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File 1508/1905 Pt 1 'Bahrain: situation; disurbances (1904-1905); Sheikh Ali's surrender; Question of Administration Reforms (Customs etc)' [‎43v] (91/531)

The record is made up of 1 volume (260 folios). It was created in Nov 1904-Aug 1914. 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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** which you had spontaneously issued in January 1896, forbidding the sale of
“arms and ammunition to your subjects In view of these facts, the Goyem-
“ ment of India are unable to understand on what grounds you now represent
“ that you were forced by British representatives to interdict the sale of arms.
“ Further you are well aware that the Sheikh of Koweit and the Sheikhs of
“ the Trucial Coast The historic term used by the British to refer to the Gulf coast of Trucial Oman, now called United Arab Emirates. have similarly prohibited the traffic in arms in their terri-
“ tories, and your statement that you are deprived of an advantage enjoyed by
“ all the Arab Chiefs along the Arabian Coast is therefore incorrect. Finally
“ I am to remind you that the people of Bahrein in general have no need for
“ more arms than they possess, and that it is always open to you to procure the
“ consent of the Government of India to import whatever arms you may
“yourself need for special reasons. It is to your own interest that the
“ importation of arms should he restricted, but apart from this the Government
“ of India would not consider for a moment the possibility of cancelling or
«* modifying the agreement into which you have entered, since it is essential
for the preservation of the public peace that the traffic iu arms along the
Arabian Coast should be rigidly confined and limited.
“In the second place you complain that an English representative has
“been substituted for the former Mussulman representative of the British Gov-
‘f ernment in your State and that, as a consequence of his interference in the
“ internal administration of the state, you were forced to arrest your relative
“Sheikh Ali and surrender him to the British authorities for an imaginary
“ offence. In reply to this, I am to remind you that the political and commercial
“conditions in Bahrein have considerably altered of recent years and that in
“ consequence it has become necessary for the Government of India to have a
“ more efficient representative, on whose advice you can more confidently rely,
“ It is also well known to you that the great increase of trade enjoyed by the
“ merchants of Bahrein is largely due to the presence of a British officer in
“ your island.
“ With regard to the case of Sheikh Ali, your nephew, you know that
“ he was punished, because he rebelled against your orders and set at naught the
“ commands of the British Government. I have already addressed you on this
“ subject in my letter dated June 7th, 1905, and it is not necessary for me to say
“ anything more with regard to the matter here.
“Next you represent that your flag mast was thrown down by the
Enclosure to letter from the Political Rtsident, No. “ British authorities. The Government
259 , dated nth June 1905. « 0 f India cannot believe that you are
‘‘actuated by serious motives in preferring this complaint after the Political
Agent has given you a personal assurance, which you have accepted, to the
effect that the flagstaff was not lowered, but was blown down in a heavy gale.
“ Finally, the Government of India are unable to understand your allega-
11 tion that you receive no reply to the representations which you prefer.
“ I, who am the representative of the Government of India in the Persian Gnlf,
“ have written to you in reply to your complaints explaining the policy of the
“Government of India and advising you for your good, while your Political
Agent, Captain Prideaux, has constantly listened to your grievances and assisted
“ you with his counsels. In this connection I am to remind you that it is the
“ duty of British representatives to communicate fully to Government the cir-
“ oumstances and wishes of Chiefs to whom they are accredited, and that in view
“of this fact the Government of India can only consider your communications
“ when received through the responsible officers with whom you are in touch.
“ It was therefore both unnecessary and incorrect for you to forward a copy of
“ your petition to the Secretary of State for India through the medium of a
“ commercial firm.”
I have the honour to he,
Your most obedient servant,
Assistant Secretary to the Government of India.
G. C. Tree#, 8imla.-No. 164 F, D.—23-5-06.—.65-B. B. C.

About this item


The volume contains correspondence relating to disturbances in Bahrain and the consequent discussion over administrative changes. The correspondence is mostly between 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. , the Foreign Office, and the Government of India. Further correspondence, included as enclosures, is from the following:

The disturbances centred around attacks on a German man and several Persians by Shaikh Isa's nephew, Ali bin Ahmed, and his followers in late 1904. The papers within the volume cover several matters related to these attacks:

  • the investigation into the details of the attacks;
  • the discussion over what to do about Ali bin Ahmed and his eventual exile;
  • British naval operations to enforce order;
  • Turkish claims that Shaikh Isa believes himself to be a Turkish subject;
  • the discussion over increased administrative intervention in Bahrain, specifically control of customs.
Extent and format
1 volume (260 folios)

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

The subject 1508 (Bahrain) consists of three volumes, IOR/L/PS/10/81-83. The volumes are divided into five parts, with parts 1 and 2 comprising one volume each, and parts 3, 4, and 5 comprising the third volume.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover with 1 and terminates at the inside back cover with 262; 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. A previous foliation sequence, which is also circled, has been superseded and therefore crossed out.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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File 1508/1905 Pt 1 'Bahrain: situation; disurbances (1904-1905); Sheikh Ali's surrender; Question of Administration Reforms (Customs etc)' [‎43v] (91/531), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/10/81, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 13 November 2019]

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