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'Italian proceedings on the African coast of the Red Sea' [‎131r] (17/32)

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The record is made up of 16 folios. It was created in 19 Sep 1881. It was written in English. 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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(&
* This was a reference to the Abyssinian
Blue Book.—A. W. M.
17
reminded Baron Blanc of the recent correspondence
on the Italian request for moral support, and ex
pressed doubts as to the result of reopening a ques
tion upon which an answer had been so lately
returned; adding that as regarded the appointment
of a Consul or Vice Consul to reside at Assab, if it
was intended that he should receive his exequatur
from the Italian Government, it would he asking
Her Majesty’s Government to place themselves in
contradiction with their principles with respect to
the question of sovereignty over that district,—
principles which had only last year received con
firmation by the jurisdiction of the British Consul
at Jeddah having been extended to Assab under
the exequatur of the Porte.
At this point of the conversation Baron Blanc
sent for M. Mai van o, the head of the Political
Department, who, in reply to Sir A. Paget’s last
observation respecting the sovereignty, remarked
that Her Majesty’s Government had not always
been of the same opinion.*
M. Malvano then proceeded to state that, even
without the appointment of a Consular ^ officer,
the object the Italian Government had in view
might be attained by a diplomatic instrument
between the two Governments, which, by its con
ditions, would serve at the same time as a gua
rantee against the establishment at Assab ever
being used in a manner disadvantageous to British
interests 5 for instance, it might, if desired, contain
a clause forbidding the importation of arms or
munitions of any kind; another, with reference to
the suppression of slavery; a third, that communi
cation should be established between the Italian
authorities at Assab and the Governor of Aden in
regard to matters of commerce. “ In short,” said
Baron Blanc, who here interrupted M. Malvano,
“ in addition to the declaration already given, by
<c which we are bound never to create an establish-
“ ment having a military character, and which we
“ are now ready to confirm in even a more formal
“ shape, we are ready to take every engagement
“and enter into every condition which may be
“ desired by England for the security of her
“ interests.”
Sir A. Paget replied that it was of course im
possible for him, without instructions, to pronounce
anv opinion upon such a proposal, but he promised
to‘report to Lord Granville, as accurately as he
could, the observations which had been made by
Baron Blanc.
In so doing, Sir A. Paget observed
“ I may be permitted to add that the question of
“ Assab is one upon which there is a very strong
“feeling throughout the country. Lightly 01
“ wrongly, it is thought that that possession will
“ eventually become a centre of great commercial
“ enterprise, and that it will be the destiny of Italy,
“ while developing her trade, to spread the benefits
“ of civilization amongst the populations m the
“ interior.
6005. E

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The document, written by Adolphus Warburton Moore, discusses the following: the actual course of events at Assab and in the neighbourhood since May 1880; correspondence which has passed in the same period between the British, Italian and Egyptian Governments, and between the Political and Secret Department and the Foreign Office; and the proposed disembarkation of Egyptian troops at Raheita.

The situation in Assab was related to the Italian colonisation of the area during the period known as the 'Scramble for Africa'.

Extent and format
16 folios
Written in
English in Latin script
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'Italian proceedings on the African coast of the Red Sea' [‎131r] (17/32), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/18/B105, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100033301340.0x000012> [accessed 14 November 2019]

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