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File 1912/897 Pt 2 ‘Persian Gulf:- British post offices’ [‎130r] (264/456)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (222 folios). It was created in 1914-1919. 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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CONFIDENTIAL.
No. 1943, dated Bushire, the 2!st (received 29th) June 1914.
From— Major S. G. Knox, C.I.E, Officiating Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian
Gulf, 1 •’ • n • ■ - I v * I* , 1. .
To— The Foreign Secretary to the Government of India in tl.e Foreign and
Political Department.
I have the honour to forward, for the information of the Government of India,
No. T £j T , dated 21 st June 1914 . a copy of the despatch, noted in the mar-
. ... . _ , . g ,n » which I have addressed to His Majes-
S “ er at , ‘ lran > in regard to the proposed establishment of a British
Post Office at Ahwaz.
Enclosure.
xlfsi dated Bushire, the 21st June 19*4.
From— Major S. G. Knox, C.I.E, Officiating Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian
Gulf,
To-His Excellency Sir Walter B. Townley, K.C.M.G., His Majesty’s Envoy
Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary at the Court of Persia
Tehran. 1
I have the honour to forward certain comments on the Persian propositions
detailed in Your Excellency’s despatch No. »i 3 , dated 15 th April 1914 to His
Majesty s Principal Secretary of State for Foreia n Affairs, and with regard to the
question of the establishment of a British Post Office at Ahwaz.
. Chef de Cabinet of the Foreign Ministei commences his attack with a
series of sweeping charges of a general character against the Indian Government
presumably the Indian Postal Administration. So far as can be judged from the
rather voluminous records on the subject in this Consulate-General, and it would
appear that copies of all correspondence between the two Postal Administrations
is always furnished to this office, the objections of the Persian Government have
invariably met with courteous and prompt attention; any real abuses and incon
sistencies with the Postal Convention have been promptly removed and it is only
where plausible expression of the desire for compliance with the strict letter of
the law of the Postal Convention has thinly veiled a concerted design to para
lyse or abolish the only efficient postal institutions in these regions that the
Indian Postal authorities have declined to be drawn into useless and dangerous
correspondence and have referred their critics to the diplomatic channel. & I do
not propose to content myself with this general denial of the allegations of the
Chef de Cabinet, but have taken from the records specific instances in which the
complaints of the Persian authorities have received full attention and their
reasonable grievances immediate redress. They will be found detailed in Appen
dix I to this desaatch.
The Chef de Cabinet states that Persia has been denied the most elemen-
tary rights in her own territories.
The latest indictment of Persian postal arrangements—I refer to despatch
No. 10 , dated lath May 19 . 4 , from His Majesty’s Consul, Kerman, on the postal
mce between Bandar Abbas and Kerman—would certainly justify the retort
mat Persia, in this particular connection, is either unable or unwilling to fulfill the
most elementary duties in her own territories.
■< '„T a /rt PS be P , e T, t . ted a,S ° \° refer t0 Your Excellency’s remarks as to
ln ^ " d ' fficu ‘ ie3 °n the Shiraz road ’in despatch No. a 18 , dated aoth October
I 9 '-' t0 H ,' s Majesty s Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and
A " ln despatch No. 34 dated 30 th January 1914 , to the same address as to
unsatisfactory nature of the existing postal arrangements in Arabistan ”.
1 J. ha y e .been unable to trace in my records the explicit understanding given
by H,S Majesty’s Charge d'Affaires, Tehran, in September , 908 , and in lhe
sence of that document (?) it is only possible to guess at the contents. But
as contended by the Chef de Cabinet what is required by the Persian Postal
C80FD

About this item

Content

The volume comprises copies of printed correspondence, handwritten correspondence, notes and other papers. This relates to the operation of British Indian post offices in Persia, and in particular in the region known as Arabistan [Ahvāz] by British officials. The file is a direct chronological continuation of File 1912/897 Pt 1 ‘Persian Gulf. British post offices [also in Turkish Arabia]’ (IOR/L/PS/10/242). Principal correspondents in the volume include: HM Minister in Tehran (Sir Charles Murray Marling); 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. staff (John Evelyn Shuckburgh; Arthur Hirtzel); the Deputy Chief Political Officer at Basra (Captain Arnold Talbot Wilson); the Chief Political Officer at Basra (Sir Percy Zachariah Cox); and the Officiating Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. 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. (Major Stuart George Knox).

Subjects covered in the volume include:

  • a printed copy of the Convention of Rome (dated 26 May 1906), created by the Universal Postal Union, incorporating detailed regulations for its execution, in French and English, printed in 1907 by HM Stationery Office (ff 160-224);
  • office notes relating to protests from the Persian Government at the opening of Government of India post offices at Henjam [Jazīreh-ye Hengām] and Charbar [Chābahār], and the anticipated post office at Ahwaz [Ahvāz] (ff 153-159);
  • a copy of a letter from Knox to Sir Walter Beaupré Townley, HM Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary at the Court of Persia, dated 21 June 1914, countering complaints made by the Persian Government about British Indian postal service activities in southern Persia, by pointing out the perceived inadequacies in the Persian postal system (ff 130-133);
  • complaints made by HM Consul at Kerman (Lieutenant-Colonel David Lockhart Robertson Lorimer), of deficiencies in the existing Persian postal service at Kerman. The Consul emphasises insecurities and delays on routes to Bandar Abbas [Bandar-e ʻAbbās] and Tehran, the inefficiency of staff, and the importance of the service to Kerman’s European community (ff 135-136, ff 77-78);
  • a memorandum written by Wilson to Cox, dated 21 July 1917, giving a detailed account of the prevailing political situation (including Anglo-Persian relations) in Northern Arabistan (ff 41-44);
  • the proposal, put forward by Cox in 1916, to open a British Indian post office at the Anglo-Persian Oil Company’s (APOC) concession at Maidan-i-Naphtum [Meydān-e Naftūn]. It provokes much discussion between British officials in the Gulf, Government of India officials, and officials from the 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. and the Foreign Office, chiefly relating to the likely response of the Persian authorities to such a move, and whether the move could be justified. A useful précis of the differing opinions of officials involved in making the decision can be found at ff 14-18.

Each part includes a divider which gives the subject and part numbers, the year the subject file was opened, the subject heading, and a list of correspondence references contained in that part by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence.

Extent and format
1 volume (222 folios)
Arrangement

The papers are arranged in approximate chronological order from the rear to the front of the volume.

The subject 897 ( 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. : British Post Offices) consists of 4 volumes, IOR/L/PS/10/242-245. The volumes are divided into 4 parts with each part comprising one volume.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover with 1 and terminates at the inside back cover with 226; 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. Pagination: an original printed pagination sequence is present between ff 160-224.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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File 1912/897 Pt 2 ‘Persian Gulf:- British post offices’ [‎130r] (264/456), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/10/243, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100026393900.0x000041> [accessed 18 October 2019]

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