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Serb insistence on Montenegrin surrender to Austrian Forces

Claims that King Nicholas and his Government capitulated unilaterally to 
Austrian Forces were commonly used to discredit the King, in an attempt to 
justify the illegal annexation of Montenegro by an allied power (Serbia). 
During the course of the Paris Peace Conference it was disclosed, for the 
record, that the King was pressed to surrender on the repeated insistence of 
Serb Army commanders, led by Serbian Colonel Pechich, under whose command the 
King had placed his armies in what transpired to be a naive act of trust in 
his slav-brothers.

Montenegro had refused Austria's advances of neutrality at the outset of war, 
in the face of the threat to Serbia, but with Serb Army leaders capitulating, 
the King's hand was forced. As a result the departure of the Royal Family 
from Montenegro was inevitable, which was later to be exploited during the 

Newly uncovered archives reveal that on 31st December 1915, Colonel Pechich 
proposed asking for an armistice in Montenegro. When the Supreme Austrian 
Command answered this request with the utmost harshness and cruelty, Colonel 
Pechich the effective Commander-in-chief of our Montenegrin troops advised 
the King of Montenegro to make peace 'the enemy can no longer be 
resisted....... (13th January 1916). The King received this document the same 
day at 7:00am.

    The two most important passages are:-
    'Sire, the Officers in Command of the Army on the Western Front declare 
that our Army is so demoralised that, 
    'Having shown you the true state of affairs in the army, I have the 
honour to point out to Your Majesty that it is utterly impossible to Carry on 
the struggle under such conditions, and that, without delay and as quickly as 
possible we must (1) ask to make peace with the enemy, since he would not 
accept the proposal for an armistice made two days ago by the Royal 

The entire text of the document and its context is found in the Paris Peace 
conference Papers (officially Archived):

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