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File 1356/1912 Pt 1 'Turco-Persian Frontier:- negotiations at Constantinople.' [‎56r] (121/885)

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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Enclosure 2 in No. 1 .
jP N°t es 011 Mr. ALwyn Parkers Memorandum on the Frontier betiueen Mohammerah
and Turkey.
1 . Desti action of h ort at Failiyeh. — Points out that danger to navigation of
Bussorah, which was motive of commissioners in fixing the boundary and causing
destruction of fort, no longer exists.
2 . Haffar C anal. Throws doubt on belief generally accepted in our records as to
the identity and origin of the Haffar Canal.
3. The An a 6 .-—Questions accuracy of Major fiawlinson’s theories regarding their
origin and nationality.
4. Tamar Lands, Ac. Discusses nationality of lands between locally-recognised
boundary and Mohammerah, and adduces fresh arguments in support of Persian
5. Ownership of Islands in Shaft-el-Arab. —Adduces further arguments in favour
of observance of mid-channel line.
6 . Mid-Channel Line. —Discusses legal objections raised in Foreign Office memo
randum and adduces further arguments in favour of 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. view.
7. Status of Sheikh and his Tribesmen. —Discusses.
8 . Hawizeh District. —Adduces arguments disposing of Turkish claims and showing
permanent occupation by Persia for over 300 years.
9. Purchases of Land by Sheikh. — Points out that no territorial aggrandisement
is involved.
10 . Survey of India Map. —Points out that it is obsolete.
Note 1.
Page 4 : Fort at Failiyeh destroyed by order of the Commissioners in order
to secure Freedom of Navigation for Turkey.
It may be observed that the boundary as locally recognised leaves the main channel
of the Shatt-el-Arab a few hundred yards above the sheikh’s palace at Failiyeh (which is
in no sense a fort) and passes behind wooded islands, which completely shut off Persian
territory from the view of the navigable channel. Thus its adoption would not give
Persia control of the left bank beyond Failiyeh. As regards Failiyeh itself, and,
indeed, as regards the whole of his frontier, the sheikh has rigorously observed the
undertaking to build no fortifications which was given by the Persian envoy in 1848
(see foot of p. 48).
Note 2 .
Page 10 : The Haffar Canal.
(See also reference to it by Layard at pp. 52 and 53.)
The exposition here given of the geographical position of Mohammerah and the
rough sketch map given in illustration are both based upon the assumption that the
section of the waterway on which Mohammerah stands is an artificial cut, and that the
latter is the “ Haffar ” properly so called.
I submit that this assumption is erroneous. The testimony of ancient maps and
documents which, owing to my absence from books and records, I am unable to quote
in extenso, is that the position was originally as shown in the accompanying very rough
sketch. That is to say, that the Karun flowed via Marid and the old settlement of
Kubban to the Khor Musa, whilst the Shatt-el-Arab bifurcated at the present site of
Mohammerah and divided its waters from thence to the sea between its present channel
and the Bahmanshir branch.
The term “Haffar” is applied locally invariably to the reach of the Karun above
Mohammerah between Marid and the head of the Bahmanshir, and in no case to the
wateiway on which Mohammerah stands, which, on the contrary, is often called
Bahmanshir (see “Gazetteer,” p. 598, and Lieutenant Wilson’s 1 m. = 1 inch maps
of Mohammerah and the Shatt-el-Arab for further explanations as to the position of the
Haffar reach).
2506 m —1]

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.' [‎56r] (121/885), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/10/266, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 21 January 2020]

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