The Info List - Free Territory Of Trieste

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The Free Territory of Trieste
(Italian: Territorio libero di Trieste, Slovene: Svobodno tržaško ozemlje; Serbo-Croatian: Slobodni teritorij Trsta) was an independent territory situated in Central Europe
between northern Italy
and Yugoslavia, facing the north part of the Adriatic Sea, under direct responsibility of the United Nations Security Council in the aftermath of World War II.

Map of the territory, showing the two zones

The Free Territory was established on 10 February 1947 by a protocol of the Treaty of Peace with Italy
in order to accommodate an ethnically and culturally mixed population in a neutral independent country. The intention was also to cool down territorial claims between Italy
and Yugoslavia, due to its strategic importance for trade with Central Europe. It came into existence on 15 September 1947. Its administration was divided into two areas: one being the port city of Trieste
with a narrow coastal strip to the north west (Zone A); the other, larger (Zone B) was formed by a small portion of the north-western part of the Istrian peninsula. The Free Territory was de facto taken over by its two neighbours in 1954 and this was formalized much later by the bilateral Treaty of Osimo
of 1975, ratified in 1977.[2]


1 Geography 2 History

2.1 World War II 2.2 Establishment of the territory and Provisional Government 2.3 Dissolution

3 Governors of the Territory

3.1 Zone A

3.1.1 Military commander

3.2 Zone B

3.2.1 Military commander

4 Economics 5 Demographics 6 See also 7 References 8 External links


Free Territory of Trieste
identity card.

The Free Territory of Trieste
comprised an area of 738 km² around the Bay of Trieste
from Duino/Devin in the north to Novigrad/Cittanova in the south, and had approximately 330,000 inhabitants. It bordered the new Italian Republic to the north, and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
to the south and to the east. The rivers of the territory included the Rižana/Risano, the Dragonja/Dragogna, the Timavo/Timava, the Val Rosandra/Glinščica and the Mirna/Quieto. The Territory's highest point was at Monte Cocusso/Kokoš (668 m). Its most extreme points were near Medeazza/Medjavas at 45° 48’ in the north, at Tarski Zaliv / Porto Quieto at 45° 18’ in the south, Savudrija
/ Punta Salvore at 13° 29’ in the west and Gročana/Grozzana at 13° 55’ in the east. History[edit] See also: Imperial Free City of Trieste

Unofficial coat of arms of the Free Territory of Trieste
as used in Zone B from 1947 to 1954.

Since 1382, Trieste
had been part of the Habsburg Monarchy, whilst Istria
had been divided for centuries between the Habsburg Monarchy (its central, northern and eastern parts) and the Republic of Venice (its western and southern parts). The population of the territory has been diverse and mixed, with different and often changing ethnic majorities in different parts of the territory.[citation needed] Italian-speakers have been predominant in most urban settlements and in the coast, with strong minorities of Slovenes, Serbs
and Croats, especially in Trieste
district, where Slovenes
represented a third of the population by the end of World War I
World War I
(most of them however were of recent arrivals, after 1880, from interior Slovene districts).[3][4] The countryside of the territory was mostly Slovene or Croatian in the southernmost portion of the area. There was also a smaller number of Istro-Romanians, Greeks, Albanians and a strong Triestine Jewish community. An example of this ethnic mix is the Triestine dialect. Its base is derived from Venetian, influenced by a Friulian substrate, mainly due to the existence of the now defunct Tergestine dialect, which was closely related to Friulian. Some of the Triestine words are of German and Slovene origin and also came from other languages, such as Greek. The variations of spoken Slovenian and Serbo-Croatian
in the territory were also largely dialectal, sharing words with the Triestine and Istrian dialects. In the southernmost part of the territory the Croatian-based dialects were of the Chakavian type, while the Venetian-based Istrian is also commonly used.

A 1950 poster for the Marshall Plan
Marshall Plan
displaying national flags of European countries, including one for Trieste
with a blue background (the United Nations' official color).

