The Austrians chose to exhibit an unsuitable final offer to Serbia and after that to announce war, depending on Germany to deflect Russia from mediation. Despite the fact that the terms of the final proposal were at long last affirmed on July 19, its conveyance was deferred to the night of July 23, since at that point the French president, Raymond Poincaré, and his chief, René Viviani, who had set off on a state visit to Russia on July 15, would be en route home and accordingly helpless to show a quick response with their Russian partners. At the point when the conveyance was reported, on July 24, Russia pronounced that Austria-Hungary must not be permitted to smash Serbia.
Serbia answered to the final proposal on July 25, tolerating the greater part of its requests however challenging two of them—to be specific, that Serbian authorities (anonymous) ought to be expelled at Austria-Hungary’s command and that Austro-Hungarian authorities should partake, on Serbian soil, in procedures against associations unfriendly to Austria-Hungary. Despite the fact that Serbia offered to present the issue to global assertion, Austria-Hungary expeditiously separated political relations and requested halfway assembly.
Home from his journey on July 27, William learned on July 28 how Serbia had answered to the final proposal. Without a moment’s delay he educated the German Foreign Office to tell Austria-Hungary that there was never again any avocation for war and that it should mollify itself with a brief control of Belgrade. In any case, in the interim, the German Foreign Office had been giving such consolation to Berchtold that as of now on July 27 he had convinced Franz Joseph to approve war against Serbia. War was in truth pronounced on July 28, and Austro-Hungarian gunnery started to shell Belgrade the following day. Russia at that point requested incomplete assembly against Austria-Hungary, and on July 30, when Austria-Hungary was riposting routinely with a request of activation on its Russian wilderness, Russia requested general preparation. Germany, which since July 28 had still been trusting, in dismissal of prior notice clues from Great Britain, that Austria-Hungary’s war against Serbia could be “confined” to the Balkans, was presently baffled seeing that eastern Europe was concerned. On July 31 Germany sent a 24-hour final proposal expecting Russia to stop its activation and a 18-hour final offer expecting France to guarantee nonpartisanship in case of war among Russia and Germany.