рефераты бесплатно



Nile''; but this claim was not recognized either by France or by the Congo

Free State. From her base on the Congo, France was busily engaged pushing

forward along the northern tributaries of the great river. On the 27th of

April 1887 an agreement was signed with the Congo Free State by which the

right bank of the Ubangi river was secured to French influence, and the

left bank to the Congo Free State. The desire of France to secure a footing

in the upper Nile valley was partly due, as has been seen, to her anxiety

to extend a French zone across Africa, but it was also and to a large

The contest for the upper Nile.

extent attributable to the belief, widely entertained in France, that by

establishing herself on the upper Nile France could regain the position in

Egyptian affairs which she had sacrificed in 1882. With these strong

inducements France set steadily to work to consolidate her position on the

tributary streams of the upper Congo basin, preparatory to crossing into

the valley of the upper Nile. Meanwhile a similar advance was being made

from the Congo Free State northwards and eastwards. King Leopold had two

objects in view—-to obtain control of the rich province of the Bahr-el-

Ghazal and to secure an outlet on the Nile. Stations were established on

the Welle river, and in February 1891 Captain van Kerckhoven left

Leopoldville for the upper Welle with the most powerful expedition which

had, up to that time, been organized by the Free State. After some heavy

fighting the expedition reached the Nile in September 1892, and opened up

communications with the remains of the old Egyptian garrison at Wadelai.

Other expeditions under Belgian officers penetrated into the Bahr-el-

Ghazal, and it was apparent that King Leopold proposed to rely on effective

occupation as an answer to any claims which might be advanced by either

Great Britain or France. The news of what was happening in this remote

region Of Africa filtered through to Europe very slowly, but King Leopold

was warned on several occasions that Great Britain would not recognize any

claims by the Congo Free State on the Bahr-el-Ghazal. The difficulty was,

however, that neither from Egypt, whence the road was barred by the khalifa

(the successor of the mahdi), nor from Uganda, which was far too remote

from the coast to serve as the base of a large expedition, could a British

force be despatched to take effective occupation of the upper Nile valley.

There was, therefore, danger lest the French should succeed in establishing

themselves on the upper Nile before the preparations which were being made

in Egypt for ``smashing'' the khalifa were completed.

In these circumstances Lord Rosebery, who was then British foreign

minister, began, and his successor, the 1st earl of

The Anglo-Congolese agreement of 1894.

Kimberley, completed, negotiations with King Leopold which resulted in the

conclusion of the Anglo-Congolese agreement of 12th May 1894. By this

agreement King Leopold recognized the British sphere of influence as laid

down in the Anglo-German agreement of July 1890, and Great Britain granted

a lease to King Leopold of certain territories in the western basin of the

upper Nile, extending on the Nile from a point on Lake Albert to Fashoda,

and westwards to the Congo-Nile watershed. The practical effect of this

agreement was to give the Congo Free State a lease, during its sovereign's

lifetime, of the old Bahr-el-Ghazal province, and to secure after His

Majesty's death as much of that territory as lay west of the 30th meridian,

together with access to a port on Lake Albert, to his successor. At the

same time the Congo Free State leased to Great Britain a strip of

territory, 15 1/2 m. in breadth, between the north end of Lake Tanganyika

and the south end of Lake Albert Edward. This agreement was hailed as a

notable triumph for British diplomacy. But the triumph was short-lived. By

the agreement of July 1890 with Germany, Great Britain had been reluctantly

compelled to abandon her hopes of through communication between the British

spheres in the northern and southern parts of the continent, and to Consent

to the boundary of German East Africa marching with the eastern frontier of

the Congo Free State. Germany frankly avowed that she did not wish to have

a powerful neighbour interposed between herself and the Congo Free State.

It was obvious that the new agreement would effect precisely what Germany

had declined to agree to in 1890. Accordingly Germany protested in such

vigorous terms that, on the 22nd of June 1894, the offending article was

withdrawn by an exchange of notes between Great Britain and the Congo Free

State. Opinion in France was equally excited by the new agreement. It was

obvious that the lease to the Congo Free State was intended to exclude

France from the Nile by placing the Congo Free State as a barrier across

her path. Pressure was brought to bear on King Leopold, from Paris, to

renounce the rights acquired under the agreement, and on the 14th of August

1894 King Leopold signed an agreement with France by which, in exchange for

France's acknowledgment of the Mbomu river as his northern frontier, His

Majesty renounced all occupation and all exercise of political influence

west of 30 deg. E., and north of a line drawn from that meridian to the

Nile along 5 deg. 30' N.

