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Durham e-Theses
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British political relation with Kuwait 1890-1921

Al-Khatrash, F. A. (1970) British political relation with Kuwait 1890-1921. Masters thesis, Durham University.



This thesis concerns British political relations with Kuwait between 1890 and 1921. The first notable ruler in this period was Sheikh Muarak who assumed power in 1896 through the assassination of his brothers. At first he faced difficulties from the Turks, and he therefore signed a secret agreement with Britain in 1899 for protection. By this agreement he undertook not to sell, lease or contract with any foreign power except Britain. At the same Russia and Germany were trying to secure a port or coaling station on the gulf. This of course threatened British interests in the area, especially proposals to make Kuwait a terminus of the Baghdad railway. Turkey in turn endeavoured to strengthen her position by attempting to exile Sheikh Mubarak and by occupying Umm Qasar, Bubiyan and Safwan. Britain denounced this as a disturbance of the “Status quo” and appointed a political resident to Kuwait in 1904. In 1913, After two years of negotiations, Britain and turkey finally reached agreement about Kuwait but the first World war prevented its ratification. Britain thus declared Kuwait an independent principality under British protection. Mubarak was succeeded by Sheikh Salim in 1917, bringing a great change in Anglo-Kuwaiti relations. Salim secretly gave active support to the Turks in the war, causing the British difficulties in enforcing the blockade they instituted. Salim also suffered from strained relations with Ibn Sa’udi over tribal matters and boundaries, culminating in a war for which Kuwait paid dearly, and in British arbitration to end the conflict. Sheikh Salim’s reign lasted from 1917 to 1921 and was critical period for Kuwait in her relations both with Britain and with Sa’udi Arabia. Developments in Kuwait during this period illustrate the growing interest and influence of the European power in the area as the Ottoman empire disintegrated.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Thesis Date:1970
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:14 Mar 2014 16:23

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