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International Disputes

  • Cambodia is concerned about Laos' extensive upstream dam construction
  • Cambodia and Thailand dispute sections of boundary; in 2011 Thailand and Cambodia resorted to arms in the dispute over the location of the boundary on the precipice surmounted by Preah Vihear temple ruins, awarded to Cambodia by ICJ decision in 1962 and part of a planned UN World Heritage site
  • Cambodia accuses Vietnam of a wide variety of illicit cross-border activities; progress on a joint development area with Vietnam is hampered by an unresolved dispute over sovereignty of offshore islands
  • Cameroon
  • Bakassi Peninsula - ICJ ruled in 2002 on the entire Cameroon-Nigeria land and maritime boundary but the parties formed a Joint Border Commission to resolve differences bilaterally and have commenced with demarcation in less-contested sections of the boundary, starting in Lake Chad in the north
  • The ICJ ruled on an equidistance settlement of Cameroon-Equatorial Guinea-Nigeria maritime boundary in the Gulf of Guinea, however, implementation of the decision is delayed due to imprecisely defined coordinates, the unresolved Bakasi allocation, and a sovereignty dispute between Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon over an island at the mouth of the Ntem River; Nigeria initially rejected cession of the Bakasi Peninsula
  • Lake Chad Commission continues to urge signatories Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria to ratify delimitation treaty over the lake region, which remains the site of armed clashes among local populations and militias
  • Canada
  • Maritime boundary disputes with the US at Dixon Entrance, Beaufort Sea, Strait of Juan de Fuca, and around the disputed Machias Seal Island and North Rock
  • Uncontested dispute with Denmark over Hans Island sovereignty in the Kennedy Channel between Ellesmere Island and Greenland
  • Canada, Russia, the US, Denmark [via Greenland] and Norway are staking claims in the Arctic Ocean, which may contain a quarter of the world's untapped petroleum reserves, and is becoming more accessible due to global warming; under the Convention on the Law of the Sea, they could acquire rights to Arctic seafloor territory if the areas are linked to their continental shelves; Russia made its claim in 2001, though it will make a resubmission; Canada ratified the Law on the Sea in 2003, so it has to file its claim by 2013; The United States had not ratified the Law of the Sea Convention
  • Cape Verdenone
    Cayman Islandsnone
    Central African Republic
  • Internal political instabilities with fighting and violence overlap into Chad and CAR, leaving refugees and rebel groups in both countries;
  • Sudan has pledged to work with CAR to stem violent skirmishes over water and grazing rights among related pastoral populations along the border
  • Chad
  • Civil war in Sudan overlaps into Chad as both states step up border patrols, leaving refugees and rebel groups in both countries; Chad serves as an important mediator in the Sudanese civil conflict
  • Chadian Aozou rebels reside in southern Libya
  • Lake Chad Commission continues to urge signatories Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria to ratify delimitation treaty over lake region
  • Chad rejects Nigerian request to redemarcate boundary, the site of periodic cross-border incidents
  • Chile
  • Bolivia-Chile disputes Bolivia reactivated its claim to restore the Atacama corridor, ceded to Chile in 1884, to secure sovereign maritime access for Bolivian natural gas. Chile seeks an ICJ ruling in the decades-old dispute over whether Chile has the right to use a river that crosses their shared border.
  • dispute with Peru over the economic zone delimited by the maritime boundary
  • Beagle Channel islands dispute resolved through Papal mediation in 1984, but armed incidents persist since 1992 oil discovery
  • territorial claim in Antarctica (Chilean Antarctic Territory) partially overlaps Argentine and British claims
  • China
  • Spratly Islands - a complex dispute with Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam, and possibly Brunei; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" has eased tensions but falls short of a legally binding "code of conduct" desired by several of the disputants;
  • Philippines claims sovereignty over Whitsun Reef (also claimed by both China and Vietnam), occupied by China in early 2021.
  • India-China Border - most of the rugged, militarized boundary with India is in dispute, but the two sides are committed to begin resolution with discussions on the least disputed Middle Sector;
  • Senkaku - China and Taiwan have intensified their claims to the Senkaku Islands (Diaoyu Tai) administered by Japan
  • Ieodo / Suyan Rock / Socotra Rock is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Korea, which considers it to lie within its EEZ, referring to it as Ieodo or Parangdo, and the People's Republic of China which refers to it as Suyan Rock.
  • Kashmir remains the world's largest and highly militarized territorial dispute with portions under the de facto administration of China (Aksai Chin), India (Jammu and Kashmir) and Pakistan (Azad Kashmir and Northern Areas), but recent discussion and confidence-building measures among parties are beginning to defuse tensions, India does not recognize Pakistan's ceding lands to China in a 1964 boundary agreement;
  • China continued to seek a mutually acceptable solution to the disputed alluvial islands at the confluence of the Amur and Ussuri Rivers and a small island on the Argun River as part of the 2001 Treaty of Good Neighborliness, Friendship, and Cooperation. The 400 year-old border dispute between Russia and its Eastern neighbor ended in December 2008 with a 340 square kilometer piece of land being officially placed under the Chinese flag. The half-Russian, half-Chinese island is a hundred kilometers from the city of Khabarovsk. It has two names: the Russian half is called Bolshoy Ussuriysky Island, the Chinese half is now known as "the Island of the Black Bear".
