The Fashoda Crisis begins as French forces arrive and build a fort at Fashoda (Kothok, South Sudan) on the White Nile, to stake France’s territorial claim of the area. Fashoda is strategically important because it lies at the intersection of two imaginary lines across Africa – one north to south from Cairo to Cape Town and one east to west from French Somaliland to Dakar in French Senegal. British and Egyptian forces fighting together to control Sudan will soon arrive, numbering ten times the French garrison, and will politely enquire what the French are doing. However, in Paris and London, a diplomatic crisis will erupt that will nearly lead to war. With no public support in France for a war in Sudan, Paris will withdraw from Fashoda on 6 November, leaving undisputed control of Sudan to Britain and Egypt (until 1956). However, by withdrawing, France gains an ally in London that whose support will be critical when France and Germany go to war (World War I). Throughout the crisis, the Sudanese people whose lands are coveted by Europeans are not involved or considered.