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File 1356/1912 Pt 1 'Turco-Persian Frontier:- negotiations at Constantinople.' [‎53r] (115/885)

The record is made up of 1 volume (436 folios). It was created in 7 Feb 1912-25 Sep 1912. 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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No adjustment on the basis of the mediating commissioners’ line is conceivable ; it
is not merely a question of territory, for the present boundary is a natural one, very
strong strategically for both parties, and as such deserving of adoption. It is also a
_ racial boundary, for the tribes on the Turkish side of the border are, like their masters,
Sunnis, whereas the Beni Taruf, Beni Salih, &c., are Shiahs, like Persians. A bitter
hostility exists between them,* and I am persuaded that no decision of The Hague or of
any other body could give effect in practice to any other frontier but the present, except
at the expense of much blood and money. It need scarcely be said that Turkey would
not gain in any way from such an extension of her territory, as the Arab tribes on this
border pay no taxes to .Turkey to speak of.
Note 9.
Page 4f> : The Sheikh of Mohammerah’s purchases of Land.
I am unable to understand what can have given rise to the idea that the sheikh is
pursuing a policy of gradual territorial encroachment by means of the purchase of real
estate. A general survey of his position in Turkey as a landowner is given at p. 58 of
Wilsons precis, but it cannot be too strongly emphasised that the sheikh conforms to
Turkish law like any other foreigner in all matters concerning his estates and buildings
on Turkish soil, and that the purchase of land by him involves no question of territorial
encroachment any more than in the case of Sheikh Mubarak, who has also purchased
in recent years extensive properties in Turkey.
I would refer to pp. 58 and 59 of Lieutenant Wilson’s precis on Arabistan.
Although in 1909 a hot-headed vali did much to strain the relations existing
between the sheikh and the local Turkish officials, this year (1912) the sheikh’s relations
are again cordial, and, if things are allowed to remain where they are, will doubtless
remain so.
Note 10.
Map opposite p. 46.
I venture to point out that this map is quite inaccurate, and has been cancelled and
withdrawn from sale by the Survey of India. Beference should be made to the map
enclosed in Lorimer’s “ Gazetteer,” or to the 4-mile = 1 -inch maps of Arabistan, which
were sent to His Majesty’s Foreign Office in 1909.
Enclosure 3 in No. 1 .
Extract from a Letter from the Assistant Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. , Bussorah, to the Political
Resident in Turkish Arabia, Bagdad, dated December 30, 1891, forwarded to the
Government of India in the Foreign DepaHment under Bushire Residency A diplomatic office of the British Government established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. Letter
of February 1, 1892.
HIS Excellency the vali stated that the frontier line between Turkey and Persia was
at present a matter of dispute between the two countries, that the Porte claimed Moham-
merah as Turkish territory, that negotiations were pending between the two countries
by which Persia would give up certain territory between Zoab and Khanikin, and that
in consideration thereof Turkey was to relinquish all claim to Mohammerah and the
islands in that vicinity.
o *
* See “ Gazetteer,” p. 69.

About this item


The volume discusses the disputed Turco-Persian Frontier, particularly at Mohammerah, and the negotiations in Constantinople to attempt to settle it.

The correspondence focuses on:

  • the differences of opinion over the actual boundary at Mohammerah, including several maps demonstrating these differences;
  • movements of Turkish and Russian troops;
  • ownership of the Shat-el-Arab and questions of access for navigation;
  • copies of treaties, correspondence and memoranda dating back to 1639 relating to the question of the Turco-Persian frontier.

The principal correspondents in the volume are the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Sir Edward Grey); the Secretary of State for India (Robert Offley Ashburton Crewe-Milnes, 1st Marquess of Crewe); the 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. (Sir Percy Zachariah Cox); the British Ambassador to Constantinople (Sir Gerard Lowther); the British Ambassador to Russia (Sir George Buchanan); the Viceroy of India (Charles Hardinge, 1st Baron Hardinge of Penshurst); the British Ambassador to Tehran (Sir George Head Barclay); representatives of the Foreign Office (particularly Alwyn Parker) and 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 Arthur Talbot Wilson, on special duty in relation to the Turco-Persian Frontier.

This volume is part one of two. 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 (436 folios)

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

The subject 1356 (Turco-Persian Frontier) consists of 2 volumes, IOR/L/PS/10/266-267. The volumes are divided into two parts, with each part comprising one volume.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the first folio with 1 and terminates at the last folio with 436; 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.

The foliation sequence does not include the front and back covers, nor does it include the leading and ending flyleaves.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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File 1356/1912 Pt 1 'Turco-Persian Frontier:- negotiations at Constantinople.' [‎53r] (115/885), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/10/266, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 7 April 2020]

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