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Coll 6/67(1) 'Boundaries of South-Eastern Arabia and Qatar.' [‎173v] (351/794)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (392 folios). It was created in 13 Jun 1934-13 Dec 1934. It was written in English and Arabic. 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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7. The Wahabi Amirs held Hasa and Nejd.
8 Bahrein was in the possession of the Uttabi Sheikhs, who, originally settled
on the mainland of Arabia at Zubarah 18th-century town located 105 km from Doha. in Qatar, had expelled the Persians from
Bahrein in 1783. The Bahreini Sheikhs, apprehensive of attack by Muscat, had in
1799 made overtures to Persia and paid her tribute. In 1800 they were temporarily
subdued by Muscat.
Lor. I, 789- 9. Qatar.—The Uttabi Sheikhs of Bahrein had hereditary possessions in Qatar,
90. ’ an d took refuge there on their expulsion from the islands by Muscat in 1800.
10. The present-day Trucial Coast The historic term used by the British to refer to the Gulf coast of Trucial Oman, now called United Arab Emirates. , then known as the Pirate Coast, was ruled
by Arab Sheikhs, the ancestors of the present Trucial Sheikhs. Of these Sheikhs,
only tw T o were of real importance, the Beni Yas Sheikh of Abu Dhabi and the rival
Jowasimi Sheikh of Ras-al-Khaimah, whose capital was later removed to Shargah.
These rulers were separated by a secular enmity, and belonged to the opposing
religious factions of the Hinawi and the Ghafari. The fact that the Rulers of Muscat
also belonged to the Hinawi faction formed a link between Muscat and Abu Dhabi.
The Sheikhs of the Pirate Coast held a fringe of varying depth along the coast, but
do not appear to have exercised any real influence in the remoter hinterland, which
was in the possession of Bedouin tribes.
11. At the eastern end of Arabia was the independent Sultanate of Muscat, at
Lor I 421 this time ruled by the able and vigorous Saiyid Sultan, who succeeded in 1/92, and
who had in 1791 extorted a lease of Bunder Abbas and its dependencies from
Persia. The Sultan had in 1798 entered into an alliance with the British Govern-
Lor. l, 429. ment ^ had in jgQQ a g ree( } to re ceive a British Political Representative. In the
same year he succeeded in establishing his dominion over Bahrein.
12. The British Government, represented by the Government of India and the
Government of Bombay, were closely associated with Gulf affairs for commercial
reasons, but their policy in 1800 and until late in the nineteenth century was
essentially to restrict their activities on the Arab littoral of 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. to the
minimum necessary to secure the security of the seas and freedom for British and
Indian commerce. They were consistently extremely reluctant to involve themselves
in any way in the affairs of the hinterland, save to the extent necessary to secure
these objects. As will be seen from the statement which follows, they wmre anxious
in these circumstances to observe strict neutrality towards the Wahabis and to
abstain from involving themselves in difficulties with this new and considerable
mainland Power.
II.—1800--1871. From the first expansion of the Wahabis in Eastern Arabia
to the Conquest of Hasa by the Turks.
Lor. I, 842.
Bombay
Selections
XXIV, 303,
429.
1800 to the Death of Amir Abdul Aziz in October-November 1803.
First Wahabi Encroachment in Eastern Arabia.
13. In 1800 the Wahabis for the first time turned their attention to Eastern
Arabia. In that year a Wahabi expedition invaded Oman and occupied the oasis
of Baraimi—a strategic point of the first importance commanding the approaches to
Muscat. In 1801 the Sultan of Muscat was forced by the Uttabi Sheikhs to abandon
Bahrein. In 1802 a fresh attack on Bahrein by Muscat was repulsed with Wahabi
assistance, but thereafter with brief intervals Bahrein remained under Wahabi
influence till 1811, tendered tribute to the W’ahabis in 1803, and afforded naval
assistance to them against Muscat in 1805. By 1802 the wRole coast from Basra
to the boundary between Muscat and Shargah at Diba had been reduced to nominal
submission, and in 1803 the Sultan of Muscat was forced to conclude a truce with
the Wahabis, under which Muscat agreed to pay zakat to them, and to allow a
Wahabi representative to reside at Muscat.
The Wahabis in Western Arabia, 1800-1804.
14. In Western Arabia in the meantime the Wahabis had captured and destroyed
Kerbela, and had in 1802 decisively defeated a punitive expedition sent against
them by the Turks. Their control of Hasa and Nejd was now complete. During
1803 they overran the Hejaz and completed the conquest of the Turkish districts
1067 1054 ’ 011 t ^ le ® ea Idtoral. The Wahabi Amir was murdered at the end of 1803, and
was succeeded by his son, Sand bin Abdul Aziz, who ruled till 1814.

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Content

This volume primarily concerns British policy regarding the south-eastern boundaries of Saudi Arabia.

It includes interdepartmental discussion regarding the approach that the British Government should take in reaching a settlement with King Ibn Saud [‘Abd al-‘Azīz bin ‘Abd al-Raḥmān bin Fayṣal Āl Sa‘ūd] over the demarcation of the boundaries.

Much of the correspondence discusses the legal and international position of what is referred to as the 'blue line' (the frontier which marked the Ottoman Government's renunciation of its claims to Bahrain and Qatar, as laid down in the non-ratified Anglo-Ottoman Convention of 1913 and redefined and adopted in the Anglo-Ottoman convention of the following year), a line which is not accepted by Ibn Saud as being binding upon his government.

The volume features the following principal correspondents: His Majesty's Minister at Jedda (Sir Andrew Ryan); 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. (Lieutenant-Colonel Trenchard Craven William Fowle); the 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. , Kuwait (Lieutenant-Colonel Harold Richard Patrick Dickson); the 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. , Bahrain (Lieutenant-Colonel Percy Gordon Loch); the Chief Commissioner, Aden (Bernard Rawdon Reilly, referred to in the correspondence as Resident); the Secretary of State for the Colonies (Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister); the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Sir John Simon); the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs; officials of 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 Colonial Office, the War Office, and the Air Ministry.

Matters discussed in the correspondence include the following:

  • Whether the British should press Ibn Saud [‘Abd al-‘Azīz bin ‘Abd al-Raḥmān bin Fayṣal Āl Sa‘ūd] for a general settlement of all outstanding major questions.
  • The extent of territory that the British should be prepared to include in any concession made to Ibn Saud.
  • The British response to what are referred to as Ibn Saud's 'ancestral claims' to territories east of the blue line.
  • Sir Andrew Ryan's meetings with Ibn Saud in Taif, in July 1934.
  • Meetings held at the Foreign Office between Sir Andrew Ryan, George Rendel (Head of the Foreign Office's Eastern Department), Fuad Bey Hamza (Deputy Minister for Saudi Foreign Affairs), and Hafiz Wahba (Saudi Arabian Minister in London), in September 1934.
  • The boundaries of a proposed 'desert zone', suggested by Rendel, where Ibn Saud would hold personal rather than territorial rights.
  • Saudi-Qatari relations.
  • Whether tribal boundaries should be considered as a possible solution to the boundary question.

Also included are the following:

The Arabic material consists of one item of correspondence (an English translation is included).

The volume includes a divider which gives a list of correspondence references contained in the volume by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence (folio 4).

Extent and format
1 volume (392 folios)
Arrangement

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

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the inside front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 394; 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 Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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Coll 6/67(1) 'Boundaries of South-Eastern Arabia and Qatar.' [‎173v] (351/794), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/2134, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100056574349.0x000098> [accessed 16 October 2019]

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