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'File 8/15 Arab Series - 1933-1939' [‎86v] (172/434)

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The record is made up of 1 file (214 folios). It was created in 31 Aug 1933-20 Mar 1939. It was written in English and French. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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(Received on the 2nd March 1935, with Political Secretary s letter No. 7, dated the
14th February 1935.)
Enclosure in Foreign OiFice covering letter dated the 6tli February 1935.
No. 1.
Letter from His Majesty’s Charge d’affaires, Jedda, to the Foreigm
Office, No. 354, dated the 3rd December 1934.
With reference to my despatch No. 300 of the 2nd October last j Serial No. (95)
in h ile No. 17-N./34] reporting the appointment of Sheikh Abdullah Suleiman,
Minister of finance, to be Deputy Minister of Defence, I have the honour to trans
mit to you herewith the translations of two announcements by the latter Ministry
regarding the small regular ’’army maintained by Ibn Saud, which appeared in
the Saut-al-Hejaz of the 26th November. The first relates to enlistment in the ranks
and contains the conditions and terms of service, whilst the second announces the
establishment, as from the 16th January, 1935, of a military school at Mecca, where
candidates for commissioned rank are to pursue a three years’ course of training.
2. This evidence of Sheikh Abdullah Suleiman’s determination to strengthen
and improve the present standing army of Saudi Arabia is of considerable interest.
The development may be the fruit of experience gained during the war with the
\ emen, though I am unable to believe that the Saudi regular forces are to be largely
increased. The tribes, and notably the Ikhwan wdll afways be Ibn Saud s most
effective and least expensive military weapon.
Enclosure 1 in No. 1.
Translation from the Saut-al-Hejaz, No. 135 of November 26. 1934.
(1) Local News.
(e) Announcement by the Ministry of Defence.
The Ministry of Defence announce that those w^ho may desire to serve in the
army for a period not less than three years should approach the Directorate of
Military Affairs at Jarwal Barracks, Mecca, on every day between 9 a.m. and
12 o’clock, with the exception of Fridays.
The Government will supply food to the soldiers, and they wdll receive their
salaries just as other Government officials.
The conditions are as follows :—
(1) The applicant should be a Saudi subject.
(2) His age should be between 18 and 22 years.
(3) He should be of good character and free from any disease.
Enclosure 2 in No. 1.
Translation from the Saut-al-Hejaz, No. 135 of November 26, 1934.
(1) Local News.
(d) Announcement by the Ministry of Defence concerning the Military School at
Those who desire to enter the military school at Mecca, which will be opened
as from the 10th Shawaal, 1353 (16th January, 1935), should approach the
Director of Military Affairs at Jarwal Barracks on every day between 9 a.m. and
12 o'clock, except on Fridays.

About this item


The file contains the Foreign Office confidential prints of the Arabia Series for the years 1933 to 1938. It includes correspondence, memoranda, and extracts from newspapers. The correspondence is principally between the British Legation in Jedda and the Foreign Office. Other correspondents include British diplomatic, political, and military offices, foreign diplomats, heads of state, tribal leaders, corporations, and individuals in the Middle East region.

Each annual series is composed of several numbered serials that are often connected to a particular subject. The file covers many subjects related to the affairs of Saudi Arabia.

Included in the file are the following:

  • a memorandum on Arab Unity produced by the Foreign Office dated 12 June 1933 (author unknown), folios 11-13;
  • a memorandum on petroleum in Arabia produced by the Petroleum Department dated 5 August 1933 (author unknown), folios 23-26;
  • a record of interviews with Ibn Sa‘ūd, King of Saudi Arabia, conducted by Reader Bullard and George William Rendel between 20 and 22 March 1937;
  • a memorandum on Yemen by Captain B W Seager, the Frontier Officer, dated 20 July 1937;
  • several records of proceedings of ships on patrol in the Red Sea, including that of HMS Penzance , Hastings , Colombo , Bideford , and Londonderry .

Folios 213-15 are internal office notes.

Extent and format
1 file (214 folios)

The file is arranged chronologically.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the main foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover with 1 and terminates at the back cover with 217; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. An additional foliation sequence is also present in parallel between ff 2-215; these numbers are also written in pencil, but are not circled, and are located in the same position as the main sequence.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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'File 8/15 Arab Series - 1933-1939' [‎86v] (172/434), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/2/310, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 5 April 2020]

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