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'File 8/15 Arab Series - 1933-1939' [‎150r] (299/434)

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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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the bedouin tribes of this part of the country have naturally observed as
the frontier the place named in the Uquair agreement and have no under
standing of the inaccuracies of the map on which it was originally worked
out ?
5. The Saudi proposal regarding the Neutral Zone is that it should be
abolished by establishing a frontier line drawn straight from the junction
of the Wadi al Aujah with the Batin, to Bir Ausab. This proposal is
being examined by the Iraqi Government, hue as at present the only im
portant feature of this territory is the watering places used by the bedouin
tribes of Nejd and Iraq, it does not appear that His Majesty’s Govern
ment need be concerned as to the manner in which it is dealt with by the
two limitrophe governments.
6 . As regards extradition, Mr. Edmonds tells me that he understands
that the Saudi Arab Government are asking for an agreement considerably
w T ider in scope than that signed at Mecca in April 1931.
7. I am sending copies of this despatch to His Majesty’s Minister at
Jedda and to His Majesty’s Consul-General at Beirut.
Letter from the Foreign Office, to H. M.’s Ambassador, Bagdad,
No. E. 981/52/25, dated the 11th March 1936.
\ou may like to have a private word of explanation about our attitude
towards the question of the frontier between Saudi Arabia and Iraq, as
developed in your official despatch No. 89 (17/25/36) of the 17th February.
2 . I should explain in the first place that we have long been familiar with
the discrepancy between the true position of the summit of the Jebel Anaiza
as now surveyed on the ground and the geographical description of it— i.e.,
the approximate intersection of latitude 32 North with longitude 39 East—
given in the Protocol of Uqair—a geographical description which is repro
duced by itself in the Hadda Agreement. In our view there is no doubt what
ever that the true summit of the Jebel Anaiza as now surveyed must be regard
ed as the terminal point of the frontier, since the geographical co-ordinates
are quoted in the protocol of Uqair merely as a supplementary or explanatory,
and not as a substantive, definition. Indeed they are only mentioned as
giving the approximate position.
3 . The point is of considerable importance to us in connexion with
the sector of the Transj ordan-Saudi frontier laid down in the Hadda Agree
ment. The negotiators of that Agreement plotted the frontier on the 1918
edition of the one in a million War Office international map, and, as so
plotted and shown on that map, the frontier is a more or less reasonable
one. It now turns out however that the physical features are in fact
wrongly shown on that map in relation to the geographical coordinates,
with°the result that if the frontier were plotted on the ground or on a
revised map purely in the light of the geographical coordinates quoted in
the Hadda Agreement for purposes of definition, a new and most un
satisfactory frontier in relation to the physical features would result. We
are satisfied here that the Hadda frontier should follow as closely as possible
the line drawn on the 1918 map in relation to the physical features as shown
on that map, and that the geographical coordinates quoted in the Hadda
Agreement should therefore be disregarded where they do not correspond to
that line. Our strongest legal argument in support of this view, however,
is The fact that the North-Eastern terminal of the Transjordan-Saudi
frontier must correspond with the North-Western terminal of the Iraqis
Saudi frontier, and therefore, in view of the phraseology of the Protocol
of IJqair which defines the latter terminal, that it must lie at the true
summit of the Jebel Anaiza and not at the purely geographical point men
tioned in the Hadda Agreement. Once this point is established the rest
of the frontier will follow.

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' [‎150r] (299/434), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/2/310, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 18 February 2020]

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