British Indian Ocean Territory


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British Indian Ocean Territory,

archipelago, c.1,180 mi (1,900 km), NE of Mauritius, in the central Indian Ocean. The more than 50 islands, which form the Chagos Archipelago and are located on the southern end of a chain of sea mounts that also includes LakshadweepLakshadweep
, union territory (2001 provisional pop. 60,595), 11 sq mi (28 sq km), SW India, consisting of the Laccadive, Minicoy, and Amindivi islands in the Arabian Sea off the coast of Kerala state.
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 and the MaldivesMaldives
, Divehi Divehi, officially Republic of Maldives, republic (2005 est. pop. 349,000), 115 sq mi (298 sq km), off the coast of S Asia in the N Indian Ocean. Malé is the capital and the largest island. Land and People

The Maldives stretch c.
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, were administered by MauritiusMauritius
, officially Republic of Mauritius, republic (2005 est. pop. 1,231,000), 790 sq mi (2,046 sq km), in the SW Indian Ocean. It is part of the Mascarene Islands, c.500 mi (800 km) E of Madagascar.
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, but they were made a separate dependency by the British in 1965 before Mauritius became (1968) independent. Their importance is primarily strategic; the United States and Britain maintain a major naval facility on the main island, Diego GarciaDiego Garcia,
coral island, 11 sq mi (28 sq km). Indian Ocean, largest island of the Chagos Archipelago, SW of Sri Lanka. Part of the British Indian Ocean Territory, the island was leased (1970) to the United States and later developed as a joint U.S.
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. Between 1967 and 1973 Britain evicted the Chagos islanders as the archipelago was converted to purely military use; a case brought in 1975 by islanders led to a settlement and compensation in 1982. In 2000, however, islanders secured a British court decision declaring their explusion illegal, but the British government subsequently (2004) prevented their return to the outlying Chagos islands. Islanders again successfully challenged the government in court in 2007, but the government won on appeal the following year (on the basis of the 1982 settlement), and that decision was upheld by the European Court of Human Rights in 2012 and the British Supreme Court in 2016. In 2010 the British government established one of the world's largest marine reserves (210,000 sq mi/545,000 sq km) in the waters surrounding the islands. The UN General Assembly, at Mauritius's urging, in 2017 referred the question of the Chagos Islands' legal status to the International Court of Justice. The archipelago is claimed by Mauritius, Maldives, and Seychelles.

British Indian Ocean Territory

a UK Overseas Territory in the Indian Ocean: consists of the Chagos Archipelago (formerly a dependency of Mauritius) and formerly included (until 1976) Aldabra, Farquhar, and Des Roches, now administratively part of the Seychelles. Diego Garcia is an important US naval base
References in periodicals archive ?
Circuit Holds Claims of Harms to Native Inhabitants of the British Indian Ocean Territory Caused by the Construction of a U.
After all, it was her mother, Queen Elizabeth II, who signed the Order in Council detaching the Chagos Archipelago from Mauritius, which established the British Indian Ocean Territory, and another in 2004 when Jack Straw was Foreign Secretary, banning the Chagos Islanders from returning to their homeland.
To legitimise their continued exile, the Government made an Order in Council under the royal prerogative declaring that no person had a "right of abode" in the British Indian Ocean Territory.
The recent declaration of the British Indian Ocean Territory MPA (including Chagos) increases these numbers significantly and will form the world's largest marine protected area, and a probable doubling of the area of ocean under strict protection for the recovery of marine wildlife and ecosystems.
The Chagos Archipelago and its surrounding waters comprise the British Indian Ocean Territory, an overseas territory of the U.
Interestingly, Cook was moved from his position as foreign secretary the following year, and his successor, Jack Straw, a lawyer by profession and a man much more sensitive to American anxieties (which had increased significantly after 9/11) than his predecessor, issued an "order in council" under the royal prerogative in 2004--a tactic which cleverly avoided any parliamentary scrutiny--that no person had a "right of abode" in the British Indian Ocean Territory.
He awarded summary judgment to the Attorney General, on behalf of the Government and Her Majesty's British Indian Ocean Territory Commissioner.
The ten territories involved so far are Ascension Island, Bermuda, British Antarctic Territory, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, St Helena and Tristan da Cunha.
Funding for Darwin Plus will come from Defra, FCO and DFID and will go to projects such as eradicating invasive black rats from the British Indian Ocean Territory and developing marine and fisheries management for the Pitcairn Islands.
The countries are: Ascension Island, Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, Belize, British Antarctic Territory, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, South Georgia.
In addition to thousands of personnel working in Cyprus, Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands and the British Indian Ocean Territory, the JFC also includes the Defence Academy in Wiltshire and Defence Intelligence and cyber capabilities.

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