The Treaty Of San Stefano (1878)

The Treaty Of San Stefano (1878)

By this treaty: (1) The Sultan of Turkey recognized the complete independence of Serbia, Montenegro, and Rumania. (2) The Sultan agreed to introduce reforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina under the joint control of Russia and Austria. (3) Greater Bulgaria was to be created as an autonomous tributary state extending from the Danube River to the Aegean Sea and from the Black Sea to Albania comprising of north and south Bulgaria (Eastern Roumelia) as well as considerable part of Macedonia.

The Treaty of San Stefano was extremely favourable to the Bulgarians. It realized the vision of Greater Bulgaria. Greece and
Serbia vigorously protested against the settlement which ignored their own claims upon Macedonia. The Great Powers were also hostile to the Treaty of San Stefano on different grounds. England especially disapproved the proposal for an enlarged Bulgaria. She felt that the newly erected state of Bulgaria would become a Russian province and this would prepare a ground for her ultimate advance towards Constantinople.

Disraeli was determined to check the spread of Russian influence in the Balkans. He was convinced that the security of the sea route to India through the Mediterranean needed a strong and friendly Turkey. Austria had her own reasons for dissatisfaction. She claimed as her share of spoils the occupation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Thus, both England and Austria demanded a European Congress for revising the terms of the Treaty of San Stefano. Russia was reluctant to accept the joint demand of England and Austria. She did not want to give up her hard won benefits out of the Russo-Turkish War. However, the warlike moves of England such as ordering Indian troops to proceed to Malta and ordering the British fleet to be ready for action convinced Russia the imminent danger of a war for which she was not prepared. Under these pressures Russia had no other alternative but agree to the Anglo-Austrian demand for an European Congress for the revision of the Treaty of San Stefano.

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