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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1951. The Near East and Africa

Egypt,   pp. 343-444 PDF (39.2 MB)

Page 345

   2. It would be agreed that the common aim of the British and
 Egyptian Governments was the establishment of self-government
 in the Sudan as soon as practicable. Thereafter, the Sudanese people
 would have the right to choose freely the form of government under
 which they desired to live.
   3. The wide differences of race, religion and political development
 requires the closest cooperation between Egypt and Great Britain
 with the Sudanese.
   If these principles were agreed to they would be embodied in an
 exchange of notes in which the Egyptians would state their views on
 what they thought the future of the Sudan should be. The British
 would reply welcoming that system or any other which the people
 of the Sudan might choose. (Wardle-Smith prefers the word accepting
 instead of welcoming and hopes to persuade his Ambassador in this
   The agreement might also provide for a standing Anglo-Egyptian
 Sudanese Supervisory Council which would be established for the
 specific purpose of putting into effect the principles enumerated in
 the proposed exchange of notes.
   The British Embassy feels that the Egyptians may not find these
 proposals acceptable. However, it believes that there would be a tac-
 tical advantage to having such refusal on record. It would give the
 British a good moral case as far as world opinion goes, in that the
 Egyptians would be on record against an arrangement providing for
 self-determination after the achievement of self-government.
   This Embassy is in entire concurrence with the view taken by the
 British Ambassador, namely that Anglo-Egyptian negotiations can-
 not be concluded on the basis of a "defense" settlement alone.
 Sudan has been far too much of a political issue in Egypt to be totally
 ignored in a prospective settlement of outstanding Anglo-Egyptian
 problems. There is a chance, however, that the British proposal out-
 lined above, would prove acceptable. It is essentially a face-saving
 device for the Egyptians, as it gives very little away of the British
 position on the Sudan. Self-government must be established as soon
 as "practicable". The Sudanese would have the right to determine
 what form of government they desired. The crux of the matter might
 well rest on such variance of wording as "welcoming" versus "accept-
 ing" the Sudanese decision. The Egyptians might well regard the
 word "accepting" as a form of concomittent which would be sold
 the Egyptian public.
 The second part of this despatch deals with the current thinking
 of the British Chiefs of Staff, and what they propose recommending
 to Foreign Secretary Bevin. (Paragraph 7 of reference telegram)
 The Chiefs of Staff have examined the prospect of a "temporary"
base in Israel. They found that it would cost approximately 50 million
pounds and 8 years to construct.

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