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Coll 30/86(2) 'Persia. Relations with Iraq. Shatt-el-Arab: Internationalisation of, and establishment of a Conservancy Board.' [‎8r] (26/944)

The record is made up of 1 volume (468 folios). It was created in 23 Dec 1935-22 Apr 1937. 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.

Transcription

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of the Protocol of 1913 and the Proces-verbaux of the
delimitation commission of 1914 on which he would like the
advice of His Majesty’s Government. He proposed therefore
to set out these points in a letter which he would send to
me with all haste..
7. I said that I was sure that you would give all advice
possible. I also expressed misgiving about the arguments
used by the Persian Minister both in connexion with the
Rooka channel and the administration of the Shatt, and
explained at some length the importance of the Rooka channel
to Iraq and the great interest which Iraq had in securing,
in the treaty, legal and physical safeguards for the passage
of British Government vessels through the Shatt. My arguments
followed familiar lines and I need not weary you by reseating
them here.
8 . I received Mr, Naji’s letter in the evening and I
enclose a copy herein. His question seems to me to beg the
point, since the real issue is not whether the status quo at
the mouth of the Shatt al Arab would be affected by the
conclusion of a treaty on the lines of the Persian counter-
draft, but whether it is not essential to take the opportunity
of these negotiations to remove the doubts concerning Iraqi
sovereignty over the Rooka channel which exist under the two
documents, the validity of which is about to be recognised.
Nevertheless, I should be grateful for a reply to Dr. Naji’s
question, to which he evidently attaches considerable
importance.
9. Prom the point of view of His Majesty’s Government,
the main defects of the Persian draft are, I think, to be
found in Article 4 (B) and Article 5. In Article 4 (s),
though there is apparently an intention to provide freedom of
passage for Iraqi Government vessels through those parts of
the/

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Content

The file concerns negotiations over a convention to establish a Conservancy Board for the Shatt-el-Arab (also referred to as the Shatt-al-Arab) between the governments of Iraq, Iran (also referred to as Persia), and the United Kingdom.

The convention had two main objects: (1) to provide for the conservancy of the Shatt-al-Arab (i.e. its maintenance as a navigable waterway adequate to the needs of international shipping); (2) to control the navigation of the Shatt-al-Arab (i.e. to provide all shipping using the waterway with a uniform system of control, administration, and discipline in all matters necessary for safe and efficient shipping). The board was to consist of Iraq and Iran as the two riparian countries concerned, and the United Kingdom as the state owning over 90 per cent of the shipping using the river.

The papers cover: Perso-Iraqi negotiations; the question of British participation in the convention; the views of the Shah of Iran; negotiations over the frontier between Iraq and Iran; dredging dues; the navigation of the river; Persian violations of Iraqi territory; the anchorage at Abadan; draft agreements on the frontier between Iraq and Iran; the Persian refusal to allow Iraq any say over the waters (the Karun) that flowed into the Shatt-al-Arab (e.g. folios 262-264); the interests of the Government of Turkey in the issue; the view of the Foreign Office that a single authority was required in order to achieve unified control over the whole waterway system (folios 245-246); quarantine and police posts; and the Port of Basra (budget estimates, and dues and charges).

The main correspondents are the Foreign Office, the British Ambassador to Iraq, and HM Minister, Tehran.

The French language content of the file consists of approximately ten folios of diplomatic correspondence and treaty drafts.

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.

Extent and format
1 volume (468 folios)
Arrangement

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

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence for this description commences at the first folio with 1, and terminates at the last folio with 464; 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 front and back covers, along with the two leading and two ending flyleaves have not been foliated. A previous foliation sequence, which is present between ff 291-464 and is also circled, has been superseded and therefore crossed out.

Written in
English and French in Latin script
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Coll 30/86(2) 'Persia. Relations with Iraq. Shatt-el-Arab: Internationalisation of, and establishment of a Conservancy Board.' [‎8r] (26/944), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/3803, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100048894115.0x00001b> [accessed 14 November 2019]

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