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Coll 6/66 'Saudi-Arabia: Saudi-Transjordan Frontier' [‎49r] (97/427)

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The record is made up of 1 file (212 folios). It was created in 3 Apr 1934-6 Mar 1940. 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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he had ever heard of any Saudi claim to the Jebel Rashrashiya, which had never
been mentioned in connexion with the Saudi Government’s claim to Hazim, and
of which he had found no trace in the records of Sir G. Clayton’s negotiations
which resulted in the Hadda Agreement. These records were, however, very
full on the question of the allocation of Qaf, which had for a long time formed
the main point in dispute, and when it was eventually agreed that Qaf should go
to King Abdul Aziz, the area which went with it had been clearly specified as
consisting of its date gardens and salt pans. There had been no suggestion that
any larger area should be conceded. If, however, Fuad Bey could produce any
T ™ ^ k a d been the clear intention of the negotiators that the
-hMiel Kashrashiya should go to Saudi Arabia, any such evidence would, of course,
be relevant and would have to be very carefully considered.
FUAD BE\ HAMZA said that his statement was supported by the
testimony of others who had taken part in the negotiations on the Saudi side.
Mr. RENDEL said that, apart from the merits of the question, this
suggestion provided a good example of the difficulties which had arisen, since, if
King Abdul Aziz thought he had secured Hazim and the Jebel Rashrashiva
(although the line as drawn on the 1918 map patently left Hazim in Transjordan),
^ir G. Clayton equally thought that he, for his part, had secured the whole of
the Jebel Tubeik massif and the route surrounding it for Transjordan.
Mi. Rendel added that the map of the northern end of the Transjordan-Nejd
fiontier appeared to be much more accurate than at the southern end, since the
c ountn in question was much better known and far more frequented.
f UAD BE\ HAMZA at this point interjected that King Abdul Aziz in
any event claimed the Jebel Tubeik under his dormant claim to Aqaba and the
Sanjak of Maan.
Mr. RENDEL reminded Fuad Bey that it had been agreed last September
that this question should not be raised for the present. He did not, therefore,
vJsh to raise it. But unless Sir G. Clayton had wished to secure the Jebel
lubeik massif for Transjordan, the southern end of the Transjordan-Nejd
frontiei carried as it was so far to the east and south—would have been
meaningless. The Jebel Tubeik fell within Transjordan because the Transjordan-
• 1 U tontier extended to the east and south of it, and not as forming part of
the Aqaba-Maan territory. The Transjordan-Nejd frontier was a valid inter
national!} agreed boundary and could hardly be disputed.
FUAD BEY HAMZA then asked for a full statement of His Majesty’s
Government s view of the problem, and he suggested that, if Transjordan needed
any particular concession of territory for practical purposes, the Saudi Govern
ment would no doubt be willing to consider granting it, subject, of course, to their
obtaining corresponding concessions of equal value in return.
Mr REM)EL said that if luad Bey wished, he would let him have a written
statement ot His Majesty s Government’s proposals such as, he hoped, would be
ot assistance to Fuad Bey in laying these proposals before King Abdul Aziz He
considered, however, that questions of give-and-take did not arise at this stage
and might never do so, since what His Majesty’s Government were trying to
establish was merely the true line of the Hadda Agreement frontier. Mr. Rendel
trusted therefore that the Saudi Government would be willing to co-operate with
His Majesty s Government in making the necessary survey, in deciding what were
the intentions of King Abdul Aziz and Sir G. Clayton, and ultimately in appoint
ing a frontier delimitation commission. All this, however, would necessarily take
a ong time, and he asked luad Bey whether he did not think that in all the
circumstances and in view of the number of other difficult questions outstanding
it mignt not be better to carry on for the present with the existing line. The
nnt S !n t f ta i 1 V^^ CCepted *? 0 £ nd i a ^ y ’ W fj^ ch had long been observe d in practice, had
not, m fact, led to many difficulties There had certainly been frontier difficulties
but these were of a different order and were due to raiding or to irregular
otortZtTtodff 1 v W 6 !' ° fficials - He WOuld ' fOT lnsta 'A Hke to take the
opportunity to draw Fuad Bey s serious attention to the unsatisfactory reports
Mich had been received by His Majesty’s Government as to the attitude of the
Saudi Amir ot Qaf. He did not wish to pursue the matter in detail at that
[456 s 2] m b2

About this item


This file primarily concerns British policy on the question of the Saudi-Transjordan frontier, specifically the frontier between Transjordan and Nejd, as initially outlined in the Hadda Agreement of 1925.

The correspondence includes discussion of the following:

  • The reported disaffection of certain Saudi tribes in the Jauf [Al Jawf] and Teima [Taymā’] areas.
  • Difficulties arising from inaccuracies discovered on a 1918 map of the frontier, on which the Hadda agreement was based.
  • Saudi Government complaints regarding the alleged violation of the Saudi frontier by British aeroplanes and soldiers at Thaniyya Taraif [Thanīyat Ţurayf, Saudi Arabia].
  • A proposal made by Fuad Bey Hamza, Deputy Minister for Saudi Foreign Affairs, during a meeting at the Foreign Office in July 1935, that the frontier should be that which is shown on the 1918 map, regardless of the map's inaccuracies (a proposal that the British authorities in Transjordan encourage the Foreign Office to accept).
  • Reports of infringements of the existing frontier by Saudi patrols.
  • The British response to Ibn Saud's [‘Abd al-‘Azīz bin ‘Abd al-Raḥmān bin Fayṣal Āl Sa‘ūd] claim to the districts of Akaba [Aqaba] and Maan [Ma‘ān] in Transjordan.

The file also includes the following:

  • Compiled notes of correspondence relating to the Treaty of Jedda (1927) and its modification (and more specifically, to the question of the Hejaz-Transjordan frontier) exchanged between Sir Gilbert Clayton and Ibn Saud (1927), and between the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and the Minister for Saudi Foreign Affairs (1936).
  • Copies of the minutes of meetings of the Committee of Imperial Defence's Standing Official Sub-Committee for Questions Concerning the Middle East, concerning the Saudi-Transjordan frontier (and, in one instance, also addressing the Island of Tamb 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. ).
  • Copies of the minutes of interdepartmental meetings regarding the Saudi-Transjordan frontier, held at the Colonial Office (7 January 1935) and Foreign Office (28 September 1934) respectively.
  • Two sketch maps depicting disputed territory near the frontier.

The file features the following principal correspondents: His Majesty's Minister at Jedda (Sir Andrew Ryan, succeeded by Sir Reader William Bullard); His Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires to Jedda (Albert Spencer Calvert); John Bagot Glubb, Acting Officer Commanding the Arab Legion; the Air Officer Commanding Palestine and Transjordan (Richard Edmund Charles Peirse); the Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs [Fayṣal bin ‘Abd al-‘Azīz Āl Sa‘ūd]; officials of the Foreign Office, the Colonial Office, the Air Ministry, and the War Office.

The file includes a divider which gives a list of correspondence references contained in the file by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence (folio 2).

Extent and format
1 file (212 folios)

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

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the inside front cover with 1, and terminates at the last folio with 213; 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. An additional foliation sequence is present in parallel between ff 2-209; these numbers are also written in pencil, but are not circled.

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English in Latin script
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Coll 6/66 'Saudi-Arabia: Saudi-Transjordan Frontier' [‎49r] (97/427), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/2133, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 16 October 2019]

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