Honduras, Liberia, Nicaragua, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Roumania, Serbia, Siam, and the Czecho-Slovak Republic) shall attend sessions at which questions concerning them are discussed. Powers having broken off diplomatic relations with the enemy Powers (Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, and Uruguay) shall attend sessions at which questions interesting them will be discussed.
Neutral Powers and States in process of formation shall, on being summoned by the Powers with general interests, be heard, either orally or in writing, at sessions devoted especially to the examination of questions in which they are directly concerned, and only in so far as those questions are concerned.
The Powers shall be represented by Plenipotentiary Delegates to the number of
Five for the United States of America, the British Empire, France, Italy, Japan;
Three for Belgium, Brazil, Serbia;
Two for China, Greece, the Hedjaz, Poland, Portugal, Roumania, Siam, and the Czecho-Slovak Republic;
One for Cuba, Guatemala, Hayti, Honduras, Liberia, Nicaragua, and Panama;
One for Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, and Uruguay.
The British Dominions and India shall be represented as follows: Two Delegates each for Canada, Australia, South Africa, and India (including the native states);
One Delegate for New Zealand.
Each Delegation shall be entitled to set up a panel, but the number of Plenipotentiaries shall not exceed the figures given above.
The representatives of the Dominions (including Newfoundland) and of India can, moreover, be included in the representation of the British Empire by means of the panel system.
Montenegro shall be represented by one Delegate, but the manner of his appointment shall not be decided until the present political situation of that country becomes clear.
The conditions governing the representation of Russia shall be settled by the Conference when Russian affairs come up for discussion.
Each Delegation of Plenipotentiaries may be accompanied by duly accredited Technical Delegates and by two shorthand writers.
The Technical Delegates may attend sessions in order to supply information when called upon. They may be asked to speak in order to give necessary explanations.
The order of precedence shall follow the alphabetical order of the Powers in French.
The Conference shall be opened by the President of the French Republic. The President of the French Council of Ministers shall thereupon provisionally take the chair.
The credentials of members present shall at once be examined by a committee composed of one Plenipotentiary for each of the Allied or Associated Powers.
At the first meeting the permanent President and four Vice-Presidents shall be elected from among the Plenipotentiaries of the Great Powers in alphabetical order.
A Secretariat, chosen outside the ranks of the Plenipotentiaries, consisting of one representative each of the United States of America, the British Empire, France, Italy and Japan, shall be submitted for the approval of the Conference by the President, who shall be in control of and responsible for it.
Publicity shall be given to the proceedings by means of official communiqués prepared by the Secretariat and made public. In case of disagreement as to the wording of such communiqués, the matter shall be referred to the chief Plenipotentiaries or their representatives.
All documents to be incorporated in the protocols must be supplied in writing by the Plenipotentiaries originally responsible for them. No document or proposal may be so supplied except by a Plenipotentiary or in his name.
With a view to facilitate discussion any Plenipotentiary wishing to propose a resolution must give the President twenty-four hours' notice thereof, except in the case of proposals connected with the order of the day and arising from the actual discussion.
Exceptions may, however, be made to this rule in the case of amendments or secondary questions which do not constitute actual proposals.
All petitions, memoranda, observations and documents addressed to the Conference by any persons other than the Plenipotentiaries must be received and classified by the Secretariat.
Such of these communications as are of political interest shall be briefly summarized in a list circulated to all the Plenipotentiaries. Supplementary editions of this list shall be issued as such communications are received.
All these documents shall be deposited in the archives.
All questions to be decided shall be discussed at a first and second reading; the former shall afford occasion for a general discussion for the purpose of arriving at an agreement on points of principle; the second reading shall provide an opportunity of discussing details.
The Plenipotentiaries shall be entitled, subject to the approval of the Conference, to authorize their Technical Delegates to submit direct any technical explanations considered desirable regarding any particular question.
If the Conference shall think fit, the study of any particular question from the technical point of view may be entrusted to a Committee composed of Technical Delegates, who shall be instructed to present a report and suggest solutions.
The Protocols drawn up by the Secretariat shall be printed and circulated in proof to the Delegates with the least possible delay.
To save time, this circulation of the protocols in advance shall take the place of reading them at the beginning of the sessions. Should no alterations be demanded by the Plenipotentiaries, the text shall be considered as approved and deposited in the archives.
Should any alterations be called for, it shall be read aloud by the President at the beginning of the following session.
The whole of the protocol shall, however, be read if one of the Plenipotentiary members shall so request.
A Committee shall be formed to draft the motions adopted. This Committee shall deal only with questions which have been decided; its sole task shall be to draw up the text of the decisions adopted and to present them to the Conference for approval.
It shall consist of five members who shall not be Plenipotentiary Delegates and shall comprise one representative each of the United States of America, the British Empire, France, Italy, and Japan.