Miscellaneous correspondence, reports, maps and other papers concerning the Middle East [16v] (33/220)
The record is made up of 1 file (110 folios). It was created in 27 Aug 1893-19 Dec 1918. 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 Documents collected in a private capacity. .
This transcription is created automatically. It may contain errors.
** On the other hand, the advantages seem to be considerable :—
“(a.) Complete control of the Arabian littoral of the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. .
“(fr.) Similar complete control of the arms traffic.
“ (c.) The practical exclusion of foreign Powers and influence in Central
(d.) The security induced by British suzerainty and ‘Bin Sauds strong
control of the Bedouin tribes will give a great impetus to trade
through the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. ports, probably diverting a share of what
now passes through the Red Sea ports.
“ (e.) The great influence Bin Sand has over Mohammedan opinion in Arabia,
an influence likely to increase as the Turkish Empire breaks up and
the Khalifate of the Sultan is questioned, will be a British asset.
“(/.) Bin Sand’s influence with all Arab tribes, and particularly with the
Northern Anazah, with whom our occupation of Lower Mesopotamia
will bring us in close contact.
Upon receipt of Captain Shakespear’s report, Sir P. Cox telegraphed on the
16th January, 1915, to the Government of India (17000/1385/15 : No. 49) a summary
of Bin Sand’s desiderata, and made the following further suggestions:—
“ Bin Saud should undertake :—
“ First. —To receive representative of British Government either at his
capital or sea-port or both, if desired.
“Secondly. —To agree (to) extra-territoriality for our non-Mohammedan
“ Thirdly. —To abstain from waging war by sea without our consent, and to
co-operate for the suppression of piracy.
“ Fourthly. —To protect pilgrim traffic passing through his territory.
“Fifthly. —To levy customs dues at rates which we consider reasonable,
having regard to rate prevailing at Bahrein and Koweit.
“ Sixthly. —To allow British merchant vessels to visit his ports.
“ Seventhly.—To agree to locate post office and possibly telegraph office at his
port when the time comes.”
“ I do not include any item regarding slave trade, as that is not now a
serious difficulty, and has given us no trouble at Koweit.
“ Only point regarding which it seems necessary to offer comment here is the
question of protection against external aggression by land. When we invited
Bin Saud to move on Basrah, we undertook to protect him against reprisals by
Turks, so that, as far as latter are concerned, what Bin Saud now asks us to give
does not amount to much more. Apart from Turks, Central Arabia is practically
inaccessible by land to any Power but ours, and I venture to think that we should
incur little risk by giving the desired undertaking, subject to (the) reservation
that aggression be unprovoked.
“ We have publicly declared that our object is to effect liberation of Arabs
from oppressive yoke (of) Turkey. In this case there is no question of annexation
of territory to which our allies could take exception, while Bin Saud’s weight in
scale would be no mean asset to joint cause of us all. Can I possibly be authorised
to draft a treaty on above lines for negotiation by Captain Shakespear ? I shall
not now have the opportunity of meeting Bin Saud myself.
“ I am obliged to give Bin Saud some reply by his messenger, who has orders
to return at once. I am sending Captain Shakespear purport of above additional
points and asking him to use his discretion in discussing them with Bin Saud. To
Bin Saud I am replying that I hope that an instrument safeguarding his position
can be arrived at somewhat on lines indicated, and that I have telegraphed to
Government on subject, but that treaty must necessarily take a little time to
On the 29th January, 1915, after further correspondence with Sir P. Cox
(21633/15, Nos. 3 and 8), the Viceroy telegraphed to the Jndia Office as follows
“ In order to expedite settlement, Bin Saud has himself submitted memo-
randum setting forth tentatively his proposals for formulation of treaty. These
About this item
The file contains correspondence, memoranda, maps, and other papers relating to Middle Eastern affairs and a few other miscellaneous matters. The majority of the file concerns discussions of and proposals for the post-war settlement of Near Eastern territories, including Turkey, Armenia, Georgia, Syria, Palestine, Iraq, and the Arabian Peninsula. The basis of these discussions was the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916.
Other matters covered by the papers include events in Siam [Thailand] and Burmah [Myanmar] and the colonial rivalry in the region between France and Britain, the Baghdad Railway, and relations with Ibn Saud in Arabia, including a report on the 1917-18 mission to Najd by Harry St John Philby (folios 67-98).
Folios 99-110 are six maps with accompanying notes that show the various proposed territorial settlements and spheres of influence in the Near East and one showing Britain's global colonial possessions.
Memoranda and correspondence comes from officials at the Foreign Office and 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. . Other correspondents include French and Italian government officials.
- Extent and format
- 1 file (110 folios)
The file is arranged in roughly chronological order, from the front to the back.
- Physical characteristics
Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front of the envelope with 1, and terminates at the inside back last page with 110, 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.
Pagination: the file also contains an original printed pagination sequence.
- Written in
- English and French in Latin script View the complete information for this record
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- Miscellaneous correspondence, reports, maps and other papers concerning the Middle East
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