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Heads Of Agreement

Volume 531: debated on Wednesday 28 July 1954

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It is agreed between the Egyptian and British Delegations that with a view to establishing Anglo-Egyptian relations on a new basis of mutual understanding and firm friendship, and taking into account their obligations under the United Nations Charter, an agreement regarding the Suez Canal Base should now be drafted on the following lines.

2. The agreement will last until the expiry of seven years from the date of signature. During the last twelve months of this period the two Governments will consult together to decide what arrangements are necessary upon the termination of the agreement.

3. Parts of the present Suez Canal Base will be kept in efficient working order in accordance with the requirements set forth in Annex 1 and capable of immediate use in accordance with the following paragraph.

4.

  • (i) In the event of an armed attack by an outside Power on Egypt, on any country which at the date of signature of the present agreement is a party to the Treaty of Joint Defence between Arab League States or on Turkey, Egypt will afford to the United Kingdom such facilities as may be necessary in order to place the Base on a war footing and to operate it effectively. These facilities will include the use of Egyptian ports within the limits of what is strictly indispensable for the above-mentioned purposes.
  • (ii) In the event of a threat of an attack on any of the above-mentioned countries, there shall be immediate consultation between the United Kingdom and Egypt.
  • 5. The organisation of the Base will be in accordance with Annex 1 attached.

    6. The United Kingdom will be accorded the right to move any British material into or out of the Base at its discretion. There will be no increase above the level of supplies to be agreed upon without the consent of the Egyptian Government.

    7. Her Majesty's forces will be completely withdrawn from Egyptian territory according to a schedule to be established in due course within a period of twenty months from the date of signature of this agreement. The Egyptian Government will afford all necessary facilities for the movement of men and material in this connexion.

    8. The agreement will recognise that the Suez Maritime Canal, which is an integral part of Egypt, is a waterway economically, commercially and strategically of international importance, and will express the determination of both parties to uphold the 1888 Convention guaranteeing the freedom of navigation of the Canal.

    9. The Egyptian Government will afford overflying, landing and servicing facilities for notified flights of aircraft under R.A.F. control. For the clearance of any flights the Egyptian Government will extend most favoured nation treatment.

    10. There will be questions of detail to be covered in the drafting of the agreement including the storage of oil, the financial arrangements necessary, and other detailed matters of importance to both sides. These will be settled by friendly agreement in negotiations which will begin forthwith.