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Permanent Mandates Commission

The Permanent Mandates Commission (PMC) was the commission of the League of Nations responsible for oversight of mandates. The first twenty-six articles of the Treaty of Versailles contained the League of Nations Covenant. The commission was established on 1 December 1920 under Article 22 of the Covenant and was headquartered at Geneva. Article 22 stipulated that "A permanent Commission shall be constituted to receive and examine the annual reports of the Mandatories and to advise the Council on all matters relating to the observance of the mandates." [1]

The PMC was the first instance that either France or Britain had been subjected to any kind of imperial oversight.[2]



The Commission had 9 and later, 10 members, 4 of them from Mandatory Powers.The members served without fixed term. William Rappard, Swiss lawyer and professor, served for the Commission's entire active life of 18 years as did Pierre Orts, Italian Marquis Alberto Theodoli, first chairman, for 16 years, the Spaniard M.Palacios for 15 years, Lord Lugard and Van Rees for 13 each while the sole female, Valentine Dannevig from Norway and the Portuguese Count Jose de Penha Garcia served for 11 years each.[3]

Modus OperandiEdit


The Commission met in sessions once or twice a year to consider annual reports from Mandatorys; within any session, any number of meetings could be held usually in private although any of these could be public. Extraordinary sessions could also be held in special circumstances. The Commission held its first session from 4 to 8 October 1921 and the 37th final session from 12 to 21 December 1939.[4]




Class A MandatesEdit

  • Palestine(United Kingdom)
  • Mesopotamia(United Kingdom)
  • Syria and Lebanon(France)

Class B MandatesEdit

  • Ruanda-Urundi (Belgium)
  • Tanganyika (United Kingdom)
  • Kamerun
  • Togoland

Class C MandatesEdit

  • Territory of New Guinea (Australia/United Kingdom)
  • Nauru (United Kingdom)
  • German Samoa (New Zealand/United Kingdom)
  • South Pacific Mandate(Japan)
  • South West Africa (South Africa/United Kingdom)


  1. ^ Article 22
  2. ^ Chin, Rachel (27 February 2018). "The Levant mandates and Charles de Gaulle's provisional government: power, culture and messages of imperial reform". European Review of History: Revue européenne d'histoire. 25 (2): 312–329. doi:10.1080/13507486.2017.1409701.
  3. ^ Settler Colonialism in the Twentieth Century: Projects, Practices, Legacies (2005) Routledge, Settler Colonialism at the Bar of the League of Nations, Susan Pedersen (Contributor)
  4. ^ Final Minutes

External linksEdit