In 1921, after World War I, Italy
annexed Trieste, Istria
and part of modern-day western Slovenia, establishing the border region known as the Julian March
Julian March
(Venezia Giulia). In 1924, Italy
annexed the Free State of Fiume, now the city of Rijeka
in Croatia. During the 1920s and 1930s, the Slavic population was subjected to forced Italianization
and discrimination under the Italian fascist regime. They were also exposed to state violence by fascist party mobs, including the burning of the Slovene National Hall in Trieste
on 13 July 1920, and also in other towns and villages. A few Slovenes
and Croats
consequentially emigrated to Yugoslavia, while some joined the TIGR
resistance organization, whose methods included more than 100 acts of terrorism, mostly against the exponents of the Italian authorities in the region (especially in the provinces of Trieste
and Gorizia). World War II[edit]

Boundary between the Free Territory of Trieste
(Duino-Aurisina / Devin-Nabrežina) and Italy

fought with the Axis powers
Axis powers
in World War II. When the Fascist regime collapsed in 1943 and Italy
capitulated, the territory was occupied by German forces who created the Operational Zone of the Adriatic Littoral, the capital of which was Trieste. The Yugoslav 4th Army and the Slovenian 9th Corps entered Trieste
on 1 May 1945, after a battle in the town of Opicina. The 2nd Division (New Zealand) arrived on the next day and forced the surrender of the 2,000 German Army troops holding out in Trieste, who warily had refused to capitulate to partisan troops, fearing they would be executed by them. An uneasy truce developed between New Zealand
New Zealand
and Yugoslav troops occupying the area until British Gen. Sir William Morgan proposed a partition of the territory and the removal of Yugoslav troops from the area occupied by the Allies. Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito
Josip Broz Tito
agreed in principle on 23 May, as the British XIII Corps was moving forward to the proposed demarcation line. An agreement was signed in Duino
on 10 June, creating the Morgan Line. The Yugoslav troops withdrew by 12 June 1945.[5][6] Establishment of the territory and Provisional Government[edit]

A postage stamp for Zone B of the Free Territory, 1948.

In January 1947, the United Nations Security Council
United Nations Security Council
approved Resolution 16 under Article 24 of its charter calling for the creation of a free state in Trieste
and the region surrounding it. A permanent statute codifying its provisions was to become recognized under international law upon the appointment of an international governor approved by the Quatripartite Powers. On 15 September 1947, the peace treaty between the United Nations
United Nations
and Italy
was ratified, establishing the Free Territory of Trieste. Official languages were Italian and Slovene, possibly with the use of Croatian in the portion of Zone B south of the Dragonja
river. However, the territory never received its planned self-government and it was maintained under military occupation respecting the administrative division into two zones as decided by the Morgan Line: Zone A, which was 222.5 km² and had 262,406 residents including Trieste, was administered by British and American forces, while Zone B, which was 515.5 km² with 71,000 residents including north-western Istria, was administered by the Yugoslav National Army.

Cyclists from Trieste
during the 1950 Peace Race, sponsored by communist governments in East Europe
(hence the Stalin portrait in the background). There had never been an official Triestine team, since almost all Triestine athletes continued to be on Italian teams, as in the cases of the boxers Duilio Loi
Duilio Loi
and Tiberio Mitri, cyclist Guido De Santi, and fencer Irene Camber.

Between October 1947 and March 1948, the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
rejected the candidacy of 12 nominations for governor, at which point the Tripartite Powers (United States, United Kingdom, and France) issued a note to the Soviet and Yugoslav governments on 20 March 1948 recommending that the territory be returned to Italian sovereignty. No governor was ever appointed under the terms of the UN Resolution. The Territory thus never functioned as a real independent state, although its formal status was generally respected and it was involved in the European Recovery Plan (ERP) and in many international organizations (OEEC).[7] The B zone even issued its own postage stamps. The break between the Tito government and the USSR in mid-1948 resulted in the proposal to return the territory to Italy
being suspended until 1954.

applied visa for the Free City of Trieste, issued by the British consular section at Haifa in 1951.

