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Confidential Print: Middle East, 1839-1969
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Confidential Print: Middle East, 1839-1969

The Confidential Print series, issued by the British Government between c. 1820 and 1970, is a fundamental building block for political, social and economic research.

The series originated out of a need to preserve the most important papers generated by the Foreign and Colonial Offices. These range from single-page letters or telegrams to comprehensive dispatches, investigative reports and texts of treaties. All items marked ‘Confidential Print’ were printed and circulated immediately to leading officials in the Foreign Office, to the Cabinet and to heads of British missions abroad.

This collection consists of the Confidential Print for the countries of the Levant and the Arabian peninsula, Iran, Turkey, Egypt and Sudan. Beginning with the Egyptian reforms of Muhammad Ali Pasha in the 1830s, the documents trace the events of the following 150 years, including the Middle East Conference of 1921, the Mandates for Palestine and Mesopotamia and the Suez Crisis in 1956, the partition of Palestine, post-Suez Western foreign policy and the Arab-Israeli conflict.

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