France had a desire to conquer Morocco and under the general agreement of the Entente Cordial Great Britain would not oppose it.

France wanted to extend control over Morocco. Germany opposed it.

The First Morocco Crisis - 1905

To test the resolve of Great Britain and France the German government arranged for the Kaiser to visit Morocco in March 1905, where he made a speech suggesting that Germany was interested in occupying Morocco.

The crisis was eventually settled at the Conference of Algeciras in January 1906 where France was officially recognised as having the rights to Morocco. Germany and Austria were opposed to this but were forced to accept the decision.

The Second Morocco Crisis - Agadir - 1911

In 1911 there was a revolution in Morocco and the French sent an army to restore the government. Under the pretext that they were protecting German nationals in Morocco the Germans sent a gunboat, The Panther, to the Moroccan port of Agadir. The true intention was to intimidate the French.

Britain was enraged by this and it prompted a speech by the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, David Lloyd George, in which he stated that 'Britain's interests were vitally affected'. Britain started to make preparations for war.

The crisis was finally resolved in November 1911 when there was an agreement that France was to be allowed a free hand in Morocco in exchange for handing over some territory in the Congo region of central Africa to Germany.

How did the Morocco Crisis' contribute to the outbreak of World War One?

It increased the tension between Germany and Great Britain and seemed to support the idea that Germany was trying to 'muscle in' on the British and French colonies.

Germany was forced to back down and was perceived to be the looser. This increased German resentment towards the British and French.

It re-enforced the Entente Cordial between Britain and France and drove them closer together.