Tension mounts in the Balkans
A photograph of a large group of Macedonian insurgents ca 1912-13. Bulgarian and Serbian claims over Macedonia are part of the wider unrest in the Balkan region Photo: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

Tension mounts in the Balkans

Published: 16 June 1913

Despite diplomatic efforts of Russia, war between Bulgaria and Serbia edged closer in recent days.

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia sent an identical telegram to the kings of both nations offering mediation and warning against war. Such a war, he said, would be a ‘criminal struggle’ which would ‘dim the glory that they have in common.’

The dispute between Bulgaria and Serbia over territorial claims for Macedonia is part of wider unrest in the region.

The Ottoman Empire, still reeling from its defeat by the combined forces of Bulgaria, Serbia and the other members Balkan League, was shocked this week by the assassination of Mahmud Shefket Pasha, the Sultan's Grand Vizier and War Minister.

He was killed as he travelled through Constantinople when four men in a motor-car fired at least ten bullets at him and his companions. His aide-de-camp, Naval Lieutenant Ibrahim Bey, was also killed in the attack.

 

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