Political map of South & Southwest Asia on 10 Aug 1920 (Anglo-French Overreach: Treaty of Sèvres), showing the following events: Wilsonian Armenia; Treaty of Sèvres.

Treaty of Sèvres

Anglo-French Overreach

Southern Asia 1920.081

Treaty of Sèvres

Indian independence movement, Turkish war of independence, Middle East transformed (10 August 1920)

Historical Map of South & Southwest Asia

The seizure of Arab Syria cemented France's claim to the region just in time for the Treaty of Sèvres the following month. Here much of the Ottoman Empire was partitioned among the British, French, Greeks, and Armenians. However in reality the Treaty was essentially worthless as it was the Turkish Nationalists, not the Ottomans, who now ruled Turkey.


Changes to the map 25 July 1920 - 10 August 1920

Treaty of Sevres: The Treaty sees the Greek border shifted east to include the region around Smyrna and eastern Thrace. The British claims to Palestine and Mesopotamia, including Mosul, have been confirmed. The French have their position in Syria and Cilicia recognized. The Armenians have been granted large tracts in eastern Anatolia, including Erzurum and Trabzon. Furthermore the remaining Ottoman rump state is subjected to the demilitarization of the Straits, an Italian zone of influence in the southwest, and British and French zones of influence in the southeast. However, due to the Turkish Nationalist rejection of the Treaty, these claims and zones are only effective where the Allies have military forces.

Syria and the Levant: The French have consolidated their hold over the Syrian interior. However in the south - which was agreed to be British according to the Sykes-Picot Agreement - Jordanian sheikdoms maintain their independence.

Arabia: The Kingdom of Hejaz has been recognized by the Treaty of Sevres. The Ikhwan of Mutayr have turned to raiding Kuwait after ibn Saud bypassed their lucrative overland routes by building ports to the south. Upper Asir has been annexed by Nejd (although some sources say it has become a protectorate of Hejaz).

British Protectorates in the Persian Gulf

The British Residency of the Persian Gulf maintains British India influence in a number of Gulf states. These states are nominally independent - and shown as such in most atlases from the period - but have all signed treaties guaranteeing British control over their foreign affairs.

The Sultanate of Muscat and Oman is the only one of these states with significant international relations, having obtained trade agreements with the US and France before it signed its treaty with Britain. Maps of the time often show Trucial Oman and even Qatar as regions of Oman.

Trucial Oman is the region to the west of Oman which collectively signed treaties with Britain. The sheikhdoms of this region are often called the Trucial States, and will become the United Arab Emirates. However at this time they have little unity, with no regional council until 1952.

Indian Empire

The British Indian Empire, also known as the British Raj, is comprised of a complex of presidencies, provinces, protectorates, and agencies. Only the top level subdivisions are shown here.

The area under direct British rule is known as British India and made up of presidencies and provinces - a presidency simply being the name for an older province.

Outside British India, but often included within the sphere of the presidencies/provinces, are the hundreds of protectorates or 'princely states'. These are indirectly ruled states, the largest being Hyderabad, Kashmir, and Mysore. The others are either collected into agencies - which may in turn contain other smaller agencies - or fall under the sway of the provinces.

Main Events

Wilsonian Armenia

The Treaty of Sèvres extends the western boundary of the Republic of Armenia to include the Ottoman vilayets of Erzurum, Bitlis, and Van - regions which had significant Armenian populations before 1914 - as well as the Black Sea port of Trabzon. However despite US President Woodrow Wilson's backing of the proposal, the United States Senate rejects both the Treaty of the Sèvres and the mandate for Armenia.

Treaty of Sèvres

The Treaty of Sèvres is signed between the Ottoman Empire and the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Japan, and a number of minor Allied Powers including Greece and Armenia in Sèvres, France. The Treaty cedes large parts of the Ottoman Empire to Britain, France, Greece, and Armenia, and establishes European spheres of influence in the remaining territory.

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