Montreux Convention (1936)

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agreement of 1936 giving turkey sovereignty over the turkish straits.

Under the Treaty of Lausanne (1923), the Turkish Straits (the Dardanelles, the Sea of Marmara, and the Bosporus) were demilitarized and placed under international control. This settlement infringed on Turkish sovereignty, and after repeated demands by Turkey to reform the relevant clauses of the Lausanne agreement, the Montreux Convention was signed on 20 July 1936. Under the terms of the convention, sovereignty of the Straits reverted to Turkey, and the Turks were permitted to remilitarize the Straits as they saw fit. Furthermore, passage of the Straits in times of war was to be restricted to non-belligerents. All of the Lausanne powers endorsed the convention, with the exception of Italy and the addition of the USSR. Britain was represented by Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden. Alarmed by the growing power of Nazi Germany, Eden and the other European signatories felt it expedient to mollify Turkey.


Lenczowski, George. The Middle East in World Affairs, 4th edition. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1980.

Shimoni, Yaacov, and Levine, Evyatar, eds. Political Dictionary of the Middle East in the Twentieth Century, revised edition. New York: Quadrangle/New York Times, 1974.

zachary karabell

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Montreux Convention

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