This left the way still open for France to the Nile, and in June 1896

Captain J. Marchand left France with secret instructions to lead an

expedition into the Nile valley. On the 1st of March in the following year

he left Brazzaville, and began a journey which all but plunged Great

Britain and France into war. The difficulties which Captain Marchand had to

overcome were mainly those connected with transport. In October 1897 the

expedition reached the banks of the Sue, the waters of which eventually

flow into the Nile. Here a post was established and the ``Faidherbe,'' a

steamer which had been carried across the Congo-Nile watershed in sections,

was put together and launched. On the 1st of May 1898 Marchand started on

the final stage of his journey, and reached Fashoda on the 10th of July,

having established a chain of posts en route. At Fashoda the French flag

was at once raised, and a ``treaty'' made with the local chief. Meanwhile

other expeditions had been concentrating on

The French at Fashoda.

Fashoda—a mud-flat situated in a swamp, round which for many months raged

the angry passions of two great peoples. French expeditions, with a certain

amount of assistance from the emperor Menelek of Abyssinia, had been

striving to reach the Nile from the east, so as to join hands with Marchand

and complete the line of posts into the Abyssinian frontier. In this,

however, they were unsuccessful. No better success attended the expedition

under Colonel (afterwards Sir) Ronald Macdonald, R.E., sent by the British

government from Uganda to anticipate the French in the occupation of the

upper Nile. It was from the north that claimants arrived to dispute with

the French their right to Fashoda, and all that the occupation of that

dismal post implied. In 1896 an Anglo-Egyptian army, under the direction of

Sir Herbert (afterwards Lord) Kitchener, had begun to advance southwards

for the reconquest of the Egyptian Sudan. On the 2nd of September 1898

Khartum was captured, and the khalifa's army dispersed. It was then that

news reached the Anglo-Egyptian commander, from native sources, that there

were white men flying a strange flag at Fashoda. The sirdar at once

proceeded in a steamer up the Nile, and courteously but firmly requested

Captain Marchand to remove the French flag. On his refusal the Egyptian

flag was raised close to the French flag, and the dispute was referred to

Europe for adjustment between the British and French governments. A

critical situation ensued. Neither government was inclined to give way, and

for a time war seemed imminent. Happily Lord Salisbury was able to

announce, on the 4th of November, that France was willing to recognize the

British claims, and the incident was finally closed on the 21st of March

1899, when an Anglo-French declaration was signed, by the terms of which

France withdrew from the Nile valley and accepted a boundary line which

satisfied her earlier ambition by uniting the whole of her territories in

North, West and Central Africa into a homogeneous whole, while effectually

preventing the realization of her dream of a transcontinental empire from

west to east. By this declaration it was agreed that the dividing line

between the British and French spheres, north of the Congo Free State,

should follow the Congo-Nile water-parting up to its intersection with the

11th parallel of north latitude, from which point it was to be ``drawn as

far as the 15th parallel in such a manner as to separate in principle the

kingdom of Wadai from what constituted in 1882 the province of Darfur,''

but in no case was it to be drawn west of the 21st degree of east

longitude, or east of the 23rd degree. From the 15th parallel the line was

continued north and north-west to the intersection of the Tropic of Cancer

with 16 deg. E. French influence was to prevail west of this line, British

influence to the east. Wadai was thus definitely assigned to France.

When, by the declaration of the 21st of March 1899, France renounced all

territorial ambitions in the upper Nile basin, King

Fate of the Bar-el-Ghazal.

Leopold revived his claims to the Bahr-el-Ghazal province under the terms

of the lease granted by Article 2 of the Anglo-Congolese agreement of 1894.

This step he was encouraged to take by the assertion of Lord Salisbury, in

his capacity as secretary of state for foreign affairs during the

negotiations with France concerning Fashoda, that the lease to King Leopold

was still in full force. But the assertion was made simply as a declaration

of British right to dispose of the territory, and the sovereign of the

Congo State found that there was no disposition in Great Britain to allow

the Bahr-el-Ghazal to fall into his hands. Long and fruitless negotiations

ensued. The king at length (1904) sought to force a settlement by sending

armed forces into the province. Diplomatic representations having failed to

secure the withdrawal of these forces, the Sudan government issued a

proclamation which had the effect of cutting off the Congo stations from

communication with the Nile, and finally King Leopold consented to an

agreement, signed in London on the 9th of May 1906, whereby the 1894 lease

was formally annulled. The Bahr-el-Ghazal thenceforth became undisputedly

an integral part of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. King Leopold had, however, by

virtue of the 1894 agreement administered the comparatively small portion

of the leased area in which his presence was not resented by France. This

territory, including part of the west bank of the Nile and known as the

Lado Enclave, the 1906 agreement allowed King Leopold to ``continue during

his reign to occupy.'' Provision was made that within six months of the

termination of His Majesty's reign the enclave should be handed over to the

Sudan government (see CONGO FREE STATE.) In this manner ended the long

struggle for supremacy on the upper Nile, Great Britain securing the

withdrawal of all European rivals.

The course of events in the southern half of the continent may now be

traced. By the convention of the 14th of February

Portugal's trans-African schemes.

