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'File 8/15 Arab Series - 1933-1939' [‎176v] (352/434)

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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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what filled me with misgiving, much annoyed me and affected my honour are
the two following points :—
(1) The question of the frontiers of Qatar, Oman and other principa
lities of the Gulf.
(2) The question of trade and marine transport.
As regards the first point, these territories themselves, as you are aware,
were under the suzerainty of my ancestors, and until the time of my grand
father, Faisal, paid an annual tax for the preservation of the relationship of
vassal to overlord. But in view of our desire for the continuation of our
friendship with the British Government and the said Amirs to whom we are
bound by old ties, we have recognised their positions in the Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. and
their principalities, and have respected the treaties between them and the
British Government.
But it never entered my head that this could be a resaon for taking away a
part of our territories and annexing it to those territories at a time when every
one admits that the peace which those places enjoy is due to God and to us.
It is not reasonable that such pressure should be due to suspicion of us or
to doubt as to our intentions or our friendship, or to the accusation that we
covet a territory which is ours. For the covetous man does not covet a
mountain or an inlet ; he covets rather a densely populated country.
What we care for is the protection of our honour and the defence of the rights
of our subjects and tribes.
As to the question of trade, I know that ships call at, and carry goods and
all kinds of merchandise to, ports on the Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. which are less important
than mine, and I who count myself the oldest friend of Britain and the greatest
of the Arabs am placed at the mercy of Koweit or Bahrain ; and whenever
the question is raised, it is said that it is one for the shipping companies. I
did not believe that friends could treat each other in such a cruel manner.
Praise be to God who granted me and my country more power than that
of Koweit, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi, &c. Why should ships call at those
places and mine suffer deprivation in that no ships call there ?
I hope you will, as you have stated, consider the situation as it is and a
veil will be drawn over the past if its mistakes can thus be corrected. Other
wise you may inform me of the real reasons. I have summarised in this letter
what I have told you at length in my conversation.
March 23, 1937.
Telegram from Sir R. Bullard, Jedda, No. 48, dated the 29th April
My despatch No. 51 of 30th March.
Two Caproni aeroplanes, balance of Italian gift, arrived by air from
Rome 27th April. Arrival almost completely ignored by Saudi officials.
lReceived on 20l.h June 1937, with Political Secretary 's letter No. 22, dated
3rd June 1937.)
Enclosure in Foreign Office covering letter, dated 27th May 1937.
Letter from the British Legation, Jedda, to the Right Hon’ble
Anthony Eden, No. 85-E, dated the 2nd May 1937.
In continuation of my despatch No. 327 of December 21st last, I have the
honour to inform you that the Saudi Arabian Mining Syndicate (Ltd.) have
not as yet been successful in discovering a supply of water adequate for the
purposes of the Madh-adh-Dhahab mine. However, they appear to be con
fident of ultimate success for they have been accelerating the work on the
Jedda “ terminal ”, and also on the jetty which now projects some distance

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' [‎176v] (352/434), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/2/310, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 30 March 2020]

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