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Coll 6/65 'Relations between Saudi-Arabia and the Yemen.' [‎54r] (107/917)

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The record is made up of 1 file (457 folios). It was created in 30 Apr 1934-27 Jan 1938. 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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*EgE»DIX HOU TO S« Q«R. S« S« JO. 74/21/10 of 1st Au^uat, 1934
HENHY DE MOKF^II) sailed into HODEIDA. roads on the
late afternoon of 30th June, and anchored close in shore.
He was aimply attired, viz;- in a loin cloth. The weather
had been sufficiently rough to justify the hire of a dhow by
some of the warships in preference to risking the ship’s
motor boat, but in spite of the conditions, this remarkable
man launched his tiny "houri”, and disdaining the ordinary
landing place, was propelled by two of his crew through the
surf to the beach. I then lost sight of him temporarily,
but met him on one or two occasions later, and also went on
board his sailing craft - the "JPAT EL RAHMAJJ”.
2. The latter may be described as a conrerted dhow,
rigged as a cutter, of about 30 tons. There is an after
"cabin”; a tiny auxiliary engine which produces about three
knots and current for a diminutive bulb over the desk in the
"cabin"; a space for "stores"; and crew space and a further
space for stores. The crew consists of six MNAKIL and I
have never seen a cleaner, or more happy looking lot of
natives. The "cabin" has a bunk on each side, and also a
small one athwart ships right aft. The bunks have no head
room and there is very little comfort. DE MONFRSID admitted
that he knew of no other European who would put up with
similar conditions. The crew live on "doura" bread baked on
red hot ashes in a cylindrical stone cooker. He eats rice
and macaroni which he cooks himself. Both he and the crew
supplement this diet by fish caught on passage. He carries
six rifles, one for each member of the crew, for, as he said,
though now a man of peace himself, were there not still the
2AHAHIK ? He carries a sextant and navigates by latitude,
run, and instinct•
3. As regards the purpose of his visit, he informed
me that he had come to write a descriptive article for
the Paris journals "L*INTRiUSSIQ'iliUlT" and "VUE" and would
remain at HODEIDA for just under 48 hours. In answer to
my suggestion that two days seemed a very short time in
which to acquire a knowledge of a rather complicated
situation, he replied;- "Two days, and I have two eyes.
It is ample, since I shall only write about what I see
and not about what I am told".
4. He furthe r informed me that he had picked up
page 82 et seq.) at TAJOUBAH, on account of his knowledge
of the YEMEH, and had dropped him at MOCHA to try to arrange
a visit to the IMAM. I enquired after ABDI and he replied
that he was still working for him at his place near JIBOUTI,
but had become quite blind.
5. DE MONPBEID visited me in "HASTINGS”, wearing
his best suit and looking far from unpresentable. (I am
told by DE BADENS that in PARIS, where he now resides
normally, he has a house in the fashionable quarter, next
to that of the DUO DE YEN DOME, and is usually very smartly
dressed). I remarked that it was a curious reflection
that I, who in 1922 was endeavouring to frustrate his
wicked activities, should now be entertaining him in my
cabin. He replied;- "Les amitifts durables se fondent
dans la lutte", and then proceeded to write it on the fly
leaf of the book referred to in paragraph 4 above, a copy
of which had been given to me by the commander-in-chief,
Mediterranean, before leaving MALTA.

About this item


This file concerns Saudi-Yemeni relations, beginning with the final weeks of hostilities between the two countries before going on to cover peace negotiations and the reoccupation of Hodeidah (also transliterated as Hodeida) by the Yemeni authorities, following the gradual withdrawal of Saudi troops.

Related matters discussed in the correspondence include the following:

In addition to correspondence the file includes the following:

  • Extracts from Aden, Bahrain, and Kuwait political intelligence summaries.
  • Copies of an English translation of the Treaty of Taif.
  • A copy of an English translation of the Treaty between King Ibn Saud [‘Abd al-‘Azīz bin ‘Abd al-Raḥmān bin Fayṣal Āl Sa‘ūd] and the Idrisi [Sayyid Muḥammad bin ‘Alī al-Idrīsī], signed on 31 August 1920.
  • Copies of extracts from reports from the Senior Officer of the Red Sea Sloops, as well as copies of reports from the commanding officers of HMS Penzance and HMS Enterprise respectively.

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); the Secretary of State for the Colonies (Philip Cunliffe-Lister); the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Sir John Simon); the Senior Officer of the Red Sea Sloops; the Commander of HMS Penzance ; His Majesty's Ambassador in Rome (James Eric Drummond); the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Yemen; officials of the Colonial Office, 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. , the Foreign Office, the Admiralty.

Although the file includes material dating from 1934 to 1938, most of the material dates from 1934. The French material consists of three telegrams addressed to the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs by Yemen's Minister for Foreign Affairs.

The file includes two dividers which give a list of correspondence references contained in the file by year. These are placed at the back of the correspondence (folios 2-3).

Extent and format
1 file (457 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 458; 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. A previous foliation sequence, which is also circled, has been superseded and therefore crossed out.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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Coll 6/65 'Relations between Saudi-Arabia and the Yemen.' [‎54r] (107/917), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/2132, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 23 September 2019]

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