The khedive was practically compelled to form a government in which Arabi was minister of war and Mahmud Sami premier, and Arabi took steps to extend his influence throughout his army.
The British government intervened on behalf of the khedive and consistently maintained that the Rafa-Akaba line must be the frontier.
In 1873 a further firman placed the khedive in many respects in the position of an independent sovereign.
The khedive of Egypt has authority, delegated by the sultan, to grant this order.
In 1865 Massawa and the neighbouring coast was acquired by Egypt, the khedive Ismail entertaining projects for connecting the port by railway with the Nile.
In 1870 it was claimed by the khedive Ismail, but was not permanently occupied by Egypt until 1875.
Upon the military insurrection of September 1881, Sherif was summoned by the khedive Tewfik to form a new ministry.
The khedive had also seized Bogos, in the hinterland of Massawa, a province claimed by Abyssinia.
Arabi pleaded guilty, was sentenced to death, the sentence being commuted by the khedive to banishment; and Riaz resigned in disgust.
In vain the khedive and his prime minister, Sherif Pasha, threatened to resign, and the latter actually carried out his threat.