Free Trieste Movement

ITALY’S OBLIGATIONS TOWARDS THE FREE TERRITORY OF TRIESTE

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The fact that the Free Territory of Trieste exists has been recently confirmed with an important document of the United Nations Security Council. It is document S/2015/809 of 23 October 2015 with an analysis of the UN Secretariat about the Palestinian crisis and the international systems of defence that the United Nations might adopt on the bases of the special defence systems of certain territories.

Among such systems, there is also the case of the provisional regime of government of the Free Territory of Trieste, still ongoing. The instrument of intenrational law that recognize the Free Territory of Trieste are the Treaty of Peace with Italy of 10 February 1947, the Memorandum o Understanding of London of 5 October 1954, UN Security Council Resolution S/RES/16(1947) of 10 January 1947.

The ambiguous Treaty of Osimo of 1975, often advocated by Italy to attempt claiming its sovereignty over former Zone A of the Free Territory of Trieste, instead, has no value for the United Nations as for amending the Treaty of Peace with regard to the legal status of the Free Territory of Trieste. Because that is a mere bilateral agreement between Italy and Yugoslavia fo settle their own border, and that could not affect the frontiers of the Free Territory of Trieste, over which neither State has powers.

And the fact that this bilateral agreement could not put into question the legal status of the Free Territory of Trieste had to be well known to tale as well, since in its own financial laws, drafted after the ratification of the Treaty of Osimo (1977) the State of Italy continued to implement funds for the Government, for it to fulfil the obligations established with the mandate of temporary civil administration of the Free Territory of Trieste.

There are evidences of this in many State budgets, certainly until the mid 1980s. We are talking about international obligations, as we read in the expenditure item under “Territorio Libero di Trieste”, which derive from the current regime of provisional administration.

Follows the translation of expenditure side No. 5, point 14 of the Rendiconto Generale (General Financial Statement) of the State of Italy as for financial year 1982: “Free Territory of Trieste – Funds issued pursuant article 11 of annex VII of the Treaty of Peace signed at Paris on 10 February 1947, implemented with Legislative Decree of the Provisional Head of State No. 1430 of 28 November 1952”. Amount allocated: ITL 85 billion.

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Annex VII of the Treaty of Peace is the instrument for the provisional regime of the Free Territory of Trieste, at article 11 it rules:“Pending the establishment of a separate currency regime for the Free Territory the Italian lira shall continue to be the legal tender within the Free Territory. The Italian Government shall supply the foreign exchange and currency needs of the Free Territory under conditions no less favorable than those applying in Italy. Italy and the Free Territory shall enter into an agreement to give effect to the above provisions as well as to provide for any settlement between the two Governments which may be required..

Which means that in 1982 (but, as we mention, even after this date), and seven years after the Treaty of Osimo, the Republic of Italy recognized with no doubt the existence of the Free Territory of Trieste under a mandate of provisional administration, entrusted to the Italian Government. This legal status has never been changes of a bit by any following agreement or international treaty. As confirmed by the United Nations themselves on 23 October 2015 with document S/2015/809.

Now, all that remains to be discovered is if the funds destined to the temporary civil administration of the Free Territory of Trieste and assigned to the Commissar of the Government were actually used for the purposes set out by the Treaty of Peace.

And, least but not last, how comes that to this day, and in clear violation of the very laws of the Republic of Italy, Italian public servants who work in Trieste go on denying the legal value of the Treaty of Peace, claiming that the Free Territory of Trieste does not exist and prosecuting the people of Trieste who appeal to the rule of law? Aren’t those subversive acts against the global legal order and against the very laws of the Republic of Italy?

Translated from blog “Ambiente e Legalità” – “Environment and Legality” by Roberto Giurastante

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