'Italian proceedings on the African coast of the Red Sea' [137r] (29/32)
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.
This transcription is created automatically. It may contain errors.
Egyptian Commissioners, of himself having been
an accomplice in the massacre of the Italian party,
and expressed the conclusions to which the Italian
Government would come, first, that the Egyptian
Government would have unfairly taken advantage
of that unfortunate event; and, secondly, that the
uncalled for disembarkation of troops at Raheita
must he resisted by Italy as an act of hostility directly
aimed at the Italian position at Assab and the-
maintenance of the statu quo.
Tigrane Bey said that this Note seemed quite
contrary to what Eakhry Pasha had been led to
expect from what Mr. Cookson had told him, and
that it could only tend to envenom the discussion
between the two Governments by the introduction
into the question as to disembarkation of Egyptian
troops at Raheita, of an irritating topic which
ought to form the subject of a separate discussion.
At the request of Tigrane Bey, Mr. Cookson
undertook to see M. Macchiavelli and ask him
whether, in consequence of what had recently
passed between the Cabinets of London and Rome,
he could not withdraw the Note, which he suspected
had been written under instructions previous to the
date of the latest communication from Rome.
He accordingly went to M. Macchiavelli, and
told him confidentially the advice which had been
given to the Egyptian Government, and asked him
whether, now that it was almost certain that this
would be followed, he could not withdraw a Note
which seemed to be very unlikely to assist an
amicable arrangement of the question. M. Mac
chiavelli confirmed Mr. Cookson’s anticipation that
the Note had been dictated to him by a Despatch re
ceived some days before, and consented to telegraph
for permission to withdraw it. He explained that,
in order to soften as much as possible the effect of
the terms of the Note, he had only presented it
without signature as a summary statement of the
views of the Italian Government at the time it was
In reporting to Lord Granville what had passed,
Mr. Cookson added :—
“ If the Note is withdrawn, it is the intention of
« the Egyptian to reply to all the arguments put
« forward as pretexts for the Italian intervention
“ at Raheita, but not to proceed at present to carry
“ out the plan of sending troops there, even though
« this plan was already formed, and the troops
« embarked, before the massacre at Beilul.
“ Eakhry Pasha, as well as Riaz Pasha, whom
“ I saw later in the day, expressed a strong hope
« that Her Majesty’s Government would now give
“ them assistance in settling before long the whole
“ question of the Italian claim to Assab. The
“ pretensions of Italy are regarded by the Egyptian
“ Government as a standing menace to the financial
<£ and political interests of Egypt, as, if the Italians
“ succeed in their object of establishing a trade
<e with Abyssinia, the most important article of im-
About this item
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'.
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