1885, in which Portugal recognized the sovereignty of the Congo Free State,

and by a further convention concluded with France in 1886, Portugal secured

recognition of her claim to the territory known as the Kabinda enclave,

lying north of the Congo, but not to the northern bank of the river. By the

same convention of 1885 Portugal's claim to the southern bank of the river

as far as Noki (the limit of navigation from the sea) had been admitted.

Thus Portuguese possessions on the west coast extended from the Congo to

the mouth of the Kunene river. In the interior the boundary with the Free

State was settled as far as the Kwango river, but disputes arose as to the

right to the country of Lunda, otherwise known as the territory of the

Muato Yanvo. On the 25th of May 1891 a treaty was signed at Lisbon, by

which this large territory was divided between Portugal and the Free State.

The interior limits of the Portuguese possessions in Africa south of the

equator gave rise, however, to much more serious discussions than were

involved in the dispute as to the Muato Yanvo's kingdom. Portugal, as has

been stated, claimed all the territories between Angola and Mozambique, and

she succeeded in inducing both France and Germany, in 1886, to recognize

the king of Portugal's ``right to exercise his sovereign and civilizing

influence in the territories which separate the Portuguese possessions or

Angola and Mozambique.'' The publication of the treaties containing this

declaration, together with a map showing Portuguese claims extending over

the whole of the Zambezi valley, and over Matabeleland to the south and the

greater part of Lake Nyasa to the north, immediately provoked a formal

protest from the British government. On the 13th of August 1887 the British

charge d'affaires at Lisbon transmitted to the Portuguese minister for

foreign affairs a memorandum from Lord Salisbury, in which the latter

formally protested ``against any claims not founded on occupation,'' and

contended that the doctrine of effective occupation had been admitted in

principle by all the parties to the Act of Berlin. Lord Salisbury further

stated that ``Her Majesty's government cannot recognize Portuguese

sovereignty in territory not occupied by her in sufficient strength to

enable her to maintain order, protect foreigners and control the natives.''

To this Portugal replied that the doctrine of effective occupation was

expressly confined by the Berlin Act to the African coast, but at the same

time expeditions were hastily despatched up the Zambezi and some of its

tributaries to discover traces of former Portuguese occupation.

Matabeleland and the districts of Lake Nyasa werespecially mentioned in the

British protest as countries in which Her Majesty's government took a

special interest. As a matter of fact the extension of British influence

northwards to the Zambezi had engaged the attention of the British

authorities ever since the appearance of Germany in South-West Africa and

the declaration of a British protectorate over Bechuanaland. There were

rumours of German activity in Matabeleland, and

Rhodesia secured for Great Britain.

of a Boer trek north of the Limpopo. Hunters and explorers had reported in

eulogistic terms on the rich goldfields and healthy plateau lands of

Matabeleland and Mashonaland, over both of which countries a powerful

chief, Lobengula, claimed authority. There were many suitors for

Lobengula's favours; but on the 11th of February 1888 he signed a treaty

with J. S. Moffat, the assistant commissioner in Bechuanaland, the effect

of which was to place all his territory under British protection. Both the

Portuguese and the Transvaal Boers were chagrined at this extension of

British influence. A number of Boers attempted unsuccessfully to trek into

the country, and Portugal opposed her ancient claims to the new treaty. She

contended that Lobengula's authority did not extend over Mashonaland, which

she claimed as part of the Portuguese province of Sofala.

Meanwhile preparations were being actively made by British capitalists

for the exploitation of the mineral and other resources of Lobengula's

territories. Two rival syndicates obtained, or claimed to have obtained,

concessions from Lobengula; but in the summer of 1889 Cecil Rhodes

succeeded in amalgamating the conflicting interests, and on the 29th of

October of that year the British government granted a charter to the

British South Africa Company (see RHODESIA.) The first article of the

charter declared that ``the principal field of the operations'' of the

company ``shall be the region of South Africa lying immediately to the

north of British Bechuanaland, and to the north and west of the South

African Republic, and to the west of the Portuguese dominions.'' No time

was lost in making preparations for effective occupation. On the advice of

F. C. Selous it was determined to despatch an expedition to eastern

Mashonaland by a new route, which would avoid the Matabele country. This

plan was carried out in the summer of 1890, and, thanks to the rapidity

with which the column moved and Selous's intimate knowledge of the country,

the British flag was, on the 11th of September, hoisted at a spot on the

Makubusi river, where the town of Salisbury now stands, and the country

taken possession of in the name of Queen Victoria. Disputes with the

Portuguese ensued, and there were several frontier incidents which for a

time embittered the relations between the two countries.

Meanwhile, north of the Zambezi, the Portuguese were making desperate but

futile attempts to repair the neglect

Anglo-Portuguese disputes in Central Africa.

Страницы: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19

Copyright © 2012 г.
При использовании материалов - ссылка на сайт обязательна.