  • North Korea and China seek to stem illegal migration to China by North Koreans, fleeing privations and oppression, by building a fence along portions of the border.
  • Christmas Islandnone
    Clipperton Islandnone
    Cocos (Keeling) Islandsnone
  • Nicaragua vs Colombia Maritime dispute In December 2007, ICJ allocates San Andres, Providencia, and Santa Catalina islands to Colombia under 1928 Treaty but did not rule on 82 degrees W meridian as maritime boundary with Nicaragua; On 19 November 2012 the International Court of Justice (ICJ) found, unanimously, that the Republic of Colombia has sovereignty over the islands at Alburquerque, Bajo Nuevo, East-Southeast Cays, Quitasueño, Roncador, Serrana and Serranilla.
  • Venezuela maritime boundary dispute in the Gulf of Venezuela;
  • Venezuela provides support to Colombia insurgents, leading to periodic crises
  • Colombian drug activities penetrate Peruvian border area;
  • the continuing civil disorder in Colombia has created a serious refugee crisis in neighboring states, especially Ecuador
  • Comoros
  • claims French-administered Mayotte
  • challenges France's and Madagascar's claims to Banc du Geyser, a drying reef in the Mozambique Channel
  • in May 2008, African Union forces are called in to assist the Comoros military recapture Anjouan Island from rebels who seized it in 2001
  • Congo, Democratic Republic of the
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo is in the grip of a civil war, tribal conflict, and rebel gang fighting that has drawn in neighboring states of Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda; in the Great Lakes region and Sudan, heads of the Great Lakes states and UN pledge to end conflict, but unchecked localized violence continues unabated
  • the location of the boundary in the broad Congo River with the Republic of the Congo is indefinite except in the Pool Malebo/Stanley Pool area
  • Uganda and DRC dispute Rukwanzi island in Lake Albert and other areas on the Semliki River with hydrocarbon potential
  • boundary commission continues discussions over Congolese-administered triangle of land on the right bank of the Lunkinda river claimed by Zambia near the DRC village of Pweto
  • DRC accuses Angola of shifting monuments
  • Congo, Republic of the
  • the location of the boundary in the broad Congo River with the Democratic Republic of the Congo is indefinite except in the Pool Malebo/Stanley Pool area
  • Cook Islandsnone
    Coral Sea Islandsnone
    Costa Rica
  • Calero Island / Harbor Head - The International Court of Justice issued a final ruling 16 Decembe 2015 on the two cases raised by Nicaragua and Costa Rica over disputes along the border between the two Central American countries. The ICJ ruled in favor of Costa Rica in both cases. In the case of the disputed area of the Calero Island – as Costa Rica calls it – or Harbor Head – as Nicaragua names it – the ICJ ruled it belongs to Costa Rica.
  • Cote d'Ivoire
  • continuing rebel fighting extends to neighboring states and has kept out foreign workers from nearby countries
  • the Ivorian Government accuses Burkina Faso and Liberia of supporting Ivorian rebels; the March 2007 peace deal between Ivorian rebels and the government brought significant numbers of rebels out of hiding in neighboring states
  • Croatia
  • dispute remains with Bosnia and Herzegovina over small sections of the boundary related to maritime access that hinders ratification of the 1999 border agreement
  • the Croatia-Slovenia land and maritime boundary agreement, which would have ceded most of Pirin Bay and maritime access to Slovenia and several villages to Croatia, remains unratified and in dispute; Slovenia also protests Croatia's 2003 claim to an exclusive economic zone in the Adriatic
  • As a European Union peripheral state, Slovenia imposed a hard border Schengen regime with non-member Croatia in December 2007
  • Cuba
  • US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay is leased to US and only mutual agreement or US abandonment of the area can terminate the lease
  • Cyprus
  • Hostilities in 1974 divided the island into two de facto autonomous entities, the internationally recognized Cypriot Government and a Turkish-Cypriot community (north Cyprus); UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus maintains the buffer zone between north and south; on 1 May 2004, Cyprus entered the European Union still divided, with the EU's body of legislation and standards (acquis communitaire) suspended in the north
  • Turkey protests Cypriot Government creating hydrocarbon blocks and maritime boundary with Lebanon in March 2007
  • Czech Republic
  • Liechtenstein's royal family claims restitution for 1,600 sq km of land in the Czech Republic confiscated in 1918
  • individual Sudeten Germans seek restitution for property confiscated in connection with their expulsion after World War II
  • Austria has minor dispute with Czech Republic over the Temelin Nuclear Power Plant

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    Page last modified: 30-06-2021 11:38:43 ZULU