Letter from Mr. Griffin to Amir Abdul Rahman Khan :: Khyber.ORG

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Letter from Mr. Griffin to Ameer Abdul Rahman Khan

...After compliments

"His Excellency the Viceroy and Governor-General in Council has learnt with pleasure that Your Highness has proceeded toward Kabul, in accordance with the invitation of the British Government. Therefore, in consideration of the friendly sentiments by which Your Highness is animated, and of the advantage to be derived by the Sirdars and people from the establishment of a settled government under Your Highness's authority, the British Government recognises Your Highness as Amir of Kabul.

I am further empowered, on the part of the Viceroy and Governor-General of India, to inform Your Highness that the British Government has no desire to interfere in the internal Government of the territories in the possession of Your Highness, and has no wish that an English Resident should be stationed anywhere within those territories. For the convenience of ordinary friendly intercourse, such as is maintained between two adjoining States, it may be advisable that a Mahommedan Agent of the British Government should reside, by agreement, at Kabul.

Your Highness has requested that the views and intentions of the British Government with regard to the position of the ruler at Kabul in relation to Foreign Powers should be placed on record for Your Highness's information. The Viceroy and Governor-General in Council authorises me to declare to you that since the British Government admits no right of interference by Foreign Powers within Afghanistan, and since both Russia and Persia are pledged to abstain from all interference with the affairs of Afghanistan, it is plain that Your Highness can have no political relations with any Foreign Power except with the British Government. If any Foreign Power should attempt to interfere in Afghanistan, and if such interference should lead to unprovoked aggression on the dominions of Your Highness, in that event the British Government would be prepared to aid you, to such extent and in such manner as may appear to the British Government necessary, in repelling it; provided that Your Highness follows unreservedly the advice of the British Government in regard to your external relations.

This letter, generally referred to as the letter from the Foreign Secretary, dated July 20, 1880, was sealed by Griffin and delivered by him during the Zimma meeting.