BBC broadcast at 31 August 1939 the Germany proposes a settlement to the Polish problem – 16 Points

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The Germany proposes a settlement to the Polish problem – 16 Points

  1. The free city of Danzig should return to the Reich unconditionally and forth width on account of its purely and German character and the anonymous will of its population.
  2. The corridor should decide itself whether it desires to belong to Germany or Poland. For this purpose, a plebiscite should be held.
  3. Those entitled to vote in this plebiscite would be all Germans and Poles who have been residents in the corridor since the 1st of January 1918 or have been born then.
    All Germans expel from the corridor or forced to leave would return in order to cast their votes.
  4. In order to guarantee an entirely objective form of voting, an international commission will be set up, similar to that had operated during the Saar plebiscite.
    It will consist the representatives of Italy, Soviet Russia, France and Great Brittan.
    All Polish, police, military and other authorities would have to leave the corridor at the shortest possible mercers except that Gdynia which would remain Polish.
    The exact frontier between Gdynia and Germany would have to be fixed trough agreement between Berlin and Warsaw.
  5. The plebiscite will not take place before elapse of twelve months.
  6. To maintain communication between Germany and east Prussia, before and during the plebiscite, Germany would be given a rail road and a motor road through the corridor for her exclusive use.
  7. The plebiscite will be decided by a simple majority of votes.
  8. To guarantee the safety of traffic between Germany and east Prussia, in case the plebiscite will result in a partition of the corridor, special motor roads and rail roads should be granted, not extending wider than one kilometer.
    This strip will be declared an extra territorial zone.
  9. In case the plebiscite decides that the corridor should remain with Poland, Germany has prepared to carry out an exchange of population.
  10. The special privileges short by Poland in Danzig, will be lay down in a way analogous to the German privileges in Gdynia.
  11. In order to obviate all feeling of insecurity, both Gdynia and Danzig would be declared to be senders of trade which would not be fortify. The peninsula of Hel would in any case be demilitarized.
  12. For the settlement of possible of complains of the minorities, both contacting parties agreed that these complains be submitted to an international commission.
  13. Germany and Poland should agree to repair and recompense all economic damages caused to their respective minorities since 1918.
  14. The minorities remaining in either country after the plebiscite would be exempt from military service and enjoy full social and cultural freedom.
  15. In case of acceptance of these proposals, Germany and Poland should declare themselves ready to order and carry out immediate demobilization of their respective armies.
  16. All further measures which might become necessary, should be lay down through neutral agreement between Germany and Poland.

The German announcer who read out these proposals concluded by saying:
“The Führer and the German government had waited for two days in vain for a reply to these proposals and therefor regard these proposals as practically rejected.”