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'File 61/11 VI (D 102) Hejaz-Nejd Miscellaneous' [‎100v] (221/522)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (259 folios). It was created in 2 Feb 1931-30 Aug 1934. It was written in English and Arabic. 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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2. The King, said Sheikh Yusaf, was desirous of peace. There had been
many occasions in the past when he might have gone to war with the Imam, but
he had always avoided it. He had no territorial ambitions in respect of the
Yemen. His dominions were quite large enough. The failure of the Abha
Conference and of his direct negotiations with the Imam compelled him to defend
his rights. It was hardly necessary to go into the reasons for his friendship with
His Majesty's Government. He wished to keep them informed as a duty of
friendship and in order to seek their advice. He was confident that His Majesty 's
Government were on his side.
3. Sheikh Yusuf went on to say that he was not sure how much I had been
told by Sheikh Abdullah Suleiman and Taufiq Bey Hamza. He would, therefore
recapitulate the developments which had produced the present situation. I would
remember that at an earlier stage the King and the Imam had reached a
preliminary agreement regarding the determination of frontiers, the disposal of
the Idrisi, the discussion of the Najran question and a meeting of delegates to
draw up a treaty of friendship. The King had thereupon ordered his troops to
keep to their positions and to make no advance. Even before that the Commander-
in-chief had been directed to refrain from any aggression.
4. Before the delegates met the Imam had taken forward action. He had
sent Abdul Wahhab-el-Idrisi to occupy A1 Ardha, where a Saudi garrison of
fifty men were made prisoners. He had made approaches to the Beni Malik, some
of whom took his part, and to the people of Faifa, who resisted. He had occupied
both districts, sent olncials there and collected taxes. The Imam had stated, in
reply to remonstrances, that these acts were done before his orders had reached
his commanders, and had promised to evacuate the occupied areas, subject to the
King s pardoning the local dissidents. The King had done this, but there had
been no withdrawal. On the contrary the Yemeni forces in the Beni Malik area
had been reinforced.
5. Sheikh Yusuf was quite vague as regards dates, and his information as
t ? ^ti ibution of tribes differed somewhat from that given me bv
ua ey Hamza. I gathered, however, that the area affected comprised the two
moun ains called Beni Malik and Faifa, and the tribes bearing those names as
we as 0 eis like the Abadil and Bil-Ghazi, A1 Ardha being apparently in the
V. ,U n 0 • 0 A ^ acllL .(The fact is that neither Fuad Bey nor Sheikh Yusuf have
^c£ re f C1 /? e 111 01ma Jj 011 ' ^ ma y be taken that the most salient features of
tne disputed area are the two mountains named.)
tainp!i w k en . th® delegates met was that the occupation was main-
to ask thp Kincff 1€ | 0ni !f €s ? lven by the Imam. The latter had gone so far as
King- m-pfprrpH ? ^ eaSe / P r i soner s at Jizan, a demand so astonishing that the
e^bv the a! ? I" T ^ e Q as T a " ce of P a, ' don ^ the local rebels was
channel avaidt I * ^ h T T gh Sayf-al-Mam Ahmed, as that was the only
conference should havl ^i f i , ' 1 " wcvei '', refused to evacuate until the
been admitted ThpK in h i a on til the Yemeni claim to Najran should have
In the course of tbew i./? exercised patience until the end of the negotiations,
agreement about the rW ver '' e J 1 ?'™' 8 delegates had denied any preliminary
STtS Kine inform^ nf 111 ? 11 ?!, frontiers, the Idrisi, or anything else. At
long as the unlawful oconLr^ 1 " r f 1 negotiations could not be completed, so
preliminary aer^mput w 0f ^ tf P ltor y was P ereist ed in, contrary to the
withdrawIfoTtWorce, nf ^gested that Najran should be neutralised by the
had been agreed and flmi t) 10 t 1 81 lat 'he Idrisi should be disposed of as
Malik &c Iniam should wi^draw from the area of the Beni
to Najran amfto wtrifdraw'frOTnTh'u ar'' the f Hlg 10 reco g nise his clai 1 m
area of the Beni Malik &c ea " ln S which he could not vacate the
sending reinforcements and^irr^^ 11 ^ t0 k ? ep P roni i ses and his action in
the King to order the Amir Sand f in ^ trou ble among the tribes had compelled
intimated that hewotlTbenrtareff^ 6 ' He had informed ^ ^ am but had
would evacuate the occupied itp - I"rif resume negotiations, if he, the Imam,
friendship. The Amir Saud had ej! V SS and P rocee d with the treaty of
two days earlier by some of his trooDs OU Th \ ¥ arch ' having been preceded
8. After thanking Shefkh Yu nf ^ e i lad ? far beei1 no clash - • f
confidence that His Majesty's Government wpvJ ^ th ! Ki ^ ,s ^ vessl jj
j . vjuvernment were on his side. They were, indeed,

About this item


The volume contains two original files bound together. The first file (folios 1A-207) has the original reference 61/11 VI (D 102) and covers the period 7 November 1933 to 30 August 1934 and relates to Hejaz-Najd affairs. The second file (folios 208-243) has the original reference 61/6 VII (D 95) and covers the period 2 February 1931 to 5 August 1932 and relates to Najd affairs. Both contain letters, telegrams, memoranda, and reports sent between the British Legation in Jeddah, the Foreign Office in London, the Political Residencies in Bushire and Aden, the Political Agencies in Bahrain, Kuwait, and Muscat, the High Commissioner in Trans-Jordan, the High Commissioner in Baghdad (later the British Embassy following Iraqi independence in 1932), the Colonial Office in London, the Government of India, and Ibn Sa'ud.

The main subject of the first file is the territorial dispute between Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Contained in the volume are papers concerning Saudi Arabian advances into the territories of 'Asir and Yemen and the subsequent Treaty of Taif that largely settled the dispute. There is also coverage of diplomatic conversations between Italy and Britain regarding the dispute, including secret talks in Rome. Included is the full Arabic text of the Treaty (folios 143-150A) and an English translation (folios 156-177).

Other subjects covered in the first file are:

  • the visit of M. Maigret, the French Charge D'Affairs, to Riyadh to speak with Ibn Sa'ud;
  • the visit of Talaat Pasha Harb;
  • a provisional agreement signed by the United States and Saudi Arabia;
  • the prospect of gold in commercial quantities in the Hejaz.

Notable documents contained in the volume are a report on the heads of foreign missions in Jeddah, and a revised (June 1934) report on the leading personalities in Saudi Arabia.

The subjects covered by the second file are:

  • details and significance of a resurgence in war dancing by the Saudis;
  • the visit of Charles Crane to see Ibn Sa'ud;
  • a request for military assistance made by Saudi Arabia to Turkey;
  • the conditions of entry into Hasa for Hindu merchants.

At the end of each file are several pages of internal office notes.

Extent and format
1 volume (259 folios)

Each of the two separate files which make up the volume is arranged chronologically.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: The sequence starts on the first folio and continues through to the inside back cover. The numbers are written in pencil, circled, and 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. There are the following anomalies: 1A, 1B, 1C, and 1D; 11A and 11B; 24A; 30A; 132A; 143A; 150A; and 236A. There are two other sequences, both uncircled and incomplete.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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'File 61/11 VI (D 102) Hejaz-Nejd Miscellaneous' [‎100v] (221/522), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/1/569, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 19 October 2019]

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