The object of which will be to consider a solution of the Eastern question
In virtue of the resolutions arrived at by the Council assembled on the 25 th January in Paris, a Conference is to be held in London on the 21 st February, in which the delegates of the Allied Powers as well as those of the Ottoman and Greek Governments will take part and the object of which will be to consider a solution of the Eastern question. It is believed that current events will necessitate alterations being made in the existing Treaty.
The collaboration of the Imperial Government is made dependent on Mustapha Kemal Pasha and all the other delegates from Angora, provided with the necessary full powers, being members of the Otto man delegation. These resolutions have been made known through the representatives of the Allied Powers in Stambul. I await your decision and your reply, in order that the persons whom you will chose will meet those we shall gather here and leave with them together. In view of the special importance of this I request you to give orders that the telegraph lines shall be kept free for communications on this subject.
I am awaiting your answer at the telegraph instrument in the hope that it will be possible for you to reply at once. A telegram in cipher will follow this one. Tewfik.
The telegram in cipher was worded thus:
Stambul, 8 p.m. 27 th January, 1921. To His Excellency Mustapha Kemal Pasha. We have just this moment heard from a reliable source that the Greeks, in order to obtain more influence at the London Conference, are sending an Army Corps to Smyrna and that they are moving the troops they have in Thrace to Anatolia. It is expected that they will begin their attack in about ten days. Tewfik.
I sent the following reply:
Angora, 28 th January, 1921. To His Highness Tewfik Pasha, Stambul.
Reply to your telegram of the 27*^ January, 1921.
The only lawful and independent sovereign power which is based on the national will and which governs the fate of Turkey is the Grand National Assembly, which is permanently sitting in council at Angora. It is the Government of this Assembly alone which is author ised to settle all questions relating to Turkey, and to it alone every appeal must be made on questions that relate in any way to foreign countries. No other body existing in Stambul has any lawful and legitimate authority.
Consequently, the fact that such a body calls itself a government is in clear contradiction to the sovereign rights of the nation, and it is not entitled to make use of the expression “Government” in respect to itself in dealings with foreign countries and claiming to be an authority that must be appealed to on questions that concern the life of the country and of the nation. The duty which your body has to fulfil and which conscience and patriotism dictate is to accept and to proclaim according to the actual condition of affairs that the lawful Government of the nation and the country to whom everybody must appeal is at Angora. Although there is no doubt that the Entente Powers are perfectly clear about the fact that the Government pos sessing the lawful power in the name of our nation and our country is at Angora, the hesitancy which these Powers show in proclaiming their point of view on this question is due to their belief that it would be better for them if there were a mediatory body in StambuL