Southern Asia 1923: Treaty of Lausanne

Political map of South & Southwest Asia on 24 Jul 1923 (Rising Nationalism: Treaty of Lausanne), showing the following events: Treaty on the Creation of the USSR; Separation of Transjordan from Palestine; Soviet resolution on Bukhara; Treaty of Lausanne; Mosul Question.

By 1923 the Turkish War of Independence was all but over, with the Allies abandoning their attempt to partition Anatolia according to the Treaty of Sevres. At the Treaty of Lausanne, they made peace with the Turkish nationalists and recognized the new state of Turkey.


Changes to the map 2 December 1922–24 July 1923

Treaty of Lausanne: The Republic of Turkey is recognized, the Dardanelles are demilitarized, and Britain agrees to withdraw from Constantinople. Mosul is disputed between Turkey and Britain.

Yemen: Yemen has occupied Baidha and is occupying Upper Audhali on its frontier with the Aden protectorates. The independence of Yemen has been recognized at Lausanne.

Transjordan: Transjordan has been formally separated from Palestine.

Ikhwan: Saudi-based Ikhwan are raiding the outskirts of Transjordan and Hejaz, while Iraq-based Ikhwan are raiding northern Nejd.

Soviet Union: Transcaucasia has united with Soviet Russia (and Ukraine and Byelorussia) to form the Soviet Union.

British Protectorates in the Persian Gulf

The British Residency of the Persian Gulf maintained British India's influence in a number of Gulf states from the 19th Century until 1947. These states were nominally independent - and shown as such in most atlases from the period - but all signed treaties guaranteeing British control over their foreign affairs.

The Sultanate of Muscat and Oman was 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 was the region to the west of Oman which collectively signed treaties with Britain. The sheikhdoms of this region were often called the Trucial States, and later became the United Arab Emirates. However at this time they had little unity, with no regional council until 1952.

Indian Empire

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

The area under direct British rule was 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, were the hundreds of protectorates or 'princely states'. These were indirectly ruled states, the largest being Hyderabad, Kashmir, and Mysore. The others were either collected into agencies - which might in turn contain other smaller agencies - or fell under the sway of the provinces.

Main Events

30 Dec 1922 Treaty on the Creation of the USSR

After approval by delegates from the Russian SFSR, the Transcaucasian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR, and the Byelorussian SSR on 29 December, the first Congress of Soviets of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) signed the Treaty on the Creation of the USSR and the Declaration of the Creation of the USSR, uniting all four republics as the USSR or Soviet wikipedia

25 May 1923 Separation of Transjordan from Palestine

The United Kingdom formally recognizes the Emirate of Transjordan as independent from Palestine. The British will gradually relinquish control of the government, limiting their oversight to financial, military, and foreign policy wikipedia

12 Jun 1923 Soviet resolution on Bukhara

Following the fourth meeting of the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party in Moscow (9-12 June 1923), Josef Stalin, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, denounces the situation in the Bukharan People’s Soviet Republic, where he claims merchants and intellectuals hold power at the expense of the peasants. The Politburo then adopts a resolution on Bukhara, curbing the influence of the Young Bukharans in its wikipedia

24 Jul 1923 Treaty of Lausanne

The Grand National Assembly of Turkey signed the Treaty of Lausanne with the British Empire, the French Republic, the Kingdom of Italy, the Empire of Japan, the Kingdom of Greece, and the Kingdom of Romania in Lausanne, Switzerland. The treaty superseded the failed Treaty of Sèvres, defining the borders of the new Turkish Republic and recognizing it as the successor of the Ottoman Empire. The treaty also demilitarized the Daradanelles, opening the Turkish Straits to unrestricted civilian and military traffic, under the supervision of the International Straits Commission of the League of wikipedia

24 Jul 1923–13 Jan 1926 Mosul Question

Despite signing the Treaty of Lausanne, the Republic of Turkey and the Kingdom of Iraq, a British dependency, continue to dispute the possession of the oil-rich former Ottoman Vilayet of Mosul. The region is also claimed for a independent state by its Kurdish inhabitants. Eventually a League of Nations investigative commission recommends that Iraq should retain Mosul and Turkey backs down in return for a 10 percent royalty on Mosul’s oil deposits for 25 wikipedia