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The Foreign Office is a branch of the British government that concerned with foreign affairs. Founded in 1782, the office is responsible for promoting and protecting British interests abroad. It is led by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, who is in charge of negotiating all treaties with foreign states. Its headquarters are located on King Charles Street in Whitehall, London.

In May 1889, during the tenure of Lord Holdhurst as Foreign Secretary, a secret treaty between the UK and Italy was stolen from the office of his nephew Percy Phelps. Sherlock Holmes investigated the case at Phelps' behest in The Adventure of the Naval Treaty.

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