The Allied Military Government administered Zone A, which was divided into peacekeeping and law enforcement sectors protected by a command of 5,000 Americans ("TRUST", the TRieste United States
United States
Troops) and 5,000 British in "BETFOR" (British Element Trieste
FORce), each comprising a brigade-sized infantry force and complete support units (signals, engineers, military police, etc.) According to the estimates published by the Allied Military Government, as of 1949 in the A zone there were about 310,000 inhabitants,[8] including 239,200 Italians and 63,000 Slovenes. According to contemporary Italian sources, in zone B there were 36,000-55,000 Italians and 12,000-17,000 Slovenes
and Croats. According to the Yugoslav census of 1945, which was considered falsified by the Quadripartite Commission set up by the United Nations,[9] in the part of Istria
which was to become Zone B there were 67,461 inhabitants, including 30,789 Slovenes, Serbs
and Croats, 29,672 Italians and 7,000 people of unidentified nationality. Dissolution[edit] On 5 October 1954, the London Memorandum
London Memorandum
was signed in the British capital by ministers of the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, and Yugoslavia. It gave former Zone A with Trieste
to Italy
for an ordinary civil administration, and Zone B, which had already had a communist government since 1947, to Yugoslavia. In addition, Yugoslavia was given several villages in the municipality of Muggia that had been part of Zone A: Plavje, Spodnje Škofije, Elerji, Hrvatini, Kolomban, Cerej, Premančan, and Barizoni. The castle and village of Socerb
above San Dorligo della Valle
San Dorligo della Valle
was also ceded to Yugoslav administration, according to the demarcation line defined by Annex I to the London Memorandum. In 1975 the bilateral Treaty of Osimo
Treaty of Osimo
was signed in Osimo
and ratified two years later, definitively stopping respective claims over the former Free Territory of Trieste
by Italy
and Yugoslavia, as the London Memorandum
London Memorandum
only disestablished the territory de facto, but not de jure.[10] Governors of the Territory[edit] Zone A[edit] Military commander[edit]

Governor In Office Country

Maj. Gen. Bernard Cyril Freyberg * 2 May 1945 - July 1945 New Zealand

Col. Alfred Connor Bowman * July 1945 - July 1947 United States

Col. James Jewett Carnes * July 1947 - 15 September 1947

Maj. Gen. Sir Terence Sydney Airey 15 September 1947 - 31 March 1951 United Kingdom

Maj. Gen. Sir Thomas John Willoughby Winterton 1 April 1951 - 26 October 1954

Zone B[edit] Military commander[edit]

Governor In Office Country

Dušan Kveder * 1 May 1945 - September 1947 Yugoslavia

Mirko Lenac 15 September 1947 - March 1951

Miloš Stamatović March 1951 - 25 October 1954

*Governors of all Julian March
Julian March
prior to the establishment of the Territory.[11] Economics[edit] The economy of the area formerly part of the territory is based on its ports, namely the Free Port of Trieste
and the Port of Koper/Capodistria. The first has a peculiar free zone (nowadays also offshore) status originated in 1719[12] and confirmed by the Treaty of Peace with Italy
of 1947, which allows the transportation of goods inside the area. This status is recognised by the international community and the European Union.[13][14] An extract from the answer given by Algirdas Šemeta
Algirdas Šemeta
on 7 August 2012, on behalf of the European Commission
European Commission
about the Free Port of Trieste:[13]

Annex VIII to the Treaty of peace with Italy
of 10 February 1947 stipulates in its Article 1 that the port of Trieste
shall be a customs free port. Article 5(2) of Annex VIII provides that in connection with importation into or exportation from or transit through the Free Port, the authorities of the Free Territory shall not levy on such goods customs duties or charges other than those levied for services rendered.[13] [emphasis added]

The port economy is suffering from poor railway connections due to high tariffs and from the lack of a modernized infrastructure.[15] The "Galleria di cintura" railway between the new and the old parts of the Port of Trieste
were renovated and enlarged in 2010,[16] yet it remains largely unused. Demographics[edit] During the late 1940s and in the years following the division of the Territory, up to 40,000 people[17] (mostly Italians) chose to leave the Yugoslav B zone and move to the A zone or Italy
for various reasons: Some were intimidated into leaving, and some simply preferred not to live in Yugoslavia. In Yugoslavia, the people who left were called optanti ("choosing"), while they call themselves esuli ("exiles"). About 14,000 Italians chose to remain in the Yugoslav zone, currently divided between Slovenia
and Croatia. The population of the Free Territory of Trieste
amounted to approximately 370,000 inhabitants in 1949. See also[edit]

