On April 14, 1917, a provisional agreement was reached between British and French Prime Ministers David Lloyd George and Alexandre Ribot, as well as with Italian Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Paolo Boselli and Sidney Sonnino, to settle Italian interests in the Ottoman Empire, in particular Article 9 of the Treaty of London. [38] The agreement was necessary by the Allies to secure the position of the Italian armed forces in the Middle East. In May, Clayton Balfour said that in response to a proposal that the agreement was contentious, Picot had “admitted that a significant revision was needed given the changes in the situation since the agreement was drafted,” but nonetheless considered that “the agreement was in any case valid in principle.” On the eve of Sykes-Picot`s centenary in 2016, the media[109] and science[110] generated great interest in the long-term effects of the agreement. First Sykes in early May, then Picot and Sykes traveled together to the Hejas in May to discuss the deal with Faisal and Hussein. [55]:166 Hussein was persuaded to accept a formula that preferred that the French in Syria should have the same policy as the British in Baghdad; As Hussein believed that Baghdad would be part of the Arab state, this had finally satisfied him.