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Making Minorities HistoryPopulation Transfer in Twentieth-Century Europe$
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Matthew Frank

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780199639441

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199639441.001.0001

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A Paris Affair

A Paris Affair

The Post-War Limits of Population Transfer

(p.311) 8 A Paris Affair
Making Minorities History

Matthew Frank

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the immediate impact of the incipient Cold War on the scope for mass population transfer in Europe. It looks at the attempts of the Czechoslovak state to achieve a total solution to its minorities problem through a mixture of voluntary population exchange and an internationally sanctioned compulsory transfer of its Hungarian minority. The drama in which a Czechoslovak amendment on transfer first looked set to gain international approval but was then defeated at the Paris Peace Conference (August to October 1946) is discussed, as is the significance of this setback for Czechoslovakia’s international reputation as well as for the future prospects of mass population transfer as international policy. This provides the broader context for understanding how population transfer first served and then frustrated the Soviet Union’s aims in eastern Europe, and the way in which deepening East-West fissures impacted on the desirability and feasibility of the measure.

Keywords:   Czechoslovakia, Hungarian minority, Paris Peace Conference, 1946, Cold War, Soviet Union, eastern Europe

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