Treaty of Peace with Italy, 1947 Communist Party of the Free Territory of Trieste United Nations Security Council
United Nations Security Council
Resolution 16 Julian March Istrian exodus Morgan Line Slovene Littoral Province of Trieste

List of governors of the Province of Trieste

Triestine Serbs Slovenian Istria Istria


This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2012) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

^ "A/AC.25/Com.Jer/W.4". United Nations. Archived from the original on 6 May 2014. Retrieved 5 June 2013.  ^ Drašček, Nuša. "Slovenska zahodna meja po drugi svetovni vojni", diplomsko delo, Univerza v Ljubljani, Ljubljana, 2005 ^ http://www.kozina.com/premik/1910-02.pdf ^ "Ljudsko štetje Avstrijskega-ilirskega Primorja 31. decembra 1910 - Österreichisch-Illyrisches Küstenland - Volkszählung von 31. Dezember 1910 - Censimento del Litorale Austriaco-illirico del 31 dicembre 1910". www.kozina.com. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "Stanford University". stanford.edu. Archived from the original on 21 July 2006. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "Ashburton Guardian". ashburtonguardian.co.nz. Archived from the original on 27 June 2006. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "Organisation for European Economic Co-operation - OECD". www.oecd.org. Retrieved 2015-09-24.  ^ http://www.milhist.net/docs/intellrev.html#59 ^ " United States
United States
Intelligence Review, Issue 3, 28 February 1946". milhist.net. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ Tržaški Slovenci in vprašanje razdelitve Svobodnega tržaškega ozemlja, page 411-422 ^ Worldstatesmen / Italy
/ Trieste
by Ben Cahoon ^ "The port of Trieste
and its railway connections in the Habsburg monarchy: economic change and infrastructure problems, 1850-1918" (PDF). docutren.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 June 2012. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ a b c "Answer to a written question - Free Port of Trieste
- E-006217/2012". www.europarl.europa.eu. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "The jurisdictional regime of the Free Zones (in Italian)". isdit.it. Archived from the original on 18 February 2013. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "I treni austriaci entrano in porto Storico accordo con Maneschi - Cronaca - Il Piccolo". gelocal.it. 28 November 2011. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ "The "Galleria di cintura" now runs on two tracks (2010, in Italian)". triestelive.it. Archived from the original on 3 February 2014. Retrieved 10 September 2017.  ^ Arrigo Petacco, The exodus. The story of the Italian population of Istria, Dalmatia, and Venezia Giulia, Mondadori, Milan, 1999. English translation.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Free Territory of Trieste.

Vintage Life Magazine Photos of Trieste
at Google Images. http://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_2015_809.pdf

Coordinates: 45°41′N 13°45′E / 45.68°N 13.75°E / 45.68; 13.75

v t e



Timeline Imperial Free City of Trieste
(1849–1922) Governors (1918–54) Morgan Line Free Territory of Trieste
(1947–54) Treaty of Osimo Province of Trieste

Geography and surrounding area

Gulf of Trieste Duino
Castle Grotta Gigante Sistiana Val Rosandra Altura Rozzol

Buildings and landmarks

Caffè San Marco Kleines Berlin Miramare Castle Piazza Unità d'Italia Savoia Excelsior Palace Trieste
Astronomical Observatory Trieste
Botanical Garden Trieste
Commodity Exchange Victory Lighthouse

Places of worship

Catholic: Trieste
Cathedral Temple of Monte Grisa Jewish: Trieste
Synagogue Serb Orthodox: St. Spyridon Church


Politeama Rossetti Risiera di San Sabba Revoltella Museum Sartorio Museum Teatro Stabile Sloveno Teatro Verdi Trieste
Film Festival Trieste
Natural History Museum

Local media

Newspapers: Il Piccolo Primorski dnevnik Radio: Radio Trst A

Education and research

University of Trieste MIB School of Management Trieste AREA Science Park (ELETTRA ICGEB) International Centre for Theoretical Physics International School for Advanced Studies The World Academy of Sciences

Sports venues

Current: Stadio Nereo Rocco PalaTrieste Former: Stadio Littorio (1932–92)


Port of Trieste Trieste
Airport Trieste
Centrale railway station Trieste– Opicina

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